Crazy Kawaii or Die Nails

Over the years, I've accumulated quite the nail polish collection. More recently, I've added some of the items from my nail enthusiast gift guide to the mix. :) Despite my love of nail polish, I rarely take the time to actually use it. This year, that's going to change! As part of my organizing goal for 2015, I've scheduled at-home manicures for Wednesday nights (while Tal has his guilt-free game night). It's free (no additional cost) and every time I look at my painted nails, I smile. So... you can expect to see more nail looks on the blog here - I've even added a new "nails" button the sidebar. As an added bonus, hopefully I'll get better at painting my nails in the process!

This particular look was completely centered around the gorgeous "Kawaii or Die" glitter coat polish by Baroness X. I wanted it to be the focus, but also enjoy painting my nails different colors. So I selected colors that matched some of the glitter chunks and also had a chance to try out both my new nail stencils and new Baroness X "Mermaid Madness" polish!


10 Dates Under $10 | Date Ideas

Quitting my corporate job last year to start my own business was one of the best things I've ever done for my personal happiness. It wasn't, however, particularly helpful for our finances. :) As such, Tal and I have learned to be more conscious of our spending habits. I thought it would be fun to continue the Date Ideas series with these fun and inexpensive ideas for dates on a budget!

1. Gourmet Popcorn + Movie: Make or buy a bag of gourmet popcorn, then cuddle up on the couch and watch a movie on Netflix or Hulu.

2. Valentine's Cards: Pick up some paper crafting supplies and make each other cute valentine's cards. Write in the cheesiest love poems you can think up. Make sure you can't see each other's cards until you exchange them at the very end!

3. Backyard Picnic: Cook your favorite warm dish together and then bring it out for a picnic in the backyard.

4. Hike + Junk Food: Stop by and pick up each of your favorite junk foods. Bring them with you on a hike and when you reach the top (or a nice spot), sit down and indulge together.

5. Surprise Gifts + Guesses: Head to a local outdoor shopping village (one that's pretty to walk around). Split up to purchase tiny gifts for each other and then hide them somewhere on your person. Meet up at a designated spot, then walk around together and try to guess where the other person got your gift and what they got. Have your top three guesses ready for the big reveal at the end where you exchange your gifts and see who guessed right!

6. Monster Figurines: Get a few colors of polymer clay and a bag of googly eyes at a local craft store and make silly figures or monsters together. Bake them in the oven for a cute little date keepsake.

7. Drink/Snack + Walk: Pick up froyo or hot chocolate at a local shop. Chat and walk around the surrounding area. Tal and I did this just the other day! We got froyo and window shopped at the local University Village.

8. Dream Vacation Planning: Buy a pretty notebook and use it to start planning your dream vacation together. You can print and paste pictures in, note the best times of year for your favorite spots, write in any events you'd love to attend, etc. Even if you can't afford it anytime soon or never end up going, it'll be fun to discover each others' travel dreams.

9. Evening Doughnuts: Go out for doughnuts in the evening!

10. Photobooth: Gather silly items! Scour your house, ask friends for silly party goodies they don't want, check the discount/out-of-season section at a local party store, visit a thrift shop, or make your own from craft supplies and things you find lying around the house. You can even borrow big frames from your photos or make and paint cardboard masks. Find a good spot (blank wall, good lighting) and use your phone to take tons of funny photobooth pics - either manually or via the Party Party app ($0.99). Print your faves and hang them up on the fridge/wall!

Sorry for the fuzzy photo! I don't usually bring my camera out so it was taken with my iPhone. What are your favorite inexpensive dates? I'd love to hear your ideas! :)

*Date Ideas is a series where I share cute, simple suggestions for dates. Since I live in Seattle, you'll most likely see Greater Seattle locations, but with a simple online search, they should be easy to recreate in most areas! If you have any cool date ideas you'd like to share, I'd love to hear about them!


Book Review | The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer

From the book description (Goodreads page):
Rock star, crowdfunding pioneer, and TED speaker Amanda Palmer knows all about asking. Performing as a living statue in a wedding dress, she wordlessly asked thousands of passersby for their dollars. When she became a singer, songwriter, and musician, she was not afraid to ask her audience to support her as she surfed the crowd (and slept on their couches while touring). And when she left her record label to strike out on her own, she asked her fans to support her in making an album, leading to the world's most successful music Kickstarter.

Even while Amanda is both celebrated and attacked for her fearlessness in asking for help, she finds that there are important things she cannot ask for-as a musician, as a friend, and as a wife. She learns that she isn't alone in this, that so many people are afraid to ask for help, and it paralyzes their lives and relationships. In this groundbreaking book, she explores these barriers in her own life and in the lives of those around her, and discovers the emotional, philosophical, and practical aspects of THE ART OF ASKING.

Part manifesto, part revelation, this is the story of an artist struggling with the new rules of exchange in the twenty-first century, both on and off the Internet. THE ART OF ASKING will inspire readers to rethink their own ideas about asking, giving, art, and love.


Outfit: Zombie Bat

Quick shop news: I'm participating in Twinkie Chan's giveaway this month, so head over to her blog for a chance to win $40 to my shop! From now through the end of January, I'm also offering 20% off any order (biggest discount ever) with the coupon code "EARLYVALENTINES20"!

Honestly, this outfit was born out of my desire to wear two of my Christmas presents from Tal immediately. Heh. The composition is a little wild for my usual style, but it was so much fun! These were taken a few weeks ago, when I still had my peppermint holiday nails.

Yes, those are detachable bat wings on the hoodie. Thank you, Skelanimals, for adding a little bit of awesome to my life. :) The leggings are by talented artist Jen of No Flutter, whose work I've been goggling at on Facebook for a little while now.

T-shirt & Hoodie: Sklelanimals | Necklace: Kelsea Echo | Leggings: Wild Bangarang ft. No Flutter | Flats: Tieks

Now if only those bat wings could actually help me fly... ;)

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