Monday, November 6, 2017

My November 2017 Goals!

Hey November! I'm pretty stoked to see you, October was a bit of a doozie over here, not even gunna lie :). 
I was tracking my goals here on the blog as a way of accountability and in a funny way, another route of documenting our lives. While my goals have shifted dramatically since the beginning of the year now with owning my own business, I find tracking them SO helpful. I'm excited to get back to putting them on the blog!

The Powersheets by Lara Casey from Cultivate What Matters are my goal guide and planner of choice. They just launched the new ones, so run and get them before they sell out now! 

How the system usually works for me is that I look at my calendar towards the end of a month and before a new one starts. I jot down important things already on the calendar, big things I want to get done and then there's a spot for "I'm Excited For..." which I love so that I don't get bogged down in the heavy "to do" list. I also go back to the beginning of my Powersheets and check in on my big 10 goals I set when I started to make sure I'm working towards them. I use my iCal and Simplified Planner to track things on my calendar daily/weekly (a Sunday prep post is coming soon!).

Y'all - I have NO time to be doing this kind of thing, but it's amazing what an hour or two on the couch while Ry is watching TV can do for our whole month. We're such happier people because we plan and don't have surprises (which = stress)!

My one focal goal for the month is: Invest

I feel like this month is going to be a month of just going all in and investing in all I want to cultivate and get done before the holidays and really, the end of the year. I want to be able to enjoy time "off" (you're never really off in social media)!!! Plus, we're making some big investments in my business, go to today's post on my business Instagram to see one of them!

The Powerseets break things down into Monthly, Weekly and Daily Goals. I'm not going to share alllll of mine with you because that would be A LOT in this one post, but here are the personal ones I want to get done (I left out the boring work ones)!
NOVEMBER 2017 GOALS 
  • Figure out my 30th birthday plans (+ write a long sappy post on it 😂) - My birthday is Christmas Eve and all of our plans we've tried to make thus far have fallen through because of a busy year-end calendar. Any suggestions?
  • POTTY TRAIN & NEW BIG GIRL BED!
  • Declutter Sully's room + Start her big girl book! These go hand in hand because there are 1 drawer and 2 boxes of "stuff" from her little life that I need to go through and organize/document. 
  • Send Christmas cards + chip away at gifts.
  • Welcome my bestie back home to South Carolina!!!!!!!! Y'all I am SO pumped about this one! After five years, my bestie is moving home to Greenville from San Diego. She recently had a precious baby boy who I can't wait to be closer to and have Sully love on. What should I do to really welcome her home well?!
  • Switch out winter clothes. 
  • Finally get the kitchen lights up! Bain of my existence y'all. 
  • Sunday prep - calendar, meals and financials. Like I mentioned, post coming soon on this process. 
  • Tend to the garden and get it ready for winter. 
  • Blog 2X/week at least.
  • Do Sully's journal/Write the Word each week. I decided to combine two goals in one and make my Write the Word journal a journal for Sully to document her life and my thoughts for her. My Mom did this for my siblings (and some for me) and it's neat to be able to look back and learn about our life through her eyes. 
  • Daily scripture. I use this book and love it, it's super short passages and is dates so I can usually get it done. I leave it on my bedside table for first thing in the AM. 
  • Enjoy Clemson weekend with all our favorites!

Gah this has me SO excited for November! It is a lot, but like my word of the month, I'm investing. I'm going all in on getting things done now so I can enjoy the holidays. 

That second bullet is a big one - do you guys have any advice for me for potty training?! AND moving her into a big girl bed?

Would love your suggestions!

Friday, November 3, 2017

5 on Friday: 5 Regrets of the Dying + A Tropical Thanksgiving

It's the first Friday in November y'all! 

Did anyone else feel like October was just the most insane month all year? Stress was at an all-time high, not even going to lie. So I'm REALLY looking forward to a slower month (fingers crossed). How about we begin wiht a little 5 on Friday... 

{ONE} A Tropical Thanksgiving

I ran across this tropical Thanksgiving tablescape from Elana Loo's blog when searching for something fun for my company, Pinckney Palm's, social media to kick off November. 
Isn't it just perfection?! How fun would it be to do a Thanksgiving picnic and pop over to Sullivan's Island to eat on the beach and mix things up?!
All photos are by @elanaloo - I'm so excited to find and follow this blogger!

{TWO} A Nurse Shares the 5 Regrets of the Dying


I mean, woah, right?! This article is really powerful you guys and hit home with me this week after coming out of a season of sheer craziness. 

I mean y'all, two of my closest friends had birthdays in October and I couldn't get my head out of the sand enough from work to hit send on my messages and calls to them. That's really bad. This article was a wakeup call to get things in check... especially considering #2 is that they wish they hadn't worked so hard and #4 is that they wish they had kept in touch with friends. 

100% worth the read! Let me know your thoughts on it in the comments or via DM on Insta

{THREE} My "can't live without" leggings - now in a new color!


When I was recovering from my c-section with Sully, these Lululemon full panel leggings were literally my saving grace. I didn't even have to wear all the bandaging because they held it all together so well :). 
I've been waiting for them to re-release the scalloped bottom style and they finally have! And this time in a dreamy dark teal color that I can't seem to take off. I mean y'all - I dream about getting home and putting on these leggings HAHA! Does anyone else do that?!

{FOUR} Social Media "Holidays" Quick Guides


Did you know I also have another blog on my company site where each month I give you a quick guide on all the social media "holidays" coming up in the next month? Click here to see November!

{FIVE} Lilly's New Arrivals


Would it even be an Attention to Darling 5 on Friday post without a Lilly favorite or two?! Lilly just released their new collection and I am LOVING it. Especially these finds:



That's a wrap, you guys! Happy November!

Friday, October 6, 2017

5 on Friday: Lilly for the Boys!

How is it Friday?! Does anyone else feel this way? My week is SO thrown off from being gone Sunday-Wednesday of this week for The Southern C Retreat. Which, btw, was awesome (more on that later)!

Yet here we are at Friday, so I thought I would share five things I'm loving this week! 

{ONE} Lilly for the boys!

Want to know one of the only reason why I didn't want a boy when I was preggers (yes, I really did want a boy at first)? Because... Lilly wasn't making boy clothes. UNTIL NOW! They've just released a collection of a print that is so fun and called "Guac and Roll" and has mens and boys items. See it all here!
My favorites from this limited collection are these Mens Shorts, these Girls Bow Leggings and this little Boys Bowtie

{TWO} My new favorite "cool girl" dress.  

When I was packing for The Southern C Retreat, I was faced with the dilemma of it being fall, but traveling to a beachy paradise in 30A Florida surrounded by the most fashionable clan.

I found this dress on Shopbop and the floral print and short, flouncy frills made it appropriate for a summery setting, but the black backdrop and long sleeves helped it also transition to fall. Not to mention, it is extremely flattering! 

Paired with my nude gladiator sandals and tassel, very pale blush earrings and it was a success!   
 

{THREE} Ever heard of emotional labor? This is a must-read. 

One of my favorite blogs, Lemon Stripes, wrote a post about this article in her post here. It was a huge "aha" moment y'all. 

Please, please know that I 100% believe that I have the world's most amazing husband, and he splits everything 50/50 since we both work full-time jobs. I'm so very blessed! 

This article helped me understand my frustration and give a name to the state in which I've fallen so many times though. 

{FOUR}  The perfect ruffled sweater.  

I'm dreaming of cooler weather and this ruffle sweater is not only at the top of my fall weather wish list, but also on sale under $50 right now!

{FIVE} Catherine is a Southern Weddings/Cultivate What Matters team member!

If you're a frequent reader of this little blog then you're familiar with my friend Catherine of Classic Catherine, especially from this post. She welcomed us to DC when we first moved there (I don't know what I would have done without her y'all!) and has visited us here in Charleston as well. 

I'm so excited that the cat (no pun intended) is out of the bag and her announcement that she's now a member of the Southern Weddings and Cultivate What Matters team went live on their blog. She also wrote a wonderful post on her blog here too. I remember praying for her so often during the interview process. It's clear God has big plans for this sweet friend and Mama and I can't wait to follow along on her journey! 
(Catherine second from the right in pink)

This 5 on Friday post makes me happy just reading over it! Especially with all that's going on in the world today. Sending out so many love and prayers. 💗 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Fall 2017 Bucket List

It is officially Fall and while it won't feel like it until a while from now here in Charleston, that didn't stop our little family from jotting down a Fall 2017 bucket list!

You'll see a lot of these floating around in the blogging world this time of year, but I thought I would make ours pretty specific so we actually take action and go do these things vs. just "visit a pumpkin patch". 

Here you have it, the Phillips Family's Fall 2017 Bucket List! 

{ONE} Attend a Clemson Game

I cheated a tad on this one because we have not only one, but TWO Clemson games already on our calendar! I'm so excited you guys!!! This is the first time we live close enough to actually fit two games in this year. Even better - Sully is coming to at least the first one with us which is homecoming.

You guys have no idea how giddy I am to enjoy Clemson traditions with her! The little things like the homecoming floats, the football players running down the hill, the balloons released into the air, an Esso meal, tailgating and getting a tiger paw painted on her cheek and so much more have me ecstatic!

{TWO} DIY Sully's Halloween Costume

I had so much fun doing this for her last year with her DIY Flamingo Costume! It's something my Nana did for me and I love doing it for my little girl. I'm thinking either Princess Poppy from Trolls or an ice cream cone this year... what do you guys think?!

{THREE} Go to the Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch

Visiting an orchard or pumpkin patch is really high on my fall list every year. Remember how cute Sully was in her 6 months old photos at a pumpkin patch visit?! This year, I've decided on the Boone Hall Plantation pumpkin patch as our destination. I'm sure it will be crazy crowded, but I can't wait to share in the joy with Sully (are you seeing a trend here?)! 

{FOUR} Decorate the Front Porch

I've already started on this one with a few pumpkins Ry grabbed for me at Trader Joes. Now I'm thinking of hay bales, our Halloween decor, a fun wreath and anything we find at the pumpkin patch (above). 

{FIVE} Bake Pumpkin Coffee Cake 

Ever since discovering a recipe for pumpkin coffee cake in this 5 on Friday, I've been dying to bake it this fall! Stay tuned to Instagram Stories to see how it turns out. 


{SIX} Host a Chili Cookoff

We've been looking for a way to invite the neighbors over and have a little celebration. What better than some friendly competition mixed in too? Ry and I have already started talking about a plan to host a chili cookoff this season. 

Any tips for us? How many chilis should we have? How should people vote? Have a favorite recipe?

{SEVEN} Find the Perfect Pumpkin Candle 

I've really struggled with this so far this season y'all! I thought I found the one, only to have Ry say it was "too pumpkin-y". Haha! I've heard good things about the Nest one... any other suggestions?

That's it, which is actually a lot I feel like! Other things I want to do before winter is get in some beach time, a bike ride, finish planting the other garden bed for fall/winter and also finalize our plans for the front porch renovation (more coming on that later). 

What's on your fall list?!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

September Book Reviews

Hey there gals and guys, any fellow bookworms amongst us?!

I had a goal in September to get back to reading and with a book club and lots of time in the car with Audible, I'm happy to say I read FOUR books this month and the month isn't even over! {insert mini victory dance, most likely to the Trolls soundtrack}

Since I was so successful in this goal (not so much in some others, more to come here), I thought I would share a review of each of them with you today! 

As always, these posts do contain affiliate links. Meaning, if you click on some of these links they could send some change my way at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting this little blog!

{ONE} Cultivate  by Lara Casey


If you follow me on Insta Stories you know I actually finished this book at the car wash on Saturday (ha!). I was really excited about this one from the moment I heard Lara Casey was releasing it, following her first book Make It Happen (although you don't need to read it before Cultivate). 

I even led a small group here in Charleston as we worked our way through it together. We got a little thrown off by the hurricane, but are going to do a grand finale celebration in a couple weeks!

So what's my official review? 

Not to be dramatic, but... this book might have just changed my life y'all! No seriously. It was the first time I got messy and wrote in almost every single margin. I actually would be quite weirded out if anyone ever got ahold of my copy and read it, it's like a diary at this point. 

If you're looking for something to bring you closer or back to God, something to reshift your focus on the things that matter in your life and something to make you feel not so alone in your own head - this is the something for you. 

It takes time to work through it and you really only can go chapter by chapter because Lara's just dropping so much knowledge and goodness on you :). Bottom line...

HIGHLY RECOMMEND 

{TWO} Chasing Slow  by Erin Loechner 



Much like Cultivate, this book has the same woven thread of focusing on what matters in life. 

The way that Erin writes is refreshing and humorous. Almost to the point where you have to stop and say, "woah, wait, that is so good" because her lessons are so deeply hidden and not preachy at all (neither are Lara's). 

I started reading the copy of the book I owned here at home and then bought the Audible version with one of my monthly credits so I could make sure I finished it before The Southern C Retreat where Erin is speaking. I think I did myself a disservice here. So on this one I say...

RECOMMEND 

IF reading yourself, not on Audible. I would also say to space out this one and Cultivate if you want to read both.

{THREE} The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo  by Taylor Jenkins Reid


I'll just start out by saying, HIGHLY RECOMMEND! I "read" it in 48 hours y'all (via Audible and with thanks to hurricane traffic). 

If you're looking for a light and mysterious book to read, pick up this one next. I haven't read into the inspiration for this novel at all, but I feel like it's a mix between what could have been a story of Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe. It will really make you think about the ins and outs of Hollywood love stories. 

It jumps between modern day via the perspective of journalist Monique Grant who is interviewing the world's largest film star, Evelyn Hugo (now in her 80s) and then Evelyn's perspective throughout her life as she tells her story. You'll be on the edge of your seat trying to figure out the connection between Evelyn and Monique the whole book. 

See, Monique is a no-name journalist who Evelyn has precisely sought out to write her life story. So you'll be asking "Why Monique?" when Evelyn could have picked the world's best journalist? As Evelyn's life unfolds, you get closer and closer to the reason(s) why Evelyn lured Monique into her home and into each other's lives forever. 

This was one I really enjoyed on Audible. Hope you enjoy it too, no matter which way you read the book! Just in case you missed it above...

HIGHLY RECOMMEND

{FOUR} Class Mom  by Laurie Gelman


This was my least favorite book this month and one I wanted to really enjoy. Don't you hate when that happens? 

It's about a Mom who has already had two girls go through elementary and middle school and now has a younger boy in kindergarten. She's talked into being class Mom and via snarky emails and sneaky plots (including chocolate brownies on picture day), ends up getting fired from the job only to earn it back again. 

Funny, yes, but not the depth in storyline or good enough twist at the end if you ask me.  That said, I think I would have enjoyed it more if 1. I had or had had children in elementary school and 2. If I hadn't listened to it on Audible. 

Sadly, on this one...

DON'T RECOMMEND

Ok, that's a wrap! Now I'm hungry for more good books and have a really long car ride coming up - what do you recommend for my October reading list?!

Friday, September 22, 2017

5 on Friday: Can I Pull Off These Sneakers?

H A P P Y  F R I D A Y !!!


It is finally Friday y'all. Did anyone else feel like this was an absolutely insane week? I honestly don't think I've ever gotten more big projects done in my life for work, ever.  

So to take a brain break and write this post is quite a treat! THANK YOU! :) 

By the way, how are you guys liking these posts? I hope they're still fun for you too. There's also more coming outside of these 5 on Friday posts. I announced this week on my Instagram a really fun project coming to the blog (eek!). For now though, I hope this 5 on Friday post provides you with some light-hearted joy and pretties! 

As always, these posts do contain affiliate links. Meaning, if you click on some of these links they could send some change my way at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting this little blog!

{ONE} Pom Pom Mule Sneakers 

Let's jump into some #realtalk. And by real talk I mean, can this Mama pull off these slip-on mule sneakers with pom poms? Or will I just feel ridiculous and like I'm trying to be cute and hip?! 

For real, let me know, I've gone back to them a few times, but just can't quite decide!
They also come in leopard and grey

{TWO} The Best Clutch!

I have fallen hard. This clutch is EVERRRRRYTHING! 

It folds over, has a pocket, has a zipper section, magnetizes shut, has the most classic black and white palm print and is made here in Charleston. In fact, it's made by my awesome suitemate and office buddy Emily of Suite 33. And no, she did not pay or ask me to say any of the above :). 

I took it out with us on a date night this weekend when Ryan's Mom was in town (the necklace shown is hers, from Oops). I haven't taken it out of my bag since. So good!
Clutch // Dress (under $50) // Necklace (from Oops, The Tiny Tassel makes my fav tassel necklace) // Mani

{THREE} Eight LinkedIn Headlines That Don't Suck

I love this article from Girlboss (do y'all subscribe to their emails? you should!). My favorite one might just be: 

"Basically the Beyoncé of Excel Spreadsheets and SEO". Haha!

Note to self: Work on your LinkedIn title. 

{FOUR} Palm Wallpaper

Y'all know I've been dreaming of wallpaper and the thought of redoing my bathroom with a punchy print. It's also common knowledge that I'm a wee bit obsessed with palm, I even have "Palm" as part of my company name. I blame it on Birdcage

So imagine my heart flutters upon seeing the variations of this beauty:
What do you guys think, this or the cheetah paper I shared last time?

{FIVE} Long Wrap Cardigan 

Last week we talked about pumpkin everything, so this week I'm sharing this perfect cardigan to go with your pumpkin coffee cake, pumpkin candle and pumpkin spice latte. #BasicBsUnite. 

Look closely when you jump over to Nordstrom to take a peek, it actually has buttons and you can wear it open or snap it closed up around your neck as seen in the photo. 
It also comes in burgundy and black

That's a wrap (no pun intended on the above ;))! This is our last weekend in town before I'm gone or we're all out of town or have guests in town for the next FIVE WEEKS! I hope I can survive this season of busy, phew!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Toddler Fall Style

Do any other Mamas get sad cleaning out their child's closet when the seasons and sizes change? With every fold, I remember fun memories and firsts in the outfits and low and behold... always manage to cry at the reminder of how precious time is with our little lady. 

I think because of this, I had let things really pile up in Sully's closet and drawer over the last year. She still had 18-24 month clothes in her closet y'all 😳. So I mustered up the strength and did a big clean out. Once I was done, she was left with a few summer things in 3T and a few 4Ts peppered throughout. 

So online I headed to find some fall inspiration for toddler's and check out the latest lines from my favorite kid's brands like Mini Boden, Smocked Auctions, Toddler Gap, Crewcuts by JCrew, Carter's and Nordstrom Kids (they also carry Mini Boden and I love the Tea Collection). 

Aren't all the above just oh so cute?! Here's what I narrowed in on for all you Mamas in the same boat!

Y'all know we always let you know, so these posts do contain affiliate links. Meaning, if you click on some of these links they could send some change my way at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting this little blog!

Not mentioned in the above, but definitely staples, are our essential leggings, a good pair of brown booties (Sully ADORES boots for some reason, ha) and our favorite PJs that literally lasted and fit her for a year. 

Sale Alert - Anything from Carter's above is also 25% off! And if you're not already using the Honey plugin for Chrome, you need to get it ASAP, it's saved me so much money. When you're in your cart checking out, it plugs in promo codes. It's pretty sweet. 

Don't you just want all this in your own size?! 

What are some other staples for fall for your littles that you love?
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