Green with Envy for this Camo Jacket

St. Patrick's Day fashionI do not get excited about St. Patrick’s Day.  I have no interested in going out and drinking green beer just for the sake of it.  And I seem to never have green in my wardrobe.  I think people wear things on this day just to work in some green and forgo their usual fashion sense.  But I think this is the perfect look for me.  I am dying over this great camo jacket with gold foil accents.  And you can’t go wrong with a Ban.do gold scarf.  What will you be wearing on the 17th?

What do you think? A Survey

be your best friend

Hi beloved readers.  I would LOVE it if you would take my quick 10 question survey.  As I begin new content I want to make sure I am giving you everything you want.  There is plenty of space to write out your thoughts but also some multiple choice too.  Don’t be afraid.  Tell me what you really think.  In return, I will be your best friend.  I know.  Pretty cool, right?  In all seriousness, I am super grateful to each of you that takes the time to read my little piece of the internet!  Thank you, thank you, thank you in advance!  P.S. I’ve never done one of these before so if you think my survey could use more direct questions or be different in some way, I’d love to hear that too!

Click here to take survey

Pretty Please!

Popsicle Stick Heart Peace Sign

heart shaped peace sign out of popsicle sticksSo I fell in love with these geometric hearts that Jaren made.  I had to make them.  But I decided to change it a bit and make it in to a peace sign.  I am in love with how it turned out.  Go see her tutorial here.  And pay attention to where she says to glue at a 90 degree angle.  I totally didn’t read it first and came out with several wonky hearts.  This is a totally acceptable way for hearts to live on after Valentine’s day.

peace sign for cool kid's roomIt’s new home is in my son’s bedroom.  I love how it looks but he is eager to color it with markers.  And I’m going to let him because I want to encourage his creativity.  Even though this is right across from my bedroom door and I’m going to have to look at it.  It’s fine.  I’ll be fine.

Carded at Alt Summit

Alt Summit photosAre you sick of my talking about Alt Summit yet?  Well, hang in there for a few more posts and then I promise on to new things.  If you were following along with the conference at all you know that the business cards were a BIG deal.  You wanted to meet people just to see what their cards looked like.

business cards from Alt SummitI brought TONS of cards home with me and it took me until yesterday to feel ready to go through them.  It was super fun to remember where you met the person or why you clicked with them.  There are a bunch of sites that I can’t wait to dive in to based only off the business card.  And lots of follow-up that needs to happen.  I’m slowly getting to that.

hank and hunt card fillerWe all know that Jenny from Hank and Hunt is rad.i.cle but how freaking adorable is this!  She paired a simple white letterpress card with her contact info with gold animal candle holders.  Surely I would lose a finger if I tried to do something like this.  And she made a ton of them.  I am really starting to wonder if this girl sleeps.

cool cards from Alt SummitSome were simple, some had awesome graphic design.  Some came with swag (that pen right there is my FAVE! Thanks Love Creative!) Some were done by hand and some were gorgeously printed.

cassette tapeHow adorable are these cards?!  I was so happy to finally meet these ladies.  Andrea lives about 20 minutes from me but took going to Salt Lake City to finally get together.  And Laura is in LA which seems like world’s away sometimes.  Both of these ladies and cards are totally my style and I hope I get to know them better!

you are my fave cardYou are my Fave brought it with her slide out card.  Not sure if you can read that tiny writing but it says “Hi.  I’m Melanie.  I quote Liz Lemon at…”  She’s hilarious.

oleander and palmAnd then there was this card that made me the happiest.  I love aromatherapy and at times throughout the conference I would get the most amazing waft of lavender smell.  But I could never tell where it was coming from.  Then during one session, I look over and Lauren had this “card” sachet in front of her.  I snatched it away and didn’t give it back.  Turns out her blog is awesome too, check it out!

the faux martha cardI had seen these marshmallow cards on instagram a few days before leaving for Alt and I loved the idea.  But I don’t know The Faux Martha or what she looks like.  I had been keeping my eyes out for another gal I wanted to say hello to and approached Melissa and asked if she was so and so.  She wasn’t.  Awkward.  But when I asked what her blog was and she said The Faux Martha I became visibly excited.  She handed over this pillowy cloud of a marshmallow and it made my day.  I may have traumatized her but I think this is such a cute idea for a card!  Nice meeting you Melissa!

my card for altAnd here are the cards I decided to take with me to Alt.  I had two ideas I was working with (well and Lauren too since she does most of my graphic design) but at the end, this is what I chose.  Although after being at Alt, the other idea would have been better.  But you live and you learn right!  And I’m still super happy with how these came out.  I ended up doing these myself and was pretty dang impressed with myself since my illustrator skills are remedial at best.

my business card for alt summitI wanted it to be a visual elevator pitch of my blog.  And I wanted it to have a photo of me so that people would remember who the heck I was when they got home.  But I’m also kind of a nerd and I don’t love things that aren’t standard business card size so I included that too.

my alt summit business cardAnd in case the card became separated from the outer card my contact info was on there too.  So really you can keep one for yourself and give one to a friend.  My pal Ryan printed these for me and was so great to work with as usual.  And a big thank you to my mom who put these together for me the night before I left so I didn’t have to stay up all night doing it.  You are the best!

There were so many other great cards to share but I think I will cap it off right here.  And I think I was the first person to get one of Lauren’s cards and somehow it is nowhere to be found!  It was a little party kit and it was super cute!  I don’t want to wait another year until Alt!

Alt Summit is Ridiculously Awesome

roommates at Alt summitIf you saw my post from yesterday you know that Alt Summit did BIG things for me.  The outcome was totally different from I thought it would be during my conference planning but I love the way it turned out.  But the other part of Alt that is SO necessary is the social aspect and the pure awesomeness that is everywhere.  Alt Summit is ridiculously awesome.  I think Alt was such a great experience for me because the majority of the people there are all design oriented in some way.  We are like-minded, creative and driven.  That isn’t to say a “mom blogger” wouldn’t get anything out of it, but it really is geared more toward creative bloggers.  Not much traditional business or the back-end of blogging is discussed but mostly how to collaborate or get guest post spots for diys, etc.  The content was perfect for me at the stage that I am at.  Next year, I might get something totally different out of it.  Yes, I’m already planning on going next year.

The people who I met really made this trip extra special for me.  Some of them I knew online, some I had never heard of before.  Forming relationships in real life is so important for your support system as these are the gals that you can confide in, ask advice from and just laugh about blogging stuff with.  I shared a room with 4 other girls.  Yes, 5 women in one room.  I had a fair amount of anxiety about it before hand.  I’m super high maintenance so the idea that I would have to get up at 4 am everyday just to get a shower made me sweat.  But it turned out to be awesome.  I finally got to meet my online BFF Jenny (top photo).  I think angels sang.  She is just as lovely in person as she is online.  Lauren (bottom left photo) was who I get along really well with who was also an Alt first timer.  I got to meet Cyd (bottom right photo standing right next to me) who I instantly bonded with and wish I could make move to California if for no other reason than to listen to rap with.  And I met Jenn (bottom right photo standing next to Cyd and she is wearing a cape!  LOVE her) who is insanely talented with such a fresh outlook and is passionate about life.  There were so many great conversations in that room.  I learned a ton from them and I feel honored to be able to call them friends.

Wednesday night brand dinners at AltCyd and Jenny were speakers on panels at Alt.  My roommates were pretty much rock stars.  Not sure how I ended up with that group but so glad I did.  Jenny was also responsible for decorating 2(!) of the Wednesday night brand dinners (the Windows party on the left and Bing party on the right).  We ran around town helping her set them up.  I loved seeing her creativity in person and it was also really cool to check out a few restaurants around Salt Lake City since we didn’t have much time to actually see the city during our trip.

dinner with whimseybox at altThen Lauren and I headed off to dinner hosted by WhimseyBox.  It was a really fun experience hanging with the WhimseyBox gals and hearing the story of the company.  We met some great new friends like Laura and Maggie.  These dinners are a great way to ease in to not only talking to brands, but also meeting new people in a much less overwhelming way than the actual conference.

weather in slcIt was a great night until we learned that because the entire town was crazy busy with conferences the taxis were next to impossible to come by.  The restaurant suggested we walk across the street to the mall valet where we might have better luck.  So we did.  And just about froze to death.  I’m not sure I have ever been that cold.  We didn’t think we were ever going to get home.  We huddled up in the Cheesecake Factory and remembered that the hotel had a car service.  They came and got us and we were finally able to thaw out.  Have you heard?  I’m from California.  I don’t really own socks and the cold pretty much just laughed at my jacket.  Side note, how cute is Lauren’s phone case?

hank and hunt speaking at altDay one of the panels was amazing.  Jenny spoke about shooting great DIYs along with Chelsea Costa (who is just darling!!)  There are tons of Alt recaps floating around with actual tips taken from the panels so look around for those if you are looking for  content from the speakers.  I just want to share the overall experience (again with the iphone photos you must be thinking.  But I seriously can’t take pictures indoors.  I need a class on that!).  The panels were made up of a great mix of bloggers or brand reps and covered all sides of a topic.  They opened the floor up for Q&A and I never once got bored (and I have a very short attention span).

you are my fave speaking at altMelanie also spoke.  This panel talked about blog collaborations and how to get those contributor spots.  SO good!  The panels were pretty much back to back and I am so bummed that I didn’t make time to get to all the brand lounges.  I totally spaced and figured they would all be there the next day too but they weren’t!  I’m making a note of that for next year.

lunch at alt summitThis is what lunch time looks like at a table of bloggers.  I promise they were not rude and we actually did have a great time.

clue party sponsored by joss and main and la cremaAnd then it was time to party.  Night one is one big hosted party.  This year Joss and Main teamed with La Crema and Dash and Albert to put on a Clue themed party.  Everyone dressed up in a color theme that represented the names of the characters.  The furniture from Joss and Main and the rugs from Dash and Albert totally transformed the ballroom.  It was amazing.  I got to hang out with another fabulous lady, Lexy.  If there was a prom queen crowned for the conference I’m pretty sure she would be it.  I wish we would have gotten more time to spend together.  We got to hang out with Kelly and Alexandra too.  Excited to be spending time at the Crafting with Bloggers event with Kelly next weekend.  She’s local so I think I’ll be seeing more of her.  And I wanted to bring Alexandra home with me so we could hang out all the time.  I love her!  As usual, Lauren and I hung out and sampled the wines.  The team from La Crema was super fun and I’m glad I got to meet them during the party, they even used a photo of mine on their Facebook page (do you “like” them?)

Lauren and monkey I had such an awesome time with Lauren at the conference.  We have grown close over the last year or so and she and I travel really well together.  She also does my hair.  Which is cool.  And she is always willing to take silly pictures with me.  I heart you Lauren.

land of nod lounge at alt summitDay 2 I made sure to visit all the lounges.  I had seen some Pin boards by Land of Nod prior to the conference for a Marie Antoinette style tea party and was excited by what I saw.  They BROUGHT it!  The room was decked out in a gorgeous and fun way! Why yes that is a boat shaped like a swan.  Which now I have to have.  Consider it on every one of my wish lists for the rest of my life.

mini parties at alt summitNight 2 brought a bunch of mini parties.  This is such a fun idea and I kind of want to do this for my next kid’s party.  Each room is so different and it is another chance to hang out with all your new friends and the brands who are hosting.

emily henderson and orlando soria at alt summitThe Girls with Glasses and Method put on the most amazing dance party.  We spent a LOT of time in here.  Go Mighty teamed up with Red Envelope to put on an awesome party where you could make someone you admire a valentine.  And then I hung out with HGTV celebs Orlando (Or-lawn-do) Soria and Emily Henderson.  For real, they were SO gracious and willing to take pictures with everyone.  It must have been super overwhelming for them.  Emily is to bloggers as moths are to flame (boom SAT worthy right there).  I probably wouldn’t have asked them for a picture because they had just walked in and I didn’t want to spook them but one of my friends was dying to meet Emily and we knew this was her chance.  I was instructed to not let them go anywhere (in a non-threatening way) so that someone could go grab my friend.  So we took a picture.  Orlando is super cool and has his own blog.  And you can read his Alt recap right here.

smilebooth photos from alt 1And there was a Smilebooth.  SO fun.  I have a ridiculous amount of photos so I’ve only picked a few to share.  They make me smile.  Jenny, Alexandra, me and Lauren.

smilebooth photos from alt summit 2Lauren, me, one of my favorite people of ALL time Melanie and Corey (who incidentally I didn’t actually meet although we photoboothed together – so Corey, nice to kind of meet you!)

smilebooth photos from alt summit 3Danae, Jenn, Me, Cyd and Lauren.  Danae is a new friend who recently moved to LA.  She came to our Kismet PR class and I’m so glad she was at Alt.  I would have loved more time with her but I loved seeing her around!

smilebooth image for alt summit 4But if I had gotten nothing else out of Alt, finally meeting my boo, Jenny in person would have been enough.  She is a constant source of advice, support, laughs, and immense inspiration for me.  Alt was a total blast and I can’t wait for next year!

Oh yeah!  Here is one big thing I took away from my travels to Alt.  It is cheaper to take two bags rather than one extra large, heavy bag.  At least on Delta anyway.   I had to pay $115.  EACH WAY!  Yikes.

For sure go back and look at my instagram at more fun pictures from the conference.  And you can search instagram and twitter for #altsummit to see what everyone else is posting.  If you are looking for hard facts and tips from the sessions, go to the Alt blog for round up links.