Friday, November 28, 2014

Why Thanksgiving is the BEST

I love Thanksgiving. It’s partially because of the fact that it has become a day dedicated to showing gratitude for the things we have, but it’s also because I love food.

There isn’t any food more comforting than turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing. As I heap piles of these delicacies onto my plate, I don’t feel the shame that I would normally feel. I don’t feel embarrassed that my family members are judging. I only feel pure joy and happiness.  That in and of itself is something to be grateful for.

But seriously, I do love having a day wherein we talk about all the things we’re grateful for. I have so much, and it is so easy to take it all for granted.

I am thankful for my husband and our relationship. I am thankful to be able to attend Southern Utah University and obtain as much education as possible. I am thankful for my mom and all that she has taught me.

What are you grateful for and what are your favorite Thanksgiving foods? Let me know in the comments below.

Monday, November 24, 2014

How to Give Back: With no cost to you

I work for a nonprofit organization and this past summer, Amazon Smile (something I had never heard of before) contacted the organization I work for informing us that people have tried to donate to us through Amazon Smile.

I knew what Amazon was I had no idea what this Amazon Smile was about. The letter asked us to set up an account with them so that people who were making purchases through Amazon Smile could select us as the organization they wanted .5% of their order price to be given to.

As far as I understood it Amazon Smile was making it possible for people to give back with no additional cost out of their pockets. Everybody wins!

Now there is no reason not to be supporting the nonprofit of your choice. I do all the shopping I can through Amazon Smile now, you should too, there is not reason not to.

What nonprofit will you support?

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Pet Adoption

For the past few weeks the only thing that I have been able to think about is how I would love to bring a dog into our home. I grew up with dogs and they were always such a joy to have around, to lift the mood, or cuddle with you.

So I have been looking online at Pet Rescue websites in my area and I've been using Pet Finder to help me view pets from different shelters all in one place.

Here is what I have learned about the process of adopting a pet.

1. Pictures can be deceiving 

Just like online dating the profile you are viewing can be misleading. Make sure you go and meet the pet you are interested in adopting before you commit to it.

2. Get as much information as possible about your pets history.
Was it abused, if so are you going to be able to spend the time working on it's rehabilitation? If it was surrendered by an owner, find out the reasons why? Don't be afraid to ask questions. It will do more harm to you and your future pet if you bring them home and end up not being able to handle the responsibility.

My Aunt runs a pet foster program out of her house. She has had all kinds of pets come through her home and when I started to look into Pet Adoption she recommend these articles for me to read. I am now passing them on to you. Adopting an Abused DogAdopting a DogFirst Time Owners

3. Pets need love and attention just like me and you
Committing to a pet means really committing. You need to think about the time investment you are making when you adopt. Are you going to be able to take your pet out on a walk, play with it when you get home, give it the attention it needs? These are things you need to consider.

I know I have been having to really look into these things myself. I hope that soon I will be able to find a dog that fits into our family, and when I do I will share it with you.

Friday, November 14, 2014

eShakti Review

I love clothes. Living in a small town, it can be hard to find a large variety of cute things to wear, so I do a lot of my shopping online. One site that I found a little while ago is called eShakti. I really liked this site because it has a variety of super cute styles from vintage to modern, and every style is customizable.

A few weeks ago, I was looking for a dress for the Holiday Gala that I have been involved in planning for my Event Management class. The theme was It’s a Wonderful Life, so I wanted something that was vintage as well as school spirited. I came upon a dress that I absolutely loved, so I customized it to the length I wanted as well as the sleeve style and ordered it.

My exact dress is no longer available on the site, but I want to walk through the ordering process so that you can see how easy it is!

First you select the dress you want from the hundreds of options:

Then you can customize:

The sizes range from size 0-36W, and there is even an option to do a custom size based on your exact measurements. You can choose to keep the dress the way it is shown, or you can change the sleeves, length, and neckline. And let’s not forget that ALL OF THE DRESSES HAVE POCKETS. ALL OF THEM! You can’t beat that.

I really loved looking over this site, and I can’t wait to let you all know how my dress turned out.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Bell Centerpieces

As a part of my Gala group project for my Event Management class I was responsible for coming up with the centerpieces we were going to use. The theme is It's a Wonderful Life and to tie that to the centerpieces I decided we should use bells.

We bought everything in the enter pieces at JoAnn's. We had the vases.
12 Crackled Sliver Bells

12 Silver Bells

3 poinsettia bushes

3 little branches of berry stem bushes

And here is the final result

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

How to Make Fake Flower Look Real

In my last post I talked about my Event Management class and how my group is in charge of the President's Holiday Gala at my University. Part of the responsibilities of the group is to create and put together center pieces.

Instead of buying real flowers (or poinsettias) that would eventually die and could never be used again for an event, I decided we should use fake flowers (or poinsettias) for our center pieces. The problem with this is that fake flowers get crushed and crumpled when they are stored or shipped from a warehouse. 

So how do you make them look as real as possible? I'll show you.

Here is the poinsettia from out of the box

Here is the same poinsettia after it's been steamed

And a comparison in a bouquet 

Watch my video tutorial on how to make your fake flowers look as good as the poinsettias above. Let me know how it works out for you!


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

How to Plan an Event

This past semester I have been taking an Events Management class. The class was broken up into four separate groups and each group would be responsible for planning and executing an event on our campus.

My group was responsible for planning the University President's Holiday Gala. This event is a way of thanking donors for their support of the school. This is a big responsibility and one that will took a lot of planning.

Fortunately, I found an Event Management Plan Checklist and Guide put out by  the Gascoyne Development Commission. It covered a lot of areas of planning that I had not thought of until this gala.

In my class we talked a lot about tips for running a successful event. Here are my favorite from this class.

14 Tips for Planning Events

1.     Anticipate Everything
      a.     Where is the biggest potiential for problems?
      b.     What are the solutions?
      c.     Have a Plan B, Plan C, etc.
2.     Plan Ahead
      a.     ICID- In Case I Die
                     i.     Who is my back up?
                    ii.     Work hard from beginning to end
3.     Make Sure your event has impact
      a.      Make sure everyone understands, set clear expectations, take charge 6. Break it down into       manageable tasks
      b.      Delegate or Committee
      c.     Know your audience
4.     Managing the expectations
      a.     Set the room smaller
                     i.     What do you want people to think when they come in
           ii.“This is a great crowd”-people coming in
5.     Communication, Organization, Leadership
6.     Break it down into manageable tasks
      a.     Don’t get overwhelmed
7.     People support what they help to create
      a.     Get people involved
8.     Develop, listen to, and trust your instincts
9.     Be yourself
      a.     Have fun—but be professional
      b.     You are running the event you are not participating
10.  It’s all in the details
      a.     Be redundant in your details
11.  Rehearse everything
12.  Stage Manage and run your event throughout the entire event           
      a.  Script
      b. Cues
13.  Follow up
      a.     Thank your people
      b.     Evaluate the event
14.  In the end, “Nothing is a Crisis!”
      a. Things happen, so how are you going to deal with it?

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Best Bridal Shower Gifts

My cousin is having a bridal shower in a couple weeks, and I have had a hard time deciding what to get her.  I’m too poor for the usual lingerie, and I don’t want to get her something off of her registry, so I decided on something a little more practical…something that I think is the perfect gift for a virgin bride.

One handicap of my religious community is the fact that we don’t talk about sex. Let me rephrase that; we talk about sex, but we generally focus on abstaining from it and the evils of embracing our sexuality before marriage. As a result of this, many new brides that I know have had a lot of different experiences with their first time, and not all of them have been positive.

The things that I have found to be the most helpful in my first year of marriage are what I am going to pass on to my cousin—and to you.


Newsflash: we are NOT men. Our bits don’t just hang out there for all to see—if you want to see them, you have to put in a little effort. We should know what the parts are called and what they do. This will only help you AND your partner have the best intimate experience for your first time and forever.


Losing your virginity isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Movies and TV make it out to be this beautiful, amazing experience, but that’s not always the case. Of course, no two first times are the same and you can’t generalize, but I’d wager that a lot of women have very similar experiences. Whether you’re nervous, dehydrated, or just tired, lubrication can make the whole process a lot easier (and a lot more pleasant).

                           Side note: more is NOT always better. Find out what works for you.


When you use lube, someone’s hands are going to have some residue, and a handy towel by your bed, couch, or back seat can make your first time a lot less messy. It’s also a good idea to have something to put under you because sex can be messy

which leads us to…

4. BABY WIPES (preferably flushable)

What goes up, must come down. Will you be prepared? Baby wipes are a handy item after the deed is done. Physicians generally recommend that women urinate after sex. Baby wipes are a nice alternative to toilet paper because they don’t stick to you and they don’t tear.


Your first time might hurt, and there is no need to suffer. Whether you want to take it preemptively (as I would suggest) or after the fact, it’s always a good idea to have a pain reliever on hand.


Cosmo is full of suggestions. Some seem humanly impossible,

nevertheless, it is fun to try new things and be aware of the possibilities. If you want to take these ideas and implement them, talk about it with your partner and see what they are comfortable with. Make sure you are both aware of each other’s expectations, and only do what you are ready for.

These are six helpful items you could use for your first time, or that you could gift to your friends.

What do you wish you would have had/known before your first time? Comment below to let me know what else you would add to the list.