Looking Back + Looking Forward

Another year has come and gone... How many times have you read that on a blogger's recap post this week?! I won't bore you with the details of every single month or detail that has transpired during 2011, as I'm sure no one is as interested in them as I am myself. (Kind of a Catch-22 with bloggers, isn't it?! Hmm..) Anyway, I've said it before and I'll say it again, 2011 was a whirlwind year for me + this little blog.

A few highlights include...
+ A roadtirp to Wilmington, NC with two of our favorite people, Susannah and Chris. and getting engaged on the riverfront, canopied by twinkelights and captured on film. (I can't imagine better people to share that moment with!) Here's Mike take on it + Susannah's too!

+ Getting whisked away to NYC to stay at the Ace Hotel and attend the International Women's Day Celebration hosted by Levi's + Vogue. (Thanks for the trip, Levi's! View photos here!) 

+ Turning 23 + making my 23 before 24 list of goals! Still have a handful that I need to complete in the next 3 months! Here's to hoping I can do it! ()

+ Moving into our factory converted loft and trying to make it our Home Sweet Home. Full of shoes, twinklelights, and furry little lovemuffins (our pups!). (See the Loft Tour posts here: Twinklelights, Bedroom, Wardrobe [Updated], Workspace [Needs Updating], and Outside)

+ Deciding to launch a new handmade hair accessory shoppe, Hive + Honey. It's been a labor of love, though I can't wait until I can devote more time to it as a vital part of Honeybean.

+ We managed to sneak up to Chicago at the end of June and surprise Susannah for her birthday! It was all under the 'guise that we were driving to Northern Kentucky to foster a bulldog puppy. We were sitting on her couch when she walked in from work! That was one of my favorite parts of the year! (We also went back in September for Renegade Craft Fair but of course I'm awful at taking pictures!)

+ Making the decision to push forward with my dream of owning a small independent shoppe by joining the mobile biz craze and making Honeybean Mobile Boutique a dream come true! We unveiled her once we brought her home! Now you can shop online during the winter months, too! Lots more inventory to come! I'm even more excited about our next step...

+ We brought a sweet kitty (we named her Enid!) into our family and we're now compete as a family of 5. We took our first ever holiday card and we're preparing for another, even better, year to come. 
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

It really means so much to me knowing that so many of you take time out of your busy day to stop by my little slice of the internet. The web is such a crazy place if you think about it! I've grown to become such close friends with people I never would have had the opportunity to meet had it not been for this little blog. I know it sounds silly to say but I count my lucky stars every day to have the opportunities that I do. Pursuing my dream of owning my own businesses wouldn't be possible if it weren't for y'all! There are days I question myself as a blogger, and this entire blog in itself. But then I'll get an email or a comment that makes it more than worth it. I know I'm not out there changing lives in a huge way. I'm not curing cancer or lobbying for governmental change, but even if I can only bring a little sunshine into your day, I'll consider that a success! Thanks for making this so fun and exciting for me... It's like we're all on a journey together. Let's make sure 2012 is the one to remember! 

I'll be sharing my "New Year's Resolutions" in the next day or two! I'd love to hear about yours, too! So long, 2011. You were awesome, but 2012 is going to kick your butt! xo

DIY: Coasters

Mike and I decided to do a fully handmade Christmas this year (with one or two exceptions thrown in. Dads are hard to make for!) We were super excited to devote a handful of days to just getting crafty and baking away. I started on these coasters a couple of weeks ago (!!!) and only meant to make about 4 sets. I ended up making about 16! They're so simple and effortless that I couldn't help myself. It was fun to try different techniques to make them special, too. These are great inexpensive (yet thoughtful!) gifts for anyone you may know (or even to use in your home!). I made batches for practically everyone, and ew used our Instagram prints we've had lying around for our own set. Below I'll show you three fun ways to spruce up your own porcelain coasters, and give you a few more ideas! (It's really so simple that I don't need to do a step by step tutorial!)

What you'll need:
+ Four 4.25" x 4.25" porcelain tiles from hardware store
+ ModPodge
+ Foam brush
+ Paper or something for the "design"
+ Felt furniture backings

What you'll do: If you're using scrapbook paper or something of the sort, trim it into a 4"x4" square. (One piece of 12" scrapbook paper makes 9 (!!!) coasters!) Pour out some ModPodge and use your foam brush to brush a layer onto the top of the porcelain tile. Immediately place the design paper onto the fresh ModPodge. If you're using small pieces of paper for a collage, be careful not to tear them! The MP is sticky! Wait 20 minutes and allow it to dry. Come back and add another coat of MP over all 4 tiles, making sure to pay close attention to the edges. Allow this coat to dry for another half hour or so, and repeat two more times. After 3 coats of MP, you may turn over the coaster and add 4 felt backings to each one. This will help protect any surface it sits on. 

Voila! You now have a set of personalized coasters! Stack them up and tie them with a ribbon for a pretty presentation!

Tips and tricks: Use old movie stubs or anything that may be special between you and the recipient to make it more personal. Mike and I made a set with old date tickets and fortunes! You can also use baby pictures, pictures from growing up, or family portraits. If you have a new baby in the house then it could be sweet to use pictures of him/her to give to the baby's grandparents (or if you're on the outside then you can gift these to the parents of the baby!). If you decide to use small pieces, confetti, or anything with ink, pick up some transparencies at the office supply store and cut them into 4x4 square to place on top. This will help keep the coating even and nice. 

If you'd like to order your own Instagram prints (which are sized at 4x4!), use Mpix or download the Postal Pix app on your iPhone! 

These make great gifts because they're easy to make and cheap to put together. The tiles cost 16 cents a piece at Home Depot. 1 sheet of scrapbooking paper is enough for 2 full sets and is only 50 cents. The felt backings can be bought in sets of 25, 60, or 80 for only about $2.75. At the end of the day each set cost us roughly $1 to make (Instagram sets run about $2.50 or less!)

What would you put on your coasters if you made a set?! 

Guilty Pleasures: TV Shows

I know I've written a post on tv shows before, my favorites and inquiring about y'alls. But I thought it'd be fun to poll all of the new readers we have, too! Mike and I are obsessed with Dexter. I remember buying the first season on DVD right before I went to Europe for a few weeks. I planned on watching it on the plane ride into Budapest. Instead, I watched half of one episode and then decided it wasn't for me. Something didn't click. It wasn't until the following year that I gave it another go since Mike was insistent. From then on, we'd try and squeeze in as many episodes as we could in that unusually-cold winter. (Sometimes we'd watch as many as six or seven in one sitting! We'd stay up until 6am watching them!) Of course the show has slowed quite a bit, and the first 3 or 4 seasons were undoubtedly the best, but we're sticking it out through all 8! Who caught season 6's finale the other night?!? Whoa!

Anyway, my parents gifted us some of the seasons DVDs and now all we lack is Season 3. Mike really wants to rewatch all of them (!!!) but I'm just not sure I have it in me! Do you like to rewatch tv series?! I always wondered if that was a strange thing to do... I'm not sure why. Anyway.

Since Dexter was coming to an end, we decided to start watching Mad Men on Netflix. I've avoided Mad Men like the plague simply because everyone is always fawning over it (How rebellious of me!) but we got really into it. It's amazing how quickly we flew through 4 seasons! We'd watch an episode or two before bed every night and before I knew it, I knew the entire history of all the characters and I'm eagerly awaiting season 5 in March. I've seen a lot of chatter about Breaking Bad on Twitter lately so we started that a few days ago. We just finished season 1 last night and we're hoping it picks up a bit as some of the episodes are a little slow.

We both really like to find shows that have a ton of episodes/seasons so we can catch up and really get into it. It's hard to commit to a show when it first begins and you have to wait a week for a new episode (We do really like Whitney and Two Broke Girls though!)  We don't get to sit down and enjoy much tv very often, so just squeezing in an episode before bed has become quite the nightly tradition around here. Though I'll admit my all time favorite tv shows are probably Felicity (!!!) + NCIS (Fun fact: We have 181 episodes of NCIS on our DVR. Yowza!)

So my question for all of y'all: Do you have any tv shows you absolutely love? Bonus points if they're on Netflix Instant! (*cue everyone saying Doctor Who!* haha)

Sponsored Giveaway!: Casey Leigh

Merry belated Christmas, y'all! Hope everyone enjoyed their Sunday with friends, family, and yummy food. I had a post scheduled to go up while I was out of town for the holiday but Blogger seemed to have other plans! A nice little 2 day break on the blog wasn't a bad idea though, so we'll roll with it. Today I'm happy to introduce miss Casey Leigh of The Wiegands! Casey is a mama, artist, and blogger and she's here to offer up one lucky winner a special prize, so take a peek below.

Up for grabs for one lucky winner is a $50 store credit to the Casey Leigh shop!

To be entered to win, drop by her shop and leave a comment below on what you'd spend your winnings on! Be sure to leave an email address or Twitter name so I can reach you if you win!

If you'd like additional entries, you can do each of the following (leave a separate comment for each entry!):
+ Visit Casey's blog and leave a sweet comment
+ Follow @CaseyWiegand on Twitter
+ Tweet about the giveaway + tag @CaseyWiegand (include a link!)
+ Like Casey Wiegand on Facebook

Overall that's five ways to enter to win! A winner will be drawn at random + contacted later this week! Good luck! I'll be back with an outfit post soon! xo

Things I Love Thursday

It's the 22nd, y'all! Christmas is a mere three days away. I've got batches and batches of baked goods to make, presents to wrap, friends to see, and I have to work tomorrow night, too. We're celebrating Christmas with Mike's family on Christmas Eve, so I really only have 2 days. It's kind of exciting, and also bittersweet. I love the holiday season and the Pandora Indie Holiday station, and twinklelights galore. It won't feel quite as magical once it's passed and everyone takes down all of their decorations. Then it'll just be cold! By the way, happy first full day of winter! (or was that the 21st? Whatev. Happy winter nonetheless!) Let's look at pretty things!

 this photo. (we all have those days, right?!)  
 this incredible toddler bed! 
 these death cab lyrics 
 this overzealous pelican trying to eat a cat 
 this over the top wonderful unicorn cake 
 be still my type loving heart! 
 this chocolate is made to look like the solar system! 
 these milkshake sharin' kitties 
 this beautiful collage 
 this insightful (yet simple) illustration 

Other things that are awesome:
+++ I'm kind of crazy about a few things over at Spotted Moth, including this floral trench coat, these faux Litas (they're like exact replicas for 1/3 of the price!), and THESE! ::drool::

+++ While on the subject of shoes, if you're a fan of bold color (U GO GURL!), you absolutely need to check out these over at LuLu*s: Mixx Kay Fuschia platforms, BC Footwear Color Block kitten heels,  Luichiny Sav Vee Orange Velvet Betty Bow wedges (Long name! But so beautiful!!!)

+++ Kata's shop, Miss Cats, is full of so many wonderful things. I'm currently wearing this ring and it matches my tattooed lady plugs! Need to share those soon!

+++ I really really love Tumblr (even though I'm not very good at it!), and a few of my favorites are: Things Organized Neatly, Kitschy Living, Sweet Home Style, and F***YeahEnglishBulldogs.

+++ DIY Louisville shared their Cocoa Mug Cookies and they're too stinkin' cute!

+++ Someone needs to promptly send me all of the (totally stellar priced) Pyrex in the Junk In Da Trunk Girls shop!

+++ Bethany of Sweet Sincerity wrote a great thought provoking post on the pros and cons of a brick and mortar shop for an indie designer. 

+++ Tara-Marie of Shipwrecks & Bravery shared a post on transferring really cool paper patterns to cloth (and then sewing them into pouches!) I miss college for cool projects like this!

+++ You can still pick up my PR + Marketing Ebook (for bloggers + small biz owners) for only $20 until the end of December! The discount will be applied automatically at checkout!

+++ I'm crossing my fingers that our plans work out for a little roadtrip up to Chicago in two weeks to see Susannah and Chris! We haven't seen them since early September so it'd be rad to spend a handful of days hanging out and pretending we lived closer than 600 miles apart!

Have you read or seen anything cool on the internet lately?! Have you written a post that you love and want to share? Leave a link in the comments below so we can all pop over! OR just tell me what you're loving this week!

Shoes-day Tuesday!

Yesterday was a good shoe day (albeit it was Monday... Shoesday Tuesday just sounds better though!) Mike + I aren't exchanging gifts in a traditional manner this year. Instead, we're just picking out something we really love/want, and agreeing to purchase it. It's really hard to have the element of surprise when you live together, work together, do everything together almost! Of course I picked up a pair of ridiculous shoes, and Mike is gunning for a new set of Harmonicas to add to his collection. Yesterday was a really great day for my collection of shoes!

I write about Karmaloop a lot on here. You probably think I'm just shilling some ridiculous brand for the sake of getting paid, but I order almost all of my shoes (Jeffrey Campbells, especially) from KL because you can get them on serious markdown. Solestruck, Revolver, and Nasty Gal don't offer the same perks or discounts that KL does. However, KL rarely allows promo codes and discounts to be used on JC shoes. I guess they're a quick selling, high dollar brand and they can get full price for them. Every time a new coupon code comes out for KL, I quickly check and see if it's compatible with JCs. Lucky lucky day, the current "Up to 31% off" coupon code does work on JCs! I was able to snag The Warning Shoe on mega markdown. It was already on sale ($176 to $118) and then I used the code on top to get another ~$30 off. They're kind of different from what I normally wear, but I'm excited to put them on and prance around! They remind me of a crazy ska-cowboy platform!

Then we ventured down to look at some barns for the wedding (more on that later!). On our way home last night, we stopped into House of Stella, my friend Stacey's boutique in Cool Springs. HoS is the only JC carrying store in Tennessee so I thought we'd take a peek at what new shoes they had. Low and behold, it was my lucky day! Y'all know I've been fawning over the Lita Spikes for entirely too long. It's impossible to get them when they're stocked because they fly off the virtual shelves, and some stores have them on pre-order for the end of March! No way Jose! Luckily Stacey had just put those out yesterday! I quickly grabbed my size and that was that. That would be my Christmas present!

They're absolutely beautiful. Ridiculous, over the top, and kind of alarming. The spikes are insanely sharp too! I can't wait to wear them! Of course it would rain today.

When we got home finally, I had the happiest package waiting for me at the mailbox! A double surprise from LeBunnyBleu! A fab gal on behalf of LBB asked me if I'd like to style up some shoes and one look on their website and I was dunzo. Spikes, leather and all things edge aside, I fell in love with the pastels, the bunny ears, and the sweet little girl style of the shoes. Seriously! Have you ever seen something so cute in your life?! I instantly dubbed them my Bunny and Barbie Dream Shoes. I've been racking my brain on how to pair them with practically everything I own. These are the two pairs I picked out: Bunny + Barbie (Ebony Bow). So many awesome shoes to choose from, and only two feet to wear them on! 

** If you'd like to purchase anything at Karmaloop.com, use the promo code HURRY + the rep code KAELAH for up to 31% off your entire order. This includes Jeffrey Campbell, Betsey Johnson, and Seychelles!

And to think under a year ago I was simply a black flats girl. It's crazy how the times can change! xo

PS; Today is the last day to get the discounted sponsor rates for January! Email me (kaelahbee at gmail dot com) if you're interested! View sponsor perks here

Film Shots

It's been a while since I've shot (and developed, especially!) any film. I used to take almost a roll a day and get them developed by the handful, but for some reason I've slowly stopped. Disposables will probably always be my favorite. No matter how many big body styles or Lomography cameras we get. Don't get me wrong, each of those are fun for their own reasons, but I love the effortless simplicity of a $4 disposable from the drugstore. I have a pile of them sitting unopened in my craft closet. These were shot on our Nikon F4 over the past several weeks. I kind of like letting a camera sit around for a while before developing it because seeing what is on it can be a surprise.

Today we're supposed to go look at a potential wedding venue, and then tomorrow two more. We're also picking up last minute crafty things for our Christmas gifts. This week is going to be so jam packed with crafting + baking + getting things ready. Wish us luck! xo