Wednesday, September 30, 2015

List: Ten things brides should not worry about.

My wedding came and went quicker than anything I’ve ever experienced before.
I still can’t believe we hit our two month anniversary last Saturday.  Where does life go?!
Next up is my brother and his fiancé who are all set to get married next October.
They are planning their wedding with an entirely different approach than we did.
They booked 80% of their wedding before they were even engaged for 4 months.
We waited until we had about 9 months to go to start the major planning and book vendors.

With their strategy, they set aside a whole year to worry about the little things.
Not only is it driving our family bananas, but they aren’t taking time to enjoy their engagement.
Now that I’ve lived through the whole experience, I can give my honest opinion on a few things.
There are many things that can drive a future bride crazy that really don’t deserve to be stressed.
This list is dedicated to my future sister in law and my loving brother.

Ten things not worth stressing over while planning your wedding.

1.  Engagement Photographs
While this may be nice to do, it’s certainly not a necessity.
This is money and time that can be devoted elsewhere.
Besides, why can’t you let a friend play photographer and do it yourself?!

2.  The Bridal Party Beauty Plan
While you can pick their dress, shoes, and hair style, getting it done is their problem.
It’s their responsibility to book all of their appointments and to get there on time.
You already have a million things to do.  Let your bridal party get wrinkles over this one.

3.  Bridal Registry
Some people prefer to do this and others skip it completely.
Fact is, most people are going to give you cash for your wedding, not browse your registry.
Cash is the optimal gift anyways.  I mean, it could make for a nice down payment on a house!

4.  Getting Final Responses
The sad truth is, there will be quite a few people who will forget to mail their response cards.
Delegate this responsibility to the appropriate parent of the bride or groom.
This is a simple enough task that it could be taken out of your already busy hands.

5.  Trying On Tuxedos
By all means go with your groom and pick out your favorite tuxedo and color combos.
At that point, register your final decisions and leave it up to the groomsmen to get this done.
There is absolutely no need to accompany the groomsmen on this 5 second task.

6.  Decorating The Venue
While you should prepare a finalized plan and supply the goods, leave this to the maître dee.
Explain the plan to him/her in detail, drop off the supplies, and then forget about it.
Your maître dee or event planner will probably be tipped well.  Let them work for it!

7.  Picking up the Cake
There are plenty of bakers who deliver.  If yours won’t, then find a new baker.
You will have a million things to do that day and you don’t want to worry about that!
That $25 delivery charge was money well spent:  I saved time, stress, and unnecessary responsibility.

8.  The Weather
There are many things in your control, but this one is not.  You can’t control nature.
Other than an “if it rains” back-up plan, there is nothing you can do about it.
Ignore the control freak in you and put the farmer’s almanac down!

9.  Decorating the Ceremony Venue
Most facilities are beautiful without expensive decorations, especially a church or temple.
People will be so distracted by your wedding dress reveal that alter flowers won’t matter.
Ceremony flowers were an additional $500 that I didn’t have and I never missed them!

10.  Other Weddings
There is always going to be a bigger and better wedding.  Ignore it because this one is yours.
A wedding is all about love, family, and a good time.  Don’t let others compete with you.
This was a huge one for me.  Comparisons of my budget friendly wedding made me furious!


What things would you tell a bride not to worry about?

Monday, September 28, 2015

List: How to act like a hipster.

Yesterday I told you guys how Tab indirectly challenged me to become a “Hipster”.
I mean, how do you label a girl “trendy” without expecting her to lash back?

 I did the most “un-hipster” thing I could do to prove Tab wrong.
I researched “How to become a Hipster”, stapled my new “guide”, and highlighted the key points.
Talk about what a trendy person would do!  Sigh… 

After all my research and color coordinated highlighting, I realized one thing.
Tab was totally right and I could never, ever become a Hipster.
Hipsters may be unique and trendy, but they are exhausting.
I got tired just reading the rules for joining this social group! 

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In honor of our fiscal year end, I'm going to have to do a couple of re-posts.
Please enjoy this series from 2012.  This is my #10 most popular post  according to my Blogger stats.

*********

Here are 10 reasons why I could not become a Hipster. 

1.  Fashion
Hipsters get their apparel from places like vintage stores, their grandmother’s closets, and independent retailers.
They also like to rock over-sized, plastic glasses to complete the unique look.
Their clothes are typically layered and not matching.
Ok, the fashion thing I could do.  Well, minus the clothes that don’t match.  I mean, why wouldn’t you match?

2.  Lingo
Hipsters need to develop a whole new way of talking.
They use different sayings such as “totally deck”, “don’t be a daisy”, and “I liked them before they were famous”.
I blab way too much to change my lingo now.  I talk exactly how I write in this blog!

3.  Attitude
Hipsters are supposed to have a sarcastic, mellow personality.  They are also known to drop names.
A hipster also has to be able to tone down their humor and giggles.
Ok, I could try as hard as I want, but I’ll never have a mellow personality.  No giggles either?  Not happening… 

4.  Hair & Nails
Hair or Nail salons do not exist in the world of Hipsters.  They don’t believe in getting your hair or nails did.
Just to be clear, that means no hair appointment every 6 weeks.  That also means no UV gel mani/pedi!
Jax does not miss her hair or nail appointments.  That may be a trendy thing to do, but I really don’t care!!

5.  Independent Music & Art
Hipsters only indulge in independent music and art.  They only enjoy things that aren’t mainstream.
They could be a fan of a band one day, and hate them the next simply because the band got some hype.
They also make insulting popular artists a habit.
Where’s the fan loyalty?  When I love an artist it’s usually for life!  I’m also not too good at insulting people! 

6.  Magazines
The only magazines these people read are the ones meant for their community.
No Glamour magazine was the defining factor in my decision.  I mean, a life without Glamour?  Why?! 

7.  Dating
Hipsters tend to only date other hipsters.  They like to stay within their non-mainstream clique.
Just to be clear, that means no sexy professionals on the dating menu.  Don’t even look at the doctors or lawyers!
As if finding a decent guy isn’t hard enough, let’s eliminate the majority of the population.  Lovely… 

8.  Vocabulary
On top of the crazy lingo that these people made up, they also use words that they know nobody will understand.
They’ll go into the dictionary and look up random words to incorporate into their everyday vocab.
At least this enhances their intelligence, but why?  Why would you want to waste time talking if no one can understand you?

9.  Food
Growing your own food and adopting a vegan lifestyle is a key point of becoming a hipster.
If growing your food is impossible, stick to stores like Whole Foods that sell organic, well-seasoned varieties.
Hipsters are also famous for cooking their own gourmet meals based on what food is “hip” at the moment.
I get having “hip” clothes, listening to “hip” music, or even just being “hip”.  But, “hip” food?  No…

10.  Deny Everything
The most important thing about being a hipster, is to deny that you are one.
On top of denying that you are a hipster, you need to make fun of other hipsters for being a hipster.
Let me get this straight.  They go through all this trouble to be a hipster and they can’t even label themselves as one.
That’s just insane. 

************************** 

I will submit to me being “trendy”, congratulate Tab for winning, and continue to admire the hipsters from afar.
Want to make bets that Tab rolls his eyes after finding out all the work I put into this? 

Could you ever become a Hipster?
I mean, don’t be a daisy because it’s totally deck!

Friday, September 25, 2015

Discussion: Social labels, Hipster Vs. Trendy.

In honor of our fiscal year end, I'm going to have to do a couple of re-posts.
Please enjoy this series from 2012.  This is my #10 most popular post  according to my Blogger stats.

*********

A few weeks back, Tab and I hit up our regular lunch spot, Whole Foods.
Do you have a Whole Foods near you?  If so, you should totally shop there!  The food is yummy and healthy.
While I enjoy the food, that isn’t the only reason why I am a regular at this establishment.
Whole Foods just happens to be crawling with people referred to as Hipsters.
How many of you just hummed that Ke$ha song?  Don’t lie!

What is a hipster anyways, Jax?
A hipster is a super cool and super fashionable person that definitely doesn’t use the word “super”.
They are known for their unique style, underground music choices, and the need to always be different.
Tell me you’re not intrigued by these people?  They have cool written all over them!!

This led to a discussion of how I would love to become a hipster.
I mean, hipsters are totally hot!  I also love their carefree attitude and unique style!




That’s when Tab looked at me and said “You can’t be a hipster. You’re trendy.”.
Mixed emotions much?  I’ve never been labeled before!!
Tab then went back to eating his lunch like nothing just happened.
I mean, how could he be so ignorant to what he just started?
Tab challenged me.  Tab took off his glove, slapped me with it, and initiated a duel.
Challenge accepted and game on.

That’s when Tab caught my eye and knew exactly what I was thinking.
After an unnaturally long huff, he said “You can never be a hipster.  That’s like trying to convert Paris Hilton.”
Paris Hilton?  This went from a glove slap to swinging at me with a sword!!!

I then spent the next week gathering as much information as possible on how to become a hipster.
Lucky for me, I found a website with a very thorough step by step guide.
I’ll keep you guys updated on my “hipster” progress.
…because you care, right?  Right?!

Have you ever been labeled with a social title?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

List: Ten simple ways to liven up your cubicle.

As sad and a little depressing as it is, I spend more time in my cubicle then at home.
I'm positive that I'm not the only one.  I'm sure that the majority of you can relate.
As my Cuban born husband always says, "Work is all you do in America".  It's almost true!
That being said, our cubicles/offices/work vans are seriously like a second home.
It's important to make it a welcoming environment filled with life's essentials within reach.
In fact, most management should understand this and be able to relate.
Don't be afraid to ask them to make fun and bright purchases as long as they are productive!
When I make my number for the month, my manager surprises me with a themed office supply.  Love!

Ten simple ways to liven up your cubicle.
...I'll avoid the obvious things like personal pictures, your kid's crafts, and office awards...

1.  Travel Coffee Cup


This may be a ridiculous sum of cash to spend on a coffee cup, but it's gorgeous and will be used daily!
Can be bought via Starbucks.

2.  Water Bottle/Cold Coffee Cup


Over the course of 8 hours you should drink three of these filled with water.  
It also has great as a double purpose since it's safe to make a nice cup of iced coffee in.
Can be bought via Starbucks.

3.  Vase


Sticking with my favorite wedding theme (pink & gold), this vase is perfect to hold fake flowers in my cube.
Can be bought via Target.

4.  Tissue Box


At some point during the day, we all need a tissue.  There's no reason why we can't be cute about it!
Can be bought via Target.

5.  Accessory Tray

 
Everyone needs an accessory tray to store their random things, especially this one from Kate Spade.  Love!
Can be bought via Nordstrom.

6.  Air Freshener

You'll see how much quicker the day will go when you're sniffing the fresh scent of laundry!
Can be bought via Target.

7.  Tea Tin
I try and fill my mid-day caffeine fix with a yummy tea.  Obviously, I need a pretty tin for storage.
Can be bought via Teavana.

8.  Cell Phone Stand


This is perfect because it's theme color appropriate, my favorite animal, and serves an important purpose.
Can be bought via Amazon.

9.  Pencil Cup



I am IN LOVE with this pencil holder.  It reads "a stroke of genius" across the bottom.
Can be bought via Kate Spade.

10.  Bedazzled Tape Dispenser

At least one thing in your cubicle should be bedazzled, so why not your tape dispenser?!
Can be bought via Amazon.

How do you lived up your work space?

Monday, September 21, 2015

List: Ten ways to make the most out of your living space.

As I’ve mentioned before in this post, my apartment is just way too small for all our stuff.
Gigantic cardboard boxes have become furniture and my vacuum has become décor.  Sigh…
While we’ve decided to take the next step and purchase a home, I know that this will take time.
For now, I’m utilizing my space saving tips to avoid being on the next episode of Hoarders.
Here comes 8 years of apartment living experience…3 years of which, we were a party of three!


Ten space saving tips for apartment living.

1.  Purchase cheaper, temporary furniture that is functional.
Question 1:  Can I get my money back for this furniture when I’m done with it?
Question 2:  Does it serve a purpose or provide additional storage space?
Craigslist was a great way to find lightly used furniture with a purpose that we can re-sell later on.

2.  Invest in lots of storage bins.
Question 1:  Did I measure the corners of closets and shelves to make sure this bin will fit?
Question 2:  Will this bin take up more room, or will it help me condense the mess?
I have beach bins, purse bins, stuffed animal bins, arts & craft bins, and even a baking bin!

3.  Separate and sell or donate the items you never use.
Question 1:  Was the last time I used this item more than 2 years ago?
Question 2:  Do I see this item having a purpose in the future or is it sentimental?
My addiction to Poshmark and Mercari has given me extra cash and saved me serious space.

4.  Wait until you have your home to fill it.
Question 1:  Will this item I’m about to purchase serve its purpose now or later?
Question 2:  Where will I store this item before I find a larger, more permanent living space?
My hubby is infamous for this.  He would buy everything for our future home now if I let him.

5.  Make use of under your bed and furniture.
Question 1:  Will a slim, but longer storage bin fit under this piece of furniture?
Question 2:  If yes, what I can store under there that will save me storage space?
Under our bed is bins with all our extra linens and under our dresser is all my hubby’s work boots.

6.  If possible, ask friends or family to store larger items.
Question 1:  Will this larger item serve a purpose in the future?
Question 2:  Did this item cost a significant amount of money to make it worth saving?
The Viking’s dry cleaners and my father in law’s garage are full of expensive baby things.

7.  If necessary, find an inexpensive storage unit to rent.
Question 1:  Will this larger item serve a purpose in the future?
Question 2:  Did this item cost a significant amount of money to make it worth saving?
The cost of the storage unit should not exceed the total value of the items it’s housing.

8.  Borrow instead of buying items you don’t need often.
Question 1:  How often will I use this item and is it worth the space it will take?
Question 2:  Do I know someone that owns one that would be willing to lend it for a short time?
I follow this rule often when my husband needs tools or when I want to shampoo my rugs.

9.  Ask family and friends to respect your small space with gifts.
Question 1:  How can I nicely ask family and friends to not purchase large or unnecessary gifts?
Question 2:  If given a large gift, can I exchange it for something reasonable?
I’ll never forget the Christmas that Luci’s God father bought her this huge ball pit thing.  Horrible!

10.  Above all, stay organized and reorganize.
Question 1:  If I organize this mess, how much space will I save and how will I utilize it?
Question 2:  If I re-organize this area, can I make room for additional storage?
I can’t reiterate enough how important it is to be organized, especially when you’re limited in space.


What are your space saving tips to make the most out of your living area?

Friday, September 18, 2015

Discussion: Curly Hair vs. Straight Hair in the office.

I recently had an argument with a very intelligent person that made an ignorant statement.
He said, “No professional company would hire a lady with curly hair.  It should be straightened.”
Yes, I swear that someone actually said these words.  To make it worse, it’s someone I respect.
To sum up the long and loud argument, he feels that curly hair is not appropriate for an interview.
He thinks that it looks messy and leads to an assumption that the person is an all around mess.
As a woman with naturally wavy hair, I fought against this ridiculous stereotype.
Not only do I think it’s stupid to say curly haired women are “a mess”, but I think curly hair is sexy!
Maybe I’m a little biased because half my family, including my daughter, rock natural curls…


Don't mind the blurred face.  I had to steal this from an old post.  My naturally CURLY hair proudly displayed.

Argument One:
Straight hair makes you appear more put together, more professional, and in control.
Curly hair makes you appear messy, irresponsible, and not in control of your of your career.
You are more likely to be hired for a job if you interview with a perfect blow out.

Argument Two:
A person should not be judged based on the natural texture of their hair.
To straighten curly hair is expensive, time consuming, and potentially damaging to the follicle.
Curly or straight hair is not a considered factor when interviewing for a new position.

After asking around, I was dumbfounded by the reactions I was getting.
One person went as far as to accuse me of straightening my hair because I secretly agreed.
Ladies and gentlemen, I straighten my hair ONLY because it’s easier than getting a perfect wave.
So now, I extend this argument to my intelligent and wide minded followers.


Do you think a woman with curly hair will be at a disadvantage during an interview?

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

List: Ten things I'll never do again.

A while back our favorite rhyming cat from It’s Rhyme Time gave me a post suggestion.
Apparently list topics just pop into his brain with zero effort.  Claps for that, cat!
I saved the suggestion in my drafts folder waiting for the right time to tackle it.
Well, a recent experience made it loud and clear that the time is here!
Does anyone else involuntarily rhyme when mentioning Pat Hatt or is it just me?  Hah!

Ten things that I’ll never, ever do again.

1.  Try to make pancakes in a non-stick pan.
This just doesn’t work.  You’ll just be left hungry and very frustrated.

2.  Leave a tub of Vaseline within reach of a 2 year old.
I turned around for a second, and she SMOTHERED herself in it.  It took days to get it out of her hair!

3.  Run full force into a wall at the sight of a spider on my shoulder.
Well, maybe I’d do this again.  I mean, I never actually did this on purpose.  Bleh, gag, barf.

4.  Substitute applesauce for eggs while making meatloaf.
This trick only, and I repeat ONLY, works when making cookies.  Heed my warning, people!

5.  Agree to babysit my in laws cleaning company.
I’ve never worked so hard in my life.  To make matter worse, at the end of day, I only made $2/HR!

6.  Watch The Walking Dead with my sleeping toddler next to me.
She woke up the next morning says “Don’t eat me, mommy”.  I guess my Mush woke up.

7.  Drink a full cup of coffee while driving to a corporate meeting.
It spilled ALL over my shirt and I had zero time to clean up before meeting with the CEO.  Fail!

8.  Put on eye makeup when my husband is driving.
Let’s just say thank goodness I wear contacts because otherwise I may have lost an eyeball.

9.  Apply for a job at a company where a family member works.
You may all remember this post from a few months back, but I certainly learned my lesson.

10.  Put an egg in the microwave.
It does not hard boil itself.  Instead it explodes and hardens onto the walls of the microwave.

What have you learned to never do again?

Monday, September 14, 2015

List: Ten things that make me happy.

The past few weeks I’ve been in what I would consider a rut.
The summer is creeping to an end.  I’m over worked and mentally drained.
My wedding/honeymoon high has crashed and burned and my tan has faded.
Earlier work hours means longer days and deeper, darker circles around my eyes.
Adding a class and homework to my already hectic schedule means later nights and less sleep.
Did I mention my husband volunteering me to babysit his parent’s cleaning company for 2 weeks?!

All that aside things aren’t awful, but I could use a reminder of all the good things around me.
It’s times like these that I need to indulge in the simple things and just smile.
I could also use a vacation, but my bank account is saying otherwise.  Sigh…
In honor of the end of summer rut, please join me in listing all the things that make us happy.

Ten simple things that are making me happy right now.

1.  Gain Scented Air Freshener
Thank you, Febreze, for making my car smell like freshly cleaned laundry every time I drive.
Whoever thought of partnering Frebreze and Gain together is legitimately a genius!

2.  The Walking Dead
My nights have been filled with latest season of The Walking Dead since it’s been released on DVD.
Nothing makes me smile like watching Mr. Daryl Dixon fight off zombies.  Seriously, I love him!

3.  Merengue
Sunday morning dance parties doing the merengue with my 2 year old daughter is pure enjoyment.
La Mezcla station on Dish TV makes for great background music when making a Sunday breakfast!

4.  Hot Pink Water Bottles
My wonderful husband just bought me a hot pink water bottle with a straw from The Gap and I love it!
I mean, if you don’t like what you’re drinking out of, then you’re not going to like what’s in it. Duh…

5.  Wedding Video
I got my wedding video this weekend, and watching it with my family has been so much fun.
It’s amazing how many things were caught on camera.  Some people are in troubleee… hah!

6.  Purple Pens
I love my Profile ballpoint pen with purple ink.  It makes me actually want to take notes during meetings.
…and to make me want to do anything during a meeting other than nap is a huge success!

7.  Cold Stone Creamery
Whenever I’m not too happy, everyone knows to surprise me with Cold Stone and I’ll be all smiles.
Chocolate ice cream with brownie chunks, please!!  I’m drooling just thinking about it.  Yum!

8.  Linked Calendars
My hubby and I discovered how to link the calendars together on our phone.  That totally made me smile!
Now there is absolutely zero excuse for him to forget something ever again?  Right? RIGHT?!

9.  Dried Gourds
I bought dried gourds that have been air brushed in a translucent gold to fill my fruit bowl.
Well, I had to welcome Autumn eventually and they were so pretty and such a great price!

10.  Pink Polka Dotted Calculator
To recognize a job well done, my manager surprised me with the calculator I’ve been asking for.
Telling an employee they did a good job really does wonders for employee satisfaction!


What little things have been making you happy?

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