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Saco Shenanigans – How to Have the Best Time on a Float

Saco Shenanigans – How to Have the Best Time on a Float

Living, Traveling
It’s the Monday before our annual canoe trip, and I’ve got Saco on the brain. This morning, as I worked to finish the post for today, I found myself continuously drawn to photos of previous trips, my To Buy/To Pack/To Do list, and other Saco distractions. Finally, I decided to stop fighting it and save that other post for another day. Instead, I bring you the Saco Shenanigans Extravaganza post! Time spent floating down a river is one of the best ways to enjoy a summer day. Unlike the beach, rivers can be found just about anywhere in the country, and it can also be extremely affordable! This is my 5th year going on this trip, but some of my friends have been at it for decades. I asked them…
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5 Friday Favorites – Summer Songs for Shaking It Edition

5 Friday Favorites – Summer Songs for Shaking It Edition

Living
As I sat down to write this post, my skin pricked with excitement. In case it isn’t obvious from my earlier posts, I take my music (and my dance parties) pretty seriously, and I couldn’t wait to curate a list of prime Summer-worthy jams to share with you all. I gathered all my tools - Spotify, Shazam, pictures on my phone, and texts I had sent myself because I never know where or when a song is going to grab me. I created a short set of rules to narrow things down: Songs had to be released in 2017. They had to have an upbeat and/or summer-y vibe. I wanted a variety of genres, in addition to a mix of well-known and lesser-known artists. And let me tell you, it…
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Touted Travel – Encinitas, CA

Touted Travel – Encinitas, CA

Living, Traveling
Our last travel spotlight focused on a fun town in the upper Northeast part of the United States. This week, I’d like to bring you all to the opposite corner of the country to the town of Encinitas in the coastal Southwest, another place close to my heart. I used to be one of those rarities you hear about - a native San Diegan, born in Balboa Naval Hospital and raised (aside from a couple brief stints before I was 4) in Spring Valley. At nineteen, I decided to check out life on the East Coast and headed to Connecticut for college, but for grad school I moved back to my home county, this time living it up and sharing space with a band along the coast in Del Mar…
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Making Summer Memories Within Budget Means

Making Summer Memories Within Budget Means

Living
School is out, the kids are home, and summer is finally here! It’s the time to make memories and have some fun with the nicer weather, extra daylight, and time together. Unfortunately, summer fun and memory-making can get expensive! Fairs, amusement parks, mini-golfing, vacations, arcades and more can certainly add up! Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be! With a little planning and creativity, there are lots of ways to make the most of it without draining the piggy bank. Here are 10 activities to keep the young and old entertained for the day (or at least a good chunk of it!) on a budget:     Create a summer soundtrack. Have you ever heard a song that brought you back to a specific memory? Music has a funny way of…
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5 Friday Favorites – Fourth of July Edition

5 Friday Favorites – Fourth of July Edition

Living
The life you have imagined is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Happy Friday, everyone! The 4th of July is fast approaching, and if you happen to be lucky like my husband and I, you have a long, 4 day weekend to look forward to. For today’s Friday Favorites, I’m sharing my 5 favorite things to make your holiday festivities the most fun! 1. Sangria - If you know me, you know sangria is one of my favorite things. I rarely celebrate a holiday without creating some concoction of the sangria sort. I love experimenting with different flavors and fruits, so no two sangrias I make…
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Writing Wednesday ~ Quick and Dirty Tips to Help Uncover Bigger Issues

Writing Wednesday ~ Quick and Dirty Tips to Help Uncover Bigger Issues

Writing
“Substitute 'damn' every time you're inclined to write 'very;' your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” ? Mark Twain When it comes to writers, everyone has their own writing and editing process, and there are lots of people out there giving advice on how to go about it. I’ve taken and taught classes and read and researched the topic, and I’ve found most people to recommend revising big issues first while completely ignoring line edits until last. But I want to turn this idea on its head.   Writing is hard. Editing can be even harder. Sitting down to read your first draft after putting months or years of work into it can be disheartening. Who wouldn’t want to throw the thing…
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It’s Coming! 8 Week Countdown to the Solar Eclipse

It’s Coming! 8 Week Countdown to the Solar Eclipse

Living, Traveling
The life you have imagined is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. I can’t help but to hear it in my head, “There’s nothing I can say, a total eclipse of the…” sun? Eight weeks from today, many people in the United States will have the opportunity to experience a nearly once-in-a-lifetime event, a total solar eclipse. Once in a lifetime? you might think. I’ve heard of lots of eclipses happening. And you wouldn’t be wrong. But there are many things that, when added up, will make this year’s eclipse extra special. Type of Eclipse: For starters, it’s important to understand that there are different types…
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5 Friday Favorites – Camping Hacks Edition

5 Friday Favorites – Camping Hacks Edition

Living
The life you have imagined is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. It’s another glorious Friday, and I’m back to share my 5 Friday Favorites. Today, in honor of an annual friends camping trip I’ll be enjoying this weekend, I’m excited to share my 5 favorite camping hacks for a great time. As I've mentioned before, I love to camp. There is just something about sitting around the campfire with friends for the weekend that recharges me, whether it be being out in nature, escaping the usual weekend obligations, enjoying the company, or, most likely, all of the above.  Just to clarify, these hacks are intended…
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First Day of Summer Celebration – Summer Bucket List

First Day of Summer Celebration – Summer Bucket List

Living
It’s finally here! My 4th favorite day of the year after Christmas, Halloween, and my birthday. It’s the first official day of summer and nearly the longest day of sunlight (which actually happens on the 24th). To celebrate the first day of my favorite season, I compiled a bucket list of 50 summer activities to enjoy in the sunshine (and the occasional rain) this year, complete with a free downloadable checklist pdf for easy printing and marking off. I know I’m hoping to check a few of these off my list this week! Happy 1st Day of Summer! ~ Download FREE printable here ~ Spend a long weekend on the coast Go canoeing Fly a kite Eat a lobster roll Go sailing Watch a movie at the drive-in Have a…
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Music, Writing, and Inspiration – My Noveling Trinity

Music, Writing, and Inspiration – My Noveling Trinity

Writing
One of my favorite things to do when working on a novel or other lengthy writing project is to create a playlist or “soundtrack” for the novel. It can help me get into the main character’s head or capture the feeling or mood of a story. This is especially helpful when I’m writing out in public. I’ll plop down in a coffee shop with my laptop, plug in my earbuds, and be transported into the world I am creating. The playlist comes in handy again later after I’ve stepped away to come back with fresh eyes. I’ll pull it up and listen to it on repeat in the revision stage of writing, as I am now with Too Far Gone, to get things just right. With this story, it’s important…
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