Saturday, March 2, 2013

7 Reasons to Choose a Freelance Career

Have you ever heard that old saying "do what you love & the money will follow"? I totally believe it. If you're genuinely happy with your career you will be successf in more ways than one. I have recently started a career as a freelance marketing consultant. I thought that after I graduated (December 2012) that I had to go straight to Forbes 500 companies because that was what I was being told for the past 4 years. But after not seeing an opportunity for myself I made an opportunity. I began the first steps in owning my own marketing consulting company; I couldn't be happier about my decision. If you're thinking about going towards a freelance career here are my reasons as to why you SHOULD!
1) Make Your Own Hours: Whether you're a morning person or night person it doesn't matter because you can work when you want to, as long as the job gets done.
2) Work in Comfort: Not everyone, especially creative individuals, can work in a 3-piece suit. When you work from home you can work in your yoga pants and baggy sweat shirt!
3) Determine Your Wages: Wheb you work freelance jobs you can choose how much you make. This puts an end to getting minimum wage when you received a 4-year degree.
4) Make Your Own Schedule: I get to work out at the gym when I want or go get groceries when I want because I works freelance career. The convenience I get is priceless!
5) Save Money: When you work freelance you save gas money, clothing money,  and money on household expenses. Household expenses? Yes, you can make more meals from home because you are no longer "stuck in traffic" or "working late to meet a deadline." 
6) Ditch the Drama: when you work freelance you don't have to deal with bitchy coworkers. This alone is an amazing reason to choose freelance!
7) Bathroom Breaks: I drink a TON of water every single day, I always have to go to the bathroom. But when working in an office you can't leave hour desk constantly without looking sketchy. When you work from home you can go pee as much as you want!!

Monday, January 28, 2013

20 Random Acts of Kindness

It is so easy for all of us to get caught up in our daily lives and forget to spread a little joy onto someone else.  So I am presenting you with a list of random acts that I have done and have yet to-do! I challenge you to commit a random act once in awhile and see how amazing it truly feels to put a smile on someone else's face :)

  1. Send a 'thinking of you' card to a friend or family member that you have lost touch with.
  2. Start a small stash of canned goods that you got from a BOGO coupon and donate your freebies to your local food pantry.
  3. Put a few extra quarters on top of the gumball or small toy machines at the grocery store.
  4. Keep a few baggies in your car filled with a few toiletry items to give out to the homeless when you see them on the side of the road "begging."
  5. If you are as fortunate as me to live where it snows (slight sarcasm) brush off the snow/ice of your neighbor's car if you leave for work or school before them.
  6. Go through your closet and pick out the clothes you no longer wear and donate them to an all women's shelter.
  7. Paper or plastic? If you choose to have your groceries bagged in plastic save the plastic bags and donate them to a local animal shelter.
  8. Remember that pile of books from when you were a kid? Donate those to a local school or library.
  9. Simply hold the door open for someone. It may seem like a no-brainer but there are people who lack basic etiquette.
  10. Return your shopping cart and someone else's when out shopping.
  11. Surprise your loved one by cooking their favorite meal for dinner.
  12. Get a few people together to make a handmade card or small gift and donate them to an elderly care center or children's hospital.
  13. When was the last time you actually thanked your parents for putting up with you for the past twenty-some years and loving you unconditionally? Call them up, send them flowers, or go and visit them and thank your mom and dad for everything that they have done for you and continue to do.
  14. So your bartender or server is less than cheerful, give them a bigger tip than usual with an inspiring quote. You have the chance to turn their day around!
  15. If you have a green thumb and have extra fruit or veggies, share them with your neighbors.
  16. Compliment someone.
  17. Write inspiring and motivating quotes on sticky notes and place them where people will see them (without littering, of course).
  18. Next time you see a mom with three screaming kids in-line behind you, let them cut in front of you.
  19. Put a few extra quarters in someone else's parking meter if you see that it's about to expire.
  20. Next time you get coffee through the drive-thru buy coffee for the car behind you.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

10 Ways to Travel Cheap

If you only see dollar signs when you hear the word 'vacation' this post is for especially for you! Vacations can be expensive but if you do it right you will save money and see sandy beaches and delicious food when you hear 'vacation.' So with spring break and tax refunds coming up, it is time to start planning your next adventure!

1. Scope Out Deals: As you enjoy your morning cup of coffee check-out these deal sites. This is the only way my friends and I travel now because the deals are AWESOME!  Most of the packages that you can get from these sites come with luxurious suites, bar and spa credits, and some are all-inclusive!


2. Avoid Weekend Travel: Try to make your main travel days Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  Hotel rates are much cheaper during the week than they are on the weekend.  Plus, if you are going to Vegas or somewhere similar, during the week you have a greater chance at getting better deals on shows and spa treatments.

3. Flying Tips: The best absolute best day to book your flight is Tuesday morning around 6am. And when you are booking your flight, fly red-eye!  When you fly red-eye you can knock off up to $80 per ticket! While I love saving money because I fly at night or early morning I also LOVE that everyone is sleeping and quiet when flying at these times.

4. Pack Light: This is another flying tip, pack as light as possible because many airlines still allow you to bring on two carry-on bags like a suitcase and large purse. If you check your luggage in you are looking at $60 per bag or MORE if you go over the 50lb limit! And lets not forget how expensive it will be if the airline loses your luggage and you have to buy new clothes while on vacation...not worth it, just pack light.

5. Become a Local: Many people think that because they are on vacation they need to eat at a restaurant for all of their meals. This is not a good idea. Not only will eating out at every meal cause you to gain unwanted pounds but it is SO darn expensive!! After you are done unpacking and getting settled in go grocery shopping and buy food that you can prepare and eat on-the-go. I'm not saying you shouldn't go out to a fancy or fun restaurant the whole time you are on vacation, but you should put a limit on it.  I suggest going to local farmer's markets for fresh fruits, veggies, and fish so your prepared food tastes is also a delicacy.

6. Negotiate: Sometimes prices fluctuate and that can really throw off your budget, so negotiate.  Be polite and nice when negotiating, that is number one. Ask the hotel for local deals, promotions, and specials; it can't hurt to ask.

7. Ditch the Hotel: I personally have not tried this yet, but I am looking into it after hearing so many wonderful things about it. Instead of staying at an over-priced hotel check out these websites that have apartments, condos, and even rooms for rent. They have the same luxurious feel and can give you a better taste of the local culture than a hotel.

8. Insurance: Always check with your current insurance policies and your credit card policies because they almost-always cover car rental insurance, lost luggage insurance, etc. There is NO reason for you to pay twice on a service that you already have.

9. Travel in Groups: Try and get some friends or family to travel with you because then you can rent a house and split the cost to save money. Just because you travel together it doesn't mean you have to spend every second together.

10. Off-Season: Not every vacation destination can be traveled in the off-season but if you can you SHOULD! You can save up to 60% off on rooms, car rentals, attractions, and more if you visit during the off-season. It's definitely worth considering.

Healthy Skin Scrub

Swimsuit Slim Down

15 Quinoa Recipes

Well one of the latest foodie trends is quinoa!  It's packed with protein and fiber and is gluten-free.  It's also incredibly versatile, you can have it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snacks.  Here are some new recipes for you to try so you can get your daily dose of quinoa! Just click the pic to view the recipe!

Buffalo Chicken Bites
Cheesy Zucchini Quinoa
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Quinoa Burger
Chocolate Chip Quinoa Trail Mix Balls
Loaded Quinoa Veggie Burgers
Garlic & Thyme Quinoa Patties
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
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Quinoa Pizza Bites
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Roasted Shrimp Quinoa Spring Rolls
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Quinoa Sushi Rolls
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Broccoli-Quinoa Casserole
Toasted Quinoa Salad with Scallops & Snow Peas
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Chicken-Sweet Potato Quinoa Stir-Fry
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Crispy Quinoa Sliders
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Cinnamon Quinoa Bake
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Trending Now in Women's Fashion

Check out some of the top trends for January in women's fashion! So what's HOT right now?  Fitted and peplum tops and anything containing the following key words: sheer, lace, bows, or sparkle!


Dear to Me Top Dear to Me Top
Of your countless obsessions and numberous interests you rate dressing with expression among your top. That's why this adorable short-sleeved shirt has found a place as one of your closet's clutch players. Featuring a becoming bow of paper-white attached to a simple empire-waisted black base this slinky retro-infused top really exemplifies the sort of simple yet stylishly singular pieces you favor when it comes to your fashion. For a look that's oh-so 'you' partner this notable number with polka-dotted skinny trousers lightly heeled loafers and a vintage bangle and share your lovely look with the world.

The Answer is Sheer Top in Pink The Answer is Sheer Top in Pink
Life throws mysteries your way every day but one thing that will never be questioned is your sensational style - especially when you wear this flirty petal-pink top a colorway found exclusively at ModCloth! With a sheer polka-dotted mesh design extending from the piped collar and sleeves down to the faux-sweetheart neckline you can't go wrong! The cute keyhole on the back adds the perfect touch of fashionista flair and is fastened with a shiny milk-hued button assuring that your style is always securely intact. Throw on your bright pleated skirt patent flats and a statement necklace and you'll show that you're always the right answer to anyone's fashion question!

Posh for the Photo Top Posh for the Photo Top
Snap click flash! Feeling just gorgeous in your black peplum top and metallic jacquard trousers you "smize" with your impeccably dressed best friends for the lounge photographer. Just earlier you were sitting in your corner office wrapped in a cropped grey blazer and meeting important deadlines. Now youre enjoying a glass of champagne as sparkly as the gold bib necklace above your sweetheart neckline while striking poses in your ribbed stretch fabric blouse like youre on the runway!

Refined Your Way Top Refined Your Way Top
If youve been dreaming of a soft simple and sophisticated top to suit your classic style then your search is complete! This breezy oatmeal-colored sleeveless piece features layers of lace at the shoulders and a beaded crochet design that sweeps across the neckline in vintage-inspired fashion. Layer this shirt under your favorite cardigan and pleated skirt to create a look that practically redefines the word "refined".

You're in the Sheer Top You're in the Sheer Top
With a few big projects behind you the road ahead is obstacle-free and ripe for adventure! Let your fashion reflect your lighthearted mood in this sheer teal-green top! Let loose in these loose-fitting and flowy threads featuring short ruffle-sleeves a tie-bow collar scoop neck and a quartet of collar buttons that layer peacefully over a beige cami. With your now-clear calendar meet a friend for coffee in skinny jeans and floral flats or enjoy some me-time at the park in a jean skirt and lace-up sneakers. Enjoy your independence in style!

Style-a-Day Dress in Friday Night Style-a-Day Dress in Friday Night
Start the weekend in style with this versatile jersey dress. Its comfy adjustable wrap can create looks that range from halter tops to belted skirts with a few flips of your wrist! Whether you feel like emphasizing the slightly asymmetrical hemline or drawing attention to your neckline with a creative wrap theres no limit to your styling potential. Pair it with strappy sandals and a statement necklace over the weekend then accessorize with a white cardigan and wrap headband on a weekday morning. Youll be amazed at your creativity and the compliments you receive all week long!

Seaside by Side Dress Seaside by Side Dress
Strolling arm-in-arm with your sweetheart down the pier from your resort you feel perfectly pleased with this beautiful evening - and much of that joy has to do with this dazzling maxi dress. Crafted in a flexible knit of cool cobalt this long dress boasts coy cutouts at the back amid an exposed zipper and a slinky curve-flaunting fit complete with sleek front seaming. As the wind blows gently at your neck you use a bangled arm to draw your crinkled wrap close around your shoulders just as your paramour pulls you into a warm close embrace. As the waves sigh softly against the shore you think that things just don't get better than this magnificent night!

Breakfast Special Dress Breakfast Special Dress
Smoothing the pleated-waist skirt of this black dress atop one of the diners sparkling barstools you scan the menu for the most energizing meal you can find. After all the bunches of bright greetings youll offer from above the pointed collar of this frock will need to be fueled somehow! Ordering the feature meal plus a black coffee to keep with the theme of your noir dress you pull your rouge pointelle cardigan over the straps of this back-zipped number and cross your cherry-print wedges at the ankle ties while you wait. When your dish arrives you fill yourself slowly savoring every bite before skipping off with your charm bracelet jingling and entering into what surely be a great day thanks to the invigorating breakfast you enjoyed in this LBD!

Putting Green Queen Dress Putting Green Queen Dress
So far your score has sat comfortably below par but this next hole will surely test your mini-golf mastery. After teeing off your pastel pink ball must roll through tricky turf as true green as your knit casual frock. Over the crest of a small hill the green splits into four slender alleys that mimic the straps of your shift. To navigate the terrain and reach the alley that points to the hole requires a deft hand and a keen eye. Determined you tuck your scorecard under your white polka-dotted bow belt set your penny loafers squarely beneath your hips and wrap your fingers confidently around your club. Your lucky charm bracelet jingles gently as you make your putt and watch your ball go skipping down the green. A day spent sporting your new favorite dress is lovely in itself but few things beat the feeling of an effortlessly executed hole-in-one!

Mojito Sipping Dress Mojito Sipping Dress
Escape the heat this summer in a dress that dazzles with its cool refreshing flavor! This strapless frock boasts big relief from rising temperatures with its breezy back bow above a cutout and soothing mint-hued tie-dye pattern. Pair this peerless piece with coconut-hued flats a mango-colored headband and a handbag of strawberry for a look that offers a bold splash of style to get you through any heatwave.

Proudly Posh Heel Proudly Posh Heel
Banish the bashful wardrobe 'blahs' with these breathtakingly vibrant pumps! Their cream-colored uppers balance beautifully atop their solid teal-hued heels while their shapely rounded toes are each painted with a single painstakingly detailed peacock feather in shades of turquoise and plum. Their walkable heels and rubber soles make these savvy shoes ideal for adding punch to a posh outfit or panache to a professional ensemble! Try pairing with patterned tights a solid dress and a feathered hair clip for a unique and confident look!

Master Classy Heel Master Classy Heel
You dont have to be a fashion expert to see that these pale-pink gold-toe heels are the essence of chic! This posh stiletto makes you look oh-so style-savvy with a barely-there creamy rose hue and metallic-gold-dipped toe that boost your glam factor without going overboard. Skillfully pair these pointy-toe pumps with a belted coral shift long beaded necklace and honey-hued earrings and feel elegant in your seriously sharp ensemble.

How Could You Not? Heel in Sienna How Could You Not? Heel in Sienna
You see each time you scoot out your front door as another opportunity to don these warm-brown mid-height heels by Chelsea Crew! Hey - with their wonderfully woven toes always in-style ankle straps and soft leather lining why wouldnt you wear them as frequently as possible? Its just too easy to strap this vegan faux-leather pair on with skinnies and a striped or tights and a vintage frock or even with a pencil skirt and blazer to work and always look spot-on adorable. So whats stopping you? We cant think of one thing!

Sterling Things Up Heel Sterling Things Up Heel
Enliven a festive ensemble by flaunting these sparkly heels! This vegan faux-leather pump is frosted with silver glitter from high heel to tapered toe and is sure to start a sensation at all of your holiday occasions. Add a dazzling dose of shimmer to a simple sheath or pair them with a sequined dress for head-to-toe radiance that will invigorate everyones spirit.