Photo Books Free Code

I'm getting all my photos into a digital format this year. I use chatbooks. It's only $8 for 60 pages. I scan them to either instagram or google photos. Here's a code for your first book free with chatbooks . I love this service and the books are a good quality. I plan on sharing the link to my books with my adult kids so they can print copies too. Is a wonderful way to simplify my photos!
Occasional weep deeply over the life you hoped would be. Grieve the losses. Then wash your face. Trust God. And embrace the life you have.   (John Piper)

Don't be beautiful

They keep saying that beautiful is something a girl needs to be. 
But honestly? 
Forget that. 
Don’t be beautiful. 
Be angry, 
be intelligent, 
be witty, 
be klutzy, 
be interesting, 
be funny, 
be adventurous, 
be crazy, 
be talented - 
there are an eternity of other things to be other than beautiful. 
And what is beautiful anyway but a set of letters strung together to make a word? 
Be your own definition of amazing, always. 
That is so much more important than anything beautiful, ever.

Nikita Gill via Expresso

Anna Wintour's Secrets to Success

"....four key pillars of success including aim higher, dare to be different, use all your gold, and make interesting friends." (source)

Agree-especially that last one!

A Task Will Swell

"A task will swell in {perceived} importance and complexity 
in relation to the time allotted for its completion..
If I give you 24 hours to complete a project, 
the time pressure forces you to focus on execution 
and you have not choice 
but to focus on the essentials....
In the end products of a shorter deadline 
is almost inevitably of equal 
or higher quality 
due to greater focus."  

Reading an old favorite and came across this  from The 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris


(love this)
One day my face will show that I have loved and lost
That I have frowned and fought
That I have yearned and cried
That I have celebrated and smiled
My face will show that I have lived and it mattered to me

Now I understand what true beauty really is. 
You feel it, you touch it, 
you see it, 
and you live it. 
You see it in your face, 
your feel it within your heart 
and it burns within your soul.
Beauty to me isn’t something that we create. 
It’s always been there, 
and as we grow older we see more of it, 
we appreciate the simplest of things. 
We embrace where we have been,
 and what marks life has left on us, 
because we have lived. 
We look at life in a different way, 
and we realize we are beauty. 
We always have been, 
we always will be. 
So let your face show that you have loved and lost, 
you have frowned and fought, 
you have yearned and cried, 
you have celebrated and smiled, 
and you have lived 
and your life mattered to you. 
That’s true beauty.
Mary Costanza

The Best Craft Coffee Spots in Las Vegas

If you're like me you love good coffee. That kind of place that makes their own syrup and doesn't burn their milk and really cares of coffee. When I travel I read the local Yelp reviews trying to wade through the advice to figure out if it's actually good coffee or if it's just syrupy standard stuff that people think is good coffee.

All that to say, I'm a coffee snob and I own that fully. So about Las Vegas....we found two great spots! And one to avoid.

Go to PublicUs. It's off the beaten path near Downtown Las Vegas (not the strip). There will be homeless people close by. And you will be blown away by the coffee, the friendliness, the store aesthetic and even the food. We went here every day, one day twice. Each time we were greeted warmly and served up a nice rich latte-not overly sweet at all. We tried the food and that was good too-all made in house. The interior is industrial meets mid century modern; so well done. I know you will like it :) Every person working there seemed to enjoy their job and care about their business. Sorry no pictures, I was to busy enjoying my coffee.

The Mothership. Good solid craft coffee. Kind service and all pastries baked in house-Yum!

Cafe Presse (inside the Venetian). Bitter coffee with overheated milk. I expected more from a coffee place inside an Italian themed hotel. Skip it.

Secret Spot at the Venetian, Las Vegas

place to work on your computer at the venetian las vegas
I was in Las Vegas last week for a business trip. I had some extra time and I wanted to do some work on my computer while taking in the sights and sounds of the Venetian canal shops. I stumbled upon an amazing uncrowded space right on St. Mark's square.

Pop right into Paris Baguette, grab a yummy pastry and head up the stairs that are tucked away at the back of the shop. This takes you to a little hidden gem. There is a small space for patrons with several window spots overlooking the main Piazza.

 It's much quieter than sitting in the main plaza and you can still log onto the Venetian/Palazzo complimentary WIFI. If you've ever been to Venice, it's much like Museo Correr Cafe where you can pay a little extra to enjoy your coffee overlooking St. Marks Square even without an admission to the museum.

Tiny Beautiful Things

dear sugar

Read this book. It will change you and make you consider and open you up to possibilities. Most of all it will make you grateful.

Ms. Strayed writes an advice column and shares some of the letters she receives in this book. While very few related directly to my life, the thoughts she shares are full of wisdom, pain and grace. Here is one section that impacted me.

"That you would not have chosen the things that happened to you in your life, but you are grateful for them. That you have two empty bowl eternally in your hands, but also the capacity to fill them." -on the loss of her mother and father-one to death and the other throughs distance. 
"Let yourself be gutted, let it open you, start here."

The Best Coffee in Orange County, CA

You won't find any Frappuccino Milkshakes at Hopper and Burr. With just 5 items on their coffee menu, this is serious coffee.

When we travel, we always try small local coffee houses. Some of our favorites have been in Portland and Austin. When we come home to Orange County,  great coffee is hard to come by. Hugely disappointing.

Then there is Hopper and Burr. The Cappuccino is so smooth that I didn't even need to add any sweetener. They are a small pop up shop inside Little Sparrow in Santa Ana. And they make toast! With fresh bread! And Avocado!

I think I finally found great coffee in Orange County! This girl is in heaven.

Updated April 2016.....and now there's two more wonderful hipster coffee spots in Orange County! Two of our newest favorites Neat Coffee and The Common Room.