Y’all, I discovered an incredible phone app a few weeks ago and am dying to share. If you’re the praying type (regardless of specific religious beliefs), this post is for you.
Happy New Year, belles! Are any of you making resolutions for 2016? I’ve never been one for New Year’s resolutions, though I do set personal goals for myself from time to time, and I almost always give something up or take on a new practice for Lent. This year, however, I’m kicking off 2016 with the Inside Out Challenge, which my friend Traci and I have created to explore ethical fashion and natural beauty products. We will be blogging about our experiences and invite you to follow along and/or join us (more on that below!).
I’ve known for years that many clothing companies use child and slave labor in their supply chains or pay foreign workers unfair wages. We all see it in the media from time to time when companies like Nike get exposed for supporting sweatshops. It didn’t sit well with me, but I also wasn’t sure about alternatives, and most of the time it was out of sight, out of mind. A few years ago I stumbled upon Slavery Footprint and was appalled by how many slaves I had working for me in various supply chains. I fired off emails to several companies (and amazingly, actually got a few responses!), then got busy with graduate school and never did anything serious about it. Given the choice at Whole Foods, I would typically choose the fair trade product, but that was about it.
Then, this past November, I read 7.
Traci selected it for our monthly book club, and heavens, am I glad she did. I am not kidding when I say it changed my life, in many ways that I’m only beginning to wrap my head around. Best believe, y’all will be hearing about this book more on the blog in the future.
7 really got me thinking about the choices I make with my money as a consumer, especially in regards to clothing. Simply put, it got me fired up about ethical fashion.
For the duration of 2016, I am choosing to only purchase fair trade fashion. This includes clothing, shoes, and accessories for myself as well as gifts for others. No ifs, ands, or buts. The only exception I will make is if the purchase is required in some way (i.e. a bridesmaid dress or a volunteer t-shirt). I honestly don’t foresee any of these “required” purchase in my 2016, though.
I am approximately 99% super excited about this and 1% nervous. I am taking the values I hold on the inside (social justice, belief in the value and worth of all human beings) and physically wearing them on the outside. I can’t wait to see how this challenge changes me from the inside out. And I can’t wait to share about it with y’all!
Traci’s doing something a little different with natural beauty products, and she’ll be sharing more about that on her blog soon.
Join in with us if you’d like, even if just for a month or a purchase or two, using the hashtag #2016insideout.
(Jeans photo credit: public domain image)
Yesterday was my first gluten-free Christmas, and my sweet mama made it special for me by adapting my favorite Christmas cookie recipe. Isn’t she the best?? So here’s my Christmas present to y’all: the recipe! Even if you don’t need to be gluten-free, you will ADORE these Hello Dollies. Warning: non-professional iPhone photos ahead.
Monday was one of those mornings. I hadn’t gotten home from Thanksgiving vacation until 10:30 p.m. the night before, I was pawing through my unpacked bags for my toothbrush while scrambling to get myself out the door for work, and on top of that, I was rushing to 10 different websites to snag Cyber Monday deals before they disappeared. My to do list was so long, I couldn’t cram it all into the allotted “Monday” space in my weekly agenda, so I filled up “Tuesday,” too. I was really, really stressed just looking at it, and I didn’t think I would ever be able to catch up. I was starting off my week totally exhausted. Read More
Do you ever find yourself feeling a little less-than-inspired at work? Even for those of us who like our jobs, there are times when the everyday routine just gets….dull. About two months ago, I was having a lackluster day at work when an idea suddenly popped into my head.
This is the story of why I didn’t change my last name when I got married. Can I be honest, y’all? It took me awhile to decide whether or not to publish this because I was afraid it might make others feel judged. Like that feeling you get when your friend who’s doing Whole30 starts talking about how sugar is the devil right after you’ve scarfed down 10 pieces of leftover Halloween candy. That’s not the point of this post. Every person should be able to decide what their name will be, free of judgment. The reason I’m writing this is because I hope it will at least make people think about something that we take for granted as a societal norm. I hope that if someone out there feels incredibly uncertain and torn about whether they want to change their name when they get married, they can get a firsthand perspective from someone who’s totally been there. Read More
Do y’all like to talk about food? I do, so I’m hoping you’ll enjoy this food favorites post! I’m hoping to do one at the end of every month with my favorite foodie products and/or dishes from the month. I am not a gourmet chef and find myself very pressed for time when it comes to food, so for the most part you’ll find that these posts include quick meal ideas and favorite healthy snacks. Without further ado, here are my September favorites:
Suja Cold-Pressed Juice. This stuff makes me feel amazing. I have so much more energy, and it’s a great option for those like me and Wes who are too busy/lazy to actually cook vegetables. This is the most reasonably priced cold-pressed raw juice we’ve found. Local juicers sell similar products for up to $12/bottle, and the least expensive grocery store alternative is twice as expensive. It’s still pricey, though, so hubs and I usually split one when we buy it (he has his half for breakfast, I have my half with lunch).
There have been moments lately when I’ve found myself feeling discouraged. Discouraged by the dire circumstances many of my patients are in. Discouraged by my own shortcomings as a human being and my failure to achieve a personal goal. Most acutely this past week, I felt discouraged by divisions within communities of faith. The particulars aren’t important, but I became so sad considering how humanity will always be divided by differences of opinions. It pained me to think about the anger, strife, and disappointment that surrounds these fissures, however large or small. And as I sat there feeling more and more hopeless, it hit me like a cool ocean wave on a hot summer day: God is bigger than all of this.
God is bigger than the petty things that members of faith communities squabble about. Bigger than my own failures. Bigger than the most dire of circumstances, from famine to mass genocide to horrible natural disasters.
My heart felt suddenly lighter. And dare I say….joyful? It’s not up to me to figure it all out.
Hello belles! All of my favorite articles today have to with money…specifically, how to save it! Here are my favorite tips from around the Internet lately on how to save a few dolla dolla billls while planning your wedding and reception.
1. 6 Unnecessary Wedding Expenses You Can Totally Skip. Most wedding-related expenses these days are luxuries, not necessities, so keep that in mind as you hone in on what’s truly important to spend your precious savings on! This list can help you get started.