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My Go-To Guide for Gifting

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This post is in partnership with Greetabl, but as always all opinions are my own! I'm also a real Greetabl customer, so feel free to ask me any questions you'd like answered honestly via DM on @CharlestonWeekender.

When it comes to gift giving (my main love language), I always tend to try to stick to a few rules of thumb.  Greetabl is a company I very often turn to for a snail-mail option, that also happens to check off all my gift-giving musts.  Of course I still have PLENTY of times where I wind up scrambling to send something to an out of town loved one on the day of said celebration (sorry Dad!), but Greetabl has really become one of my go-tos for birthdays, client thank-you gifts, and SO many other occasions!  Read this until the end so you can see one of the things I'm gifting my fabulous biz parter Mimi (of The Tiny Tassel) for her upcoming birthday.  I'll also give you details on an offer/discount Greetabl let me share with you!  Ok, now for some gifting tips:

- It's All in the Presentation -

I've always been a fan of the above Bree Van de Camp mantra, which also happens to help me appear to be a great hostess despite my lack of cooking skills!  I've always been a proponent of wowing your guests with your presentation- that is all you need to make a memorable evening, am I right?! The same really holds true for gifting.  There is so much to be said for cute wrapping, addressing your envelope in hand lettering (or your attempt at it), etc.  When you send a Greetabl, the packaging is super duper cute and will make the recipient smile in itself!  Your pal will open the box and see an adorable cube in a print you chose for them (like this confetti one I picked for Mimi).  You can also see the Leslie Knope one I've gifted here.  You're basically winning before they even opened it up.

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- Make it Personal -

Greetabl is personalized in more ways than one: pick your gift box print, pick 3 Instagram or camera roll photos to add to the inside, and add a custom message, too!  So even though it doesn't have an ounce of your hand writing or involve you spending your time at the post office (my VERY least favorite thing!), it's got that element of customization that makes everyone feel special.  How cute do these photos of Mimi & I look with the confetti print I picked for her!?

- It's the Thought That Counts -

I would LOVE to just be able to gift all of my friends the fanciest of schmanciest goodies.  However, for most occasions I need to stay in the under $30 price range (especially for client gifts & such).  Check out some of the cute gifts they offer that range from an $8-12 add-on!  All in all, the last few Greetabls I've sent have cost me $20-25 (including shipping & the gift that comes inside). 

So below is the gift I picked for Mimi!  She already sells cute piñatas in ours shop, so I went with the "tiny celebration" confetti of course!  It's not like we don't see an abundance of confetti around our shop, but I mean who can really have too much confetti?!

-So Here's The Deal (Literally)-

1. If you see yourself using Greetabl a ton like I do, I recommend their "Insider" program.  If you sign up before June 30 you'll get: Free shipping for a YEAR, a $20 credit (basically a FREE Greetabl), and a ton of other perks.

2.  If you want to try it out once to make sure you like it, use the code charlestonweekender to get 15% off when you make a purchase here

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Comment or DM me at @CharlestonWeekender to let me know what you think.  Happy gifting, friends!

photos c/o Kim Graham Photography

 

 

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Charleston Weekending: 2018's New Restaurants

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There have been SO many new restaurants popping up around town that I have barely been able to work my way through this list yet.  I've jotted down my recommendations of what to get beside the locations I've had a chance to try, but you'll have to comment and let me know your favorites at the ones I haven't visited!

-Breakfast-

Miller's All Day (I loved the BLT salad!)

Daps (get a mimosa and something from the "hash" section)

-Pizza-

Renzo Wood-Fired Pizza (Detroit Style)

Uneeda Sicilian (Sicilian of course)

Uptown Social (NY Style)

-Other-

Poke San (sushi, poke, & more)

Spanglish Cuban Kitchen (inside Workshop; we loved the Fricase De Pollo & Lechon Asado)

Saffire Restaurant (we had the Quinoa Bowl and the Prestige Farms Chicken Breast, both delish)

-Coming Soon-

Melfi's (Roman-ish inspired pizzeria)

Chubby Fish (fresh, Lowcountry seafood with innovative preparation)

It's hard to go wrong with a Charleston meal no matter where you go!  Follow along on Instagram for more recommendations!


photo c/o Kim Graham Photography

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Palm Springs Weekending

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This post is in partnership with The Weekend House, but all opinions are my own.  Some of the links I've included may be affiliate links, which will earn me a small commission when you click on them. 

Palm Springs came across my radar a few years ago, and I immediately fell in love with the colorful & quaint city upon my first visit in 2016.  While I was there during that first visit, a man at a neighboring table at Bingo night warned me to "be careful, Palm Springs will get in your blood!".  To say he hit the nail on the head would be an understatement! 

A couple of visits later, I fell in love with the annual Palm Springs event called Modernism Week, a celebration of midcentury architecture, design, and culture.  While I was there as part of the "Mod Squad", I stayed at the gosh darn adorable Weekend House.  You can find my other recommendations around town in my Palm Springs Life Magazine Weekend Guide, but keep scrolling to see why Lucy Marie Photography & I fell so in love with The Weekend House! 

 all images c/o  Lucy Marie Photography

all images c/o Lucy Marie Photography

Themed Rooms Abound

I love a good theme, so why not have a whole room that hightlights your favorite icon.  The Weekend House has a flamingo room, pineapple room, cactus room, and the list goes on.  I have to say I think the Flamingo room stole my heart.  That pink phone is just too much!

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Games Galore

I'm always a sucker for fun and games.  One of my favorite tried and true ways to make it feel more like the weekend is to shut of the television and break out the board games!  The Weekend House made me rediscover my love for Dominoes, so I bought this adorable pair that they had in their super chic den.  They had so many cute games both indoors and out- corn hole, ping pong, you name it!  

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Outdoor Haven, Check!

The best way to enjoy your vacation is to make sure you have a tranquil space to enjoy the outdoors.  In Palm Springs, a pool is a must. They had a hot tub for us to enjoy, too!  We certainly spent some good quality time living it up in this very well thought out backyard. Doesn't being surrounded by lots of green just make you so happy?! This is my kind of "great outdoors"!

Email me or get in touch on Instagram if you ever make your way to Palm Springs. I would love to help you have fun in my California happy place!  You can follow #WeekenderTravels to get even more travel inspiration, or pin this to Pinterest so you don't forget to add it to your bucket list.

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How To Get Yourself Into a Funk (& back out of it!)

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I originally planned to wait and share this when I was riding high on cloud nine once again, very far removed from my doldrums with plenty of superb wisdom in hand.  However, by the time I'm out of a funk I have usually forgotten just how bad it stinks and likely will have moved on to sunny & motivating topics once again.  So instead, I'm coming at you just a day or 2 out of a major funk- one that has been with me off and on for weeks and might not be completely gone!  The only word to describe it is just "blerg", a term often used by my favorite TV character (Liz Lemon), written so beautifully here by my friend The Town Serif.  

Here Are Some Funk-Inducers:

Not Exercising

My decline in physical activity has been slow and steady since opening our shop last April.  I got to a point where I was excited about being tied to my computer all the time, and slowly but surely working out fell by the wayside.  I am only successful with exercise when I am doing something truly enjoyable or being held externally accountable.  I'm currently on my second of 6 weeks working with a trainer to get myself back in the habit.  On my off days I try to get 10k steps a day.  A trainer isn't something I necessarily have extra room in my budget for, but I know it's an invaluable gift I can give myself to help me get back on track and reinstate good habits.  I'm training with Victoria from Glow Body Health & Wellness, & loving working out with her in the park!


Setting Goals

Some people thrive when they are held accountable by goals, but I tend to get easily overwhelmed by all of the things I could be/should be doing.  For right now, I'm just concentrating on tracking my business "wins".  If I work with a client I'm excited about, had a good sales month, etc., it gets added to the list.  It's nice to have a list you actually want to look at for a change!  

Eating White Foods

The three biggies that always get me are flour, sugar, and dairy!  Our bodies don't actually need these things and for some people, they can really cloud up our brain!  No, I don't have any fancy studies to back this one up, but if you start doing your own research you will be amazed. A lot of times when I find myself bloated, fatigued, or anxious for no good reason at all, it's usually because I haven't been keeping these things out of my diet. I also eat WAY too many white potatoes (in all forms) and am trying to sub sweet potatoes- white ones can be inflammatory and have a chemical called lectin that is apparently no bueno.  I have noticed most of my funks happen around my period, and to me that still points back to the foods in question here. None of them are known for being great for hormonal imbalances!

Playing The Comparison Game

For me, the girl I compare myself to the most? MYSELF. circa about 2009- working as a speech-language therapist in DC, making about 80k a year.  Plenty of money to have fun with and plenty to save.  The path to that career took 6 years of school, so why am sitting here thinking I'll get the same paycheck after just 2 years of hard work at Charleston Weekender?! Rome wasn't built in a day, duh!  It seems more common to compare yourself to what you see on social media.  I'm usually good about not doing that, but occasionally I'll see another blogger working with a brand that's turned me down and I get a little FOMO!  That's when it's time to head back to that "wins" list and refocus energy on what I DO have going on.  That energy could be spent in such better ways and we are better than that, friends!

 image c/o Kim Graham

image c/o Kim Graham


Ok, Let's Fix Our Funk! 

In addition to some of the suggestions I offered above, here are some strategies that have usually helped me.


Seek Outside Help

Sometimes I can work my way out of my own depression (which for me doesn't actually feel like sadness, just lack of motivation and lethargy/apathy).  Other times we need real professional help.  For right now that means hiring a trainer, and at times that has also meant I've worked with a talk therapist.  Occasionally, outside help is as simple as reaching out to a friend.  Simply scheduling a phone date with a gal pal is all it takes for me to get moving a lot of times.


Pat Yourself On The Back!

I bet you don't say mean things to your friends like "you really should be making more money" or "you really could be a better parent", right? Ok, then why are we letting ourselves say such mean things sometimes!?  If you heard the things I said to myself lately- about my job, about being a wife, or even about being depressed, you would think it was terrible!  I noticed when I was reading daily affirmations and writing down what I was grateful for as part of my 30 days of habit making that it was easier to stay positive with my thoughts.  Practice thinking, writing, or talking about the good things you have going on!


Take a Chill Pill, Literally!

When all else fails, I turn to medication.  This is NOT my first choice if I'm being honest. In general I am working toward having an all-natural approach to what I put on and in my body.  However, sometimes my anxiety zaps my energy and turns into depression if I don't nip it in the bud.  That means after a few too many nights of waking up at 4am I just might need a Xanax the next night.  I have also tried Prozac in the past but didn't like the side effects.  What works for me might not work for you, but sometimes it can make a world of difference.  Good news is I think I have found an all-natural substitute for Xanax that I've been trying- the essential oil vetiver! I've been rubbing it on my big toe at night and my husband and I both experience much less restless sleep that lasts all night (until Maddie snores, ugh). 


Like I said in my latest IG post, you can actually have ZERO things to complain about and plenty to be grateful for and STILL find yourself in a funk.  I hope this helps us get us out of it once again, my friends!  I'd love for you to share what helps you- leave a comment here or on over on Instagram.

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