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6.30.2017

How to Make Layered Shots for the 4th of July

Independence Day is almost here!  The 4th of July is definitely one of my favorite holidays.  And what better way to celebrate than with red, white, and blue layered shots?


And I don't mean layered like the jello shots I did for the last 4th of July.  Those don't need a tutorial, you wait til one layer is solid and then put the next one in.  Easy.  No, this layering just the booze without the solidity of jello to help you.  Which is harder but the results are worth it.  I'm not going to lie - making layered shots isn't easy and it takes practice.  It's all about mastering the slow, controlled pour.  But once you get it, they end up so stinking pretty!

6.29.2017

Three on Thursday

This post may contain affiliate links.  

Welcome back to Three on Thursday, my weekly even though I sometimes skip weeks list of things I'm loving at the moment that I think you should do, try, or buy.  If you're interested in past weeks, you can find those here.

6.28.2017

Keeping Up With Life Part 2

This post is a continuation of yesterday's, so if you haven't read that yet, I would start there.  It'll make much more sense that way!

6.27.2017

Keeping Up With Life Part 1

Finally time for that 'keeping up with life' post I promised a couple of weeks ago!  I meant to post one last week, that was my intention when I originally decided to tackle this, but Tara had been in town that weekend so it was anything but normal.  Instead, I started tracking my days on Saturday, June 17.  This particular post is going to be in two parts, with the second half coming tomorrow.  I typed it up altogether as one but it was so long, it had to be split.  I do plan on doing another one of these at least, just to give you more ideas because the next will be more traditional and have more meal ideas, and that won't be nearly this length.  This first go-around just had a lot of background explaining that had to happen, but won't be needed in the future.


6.26.2017

Ever Considered a Move to Los Angeles?

Today I have Lauren here to share a little about life in Los Angeles!  If you're missing me today, check out my post over on Lauren's blog about how to organize your bathroom cabinets and drawers.  I hope it helps!
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hi everyone! i'm lauren! steph is kind enough to let me allow me to guest post on her blog now and again and i am so happy to be here today! i live in los angeles, trying my hardest to be television screenwriter.  i work at dc comics in their publishing department and put out a lot of comic books! i wanted to share with you today what it is really like to live in one of the best, largest and most fun cities in the world, los angeles!

if you live in the valley, people who live on the other side of hollywood hills probably won't consider that you live in los angeles.  sometimes people say "do you live in los angeles or do you live in the valley?"  there are the hollywood hills that separate "los angeles" from "the valley".  the valley is where universal studios is, where warner bros. studios is (where i work), studio city, and van nuys (where i live.) you have to cross through or over the hills to get to santa monica or to the beach.  the hollywood sign is in the valley but father north.  the hollywood hills is not where the hollywood hills are.  "the valley" is the san fernando valley. #geography.  and sometimes you get made fun of living in the valley because it can be kind of trashy.  i don't care.  its cheap and its close to work. 

it is much hotter in the valley than it is over the hill. because of the ocean.  the ocean cools everything down but the hill blocks the ocean's cool breeze so its like a hot cooker of heat.  then you go over the hill and the temperature drops several degrees.  as i am writing this it is 109 and my poor little wall ac unit is no match for the outside heat.  

its true that most of the people you meet are in the entertainment industry. it is so funny to me that when i tell people who aren't in the business that i moved here to be a screenwriter, they act so surprised and say "oh so and so is an ____ or a ____" like its like "what a small world that you both are in the same industry! what are in the odds in LA! who'd thunk.  but that is how you network because everyone is in the business so then i usually respond with "can i get their info?" i'm annoying.  but very good at networking. i go to a lot of events.  but that is another post for another time that you can check out on my blog. 

carry cash everywhere.  i never, ever carried cash before but here, its a necessity.  where i am from, utah, you never ever need cash.  you can pay with a card for everything. valets, restaurants, you name it.  but in LA, there are valets everywhere and they don't take cards.  there are valets even at the grocery store.  its super inconvenient.   if you have no cash, you have to leave your id with them, go a gas station, get change and then come back. its very annoying and is best to just carry cash at all times to avoid this problem.  same with when you go to eat.  they usually don't take cards.  and get this.  when you go to the doctor, they don't take cards either.  how weird is that?  i was shocked when i went to my doctor and he said he would only take cash or check.  weird. 

 photo california_zpssmsndliy.png

take advantage of tapings. the great thing about living in los angeles is that you can be in the live studio audience of so many tapings! i wrote a post about how to get to go to tapings here.  it really is so much fun but can be tricky because the talk shows, for instance, are in the middle of the day, so you have to skip work to go.  and you have to actually tell work what you're doing in case you're on tv and they see it and so they aren't like "wait you weren't at the doctor.  is jimmy kimmel your doctor?" there are so many tapings to go to, but it does get old fast.  and tiring.  you are expected to scream and jump up and down for talk shows and you lose your voice and it can be really exhausting. 

you aren't going to go to the beach as much as you think you will.  we have been here five months and have yet to have a good beach day.  true, we moved here in january so it hasn't really been beach season until now, but we only have gone three times.  once to santa monica when we first got here so i could show my husband the pier and another to venice beach because i always wanted to check it out (really didn't like it) and another time on my birthday because i wanted to have cake by the ocean just like in the song (much better in theory.  that cake got really sandy really fast.)

there is no shortage of amazing things to do here at any given moment.  this is more of a broader observation from moving to one of the largest cities in america from utah. in utah my husband and i stayed in a lot because there wasn't much to do.  but here there are so many adventures to be had! each saturday we usually go to some new attraction or i take him to one my favorite spots in LA.  i lived here for a semester in college for an internship six years ago so when we moved here i was already in love with this city of stars.  there is so much to do and we take every advantage of living in one of the greatest cities in the world.

thanks to steph for letting me on the blog today and thanks for reading! you can find me on  at my blog, on instagram, twitter and pinterest


6.23.2017

Childhood Home Tour

I gave you the tour of our own home, and I've glossed over my parents' place a few times through pictures, but since I was pet sitting their two dogs on Wednesday (our house is a mere 2.5 miles from my parents), I thought it would be a great opportunity to just pick up the camera and do a complete walk through like I did with our house.   

6.22.2017

Three on Thursday

This post may contain affiliate links.  

Welcome back to Three on Thursday, my weekly even though I sometimes skip weeks list of things I'm loving at the moment that I think you should do, try, or buy.  If you're interested in past weeks, you can find those here.

6.21.2017

What's In My Makeup Bag?

This post may contain affiliate links.  

Makeup is one of those things that was the last to be downsized when I decluttered my stuff. I don't think it's truly minimal at this point even, but it's leaps and bounds from where it used to be. I mean, I had a solid 40 lipsticks at one point, at least! My makeup collection is always changing, but I wanted to share what I'm working with right now until something runs out.

minimalist_makeup_collection

Like I mentioned in last week's Three on Thursday post, my makeup bag is from Target and it fits my entire makeup collection.  (Side note, I have a matching little one for my nail supplies.)

6.20.2017

Our Favorite (Frugal) Date Ideas

John turns 30 in two weeks, I can hardly believe it.  I wanted to mark the occasion on the blog in some way, but I already did facts about him for his last birthday, so I decided instead to list some of our favorite ways to spend time together when we actively plan for a date night.  John is a typical 'guy's guy' so a lot of things on the suggested date night lists floating around the internet get major eye rolls from him - dance class?  art gallery?  scrapbook together?  yoga?  Nope.  I mean, to be perfectly honest, those things get an eye roll from me too.  Fancy girly girl I am not.  So if you're anything like us, read on for some of our favorite and relatively inexpensive dates.


6.19.2017

Products I Regret Buying

This post may contain affiliate links.

Yes, products I regret buying is hardly the 'recommendations' type post you're looking for... but maybe it is.  If you've been around here for any amount of time, you know that I like to give you my recommendations of favorite products (and other much loved non-monetary things, like fun YouTube videos) on Thursdays with my Three on Thursday posts.  But I haven't yet offered my opinions on things I don't like - I always figured I would just share the good stuff but now I'm realizing that you need to know about the stuff that didn't work too.  Because, man, some of these things really had me fooled: they get glowing reviews!  And now I feel like I just wasted my money, and I wish I had seen some more honest/negative reviews before making the leap.  Hopefully I can save you from making my mistakes with these products I regret buying:


6.16.2017

A Short Summer To Do List

These seasonal goals linkups are every 3 months and yet I somehow feel like I just wrote out my spring goals list, so 3 months passed for me in the blink of an eye.  Not sure how, but here we are and here's how I did with the spring session.  Spoiler: not good.

Spring Goals


1. Make Hawkeye an Easter basket.  My parents went to Florida over Easter so I pet sat for their dogs and all three musketeers got an Easter basket.
2. Plan a visit to the Botanical Gardens.  It's on my 101 list to go and Betsy's taking me as part of her Christmas gift to me.  We haven't gone yet, luckily I was smart enough to just say 'plan' this trip, not actually go.  Betsy is still waiting on dates on her end, but I sent her my list of when I can go, and I have a back up plan if she can't make it before September.  So I consider that planned.
3. Plan and book John's birthday party.  He turns 30 on July 5 and the way his schedule worked out best was to have the party on July 8.  The planning part is pretty much done, so the next two weeks is just execution.
4. Make alcoholic granita.  Easy and delicious.  It's literally as simple as mixing a good flavored vodka with ginger ale and letting it freeze for a couple hours, scrape it up with a fork, and eat. Yum.
? 5. Set up an annual home maintenance calendar.  I started this and meant to finish it before this link up, but I didn't.  It's almost there.
X 6. Get my next Invisalign tray.  HA.  I'm ridiculous.  This should have been an easy one but I didn't even consider it.  Well, that's not true - I considered it, and promptly ditched it.  Whoops?
X 7. Get halfway to my goal weight.  I have been working on it but not hardcore, and then I made the goal slightly lower, I don't know why, I like to punish myself I guess!  I pushed this one on to summer goals, I WILL make it.
X 8. Schedule Mom's birthday dinner.  Haven't set this up yet.  Her birthday is in January but she hates the cold and everything she wanted to do was warm weather activities. But with Mother's Day and Father's Day and then John's birthday, we just haven't set up a dinner or anything for her half birthday in July.  But I will!
9. Check one 'go to' place off the 101 list.  We went to the Shedd Aquarium back in April.
X 10. Go to country night with Megan.  We haven't had time!  She works crazy hours and while we did hang out (we set up her blog, we decluttered her apartment, we saw our friends' band at a street fest), we just didn't make it to country night at a bar.  But we will definitely do it soon.

Woof.  Only 50%.  I told you I'm so much less productive in spring and summer.  I just don't have the same sort of motivation that I do in fall and winter.  Although I do think if I had just one more month for these, I could have made a little more progress.  Ah well.  On to summer goals!

Summer Goals


Like spring, summer is particularly hard for me when it comes to being productive.  I still wanted to do 10 goals because I really, really like the evenness of the number.  But I wanted a good balance of easy goals with some more time consuming things that have been nagging me (re-organize my Bloglovin/Feedly readers), so I could be productive but still get some quick and fun things done.  Now, to be totally honest, I thought I had done that with my spring goals so....

Wish me luck!  What are your goals this season?

Linking up with Steph and Sara.  It might not be today but maybe next week! 


Thanks so much for stopping by.  You can also join me on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.  In addition to minimalism and organizing, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #notentirelyperfect on social media so I can see your beautifully unstaged life.  On the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or subscribe via e-mail to be alerted to each new post.

6.15.2017

Three on Thursday

This post may contain affiliate links.  

Welcome back to Three on Thursday, my weekly even though I sometimes skip weeks list of things I'm loving at the moment that I think you should do, try, or buy.  If you're interested in past weeks, you can find those here.

6.14.2017

7 Easy Cocktails You Must Try This Summer

You know I'm normally a winter lover and not a fan of summer at all.  But.  Summer cocktails are absolutely something I can get behind.  Fall and winter drinks are always warming and full of sweet, comforting flavors like vanilla or cinnamon.  Summer has none of those things, it's all about the bright citrus and berry flavors, which I'm actually a big fan of.  Here are some of my tried and true favorites for all your light, refreshing summer drink needs.  And none of them are complicated because who has the time or patience for muddling and 13 ingredients?  Not this girl.


6.13.2017

Summer Binge Watch Recommendations

I know, I know, summer is about getting outside and trying to enjoy the weather.  But I really don't like summer and being hot so I understand the need to just stay indoors sometimes.  I mean, a Netflix or Hulu binge watch weekend is just as good in July as it is in January, isn't it?!  Here's some that I definitely recommend adding to your list this season.

6.12.2017

Hawkeye's Guide To Summer

Make mommy get you a fresh summer hair cut.

6.09.2017

[Not So] Big Blog Plans

Last Friday I asked for your feedback in the form of a quick survey, and I greatly appreciate all the responses I got.  The survey is still open so if you want to take it you can, and I'm picking a winner for the $25 to Amazon by 3 p.m. central time today.  (Check last week's post if you want to know how to win.)

Most of the answers I got were kind of what I expected, as far as what you like to see and what you want to read more about.  Everyone seems to be in consensus in enjoying the real life posts and general dry humor around here, and in wanting to hear more about different aspects of organization.  'Home organizational systems' is probably the best way I can broadly describe it.  I'll definitely try to incorporate more of that in, it is what I'm very good at after all.  I have some plans on this front but nothing concrete, things are still swirling around, but once I figure it out I'll be sure to give you an update.

One thing kept coming up in the survey answers about what else you'd like to see here did sort of surprise me though, because I didn't think it would be super interesting to anyone else: how I personally 'keep up with life.'  I mean, that's basically what it all boiled down to (although, one answer did actually state those words, 'keep up with life,' a phrase I really like so thanks, whoever that was!), but there were quite a few requests for things like meal planning, decluttering and cleaning routines, things of that nature, which are all part of my 'keeping up with life' routine.  You want to know how I stay on top of everything while I still work a full time job outside of the house.  I'm thinking that the best way to blog about those things would just be to have a sort of recap of my entire week and weekend routine, broken down by time frames, posted on Mondays.  And include a financial recap with that as well.

Probably won't be starting that this coming Monday though, because Tara is coming into town this evening and we'll be day drinking tomorrow and Sunday I'll just be hungover and totally unproductive, let's be honest.  But starting next week, I think I'll try to track what I do each day and how long it takes, including what sort of food and plans I make on the weekends to get set up for the next week, and share all of that on Monday, June 19.  Then I'll get your feedback and see if it's something that's actually interesting and helpful.  It's the best way I can think of to show how everything all sort of works together with my various systems, so hopefully the posts come across how I'm currently dreaming them up in my head.

Kind of how I feel every summer - lots of thinking of things, very little motivation for follow through.  I did manage to update the look of my blog, which was totally unnecessary but a fun way to procrastinate the things I actually should be doing.  I'm a master of that sort of thing.

Have a great weekend!


Thanks so much for stopping by.  You can also join me on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.  In addition to minimalism and organizing, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #notentirelyperfect on social media so I can see your beautifully unstaged life.  On the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or subscribe via e-mail to be alerted to each new post.


6.08.2017

Three on Thursday

This post may contain affiliate links.  

Welcome back to Three on Thursday, my weekly even though I sometimes skip weeks list of things I'm loving at the moment that I think you should do, try, or buy.  If you're interested in past weeks, you can find those here.

6.07.2017

8 Tips to Make Clothes Last Longer

I very, very clearly remember wearing my beloved teal tank top to a friend's birthday party.  Not just any birthday party, her 16th birthday party.  (Hi Katie.)  Yes, we are currently 32.  So I've had this dang top for 16 years and tell me it doesn't still look fantastic, I dare you.  And it's not like I haven't been wearing it over the years, it gets regular rotation given my very small wardrobe.  I mentioned last week that I would share my best tips on how to make clothes last longer, so if anyone can help you, it's this girl who's been keeping and wearing the same clothes for 16 years.  (Side lesson - don't buy trendy things.)

6.06.2017

How To Sneak Alcohol Into Places You're Not Supposed To

Yeah, that's right, I said it.  I bring alcohol into places all the time because I loathe paying those wildly marked up prices like at, say, street fests.


6.05.2017

That Harry Potter Life

One of the gifts John got me for Christmas was the entire set of Harry Potter movies on iTunes, so I can marathon them whenever I want.

6.03.2017

A June Referral Bonus

This post may contain affiliate links.

It's summertime, and Swagbucks has brought a $5 bonus! Swagbucks is a rewards site where you earn points (called SB) for things you're probably doing online already, like searching, watching videos, discovering deals, and taking surveys. Then you take those points and exchange them for gift cards to places like Amazon, Starbucks, Walmart, Target, or PayPal cash.


When you sign up through me this month, you can earn a $5 bonus! Here's how:

1. Sign up using this link

2. Earn 300 SB total before 7/1/17. You'll get a $3 (300 SB) bonus for it!

3. If you spend at least $25 through Swagbucks Shop* you'll get another $2 (200 SB) bonus on top of the cash back you'll get from shopping. If you have some shopping to do online, just go to Swagbucks first and visit the store through them. It doesn't cost you anything extra, but you'll get SB points for every dollar you spend (on top of the bonus)!

That's it. It's super easy, and Swagbucks is for real. I use it myself, and I've earned about $2,350 in PayPal cash.  Pretty sweet.

*You must receive your shopping SB before August 1st  


Thanks so much for stopping by.  You can also join me on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.  In addition to minimalism and organizing, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #notentirelyperfect on social media so I can see your beautifully unstaged life.  On the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or subscribe via e-mail to be alerted to each new post.


6.02.2017

How You Can Help Me

Blogging is work.  Some days it leans mostly towards the 'fun hobby' side of things, but there is always work involved, no doubt about that.  There's work involved in anything you choose to actively spend your time on.  And I like seeing some sort of benefit come from that, I think you can understand that.  So let me just get really, really honest here for a minute and tell you exactly how you can help me with that.

6.01.2017

Three on Thursday

This post may contain affiliate links.  

Welcome back to Three on Thursday, my weekly even though I sometimes skip weeks list of things I'm loving at the moment that I think you should do, try, or buy.  If you're interested in past weeks, you can find those here.

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