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How To Refresh Your Home For The New Year (For Free)

One of my favorite things to do is to make minor changes to my home when I’m feeling stuck or needing something to refocus my attention. I take a short little break from work, move some stuff around, clean a few things and I’m back to new.

One thing for me this year has been trying to remove anything that makes my space feel cluttered, disorganized or otherwise un-lovely. The key is that I spend little to no money on these little updates and still enjoy the feeling I’ve accomplished something big.

Move Things Around

Hopefully you had a thought that this would be the most obvious trick. Sometimes all a space needs is a different traffic patter or a switch out of a couple of chairs. The best advice I have here is to make a little drawing of the space (don’t worry nothing too fancy) and just keep drawing it until you find something that you like. Or you could be even more like myself and just keep carrying things from one room to the other while your dog and husband grow more and more confused at what you’re doing. Whichever works best for you.

Clean Up

Another pretty obvious one is to clean a space up. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have found something pushed back into my closet that I thought was missing but really just misplaced. Cleaning can also just make a space FEEL brand new even if literally nothing else has changed. A big one for me is cleaning the baseboards in common areas, and specifically ones that you have to stare at like the bathroom. Nothing feels better than cleaning those little piles of dust and dog hair out of the corner of the room and suddenly I feel majorly accomplished for the day.

Reorganize

Similar to cleaning up is to reorganize a space. Short of going out and buying fancy things to store your stuff in, you can also group like items together or find a new way to house things that maybe you weren’t before. Take an inventory of what you have in a specific room and find new ways to keep all of those items organized or put away. For example, one of my favorite places to reorganize all the time is the kitchen. In might drive my husband insane because he no longer knows where the tortilla chips are, but I am one happy girl.

Donate

Another obvious one is to GET RID OF STUFF!! Perfect time to do this is now since it is right after Christmas. Get rid of duplicate items or things that you no longer need. Find a way to let go of all the old stuff that you know someone else could use instead of you and just let. it. go. One of the best feelings is giving things to other people and even better knowing that it’s out of your house haha!

Fix Items

Following the trend here and giving you another probably obvious idea….fix broken things! Schedule some time for yourself and fix items that you need to fix. This could be repainting something with your old paint from the storage room or fixing a scratch on wooden furniture. Either way set aside the time and you’ll feel like you’ve really tackled something I promise.

Those are all the ideas I have that are free but obviously there’s other things to be done to refresh a space like painting with new colors, wall paper, new little decor items or new furniture pieces just to name a few. Either way I hope you’re inspired to refresh your space this month to hopefully set you on a good pace for the rest of the year.

Xoxo,
Camille

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How To Set Goals for Mental Health (and why everyone should be thinking about it)

Setting goals is the most common theme in the first month of a new year. Most of which are focused around your weight, your finances, your career or entertainment (like traveling). Very few people think about setting goals to have better mental health, mostly because very few people think they need to focus on their mental health in general.

Unless you’ve dealt with any type of mental health issue like depression, anxiety or other common issues, then you probably don’t think very much about it. Have you ever stopped to consider that perhaps focusing on your own mental health could actually assist you in obtaining some of those other goals too?

Mental Health Culprits

Everyone is familiar with depression and anxiety and we’ve all heard of stress but do we actually know what to do to combat these? Did you know that statistically 100% of the population will experience at least one of these three common mental health issues at some stage of their lives? We are lead to believe that depression and anxiety are much less common than they are but the truth is you’ve probably experienced them before without even noticing. Depression can look like many things, anxiety effects everyone in a different way and stress can show up in the most unlikely of areas in our lives.

What Can Be Done?

Aside from something more serious and seeing a mental health professional, the obvious answer here is to turn to the Bible. So what does the Bible say about these conditions?

Stress

Proverbs 3:4-6

“So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man. Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

Anxiety

Philippians 4:6

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Depression

Psalm 30:5

“…For sorrow may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning…”

These are just a few examples of what the Bible says about these more common mental health issues, but my suggestion here is to google verses, write them down and repeat them every single day. Nothing makes you feel better than to hear the word of God. Luckily for us, God’s living word is so full of real life examples, stories and scriptures for us to read that help us navigate through anything in life.

Goals To Set

1. Get 30 minutes or more a day of moderate exercise (preferably outdoors)
2. Get plenty of rest but not too much (too much sleep is just as bad as not enough)
3. Spend the first 10 minutes of the day doing something you enjoy instead of getting straight into something you don’t.
4. Spend the last 10 minutes of the day doing something you enjoy
5. Spend less than 3 hours per day on your phone
6. Take part in meditation or other relaxation techniques

Pray & Worship

The answer to all of the above is to PRAY! Prayer is one of the few things in my life that I can always depend on. Prayer truly shifts things in the atmosphere and no matter how I am feeling or what I’m going through I always feel better afterwards.

Worship music just hits different. The key for me is to listen to certain types of worship for different things. When I’m depressed I put on the fun, upbeat, gospel filled music that just lifts my spirit right up. When I’m anxious or worried I typically listen to more congregational worship or ballets that help me focus on truly worshiping God and focusing less on my problems around me.

That’s all the tips and tricks I have for you today friend. Please keep in mind that this is not professional advice, rather advice from a friend who’s been there. A friend who has experienced all types of mental health “issues” and who God has healed over and over again and who is here for YOU. As we all spend this first month of a new year realigning our goals and shifting our focus on the year to come, know with confidence that someone is here for you and is in your corner.

Xoxo,
Camille

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How To Refocus Your Goals For 2021

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! Can you believe we made it through the craziness of 2020? Going into 2020 I was so full of excitement and expectation. I got married, most of the major holidays were celebrated on the weekends which is awesome, it was a leap year, we had a major election, and so many other cool things were happening; What was there to NOT be excited about?

But now? Now we made it into another new year, and I’m sure I’m not alone in that most of my goals for 2020 were majorly halted because of the pandemic. Trips I wanted to take were cancelled, events were cancelled and in general my entire life was flipped upside down. So how do we refocus those goals and make a giant step into 2021?

Write Lists

Hi, I’m Camille and I am utterly obsessed with list making. I don’t even really know what my life would be without all of my lists. I will say with full confidence that making lists is a great habit to get yourself into. Write down anything that you didn’t get to accomplish in 2020 and rededicate it to 2021. I think everyone gets a free pass for last year anyway.

Pray and then Pray again

Obviously it’s incredibly important to commit plans over to the Lord. The Bible teaches us that God doesn’t operate based on OUR plans but His own, or OUR timing but His timing. It is clear that God knows the desires of our heart and if what we want is in His will He has promised that it will happen. So write those dreams, goals and desires down then repeatedly give them over to God. There is absolutely no better way to start this year off on the right foot than to be committing every part of yourself to God. He is and always will be in total control and all we have to do is submit to His plans.

Focus on You, not on Them

I talk a lot about focusing on yourself and staying in your own lane. This is huge when we’re writing out goals and dreams. I have often been left disappointment and hurt when I “dreamed” something that was really just me focusing on what someone else had and thinking it’s what I needed to. When you’re making that 2021 goals list, stay off social media and keep focused on what YOU really want and need to accomplish. Allow yourself some time to dig deep and reflect on what you want at the end of the year to have manifested for your life. Don’t waste even a second looking at someone else’s life and comparing your own. God has a plan for YOU and for THEM and it’s unlikely that it will ever look the same.

Dream Big

One of the few times that God allows us to test Him is in His faithfulness to us. The caveat here is that not everything that we dream or want is how God will answer us. What I mean is, you may pray for years about getting your dream job and when you finally land a job, it’s not what you expected or what you thought it would be but when you take a moment you’ll realize it’s exactly what you NEEDED but maybe not what you WANTED.

It’s that age ole lesson of parents knowing what’s better for their kids than the kid does. God is the same way and knows our heart more than we do. That being said, DREAM BIG! Lay it all on the line for God and tell Him everything you want in life. Tell God all of the accomplishments you’re dreaming of or life that you see for yourself. I promise He can handle it. Just remember it may not look like you thought but God in all His love and wisdom will surely answer you.

Prepare for setbacks

I think it’s clear that almost all of 2020 was a setback for most of us. I love the saying ” A set back is a set up for a comeback”. It’s so true!! Sometimes we have to fail, or not get what we wanted in order to get something greater. I by no means wanted to NOT have my album out last year but God had bigger and better in mind and this year I’m fully ready for a comeback story! That may not be what I have planned, but I know that God is faithful and every set back is already calculated in HIS plan for me. You have to learn to go with the flow when it comes to operating under the Holy Spirit and following God. Get yourself in the right mindset for the year and know that setbacks are OKAY!!

Keep Goals Fresh in Your Mind

One of the biggest downfalls we all make is that we set these awesome goals at the beginning of the year and then two weeks later we don’t even know what they are. Insert, making a vision board. I have a post about this from last year and it’s a really great tool at keeping you focused and reminding you daily of what goals you have. Most importantly this keeps your mindset right and keeps you from making decisions that go against your goal. What that means is if my goal is to lose 20 pounds by summer and I have that on my vision board that I see every day, it’s unlikely that I’ll then go eat a half dozen donuts at dinner time because it’s fresh in my mind what my goal is. Positive reinforcement here people!!

That’s all I have for you on this first day of a fresh new year. Just remember that the goal here is really to draw closer to Jesus so spend some time today with Him and allow Him to speak some dreams, goals and vision into your heart. HAPPY 2021 FRIENDS! Let’s pray is turns out a little more productive than last year πŸ˜‰

Xoxo,
Camille

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How To Keep Christmas Day Focused On Jesus

Typically I do favorites for the month on the last Friday of the month. Obviously today is a super special day and instead of making it a post about products, I wanted to share the significance of today and how to make the story of the birth of Jesus, easier to apply in 2020.

We focus on gifts and products and shopping for basically a month, and then Christmas Day arrives and we tear into the gifts we’ve bought each other and then what? Most of us spend the day sleeping, watching TV, snacking, playing with new gifts, posting pictures of our new items and everything but thinking about why we celebrate this day in the first place.

Don’t get me wrong, Jesus received gifts too and I truly believe that God loves to see us share gifts with one another, as a way to show our love for each other. This day can be especially exciting if gifts is one of your top love languages. But what exactly are we celebrating? What is the significance of us giving gifts to one another? Allow me the next couple of minutes to explain the importance of this day.

What is the significance of the birth of Jesus?

Without getting too complex and digging all the way into Jewish culture and history, Jesus was at the time a sign from God that the Israelite’s had long waited for. They were promised a savior that would free them from their slavery, from their ridicule, from their misery. Jesus was the answer to everything they had been hoping for.

For us today, over two thousand years later, it’s still a sign of freedom. We don’t often think of ourselves in Western Culture especially, as enslaved. The modern terminology has given us a complex that forces us to believe that because we have no “owner” that we’re free. The jokes on us. The Bible teaches us that the moment we enter the world, we’re a slave to sin (Romans 6:20-22). Sin is the ultimate slave and without Jesus we’d be enslaved forever with no hope of ever being free.

The old testament teaches us that the only way that Jews could experience forgiveness for their sin at one time, was to offer sacrifices (living ones at that). That is until Jesus stepped on the scene. Without the birth of Jesus, we wouldn’t have had the death and resurrection of Jesus, which means that to this day the only way to satisfy to wrath of God would be to offer sacrifices. How grateful I am that Jesus sacrifices himself so I don’t have to sacrifice anything else. Just pause for a moment and take in the realization of what this means. Jesus coming down to Earth, allows us FREEDOM. Freedom to do anything we want, receive grace from God and keep living our lives. So much goodness of God is in that truth.

What should we take away from the story?

The story about Mary and Joseph and the long trail they took and all that they endured just to have Jesus is nothing short of a miracle itself. The story (Luke 2:1-20) is one that I recommend you spend today reading, but also is a beautiful gift to us about the goodness and faithfulness of God. See without Jesus being born on this special day, we would never have really seen the full grace of God. Don’t get me wrong, the old testament is still FULL of examples of God’s grace for His people, but there’s an intimacy and a tangible nature that Jesus brought to us.

The day Jesus was born, was the day that we were allowed to see the face of God. The day Jesus was born was the day that God Himself put on human flesh and allowed us to feel Him, to see Him, to talk with Him, to cry and laugh with Him. The day Jesus was born is the day that God allowed us to fully experience Him. The story of Jesus’ birth is OUR story, is the perfect example of the strife and pain that we experience in life only to be met with our salvation and freedom in Christ.

How to spend time on Christmas honoring Jesus

Other than the obvious, which is literally spending time alone with God today I would implore you to take a moment to evaluate your life. Are you sitting on a comfy couch reading this blog with gifts and family all around? Are you reading this on your new phone or laptop? Are you at work reading this blog? Are you surrounded by blessings and joy and happiness? Take a moment to thank God today. Remember for just a moment that without Jesus, you wouldn’t even be celebrating this beautiful day. Remember that without Jesus, Christmas wouldn’t be one of the only Holiday’s that is universally celebrated, which is itself totally crazy.

Love People

It’s one of the easiest times of the year to love people. One of my favorite things about Christmas is the tangible shift in the air and the way that everyone treats one another. I’m usually an emotional wreck around Christmas because everyone is just so kind and loving. To me, that says something about just how special this Holiday is. Jesus was and is the perfect example and fulfillment of God’s love for us and there’s something totally second nature and involuntary about how much we love other’s on this day. I can’t think of any better way to show Jesus how much you love Him, than by intentionally loving the people in your life. I know that it’s much easier said than done, but spend some time today just spreading love. I know that God’s heart is filled with joy when He see’s His children loving one another.

Merry Christmas my friend. May you spend today taking in every moment of goodness, laughter, joy and splendor that today brings each of us. I pray that everyone who reads this is reminded of the beautiful story of Jesus and His love for you.

XOXO,
Camille

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December Favorites (Christmas Edition)

This month’s favorites is a little early because I have a really special blog planned for Christmas Day and I also wanted to give you guys a little extra time to get some products ordered if you find something here that you absolutely love. I’ve also been posting gifts pretty much all month long on my Like to Know account and you’ve hopefully been following along there. Nevertheless, let’s dive in!

Thick Socks
We went on a camping trip in October and it wasn’t even “that cold” yet and because I didn’t wear the appropriate type of socks I promise I thought my feet were going to fall off over night. Insert, the most comfy, cozy and thick socks. These are also a really great price for two pair that I absolutely have loved.

Facial Steamer
This is one of those things I put on a wish list years ago and I’m so glad that I did. I probably would have never bought it for myself but now that I know how amazing it is, I certainly would. It’s perfect for those times that I want a luxurious “me” day, need a little help breathing if I’m having allergies or just need to steam my face before I do a face mask. Facial steamers have about 100 different uses and this one in particular comes with some really useful facial tools.

Trench Coat
Even if you’re not big on the fashion trends and don’t care about owning this seasons hottest jacket, let me tell you my favorite thing about this jacket. As pictured above, I literally wear pajamas or sweat pants or whatever comfies I have on and put this jacket on and instantly everyone things I’m trendy. It’s so easy to throw on last minute and because of that camel color, it goes with absolutely everything.

10 Foot Iphone Charger Cord
This one is another item that you don’t realize you need until you have one. It’s also a perfect stocking stuffer that everyone will be grateful for. I have one in almost every room and they seriously make my life much easier.

Fleece Blanket
Nick and I officially have our OWN individual fleece blankets that we are obsessed with. We also have a third one for guests, the dog or just to have on our bed for extra cold nights. These are a MUST have for the cold, especially when your husband prefers to have the heat turned down pretty low in the colder months πŸ˜‰

Matching Jogger Sets
I’ve become utterly obsessed with matching joggers and tops. I wear them as pj’s, I wear them out and about running errands, I wear then to lounge around the house. I basically live in them. It’s the easiest and most comfortable way to look cute with minimal effort. These are my cold weather version of a sundress. I recommend looking around for the style that suits you best but these are definitely a trend that is here to stay.

Pour Over Coffee Maker
We had a one cup pour over coffee maker until recently. We actually didn’t use it for a long while because it was to time consuming trying to make multiple cups with this tiny little contraption. However, if it’s just you I would suggest getting the one cup size but we have fallen (back) in love with our pour over coffee. You’ll need a kettle or a way to heat up water to an almost boiling point as well to use a pour over coffee efficiently so keep that in mind. But if you are ready for some of the best home made coffee in your life, go ahead and grab this guy!

Jade Roller
I don’t think I’ve ever shared about my jade roller because I thought everyone was familiar with them. I found out recently that this was not the case. This roller is life changing. Particularity for those mornings that I feel like I’m having to be dragged out of bed and can barely open my eyes, my jade roller steps up and saves the day. The roller’s are almost ALWAYS cold so I use to smaller side to get rid of the puffy eyes and the cooler temperature helps wake me up in the morning. I also use this with face masks or serums, to help push product into my skin. Jade rollers have a TON of benefits, and are the perfect quick gift for any one in your life.

Room Spray
Okay the two room sprays that I have were actually gifted to me by my mom and my mother in law BUT thank God that they did. The first one I had from my mom was a pumpkin spice spray that I loved using in the fall and once we transitioned over to Christmas, my MIL gifted me a Christmas scent just in time. Even better, both of the bottles are cute and easy to use as decorations around the house too. I like to spritz a little in the morning or when someone is coming over and give the room a nice light clean and festive smell that isn’t as overwhelming as candles or other sprays can be.

Silk Robe
I may have mentioned this item before but this is an absolutely amazing gift for others or for yourself πŸ˜‰ There’s something about wearing my silk robe around the house that makes any day feel so much more luxurious and relaxing. These are just one of those items that I think every woman on Earth deserves to have.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!! Please remember that Christmas is NOT all about gifts, and you don’t NEED anything. We are all so richly blessed and if you have loved ones around you for the Holiday’s that is more than enough. I simply hope this is a good resource to help you with ideas if you’re needing them.

XOXO,
Camille

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How to Give Gifts From the Heart (that friends and family will actually love)

A few years ago I found myself struggling for the longest time on what to get special people in my life for Christmas. Then I realized that as I get older, I actually enjoy thoughtful gifts more than just materialistic things and I have to assume that others do too. Along with a few unique ideas, I want to share some tips on how to listen to your loved ones or to learn what they might like.

Listening

Starting with the most obvious, is listening to what people say they want. I love catching someone talking about something they’d love to have and knowing they wouldn’t buy it for themselves. The key here is obviously writing it down or relying on your memory πŸ˜‰ I try to pay attention when someone talks a lot about an item they would love to have or feel like they need.

Asking

Another pretty obvious tip is to simply ask someone what they’d like. The tip here is to do it early enough. You want to have time to find or order what they want and truthfully you probably want them to forget they asked for it (lol) so that you can surprise them. My husbands family is the BEST at this. They start asking sometime in November for everyone to list a few items they’d like. It’s super simple and kind of fun, like a childhood memory of making a list for Santa!

Be Creative

There’s something about us that instinctively thinks that if we spend a lot of money on something, that there’s a higher value on it from others too. The issue there is that everyone values things differently. For example, I don’t really get impressed by expensive cars but some people LIVEEE for them; It’s just personal differences. Giving gifts is the same way. My husband is especially good at giving gifts that are special and meaningful and aren’t typically high in cost. A great place to find unique gifts is this website. They have super cool stuff that you wouldn’t find elsewhere and are really creative and special. You can also shop local in your town, online at Etsy or Amazon Hand Made.

Create Something

Speaking of creative, some of my favorite gifts of all time are things that people have made for me themselves. It doesn’t really have to be anything massive or crazy expensive to make but I truly feel like everyone loves to know that you made something just for them. It takes so much more time to do, but that’s part of the reason it’s so special. For example one of my best friends made a picture collage on a canvas of a bunch of old photos of us growing up and used modge podge to keep the photos on. It hangs in my office to this day because it’s so special to me. I’ve had friends make me custom wine glasses, make me yarn key chains and all kinds of little projects that ended up meaning so much to me.

Remember love languages

It’s important to note that not everyone’s “Gift” love language is very high. Technically mine is right in the middle which means I do enjoy receiving a gift from you, but it’s not the top way to show you care about me. Take into consideration what someone’s love language is and give them a “gift” that matches that. For example, if their love language is physical touch, maybe give them a coupon book full of massage credits from you (obviously this depends on who the person is lol). If their love language is quality time, maybe an enjoyable evening out or coffee date with just the two of you. This is another chance to get creative. My mom in years past has purchased car cleaning gift cards for my dad, or he’s gotten her things to help keep her organized. They might not seem like a big deal to others, but to them these are perfect gifts that actually mean something.

Plan ahead

The absolute best and most important advice I can give here to plan ahead. I’ve received and given the worst gifts by not prepping ahead of time. Now any gift is still a way to show that you’ve thought of someone but honestly there have been a handful of times where I have wasted money on something that I realized later I never needed to gift and I could have spent that money in a better way on the person I love. Even most custom items only take a few weeks to have ready, so not too much time is needed to plan ahead. By the time you’re reading this, hopefully you’ve put some thought into what you’re going to get loved ones, and if not, I would suggest following some of the above suggestions πŸ˜‰

Keep the main thing, the main thing

Now an important thing to note here is that you should remember the Holiday season is more about time spent with loved ones than about gifts given. Try to keep in mind that yes people love to be spoiled with nice things and thoughtful gifts, but the gift of your presence will always outweigh the amount of money you spend on anything. With that said, BE PRESENT. When you’re with loved ones and close friends, make sure to put your phone away and eliminate distractions and simply enjoy time spent with them. I promise that is the best gift you can ever give a person.

Happy Holidays friends,
Camille

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How to Make Time For Everyone During the Holidays (Introvert Edition)

This may come as a surprise to some, but Nick and I are both introverts. Admittedly, Nick is more introverted than myself but we both would much rather spend time just the two of us than with literally anyone (sorry friends and family we still love you! lol).

Holidays that begin pretty much at Halloween and continue for the rest of the year, can be overwhelming if you’re anything like us. Not to mention we both have families that all expect to see us for each Holiday (minus Halloween and maybe New Year)and friends that want to spend time with us too. Either way, it’s a huge blessing to be so close to family and friends, but it can truly be more exhausting if you don’t manage your time correctly.

Luckily I’ve spent about 5 years now perfecting the art of making time for everyone and even with the last couple of years adding Nick’s family and friends into the mix, I think we’ve figured out a pretty good plan to stick to until children come along and change everything.

Consolidate

I think the most obvious tip here is to consolidate friends and family gatherings. We luckily have pretty much the same groups of friends and that makes it easy to knock out seeing everyone at one gathering instead of having to go several places. Making sure that you group together all the friends that know each other makes it comfortable for everyone as well and probably more enjoyable in general.

Same goes for family members! If you can find ways to see more family members in one place, DO IT! This also just makes the Holiday’s more enjoyable anyway, when you can see all the family members you haven’t seen since last year.

No, is a complete sentence

This is my mantra going into 2021. I have felt the need to give excuses for not wanting to do something basically my entire life. I’ve also worked equally as hard at surrounding myself with people who understand that my “no” doesn’t mean it’s personal or that I don’t love them or want to spend time with them. My “no” simply means “not this time”.

You do need to be careful using no, because obviously you can hurt someone’s feelings if it’s something really special to them or if you use it too often. However, make sure you check in with how you feel when you say No to someone. Do they have a tendency to try and emotionally manipulate you into feeling bad? If so, have a conversation. I’ve had to explain to friends and family over the years that I’m not saying “no” to be mean, it’s just that I simply don’t have the capacity to do everything all the time. Those conversations have always gone really well and I’m sure they will for you too.

The Holidays are special times and my feeling is that you probably won’t say no very much, but make sure that you’re only doing what you have the capacity to do. If you’re not able to make it to a party because you need some rest, or some down time….don’t feel bad for that. People that love you should understand when rest is a priority.

Prioritize

Another tip is to prioritize. There’s been a couple of years that I just had to show up late to something because my family was having an overlapping event. Other times I’ve had to reschedule all together. Either way, make sure you’re keeping what matters the most to YOU at the forefront of your Holiday plans. My guess is that most of us prioritize family over friends, but if you’re someone who isn’t close to your family, no shame in your game! The key here is to make sure you’re not over doing it and trying to squeeze in too many things at the same time.

Write it down

One of the biggest culprits to not being able to see everyone around the Holiday’s is because we don’t put an invite in our calendar. Especially for those of you who visit from out of town for the Holiday’s, I know it’s hard to make time to see everyone and do everything in a short amount of time. Insert, WRITING IT DOWN!! A huge phenomenon I know HA!

But seriously, it’s so important to keep invitations written wherever works best for you. For me personally it’s multiple places. I have my phone calendar loaded with events as well as my personal hand written planner. This also makes it easier for me not to leave someone hanging and I can instantly look either place to see if we already have plans at the same time or if it would be too many events in one day.

That’s all I’ve got friends! I know that COVID has probably affected most of our normal plans and we likely don’t have as many parties to attend, but I have been so overwhelmed for the longest time and I felt like it was important to share this either way.

Ultimately just be true to yourself and never feel bad for needing some time for yourself, even during the Holiday season. Praying that you have an amazing Holiday season this year and that you have the most joy filled experience.

XOXO,
Camille

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November Favorites

Spoiler, I already posted my actual Black Friday blog this month. I wanted to give everyone plenty of time to actually plan on what products they wanted instead of waiting until the day of and taking the chance that things were sold out. However, because I love sharing products that have been great for me each month, I’m still sharing my favorites this month, and who knows maybe some of these will be on sale too.

Under Cabinet Lights
Full discloser (as always around here) the battery life on these guys is pretty short BUT they are rechargeable and come with a cord to plug in. These are so fun and cool. They come with a remote to control them and they have a ton of different lighting options and colors. These can also be used anywhere and are totally wireless. We’ve actually only used 4 of the 6 but I’m sure we’ll use the other 2 eventually.

Stationary Bike
Thank you Jesus that my husband brought this into our marriage LOL without this bike I probably wouldn’t have made it through quarantine without gaining a bunch of weight. It’s a great price, really high quality and is perfect for storing in smaller spaces if need be. This is one that I would HIGHLY recommend.

Amazon Tank Tops
For the first time in my life I learned this year to finally listen to my mother and layer my clothing this fall. These tank tops are thin enough to wear in warmer weather but also comfy and perfect for wearing under tops. My favorite way to style them has been under flannels with some cute ripped jeans and sneakers.

Slippers
I may have talked about these before but they are worth mentioning over and over. These are SO comfy and such a great price. The reviews had me kind of nervous about how they would fit but they have been perfect. I have what I consider a “normal” width foot, meaning it’s not wide and definitely not narrow, but they still fit comfortably. I got my true size and they still have a little room for me, which I’m fine with. These would make a great addition to stocking stuffers or Christmas gifts.

Salt Rock
I know this one is probably a little sketchy for some people and to be totally honest it’s not something I’ve had this major life changing experience with but at the very least I love the way it looks on one of our couch end tables and if there’s even the slightest chance that it’s cleaning the air for us, I’m willing to try it. My mom and I actually did a “Salt Cave Experience” in Virginia when we visited and I will say that I think both of us absolutely loved it. Look up “Salt Cave” in your city and check out the benefits.

No Bend Hair Clips
These have been a thing for a while now but I just got on the trend train. This is one of the few trends that I actually have found to be worth it. These hair clips are advertised as being able to put your hair back while doing your makeup and after you’ve done your hair and you don’t want to have creases in it from hair clips or bobby-pins or anything like that. Honestly it’s just because they are so cheap for an 8 pack, I purchased them and have actually ended up loving them. I even gave some to a girlfriend for her birthday!

Bondi Boost Hair Products
I got the shampoo and conditioner for my mom and myself a couple months ago. I typically try things for about a month or more before recommending anything. These are definitely my go-to shampoo and conditioner from now on. They are salon quality but with all natural products. My hair has grown a good amount since using them and the most noticeable difference in the FEEL of my hair. I can tell that these are all natural and don’t have any gross residue left on my hair. I have naturally curly, frizzy hair and even my frizz level seems to have decreased with these products. I do have to note that they recommend using them 2 or 3 times a week for the best results (I only wash my hair when absolutely necessary) and they have a pretty strong peppermint smell since that’s a main ingredient. I don’t love or hate the smell.

Name Necklace
okay okay this is actually something I’ve had for a couple of years now, but only recently found it mixed in with about a million of my other necklaces. I’m not sure why but I just love the idea of giving these as gifts. It’s literally the most personalized gift (lol) and it’s really easy to stack it with other necklaces. I always get compliments on it and people always ask me where it’s from.

Thick Leggings
My sweet dad actually bought these for me a while back and I have loved them. They are so cozy and warm and a really nice, thick material. They come in a few different colors as well and have POCKETS!! All my ladies know how big of a deal that is. These are hands down some of my favorite leggings. THANKS DAD!

Cold Brew Box
Sounds weird right? Allow me to explain. Java House Coffee is some of the best quality coffee I’ve found and trust me, I’ve spent some time and money looking over the years. The best part is that they have a ton of different types of at home coffee options. This one is a box of coffee that fits right in your fridge and comes with a spout. Just stick your cup under it and pour to your heart’s content. Even better? It’s prime eligible on amazon!!

Like I said, hopefully some of these are on sale today too, but if not they are still really great products that I have loved!! I can’t believe that next month is the end of 2020 and hopefully all of it’s craziness. Blessings to you all my friends and I know I’m looking forward to the beautiful month of December and all the love and joy it brings.

XOXO,
Camille

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How to spend a girls weekend in Yadkin Valley

Something a little different from me this week. A travel guide!! I spent last weekend in Yadkin Valley NC with my two best gal pals for their birthdays. Here are the activities we enjoyed and some recommendations for visiting this absolutely gorgeous small town. We all have decided to go back in the near future.

Where to Stay

We actually stayed in one of the local hotels The Fairfield Inn but I would highly recommend booking early enough to be able to stay in one the cabins locally.

The hotel was perfect though, plenty of space, very clean and close to everything. They have an amazing free breakfast each morning and the most kind staff members. If you’re hoping to have a more authentic Yadkin experience, here are the Cabins that come the most highly recommended:

Maggy’s Place Complete package and located right downtown, maggy’s is one of the most popular local spots to spend a quite weekend. It’s super adorable too and right within walking distance of so many fun things.

Ridenour Ranch I was heartbroken that this one was not available for us to stay in. It’s got everything you can dream of and it’s a fully functional FARM, complete with alpacas, who I’ve heard will come visit you while you drink your morning coffee on the patio (swoon). This one is great for those with children too.

Epic Mill & Falls As the name suggests, this place has their own waterfall on the property! Not quite as close to all the downtown action, but an incredible place to stay for a few days to get away from the busy downtown life. This is another place I had my heart set on but they just book up so quickly!

Where to Eat

Southern on Main
Ignore the low quality photos and trust that this food was amazing. The brussel sprouts appetizer was to DIE for and the courses we had were amazing. They also have one of the best classic margaritas I’ve ever tasted. This place is an absolute MUST. I would highly suggest that you make reservations because the wait can get long pretty quickly.

Talia Coffee
One of my girls actually spotted this place while we were driving past. It was right beside our hotel and was a drive thru only. Little did we know it was going to be our new most favorite coffee spot in all the land. This is a MUST if you’re going to be staying in the area. They have some of the best flavors and the two ladies that worked there were full of southern charm and very helpful when we asked questions. They even have Macadamia Nut Milk, so that’s certainly a must try!

Angry Troll Brewing
Great atmosphere, excellent drinks and even better food. This place is right downtown and was a 10/10 for everything, even a really great staff. I ordered the BBQ chicken nachos that everyone seemed to have a bite of. A few others had burgers which I heard were also a must try. This is another place you want to get to quickly because the wait list fills up fast!

Activities

Elkin Vine Line
I cannot express to you enough how awesome this was. Long story short, you choose which vineyards you’d like to visit for the day and Elkin Vine Line will pick you up and drop you off at the vineyards. We paid the extra fee and were also picked up and dropped off from our hotel and dinner but either way this service is AMAZING. Part of the reason is that the people that work there are extra kind, extra helpful and are just wonderful. They made our experience in Elkin extra special, especially since it was both of my girls birthday celebrations.

Shopping
There is ton’s of shopping to do within this entire Yadkin Valley area, made up of about four small towns. Above is a list specifically for Elkin, where we stayed but honestly there’s so much to take in you can probably narrow it down like we did and stick to one town. Our favorite was the General Store, that holds a ton of super cute, small town items and trinkets that are perfect for gift giving or just to tell a cool story. The general store was actually one of the stops for us on the Vine Line, to get lunch and I highly recommend you grabbing one of the fresh made sandwiches.

NC Hiking Trails
We didn’t actually make it to our planned hike because of the weather but if you’re into the outdoors and love a good walking trail, Elkin has access to some of the best trails there are. One of them includes the Mountains to Sea trail that everyone in the area loves. The entrance is super convenient and located right downtown where you can park for free and pick which trail entrance you’d like.

That’s all the recommendations that I have for just a short weekend trip, but I highly recommend you grabbing some girlfriends (or guys, no discrimination here) and taking a trip to this perfectly sweet southern town. You’ll feel like you’ve been transported to another place like but turns out you’re just right here in good ole NC.

Let me know if you’ve ever been here. What places do you recommend for a girls trip??

XOXO,
Camille

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How to make fair compromises in relationships for both of you

Spoiler alert, marriage is all about communication and compromise. Our society has made the word compromise seem like a bad thing, when in reality it can be incredibly healthy in all relationships. The key here is learning how to navigate compromise appropriately and fairly. Compromise is at it’s heart what is fair for all individuals involved but often we find ourselves getting the short end of the stick or hurting someone that we care about by either not setting appropriate boundaries or by having an ego and unwilling to compromise. So where to begin when learning how to make fair compromises?

Be honest and real with yourself first

One of the key’s to healthy relationships is being real with yourself first. You’re only going to continuously hurt others if you’re not capable of noticing your weaknesses and areas you need growth or knowing yourself well enough to be real. In the case of making a compromise on something, you’ll have to first come to the realization that you can’t be selfish and second know what is a non-negotiable for you. Ask yourself things like:

  1. What am I willing or not willing to do or let go of?
  2. Am I stating clearly what I’m asking for?
  3. Am I being selfish or being open to someone else’s needs?
  4. Have I put myself in their shoes and considered the issue from their perspective?
  5. Have I prayed about this issue?
  6. Am I being emotional or rational? (If you’re like me, this is a super hard one, I’m always emotional)

Active listening

When having conversations and especially conversations that are important, you have to practice active listening. This means actually hearing what the other person is saying. You have to put aside your own interests for the sake of actually hearing what someone else has to say and being able to engage in a conversation with them. A good definition of active listening is: “This is where you make a conscious effort to hear not only the words that another person is saying but, more importantly, the complete message being communicated.” It’s way easier said than done, but putting aside your own agenda and your own argument to actually hear and understand another person is a MAJOR benefit to a conversation. Sometimes you may even find that you’re actually in agreement with another person.

Come to the table with ideas

I once had a church leader tell me that they never wanted me to come to them with a problem that I had not already tried to solve myself. He said to always come to him with at least one option to resolve the issue before I came to him just to complain. Not only was this excellent leadership on his part, but also an excellent way to teach me (and others on our team) how to think for ourselves and problem solve on our own.

This works perfectly for making compromises and moving forward with a problem in your relationship too. If you come to the “table” with some ideas on exactly what you want in order to resolve the issue, more often than not you’re going to find a resolve way faster and more effectively. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a conflict with a loved one or close friend and when I gave them some ideas on how to fix our issue, it was almost instantly fixed and we could move on.

Make sure to keep in mind that these are just ideas, and the person you’re sharing them with may have ideas of their own. It’s important to be collaborative here and not just stick to your guns on your OWN thoughts. A relationship is about working together, and in many cases you’ll have to ease off of some things even if you think it’s the perfect answer.

Always be prayerful

You didn’t think we were leaving God out of this did you?? This should be the first one for sure, but I wanted to end here so this would be fresh in your mind. You must PRAY PRAY PRAY. Depending on the severity of the argument, issue or problem between you and a friend or loved one you’ll find that you have to pray harder or more specifically. Sometimes when we’re upset, our mental clarity just seems to disappear. It’s important to start with asking God to clear your mind first.

You first have to trust that God already knows the resolution here and you have to be willing to put your pride aside to ask that HIS will be done, and not your own. Truth is friend, that may end up being the opposite of what you’d like to happen, but you must know that God knows best. These are some of the hardest prayers you will ever pray, but absolutely some of the most important. Always remember that God loves you and has nothing but your best interest in mind and that He will never do anything to harm you. Compromising in relationships can be an incredible blessing and from personal experience I can testify that when I let God have total control, I have never even once regretted the outcome.

That’s all I have for you today friend. I pray that whatever relationship this applies to in your life that you will walk in boldness and knowing that God has your ultimate best outcome ahead of you. Relationships are so necessary to our overall well being but Lord knows they are some of the most challenging aspects of life. I pray today you’ll find peace in any tough situation or conversation and that you’ll grown stronger from any lesson learned.

XOXO,
Camille

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Black Friday Deals

For the sake of making sure you have plenty of time to get all the great deals, I’m posting my Black Friday blog a little early. Here are some of my favorite items that have been on sale each and every year on Black Friday. Go ahead and add them to your cart so you can hit send asap on Black Friday.

Ninja Coffee Bar
Nick and I absolutely love our coffee bar. This one comes with a million options and including a built in frother. It’s a bit pricey normally but on Black Friday you’ll find this one on a great deal!

Artificial Christmas Tree
Don’t we all need a good fake Christmas tree? Don’t get me wrong, I love a real tree for what is represents and of course the amazing smell, I’m just more fond of not having to worry about watering it all the time or cleaning up needles from the floor constantly. So artificial is usually the way I go. Good quality tree’s can get pricey as well, but not today!!

Over the Knee Boots
Here’s another item that I absolutely loveee having multiple colors and styles of but never want to pay what retailers are asking for them. I usually wait until Black Friday to update my shoes and all of the options in the link above are amazing!

Air Fryer
I cannot say enough how much we love this thing! Nicks parent’s actually got this for us last Christmas and we’ve used it non-stop from the day we opened it. We’ve made some the best chicken wings, burgers, fish, blooming onions and even used the dehydrate function to dry herbs and make our own chicken jerky. I recommend this to literally everyone I speak to.

Instapot
Repeat everything above, but think more soups, chilis, pasta dishes that are all super easy to make and very fast.

Fitbit Versa
Fitbit updates their watches almost as frequently as a new iPhone comes out, which we all know is pretty annoying but here we are. I’ve gone through about 4 Fitbit generations at this point and this one has been my favorite so far. If you’re looking for something a little less busy as an iWatch but full of cool features, then this watch is for you. I also heavily rely on this to keep me motivated for working out, getting up throughout the day and even doing meditation and relaxation.

Bath & Body Works Hand Sanitizer
Can we all just say this is a given? I mean literally 2020’s “scent” is alcohol mixed with whatever fruity flavor you like (lol). However, these sanitizers have always been my favorite and I’ve always stocked up on Black Friday because the deals are always unmatched throughout the year. Hopefully this year they’ll have had time to stock up and they won’t run out too quickly.

Bath & Body Works Candles & Holders
I’m very much a seasonal candle person. I change out my candles pretty often and actually prefer to buy the 10oz candles so that I don’t tire out of one scent too quickly. I’ve recently purchased some of the scents above and this gorgeous holder that’s perfect for any season.

Holiday Dresses
I am the worst about not planning what I’m going to wear for all the Holiday parties until it’s too late and I’ve missed all the good deals. This year I’m changing that. I have basically every outfit planned with multiple options depending on the weather and what we actually end up doing. This link is what some of my favorite dresses are that are SURE to be on an amazing Black Friday sale (last year everything was 90% off).

Beauty Products
This link is all of my favorite beauty products that I stock up on every Black Friday. The IT Cosmetics Mascara is literally 2 for 1 and I only buy it once a year. It’s amazing and lasts the entire 6 months for one tube.

Outdoor Furniture and Decor
Until earlier this year I had no clue how expensive outdoor furniture was, and now I will only ever be ordering it when there are great sales. Fortunately we already had most of what we wanted/needed when we started sprucing up our yard but there are a few things that I’m also waiting for Black Friday to pick up. Black Friday is always a good time of the year to grab anything for the yard, especially because it’s typically off season.

HAPPY SHOPPING FRIENDS!!! Let me make clear, you don’t “need” any of this. I hate when influencers online make me almost feel bad about not getting the item they’re pushing. This post is only to benefit you if you’re looking for recommendations and all of these are totally my opinion and items that I’ve loved for a while or that I have my eye on myself.

Make sure you spend responsibly and have fun!!!

XOXO,
Camille

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October Favorites

I’m sort of sad that this month is ending, October is my favorite month of all time. However, monthly favorites are probably my favorite blogs to write. I love sharing products that I’ve enjoyed with you all in hopes that you find things you love too!

Desktop/Laptop Riser
I obviously purchased this because working from home is a challenge on a laptop. We liked this one so much that we went back and purchased one for my husband as well!

Beanies
I found these super warm and cozy Carhartt beanies and they come in several really cute colors for fall. You’re probably going to want all of them eventually because they are all super cute. These are also unisex so you can buy one for the gals and guys in your life.

Just Peachy Eye Shadow Pallet
I’m such a stickler for wearing “summer” and “fall” traditional colors, all the way down to how I do my makeup. Every summer I’m hardcore “natural” makeup and every fall/winter I wear the browns, oranges and neutral tones. I just like having that clear difference in the seasons. This pallet one of my best friends bought me for a birthday and I found it last month and have had so much fun using it to make beautiful fall eye looks. PLUS is smells like peaches!! This is a must have πŸ™‚

Pumpkin Spice Creamer
If you know me at all, you probably could have guessed that I’d have this on the list. I will say that it has to be the Coffee Mate kind to actually be good (I’m sure others are good too). This one has my absolute favorite taste. Some of the other brands leave a little weird aftertaste and this one is good all around. Also fun fact, if you use a milk frother with this for about 45 seconds it totally changes the flavor and it’s amaaazzingg (even my husband likes it and he’s not big on sweeter things).

Brown Booties
I got these on sale during the Nordstrom Anniversary sale but honestly now that I’ve worn them, I would buy them full price too. These are hands down some of the comfiest booties I’ve ever worn and are so stylish and go with almost anything. They have the perfect heel height and are chunky heel which makes them easier to walk in. I’ve already worn then a million times and absolutely love them.

Camel Teddy Bear Coat
These are popping up all over this year, but this one is an amazon fashion find! I’ve been living for all the deals I can snag from amazon instead of paying an arm and a leg for the same things. This one my bestie got for my birthday this year and thank GOD she did. This coat is SO cozy and warm I could sleep in it. It’s another staple for me this fall and winter.

Phone Stand
I wish I would have purchased one of these the first time I saw it. This has absolutely changed my life (dramatic I know). I keep this one on my desk at work (at home) and it keeps me from keeping my neck bent downwards all day and allows me to actually stay off of my phone more. It’s also great for Facetime or for recording videos because it’s adjustable and I can tilt it to the perfect height and have hands free! It’s also an excellent price for such high quality.

Spanx Leggings
I shared about these when I bought stuff from the Nordstrom sale but they are worth mentioning here as well. We recently went on a camping trip and I wore these every single day. They not only are spanx, which means they keep you held in all the right places, they also are very warm! For sure recommend you get a pair of these or something similar since these are little on the pricey side.

Jogger Sets
This is the comfiest and coziest jogger set ever. It’s more on the thin side which ironically lends itself to being better for layering. I’ve worn this set a bunch of different ways with a lot of different layers and it’s just so perfect.

Multi-Vitamin
We’ve been using these for a little over a month now and have really liked them. There’s a ton of health benefits of taking a multi-vitamin and to be real with you, with COVID still everywhere, we can all use the some extra health benefits. These are a good size compared to a lot of others I’ve had in the past. I do recommend taking them with food.

Graphic Tees
The link is to some of my absolute favorite graphic tee’s lately. I’ve done a lot of searching for the perfect oversized tee’s that don’t make you look too boxy but also are just comfy and perfect for layering in the fall months. Plus graphic tee’s never go out of style and can be worn a million different ways.

That’s a wrap for October Favorites! Tag me on Instagram in any goodies you purchase so I can hype you up πŸ™‚ @cam_bam_

XOXO,
Camille

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How To Be Better Organized

This might be one of my top five favorite topics. Organization is something that I’ve long time worked on and (not) surprisingly have still not perfected haha. Nonetheless here are some of my favorite tips and tricks at being organized and staying that way.

Labels
I like to be honest with you guys so I have to say, I definitely don’t have everything labeled in my house but I do have somethings, that majorly help keep me and my husband together. Labeling helps make sure that you know where things are at almost all times along with helping keep others on track for where things should go. I even suggest labeling a junk area if you have one. My husband and I don’t have ours labeled but we do both know exactly where it is haha and that’s what matters here.

Clear Bins
Another great way to avoid frustration and clutter is to use clear bins. This might even keep you from having to label everything since you can see right into them. The important part here is to still make sure you’re grouping like items. For example, if using clear bins in your pantry make sure you put together all of the spices, all of the starches, all of the canned items etc… you don’t want to just throw things in a bin because it’s clear.

Map Out the House
One of the things I did when I was first moving into the house was figure out a purpose for everything. Much like financial gurus tell you to do with your money, I’m telling you to do with your space. Even if a space is to be kept clear and with nothing in it, that should be part of the plan. Each room, closet, drawer and cabinet should have an intended purpose. If you can find a copy of your house plan that makes this much easier but if not, just draw one as best you can and go from there. Give each area in your house a designated purpose.

Flow With The Seasons
This one probably applies to most people already because most of us do “spring cleaning” and a little in the fall but it’s still worth mentioning. Staying organized is a little more complicated than cleaning in my opinion. When the seasons change and I’m switching out my summer closet to my fall/winter closet, I always make a point to reorganize the main areas in my house. My front closet is cleaned out and reset with winter jackets and shoes and my kitchen appliances are switched out ( I make a lot more crock pot recipes in the fall so I put it somewhere more accessible) and obviously my closet is cleaned out and refreshed. Like I mentioned, put items that you’ll use more in one season in a place that’s easier to find and put away items that you don’t use as much.

Keep a record
Much like labeling and mapping, it’s important to put things in a place that they won’t move from then right that down somewhere. For me it’s an electronic copy of what all is in our attic or under the house and in our storage room. This helps me quickly locate things if we’re looking for something that we can’t find anywhere else. Keeping a notebook or an electronic copy that is accessible to your entire family also cuts down on those phone calls asking where last years pajamas are that no one can find πŸ˜‰

Stick to Your Routine
I think the hardest part about being and staying organized is picking places for things to go and then sticking to it. Part of why I’m still mastering the art of being organized is because I decide that something “makes more sense” to go somewhere else and the next time I’m looking for it I’ve totally forgotten that I moved it. The key here is taking a little time to decide where things belong and where they are going to make the most sense for you and your family and then sticking to that spot.

Don’t Over Clutter
Basically, don’t buy things you don’t need! This is so much easier said than done, trust me. Keeping your house organized is the first step to a LOT of things including organization in other areas of your life. One of the biggest steps to that is to make sure that you’re not cluttering up spaces and making it impossible to categorize areas. Believe me when I say that this is incredibly challenging for me, but it’s so good for you. Our brains actually don’t do well when they’re over stimulated and walking into a closet full of 60 pair of shoes lying around is just going to overwhelm you. If you’re like me, you’ve started to clean up and organize an area of your house a million times and just get overwhelmed and stop.

Tips and Tricks To Organization

Move things out
Like I said above, having TOO much stuff can be the biggest adversary to organization. If you’re trying to clean out and organize your kitchen, move every single thing out and into another area of the house.

Organize and Compartmentalize
Now it’s time to start putting like items together. This is always the kind of fun part for me. It’s the chance to make this process more like a game and put like things together.

Get Rid of Stuff
Again, one of the hardest parts for me is getting rid of items. But make a pile for keep, donate and trash and then fill each area up.

Decide their New Home
Now it’s time to decide what is going where and start moving things back into their new home.

EASY AS THAT! (insert sarcastic laugh). No honestly this is a lifelong process and one that has to be done continuously. You don’t just organize your home one time and then you’re done. As we grow and change, our needs wants and interest do to. That puffy sleeved sweater that I was obsessed with 5 years ago? Yeah she’s gone. I wear more colors than I use to so a lot of my black clothing has been given away too.

Make this process fun for YOU. Figure out the method that works best for you and your family and then go from there. This is not one size fits all nor does it have to be the way I’ve listed above. Just make sure that you’re doing what works best for you.

Let me know your favorite ways to organize below!

XOXO,
Camille

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How To Maintain Mental Health As A Christian

As usual I like to start off with a disclaimer that most all of my blogs are opinion based and not from a professional opinion. I’m almost always speaking from experience I’ve have in life and want to share my experiences with you. That includes my battle, trials and healing from mental illness.

I will not make this an entire article about my struggles with mental health, rather an article about how I think you and I can both depend fully on our heavenly father to guide us, walk with us and eventually heal us of any type of struggle we have.

You may be like me and have bouts of depression and anxiety. Perhaps you were diagnosed with a mental health diagnosis like PTSD, Bi-Polar Disorder, ADHD, ADD or something more like an addiction. All of these are different types of mental health issues and we HAVE to, as Christians, be more aware that people all around us are struggling in all types of ways.

So what does the Bible have to say about mental illness and mental health?

Most versus that you or I would be drawn to share the common theme that God doesn’t want us to be fearful or afraid, anxious, worried, depressed or anything else but full of joy and hope and faith (Jeremiah 29:11, Isaiah 40:31, John 16:33, 2 Timothy 1:7) . The Bible makes the story of Jesus’ ministry all about how he healed everyone from their different afflictions, so we can assume this applies to mental illnesses as well. The Bible also gives us daily affirmations and mantras that we can repeat and pray over and over until we’re blue in the face, but when you’ve struggled with mental illness the way I have, in all honesty that sometimes just doesn’t feel like enough.

So what can be done?

A quick start list for the desperate (trust me we’ve all been there):

  • Go for a walk
  • Call a friend who always makes you laugh
  • Turn on some music that always makes you want to dance a little
  • Practice one of your hobbies but make sure it’s something you’re only doing for fun
  • Make yourself a really nice meal and then take your time enjoying it
  • Get some rest. Could be a nap or could be just allowing yourself a moment to sit down and breath
  • Create a vision board of what you’d like to see yourself accomplish in the next 1, 5 or even 10 years or beyond

A more in depth list of what can be done

Prayer
I know that’s probably the last thing anyone wants to hear as an answer but the truth is, prayer is all we have. Prayer is our most powerful weapon. Prayer is the one thing in this life that no one can take away from us. Prayer is what the Lord responds to over and over again in every story of the Bible.

Now prayer looks different for different people in different circumstances. Some pray out loud, others quietly in their mind, others in a small cry for help like “Lord help me” and other times your prayer may just be you sitting in a room alone and crying. Friend, please pray. However it looks for you, please don’t let the enemy trick you into being silent. Don’t think for a moment that your Father doesn’t hear you and love you.

I’ve lost count of the many restless nights of just crying in bed, asking God to take away my depression. Those nights were my prayer, even if it wasn’t eloquent and full of biblical words. God heard me. And God hears you.

Read the Bible
You HAVE to keep your mind strong by filling it with the right content. Our brains need to be stimulated in order to keep our synapses firing and to keep our brains active. So why not use that as a reason to fill your mind with good instead of the junk that the world tries to push into in. Not saying that all other forms of entertainment or reading are junk, but for a person battling any type of mental health, you NEED that positivity. Keeping focused on God and His word, the living word, keeps you constantly reminded of who God is and all that He has and will do for you.

Serve Others
In addition to keeping focused on God, keeping focused on others helps keep your mind off of you. It sounds weird but the truth is, sometimes when we see other people’s problems it helps make ours so much smaller. I remember the first time one of my best friends told me about HER depression and anxiety and just how low she had gotten. I felt horrible for even saying I had depression. Another example is all the times I’ve served in my churches. There’s something that feels so good about being involved in your church and serving God and other people, and that feeling can help aide in your healing. God made us to be in community with people, and not to do life alone. When we surround ourselves with other believers, we surround ourselves with the Love of Jesus, and that alone can lift anyone’s spirit.

Be Honest
This might be harder than anything else on this list. I denied that I had depression for about 15 years until I couldn’t hide it any longer. I had surrounded myself with people who knew me better than I realized and when they raised concern about some of my behavior, I knew it was time to tell them the truth. THANK GOD that I did. Even talking to my friends, family and a therapist eventually saved my life. The weight that was lifted off of me when I finally told the truth was immense. Friend, find someone, even me if you’d like, to talk to about how you feel. It doesn’t have to be a long drawn out story but it does need to be honest and real. Tell someone, anyone. If you don’t think you have a person that you can be real with in your life, pray that God will send you someone.

List it out
If you’ve followed me for two seconds you probably already know that I have a list for everything. You better believe that means mental health stuff too. This list is one that includes all of my blessings. It use to be something I had to do every single day just to get to the next one. I was so depressed that I couldn’t see ANY good thing in life, so some days my only blessing was something like this:
Thanks for my dog
Thanks for water

These days I don’t have to make a blessings list as often because I include my thankfulness in my daily prayer and I’ve learned to keep my blessings at the forefront of my mind. When I was healed of my depression, it was like my eyes were opened to how beautiful my life was and had always been. Things I never noticed before became things I was the most grateful for.

Start making your list, even if it’s one item a day and I promise your entire mood will shift when you do.

Get Rid of Things
Get rid of the relationships that are the most toxic. Even if that means un-following your so called friend who makes you feel bad about yourself. Even if that means not calling your mom for a month while you heal because she always makes you feel worse. De-clutter your space where you live and keep things around that bring you joy. This is a hard one too, but to be honest it’s one of the more important ones.

Have you ever learned about how gardening works? You have to prune certain plants back in order to help them grow more. You’re literally almost killing them in some cases, so they can bounce back even more plentiful and beautiful. You have to do that with your life too. You have to prune (cut away) all of the things that are holding you back. It’s going to hurt like actual hell in some cases. Then you’ll look back in 1, 5, 10, 15 years and see just how necessary it was to make your life better.

For me it’s been relationships, a church, clothes, social media accounts, books, my hair (long story but basically my pride was wrapped up in my appearance for a long time) and so much more. Now I look back at all of those things and WOW, my life is more glorious than ever before. It hurt me so badly I thought I would die for a few of those things, but obviously it didn’t and now I’m better off than I ever was before because I allowed God to prune out what didn’t need to be there any longer.

Don’t Be Afraid of Medication and Therapy
I’m so glad to say that today we live in a world that more focused on mental health and the stigma of therapy and medication is going away little by little every day. Treatments are covered by most health insurance, medication costs are lower and overall there are more people armed with knowledge of what mental illness looks like in the ones they love. My friend, it’s okay if you need extra help. Like I said in the beginning, there have been times that praying and reading the Bible just haven’t been enough for me. I needed medication and therapy for years to help me get to a place where I was just “okay”. You can find healing even in medication and trust that God can and will use it for your benefit.

If you’ve made it this far, either you’re intrigued or you’re desperate like I have been to find healing. My friend I’m praying for you. Please know that you’re loved and that you WILL be healed, either in this life or in the next.

Reach out to me if you have questions, concerns, want to know more about my mental health story or just want to talk. I’m here but God is here first.

https://www.facebook.com/camillemusic91

https://www.instagram.com/cam_bam_/

XOXO,
Camille

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How To Make Amazing At Home Coffee

Did you celebrate National Coffee Day on Tuesday?? I’ll admit that I have an official coffee addition. Rather it’s more a caffeine addition I’m sure, but coffee is the method in which I have chosen to satisfy said addition. The plus side here is that I’ve spent countless hours finding the perfect combinations to make the best tasting at home coffee and I’m going to break that down for you here today.

IF USING WHOLE COFFEE BEANS

The most extra way to ensure that you have an amazing coffee each day is to buy whole beans and grind them up daily. If that’s your plan, then follow these tips!

  1. Check the beans you’re getting for NO OIL. Ironically you want beans that have little to no oil residue on the outside of them, because the hope here is that you’ve got beans that have soaked up all the flavors and oils that they’ve been roasted in.
  2. Find a good quality grinder that can grind them into a fine powder, pretty quickly.
  3. Use the brewing method of your choice but make sure that you use about 2 tablespoons of the coffee per cup you plan to brew. For example, we brew a 12cup karaf, so we use 24 (sounds like an insane amount but isn’t I promise) or more tablespoons of our grounds per brew.
  4. If using any type of sugar, syrup or creamer make sure it’s also a high quality. Nick uses real sugar in his coffee, and actual milk instead of a creamer. This helps keep the flavor of the coffee pretty close to it’s original flavor and doesn’t add too much too it.

IF USING COFFEE GROUNDS FROM THE BAG

  1. Make sure to buy coffee that has a valve on the bag. Good quality coffee needs to have a place for the extra carbon dioxide to release once the beans have been roasted and cooled. And of course you want to be able to smell them before you buy them (lol).
  2. Check to see whats been added, if anything, to the grounds. You don’t really want something that has a million different flavors added or something that’s too overpowering, especially if you plan to add your own flavors.

BEST BREWING METHODS


1. The number one best method is a French Press
This is probably mostly opinion based, but this article breaks down how french press works and what makes it the best brewing technique for flavor and quality. Chances are if you don’t like how traditional coffee tastes in a coffee pot, you’ll actually like french press coffee.

2. Pour Over Coffee
Pour overs take a lot longer because you have to continually pour hot water over the grounds as it brews into the pot, but this is also another method that allows the full flavor of the coffee beans to be used and leaves you with a really great tasting cup of coffee.

3. Drip Coffee
This is your traditionally brewed cup of coffee, getting it’s name from it’s literal action of dripping into the cup from the beans. This method doesn’t really allow the FULL flavor of beans to be expelled but it’s obviously still a great method.

OUR FAVORITE RECIPES

Java House Coffee Pods
1 Columbia Coffee Pod
1 Tablespoon of Rose Syrup
2 Tablespoons Hazelnut Syrup
1/4 Cup of Milk (or favorite creamer or milk substitute)
Stir and enjoy!

Pour Over Coffee
1 cup of coffee brewed your favorite style
1 Tablespoon of Pumpkin Pie Syrup
Microwave 1/4 cup of milk for 30 seconds
Froth 1/4 cup of milk for 30-45 seconds
Pour over the top of coffee
Enjoy!

OUR FAVORITE PRODUCTS

Coffee Ninja Coffee Bar
French Press
Pour Over Coffee Carafe
Milk Frother

Questions about coffee or any of our favorite methods? Connect with me one of these ways and I would LOVE to talk to you πŸ™‚

https://www.facebook.com/camillemusic91

https://www.instagram.com/cam_bam_/

Enjoy all the wonderful coffee making my friends!

XOXO,
Camille

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How To Make Room For God In Your Daily Life

If you’re a Christian I know you feel me on this one, spending time with God is a challenge. It shouldn’t be, but for some reason it is. It’s just that “out of sight out of mind” type mentality that makes it so difficult to spend even a few moments with God sometimes. That is until I read this book by Andrew Wommack, A Better Way to Pray. The concepts are pretty challenging in and of themselves, but here are some practical life applications that I took from this book.

If you’re a Christian and have the Holy Spirit living inside you, you’re already in constant communion with God

The bible teaches us to pray without ceasing and that we should basically spend our entire day giving thanks to God and praising Him. That sounds completely impossible when I also have to do a million other things a day including take care of my husband, myself, our dog, do my job, write music, write this blog, maintain relationships with friends and family and the list goes on. I barely have time to read people’s entire Instagram post’s let alone spend an hour or more reading the Bible.

The mind shift here is that with the Holy Spirit inside of me, acting as Jesus says, my “helper”, I don’t have to do much more. All I really have to do it LISTEN to the Holy Spirit and I’m already spending time with God. If you’re new to faith or have trouble understanding what or who the Holy Spirit is, reach out to me! I would love to talk with you about it. If you’re a long time believer, then you understand the concept that the Holy Spirit is for our benefit. He’s there to guide you, to protect you, to teach you, to discipline you and so much more. If we simply listen to that still small voice then we’re already in constant and intimate communication and relationship with God.

Change your mindset on what God expects from you

A lot of the teaching in my church growing up was that God was full of wrath and anger and if and when I messed up, I had to spend all this time crying out for forgiveness so that I didn’t instantly go to hell. As an adult who has spent much more time reading the Bible, I’ve come to realize that if that’s true, what is the point of Jesus? Doesn’t the Bible say that He was sent to cover our sin? He was sent so that we wouldn’t have to face the wrath of God? Isn’t Jesus’ blood poured out for me enough? The answer is YES!!! I don’t have to spend hours praying to God each day as though I’m this red-headed step child (as they say) that has to feel sorry or bad for something. I mess up daily and all bets are that you do too. However, God knew that before He ever sent His son to die for us and Jesus died knowing we would still mess up.

Our mindset HAS to shift from a place of sorrow and cowardliness to a place of boldness and confidence in who we are in Christ. We cannot think that God expects us to beg him every day for love and acceptance and forgiveness. He already loves us more than we can ever image, he already accepts us because He created us and He forgave us of our sins before we were ever even born. If we spend our daily life in this place of knowing our Heavenly Father loves us, we feel a lot less condemned when we do spend time with Him.

Make it a GET to not a HAVE to

A large part of why it’s always been so difficult for me to prioritize spending time with God daily is because I for years have viewed it as a chore. Spending time with God has been seen as something I have to do before the end of the day instead of something I get to do. It’s viewed kind of like a job, instead of a joyful privilege. The truth is, when we spend time with God it sets our entire day into a different direction. We find ourselves less focused on the negative things and we focus more on the gift of life that God has given us. To wrap this post up here are a few practical things I do to make time for God each day.

  1. Have my bible app read the daily devotion and bible plan to me
  2. Spend 10 minutes in silence with my eyes closed to focus on what God is saying to me
  3. Write a gratitude list at the end of the day of what I was grateful for, then read it in the morning to start the next day off
  4. Spend time praying while I’m doing exercise (walking, elliptical, bike etc..)
  5. Thank God even in small things. Walk outside and there’s beautiful weather, I quickly say “Thank You Lord”.

That’s a super short list but they are all really effective ways at just including God in your daily life journey. He doesn’t expect every day to be spend on your knees praying and giving thanks, but He does desire your heart and mind. God asks nothing more than that you love Him and sometimes that’s just saying “thanks”.

XOXO,
Camille

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It’s My Birthday! 29 Fun Facts About ME

I promise not to make this a super egotistical share about how great I am (LOL) and more just a chance for those of you who are super sweet to read, share and follow me to get to know me a little better. So here we go!

  1. I was born 9/11/91 and weighed 9 pounds 1 ouce
  2. I was born with strawberry blonde hair that has gotten darker as I get older
  3. My actual favorite color is black but I’m partial to blue as well
  4. Legend has it that I actually started humming along to songs before I could speak
  5. I have a condition called Hyperacusis– in short I hear almost everything really well and it can be painful and overwhelming at times. You can read about it if you’re interested.
  6. I have wanted to be a preacher since I was about 6 and use to “preach sermons” to my mom growing up
  7. I have two half siblings- topic for another day πŸ˜‰
  8. I use to hate wearing lipstick and now it’s my go to makeup product
  9. Never have I ever had a traffic violation ticket or accident (in Jesus name I won’t ever)
  10. I actually use to struggle in school with reading and writing (until College)
  11. I was healed two years ago of a major mood disorder (Thank You JESUS) and plan to one day write a book about it
  12. I had a crush on my now husband from the day I met him, but was way too scared to talk to him and mostly avoided him when we worked together (he still gives me butterflies)
  13. I don’t like wearing dresses and prefer sweatpants to basically everything
  14. Ralph got his name from my minor high school obsession with Ralph- Lauren (that’s my dog for those who don’t know)
  15. The longest my hair ever got to was 32 inches from root to tip
  16. My dream car is a red convertible 4-passanger BMW, with black interior (because that’s what my Barbie had growing up, true story)
  17. I hate wearing socks
  18. I have 8 tattoos in total
  19. I started drinking coffee every morning in 11th grade and haven’t quit since (yikes)
  20. Peaches are my favorite fruit but I rarely eat them
  21. I shamelessly play Pokemon Go with my husband and some friends and I love every second of it!!
  22. My hands and feet have gotten smaller since I was in college (don’t worry, just weight loss lol)
  23. Walmart is my favorite place to shop hands-down
  24. I can play the piano and the guitar (not great at either one and prefer to sing without an instrument)
  25. I have burned my dominant hand (right) with at least a 2nd degree burn, 3 times.
  26. I was accepted into and planned on going to Chiropractic school for a brief period in college before changing my mind and sticking with Psychology, Music & English.
  27. October is my favorite month
  28. I was born and raised pentacostal and speak in tongues (Let me know if you have questions haha)
  29. I’m beyond excited to live this last year in my 20’s. I have had an incredible life, full of love, laughter, God’s fulfilled promises, joy and so much more. No it’s not perfect, but it’s perfect for me and I plan to live this last year in this decade to the fullest and walk out everything that God has planned for me.

I hope you feel like you know the girl behind the screen a little bit better and over the course of the next year, we can all learn a little more about each other. Thank you to everyone who supports me and shares my stories each week. I can’t wait to see all that God has ready this next year.

Outfit link: 29th Birthday Out #1 with my basics all dressed up! http://liketk.it/2WkBu #liketkit @liketoknow.it #LTKstyletip

xoxo,
Camille

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How To Overcome the Tendency to Compare

Have you stopped to notice the amount of time you stare at a picture of someone online that you think it particularly beautiful or seems to have the lifestyle you think you want to live? I have. In a world where everyone is pretty much only sharing the highlight reel of their lives online, it’s hard not to get caught up in the falsehood that social media begs you to give into. That’s the exact opposite of what God wants for your life. He doesn’t want you sitting around being consumed by what your neighbor has or is doing, He wants you to be so captivated by the purpose He has for your life that you never think twice about what someone else looks like or has.

The ultimate example of this is the relationship between John the Baptist and Jesus. When you read the story of Jesus and John you learn that they are actually cousins. John began his ministry before Jesus and was baptizing people with water. When Jesus stepped on the scene people around Him were instantly beginning to instigate and try to cause a rivalry between these two men. Long story way short, neither of them were caught in the comparison of their ministries and neither were thrown off track for what God needed them to do. They honored one another in ministry and kept it moving.

That’s a gross oversimplification of what took place, but all-in-all it’s exactly what I believe God expects of us. As a young woman who has grown up smack dab in the middle of the technology era it’s incredibly easy for me to spend hours of my day scrolling online wishing I had the body, the brains, the money, the following, the talent of a million other people and most closely my own friends but it takes disciple and faith and a focus on God to look the other way. I can appreciate the gifts, beauty and talent of everyone around me without calling into question my own worth or the plan God has for me.

Here are just a few simple ways that I regain my focus and don’t get overcome by the tendency to compare myself and my life to others.

Unfollow
Let’s start with the hardest one and get straight to the point. If there is someone you follow that is causing you to feel insecure about who you are in Christ, unfollow them. Instagram and Facebook even made it easy for you and you can simply mute people so you don’t have to unfollow them, but you don’t have to see their face every morning while you scroll online before even getting out of bed.

Prioritize God
Which brings me to my next point. How can we put social media before God and expect to live a fulfilled and joyful life. The Bible instructs us over and over to BEGIN our day with thanksgiving, which simply means the moment you wake up you should be thanking God and giving Him the first part of your day. I’m not saying that I don’t also fall into the trap of checking how many DM’s I got overnight, but I try to wake up and make it out of bed before I start scrolling. This instantly sets my mind right and helps me to start my day off in a stronger and more powerful mindset, which then allows me to be less likely to want to overspend time looking at what everyone else is doing. Try with something small and simple like making a verse the note in your alarm and reading it. Or putting your favorite verse on a note card next to your bed so it’s the first thing you see when you wake up. This doesn’t mean you have to wake up and spend 20 minutes praying or reading the Bible, it just means that you should try and start your day being focused on God rather than the World.

Set Goals
My favorite pastor in all the world, Judy Jacobs, says to me (and everyone) “Write the Vision out, make it plain”. What she means is that we have a tendency to make every excuse in the world, to get side tracked and to never move ahead when we don’t even know what we’re supposed to be doing. I’m way more likely to sit for hours online on a lazy day at home “resting” than I am on the days I have tasks, goals, vision, dreams to tackle. When I’m aligned with God’s vision and plan and we have co-created a plan of attack….BOOM….Instagram who? I don’t even have time to check my phone and especially not to worry about who’s doing what better than me. Start by writing down what your BIG dream is. Want to be an author and have a book published? Cool, now work backwards and start making annual, monthly, weekly and daily plans to help you achieve that goal. Soon you’ll find that as the saying goes you’re “Captivated by Purpose” and no longer focused on what someone else is doing.

Use Auto-Post
I use an auto posting software that I preload content into and never have to think about it again. Which means again, I’m online way less than people actually think I am. It looks like I post almost daily but in reality that picture was taken weeks ago and the caption worked on over days and auto-posted at the moment that an algorithm told me to ( see how wild the truth can be online??). This is another chance for me to not even start down the long road of comparison. Oh my post didn’t get as many likes as so and so….oh well. I didn’t even see it until two days later. See what I’m saying is that social media isn’t all bad and it’s certainly not the devil as some believe, but when I use it in a healthy way it can be amazing and like this very blog post, can help encourage others in a way I wouldn’t be able to otherwise.

Pray Up
As always in every message you ever see me share the theme will be prayer. I believe with everything in me that nothing is more powerful than our relationship and time we spend with God. God literally moves mountains when we ask Him to and until we prioritize this time with God, we’ll be caught in the exact cycle that the secular world wants us to be. We’ll be captivated with Hollywood and keeping up with the most popular trends and less focused on what God needs us to do and where we should be spending our time. This is when we’re at our most vulnerable place and when we’re the most likely to compare our lives and where we are in life to someone else because we haven’t even stopped to ask God why we’re in this season of life. Spend time letting God speak to you and show you where you’re supposed to be and when. Spend LESS time focusing on what everyone around you is doing.

As I said, social media is not the worst. People who are sinful in nature can be though and if we’re not careful we’ll find ourselves focused on what the WORLD is doing and less and less on what GOD is doing. My friend, please do not lose sight of who you are. You are a child of God who was created with a deeply important purpose on this earth. You were not created to look beautiful, wear trendy clothes, make the most money of your friends and family and certainly not to be so overwhelmed with everyone around you that you can’t even take a step forward in the direction of your calling and purpose.

You are deeply loved and God has a dream life planned out just for you. He knows what your heart truly needs and what is going to satisfy you beyond what anyone or anything else ever will be able to do. Trust in that. Trust in the Lord your God who cannot and will not ever fail you.

Beloved one, don’t compare your life to someone else’s highlight reel. I promise they have their own issues that they don’t put out online for other’s to see. You might find that you certainly would not want to trade places with them.

Praying that all who read this will find peace and continent, that you’ll know who you are in Christ and that you will take whatever steps you need to in the direction of the calling placed on your life.

XOXO,
Camille

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August Favorites

I can hardly contain my excitement as I’m writing this because I am totally in love and obsessed with fall. Fall is the superior of all seasons hands down and no one will be able to change my mind. Needless to say I do enjoy a lot of our summer activities but there’s just something about fall that is so good for my soul. I always mark September as the official beginning of Fall (which it is technically) so I’m so pumped! Are you a fall/winter or spring/summer person?

As we close the sweet August chapter, full of birthdays of my two best guys (husband and dad) and begin the latter half of our year I’m really excited to share with you some of the products I’ve been using. I hope you find some things you enjoy!

  1. Java House Coffee Pods
    These are seriously life changing. I cannot tell you how many times I have been running late for something, or just not wanting to wait for an entire pot of coffee to brew and I make one of these. They are insanely easy to use, extremely delicious and super convenient for on the go people like myself. All of their products are made for convenience and I will forever sing their praises. Check my link for all of my favorite products.
  2. Torani Syrup Pumps
    If you love coffee as much as we do, you’ve got to have your full coffee station all set up and ready to go. We buy delicious coffee syrups to add to our coffee and these pumps for the bottles make sure we have the exact portions correct for our drinks! Plus they help keep the area clean. A total win win!
  3. Car Cleaning Putty
    I know this one sounds strange, but please believe me when I say it’s AWESOME! It’s hard to describe in detail but imagine a squishy play-dough like putty that stays sticky, you can clean it off and it picks up all that annoying dust inside your car. Now of course you can use this other places as well, as I have, but for the most part I’ve left it in my car and and used it every time I see that stubborn dust all over my dashboard.
  4. Mr. Coffee Mug Warmer
    I’m aware there is a coffee theme going on here, but this month I’ve spent a lot of time getting our coffee station ready for all the fall coffee trends. I go a little wild in the fall over PSL. This nifty little thing is actually something I got my husband for his birthday, because he doesn’t drink his coffee in two giant gulps like a normal person ( jk I’m aware he’s the normal one here) so his coffee has to be reheated a million times in the morning. Insert, Mr. Coffee mug warmer and he’s got a warm cup of coffee for as long as he needs it. You simply turn it on, let it warm up and turn it off when you’re done. Major points, this is guy is less than $10.
  5. Clutch Nails
    As you may know by now if you’ve been following me for a second, but I’m all about the at home mani. Even before COVID, I have been trying to empower women to do their nails at home at much as possible. I only just stumbled across this brand recently but I love the diversity they have in designs and not just solid colors. Around the same price point as most glue/press on nails but loads more designs.
  6. Like-To-Know-It App
    This is partly a shameless plug because I make a tiny commission on things that you purchase from my account BUT it’s also an amazing app. Think Instagram, but with the things in the photo including a link to exactly where they’re from. No more searching the internet or a website for the shirt you saw and can’t find anywhere. Here you can follow people and find the items right there without having to do any searching yourself. There’s also a way to follow sales directly from the app. And don’t worry it’s not all just fashion, there are home, beauty, books, health and wellness….everything you can think of! Www.liketoknow.it/cam_bam_
  7. Goli Apple Cider Supplements
    You’ve probably seen these everywhere so I’ll spare the details. All I’ll say is that these taste delicious and are very affordable and seem to benefit us. Nick and I have both been taking these and we’ve enjoyed them for a couple months now. I can’t say I’ve seen instant, amazing results but we have both been losing weight so could be these gummies or could be coincidence. Either way they get 5 stars from us!
  8. Office Chair Slip Cover
    The easiest way to make over an old chair that you don’t like the color of is with one of these super affordable slip covers. They come in a multitude of colors and are super easy to slide over any chair. Make sure you check the dimensions of your chair to get the right size but I totally love these.
  9. Customizable Tervis Mug
    My husband has this cute little tervis mug with a crab on it and I used it one day for my morning coffee. If you’re not already a tervis fan, the coffee mug will change your mind. It’s lightweight but sturdy and it’s super cute and I found this shop online that will make customizable one’s for you!
  10. Stack-able Rings
    A trend that popped right back up this year is stack-able rings! There’s millions to choose from and it’s hard to find the right kind to put together when you’re buying them in pieces. So I chose to try a pretty cheap set from Target to get my feel for how I liked them. This set was great since they already all go together and I didn’t have to worry about them looking strange together. Plus the price is great too.
  11. White “Nike” Sneakers
    My number one favorite thing to do these days is find an item that looks identical to an expensive item but for cheaper. The newest platform Nike sneakers cost you around $100 and these Walmart platform sneakers come in just around $15. I didn’t realize how much I would love wearing the white sneaker trend until I started, but especially in the summer it helps boost my tan (lol), and just makes most outfits look more sleek and put together. These are definitely worth the money too.

And that’s a wrap on the August Favorites!! I still can’t believe we’re heading into my favorite season finally. Even with COVID, this summer was still pretty great but I’m ready for my PSL (which launched last week at Starbucks and Dunkin), my cozy sweaters and being snuggled up on the couch with a million blankets and my fall candles. There’s just nothing like it. What products are you using this month that you’ve loved? Let me know in the comments!

XOXO,
Camille

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Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Short and sweet and to the point with this one. Here are the items I purchased from the Sale and some I’ve gotten in previous years that I would highly recommend anyone get!

  1. Plaid Blazer
    A blazer like this one is something that never goes out of style, can be styled in any season and goes with almost anything in your wardrobe. Below are just a few ways I would style this one.

2. Hightop Platform Converse
These are almost exactly half off during the sale and totally worth the buy. I wear my black one’s constantly and these make dresses or jeans looks super chic. This is a deal you won’t find almost anywhere else.

3. Long Cardigans
I would recommend getting this in every color but I’m just a sucker for burnt orange. It’s the epitome of fall and just gives you instant fall and cozy vibes. I wore it basically once a week last year and it’s sure to be a crowd favorite this year.

4. Bralette Tank Tops
These are soooo soft and comfy and can be styled as an undershirt AND a bra! I got the purple and the black because they’re so cheap yet such good quality. I like to wear layers in the winter and this helps cut down on all those extra camisoles and such. Can’t wait to style these under an oversized chunky sweater.

5. Steve Madden Leather Boots
Okay these are to die for. Literally just over half off, perfect color for all year long and can be styled a billion ways. These booties are BEGGING you to add them to your collection. Plus they have a nice chunky heel so they’re good and comfy for longer wear.

6. Faux Leather Jacket
This one sold out so fast last year and I barely found my size but thank you JESUS that I did. This is the most buttery soft and comfy leather jacket that I have ever owned or seen on someone. It looks flattering on everyone because it’s slightly tailored in the middle and has these gorgeous ribbed details on the arms. An absolute must have.

7.Over the Knee Boots
Again, another staple in any fashionista’s closet. You have to have a good over the knee boot and these are so comfortable and stylish they can be styled well into spring without being too warm. I have them in black and just might still go grab them in the cognac color. Maybe I can convince my husband to buy them for me for Christmas πŸ˜‰

To see everything I’m either buying, have or recommend you snag while you can, check out my links below πŸ™‚

Beauty Finds

Men’s Section Sales

Shoes

Household Items

Comfy/Cozy

Fall Staples

Designer Sales

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How To Set Healthy Boundaries in Relationships

Let my start this off by saying that I understand in our society today the word boundaries usually has a negative condonation with it. We feel kind of icky when someone says we’ve crossed a boundary of theirs or when we feel someone has crossed ours. Truthfully this is something I have struggled with my entire life. I remember I was in middle school the first time I had a therapist tell me that I was allowing people to cross boundaries in my life that they shouldn’t be.

So what are the boundaries I’m speaking of? Well here’s the Websters explanation:
Boundaries are guidelines, rules or limits that a person creates to identify reasonable, safe and permissible ways for other people to behave towards them and how they will respond when someone passes those limits.

Boundaries are something you decide for yourself. Me personally, a huge boundary that I have in relationships is “asking before showing up” (Proverbs 25:17) The quickest way for you to see my fiery redheaded side is to show up at my house unannounced or with very little notice. I do not tolerate people coming over without asking first. It seems dramatic to some, but home is my solace and a space that I protect at all costs. I am strictly scheduled and have routines for a reason, and when people just show up…it crosses a line that I do not allow. You have to have that for yourself. The things in your life that you express to those around you as lines to not be crossed.

Today I want to show you what God says about the importance of keeping peace within yourself. Setting boundaries with the people in your life is one of the best ways to do this. You can’t be of much service to God if you’re bogged down with always keeping busy, and pleasing every person around you, especially at the cost of yourself. So let’s dive in.

First let me highlight that there is an impeccable book series on this very topic that I’ve linked here that you should check out. The series teaches on setting healthy boundaries in every area of life.

  1. Maintain open communication (Ephesians 4:25)
    Have you noticed that basically every relationship in your life that has died, has done so because of diminished communication? Have you noticed how often in the Bible that the Lord talks about a longing for relationship with His people? The key to any and all healthy relationships is communication. The kicker here is that it doesn’t have to be on one person’s terms or the other and it always has to be honest. Part of the reason Nick and I were engaged in seven months and married just over a year of being together is because of the level of our communication skills. We have easily maneuvered (so far) through tough conversations and HONEST conversations, no matter how uncomfortable they are. We’ve told each other our expectations and then worked through them together from day one. I don’t sit around all day getting upset with my husband because he didn’t do something (that I never even told him I wanted him to do). I ask him daily for exactly what I want or feel like I need help with without fear that he’ll be upset. We keep communication open 24/7 and that sets us on the right path for having healthy boundaries that we don’t cross.
  2. Prayer (1 Thes. 5:16-18)
    You cannot have a healthy anything in life without prayer. This is a non-negotiable if you’re wanting to have healthy relationships. You have to pray over the people in your life. When I meet new people, I pray almost instantly about the relationship the Lord wants me to have with them. Some people are only for a season of life, while others are long term. If it’s family, I pray over our relationship constantly. Family members are the most difficult to set boundaries with. Parents especially have a hard time navigating through a child’s stages from adolescence to adulthood and it can be difficult to express to them what your personal boundaries are. However, my friend it’s extremely important to the health of your relationships with everyone that you to pray that God gives you the right words to share with all friends and family about your needs in your boundaries. I’ve even prayed at the beginning of conversations that I knew were going to be tough that God would open our hearts and minds and help us to connect better before ever uttering a word of how I was feeling.
  3. Make a list (Colossians 4:6)
    If you know anything about me at all you should know by now that lists are my favorite thing. I have a list for everything you can think of and it’s brought so much peace to my life. In this instance I made a list about 15 years ago and have made small changes to it as circumstances and life changes happened. It started off with me listing the behaviors of my friends and family, towards me, that didn’t make me feel great. An example, I didn’t like it when my friends talked over me at lunch. I’m a pretty quiet person who speaks pretty low and calm. So when I’m around my more bold and loud counterparts, often what I have to say goes unnoticed or unheard (see a theme here on why I’m a blogger? lol). My list had about 10 or 12 things like this on it. Then I grouped together like items and made a list of my top few boundaries that I don’t like crossed. This one turned into ” I ask that people give me the space to speak” and know what happened? I started waiting until my friends were done talking and spoke only when I had something to say. Years later, very few people cross this boundary of mine because I’ve made it clear to everyone who knows me that I’m not going to fight to be heard. You either want to hear what I have to say or you don’t. Your choice. I challenge you to do the same.
  4. Spend Time With People (Romans 12:9-13)
    Again, without actually working to develop a relationship, you won’t have one. The more time you spend around people, the more likely you are to show your true self and remove any masks or walls you’ve built and the same goes for them. As you become more comfortable around people simply by being in their presence you’ll be more likely to develop a natural rhythm of how you interact with them. That opens up an opportunity for you to develop a closer relationship with them and set your boundaries without feeling like you have to have a conversation about it. People will treat you, how you allow them to.
  5. Pay Attention (James 1:19)
    This is kind of like list making but more focused on knowing yourself a little better. Sometimes we’re quick to blame other people and not focus on the fact that maybe we’re the problem. Do people get irritated with you easily? Maybe you’re kind of annoying (I say that in love). Do your friends and family seem to blow you off a lot or do you feel like they don’t want to spend time with you? Perhaps you’re the one crossing THEIR boundaries. Setting boundaries goes both ways. You first need to become aware of how you’re treating other people and how you’re perceived by others. Pay attention to how people interact with you. Is it mostly avoidance? Do you see people light up with joy when they see you? Are they avoiding eye contact? Once you start to respect other people’s boundaries, it becomes much easier for them to oblige the same respect.

These are all pretty hefty and take some time to work on and cultivate. I’m still working on these in a lot of my relationships, but it’s a lifelong journey and walk with God. I pray that you take a moment for some reflection after reading this. Are there people in your life that you need to sit down with and discuss how they make you feel? Are there people that you need to ask forgiveness from for crossing their boundaries? This isn’t an easy, feel good type of thing to do. Truthfully it’s hard work that just continues to get easier over time with the help of the Holy Spirit and through prayer, but in the world today we as Christians have to work diligently at treating EVERYONE like Christ treats us and He would never cross a boundary or hurt us. Let’s extend that same love to each other.

XOXO,
Camille

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July Favorites (Reading Addition)

I’ve read more books than ever before while we’ve been living through this pandemic. This month instead of fashion or home good items, I wanted to share the few books that have helped me maintain a sense of hope and normality through all of this craziness we’re experiencing. I would love your recommendations as well!

  1. Upstairs at the White House by J.B West
    This book was so interesting. I’ve never really been that big into history but this book shed some light on just how interesting things in politics are. It gives a slight behind the scenes of Mr. West’s real life experience as “Head Butler” in the executive mansion (the living quarters of the presidents and their families). I would highly recommend this book.
  2. Next Right Thing by Emily Freeman
    I didn’t even realize that I needed this book until I was halfway through it. Her ultimate hope is that you undergo a “soul detox” and learn how to discern the process of making important decisions in your life and that you come to discover and develop your own process for doing “the next right thing” in your life….even if that means it’s just as simple as taking a nap. That might be what you need the most at the moment. This one will definitely take you on an emotional journey. There’s prayers and practical application at the end of each chapter which I love.
  3. The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer
    A.W Tozer has written more books about God than any other author…I think (ha!). His words are intelligently written and extremely compelling and even convicting in some instances. This book gives you an incredible insight to the urgency of pursuing your relationship with Jesus and significance of doing it the “right way”. He teaches you how to be on fire and passionate about your relationship with Christ and not just Luke warm in your belief about Him. This book definitely reminded me of how exciting it is to follow Jesus.
  4. A Better Way to Pray by Andrew Wommack
    Ever wonder why sometimes your prayers aren’t being answered? Why you keep asking God for the same thing over and over and it’s like he’s totally silent? This book teaches you the basics of how Jesus explained that we should pray and an incredibly easily application to doing so. Every answer we could ever search for is in the Bible, we just have to use the discernment God gave us to understand it and apply it. In this case Andrew has done it for you! Absolutely life changing read.
  5. Bible in one year 2020 by Nicky Gumbel
    Okay this on isn’t so much a book as it is a devotional but I highly recommend it to everyone. If you follow me on Instagram you see me post excerpts from this devotional almost weekly. Nicky has an incredible way of breaking down the Bible and sharing what the overarching message is and how to apply it to our life. If you’re like me and don’t always understand how a Bible verse applies to you at all, I strong suggest that you check out this Devotional. Don’t worry so much about catching up for the year…just start right where you are!

All of these books are pretty lengthy and most are hefty in their concepts and take some time to work through and digest so for that sake I’m going to keep the list short. Please reach out if you have questions, concerns, thoughts or books that you would recommend