My Favorite Organizational Tool

My Favorite Organizational Tool: Wunderlist - Paper Swallow Events

Hello lovelies!

Today I wanted to share one of my favorite tools for staying organized and keeping my sanity on a daily basis! The best part is, this tool is absolutely free at its base level (which is all I use) and can be used on both your smartphone and computer.

When I share my monthly goals, a lot of you comment about how I always manage to get so much done. A key part of achieving this is keeping my to do list up-to-date and organized. I used to write it down on paper and post it notes until I discovered the app Wunderlist, which is now what I use for everything list related.

I think my favorite aspect is how I can create lists for EVERYTHING. I have them for both my business and my personal life and it's easy to name them and keep them separated. I can also create subtasks to each individual task and set due dates. If there's a due date it will appear in the 'Today' and 'Week' section as relevant, which is great for keeping me focused on busy days. I can't get distracted by tasks due on other days.  

My Favorite Organizational Tool: Wunderlist - Paper Swallow Events

Here you can see an example of some of my lists. It's super easy to drag them around and rearrange them, which is a bonus. 

If you look at the photo you'll see that some of the lists have a little people icon beside them. Those are lists that I've shared with other Wunderlist users, which is one of my favorite features. It's easy to share checklists with clients or collab partners or my husband.

One of my biggest time-savers is the 'Shopping' list that my husband and I share. Whenever we notice that we're running low on something (milk, for example), we add it to the list. Whoever goes to the store next can check the list and everything is already there. It saves us so much time!  

My Favorite Organizational Tool: Wunderlist - Paper Swallow Events

Outfit Details:

Dress: eShakti (similar) |  Cardigan: Target (old)  |  Stacking Rings: Whisperwill  | Nail Polish:  Sally Hansen

What is your favorite method of staying organized?  

xoxo, Stacia

Let's Stop Using the Term "Bridezilla"

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Lovelies, I really hate this word. I mean, I really HATE it. It saddens my heart when I hear bridezilla jokes from people or when a bride who's having an emotional day continually apologizes to her friends for being a bridezilla. 

It saddens my heart because they are just so off the mark.  

A bridezilla is not someone who cries because they're having a bad day. Well, she might be, but just because you're crying during a bad wedding planning day does not make you a bridezilla. 

A true bridezilla is someone who makes every decision and moment between her engagement and wedding all about her individual wants and needs. She doesn't think about the needs of her guests, the practicality/affordability of her ideas, or how anything she does might affect the people around her. She is unpleasant when things go wrong and will get confrontational when people are not doing things the way she wants. A true bridezilla is no fun to be around during the wedding planning process and it's generally something felt by those around the bride and not something she finds herself worrying about. A true bridezilla doesn't worry about if she's being a bridezilla. 

If you look at that definition of bridezilla, so few people fall within it, and I hate seeing brides who are nothing like a bridezilla beating themselves up because they are having an emotional day.  

Brides, you are not a bridezilla if you ask all of your bridesmaids to wear matching dresses instead of picking out their own.

If you cry because the caterer, photographer, venue, etcetera that you really wanted is already booked on your wedding date or out of your budget.

If you sit down with the people contributing financially to the wedding and see if there is a way to rearrange the budget so that you can afford a certain vendor. 

If you panic about all the things that need to get done.  

If you need to vent about wedding stress to a friend.  

If you get your feelings hurt because a guest reacted negatively to not being allowed a plus one.  

If your numbers are tight and you can't allow people to bring plus ones.  (It may not be "the most polite," but it doesn't make you a bridezilla.)

If you put your foot down when people suggest things that are contradictory to what you're wanting for your wedding day. 

If you go against tradition and your great-grandmother can't understand why.  

If you deal with what would be considered normal, rational, human emotions coming from a potentially tense or stressful time.  

 

There is a HUGE differance between being human and being a bridezilla and it makes me so sad to see brides writing off their completely rational emotions because they feel like a bridezilla or (even worse) keeping their mouths shut because they are so worried that they might come across as a bridezilla.  

Don't devalue yourself in that way, and let's find more loving terms to use than bridezilla. And if you're seeing a friend actually behaving like a bridezilla, consider pulling them aside and saying something like, "Hey, I know this is so important to you, and all of us want to be on your side, but can we find a different way of handling things instead of _________?" 

Let's support and encourage each other and take an unecessary worry or stress off of an already busy bride. 

 What do you think of the term bridezilla?

xoxo, Stacia

Dealing with Subconscious Expectations while Wedding Planning

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If you are like me, you may be one of those girls who started planning bits and pieces of their wedding day from a young age. Some of your planning probably came from things you remember distinctly deciding you wanted to have as part of your day, while other items were potentially absorbed subconsciously from things around you. What I didn't realize until I started planning my own wedding was how much the subconscious things could trip me up. 

It was easy to reevaluate how I felt about the ideas that I have distinct memories of deciding I wanted them in my wedding. It was much harder to decide about the subconscious ideas because they tended to sneak up on me and blindside me with how much I cared about them. 

One thing that blindsided me was my wedding band.  

I guess I had never put much thought into the matter. My mom has a pretty gold band that sits next to her engagement ring, and I loved the rare chance growing up when I was allowed to put her rings on my finger. Somewhere in my growing up, I guess my subconscious assumed that I would also have a plain band. 

When it came time to start discussing and searching for wedding bands, I was suddenly confronted with a million choices that had never occurred to me. I didn't know how to process it because I really didn't know right away why all the options were so distressing. 

I decided I didn't want a plain band, which felt a bit like betrayal, and then fell in love with a band that was WAY out of our price range, which was distressing.  

I struggled for a while trying to determine what to do. Michael helped me search for other options that would fit in our budget, but none of them seemed right until I realized what was happening in my head.

I realized that I had subconsciously expected myself to get a band like my mom's and that I felt a little terrible for wanting something different. Which is not how I should have been feeling. I didn't "owe" anyone a certain type of band and that no one else cared about the band as much as I did. Michael and everyone else just wanted me to have a band that I would enjoy wearing. 

I also realized that, though the band that was out of our budget was the perfect band for me, there were a lot of other beautiful bands out there that we could afford and my expectations for having every wedding detail perfect were a little irrational. 

Most importantly I realized that my definition of "perfect" could change. I realized that the perfect wedding day for me didn't actually have anything to do with the wedding band I wore. It had everything to do with the people I was surrounded with and the man I was marrying. And all of those things had already fallen into place.  

After realizing what I was subconsciously dealing with, it was SO much easier to move forward. I found a pretty band, within our price range, and actually really adore it now. We talked at the time about saving and eventually "upgrading" my band, and we still may, but I'm also really happy with what I have.  

As for my wedding day, it was perfect. Everything I could have wanted. In the end, I didn't give my band a second thought. I almost never do.  

 

For brides going through the same thing, first I want you to know you're not alone. A lot of us get emotional about things we can't explain.

Second, remember your priorities. Walk away from the problem for a couple days, if you can, and see if it's still affecting you as deeply when you return.

Third, breathe. Your fiance, friends, family, and wedding planner are all here to help as much as they can. We want you to have the most perfect day, but sometimes our power is limited because we cannot make all the tough decisions for you. But we all have hugs and advice and listening ears that we are willing to provide as you need them, and your wedding day can still be perfect in its own way. 

 

Have you ever dealt with subconscious expectations? 

xoxo, Stacia

Remember to Be Still

You can buy a copy of this beautiful print on Etsy

You can buy a copy of this beautiful print on Etsy

Hello lovelies!

Before this week starts, I just want to remind you to take a moment and be still. Take a minute to sit, breathe deeply, and forget about all of the things you have to do both today and this week. 

Relax. Let yourself unwind and reset for a few minutes.

Whether you're a bride in the midst of wedding planning, a mom, a college student, an entrepreneur, or anyone trying to live their day-to-day life, we all let ourselves get caught up in the overwhelm. We all overcommit or overworry or get "too busy" to sit still. 

We need to remember that we are only human and we can only do our best, and sometimes our best means putting things off by a day or two while other times it means doing more than we thought humanly possible for a day. Whatever your best is today, as long as you've tried your hardest then that is enough. Regardless of what anyone else says.

So, be still for a minute today. Then take a deep breath, look today in the face, and just do your best.

xoxo, Stacia

Personal: 10 Things You Probably Don't Know About Me

10 Things Not Many People Know About Me - Paper Swallow Events

A weekend post?! WHAT? Yep! Today I'm popping in as part of Alex Beadon's #feelgoodblogging challenge to share 10 things that a lot of people don't know about me! Are you ready to learn some fun facts?!

  1. I have never actually read Little Women or Anne of Green Gables, which is ironic because I am a HUGE Louisa May Alcott and L.M. Montgomery fan! I've read all of Alcott's books outside of the Little Women storyline, Eight Cousins and its sequel, Rose in Bloom, are two of my very favorites, and Montgomery's The Blue Castle was pure magic for me in high school.
  2. The reason why I never read either Little Women or Anne of Green Gables was because, back when I first expressed interest in reading them (somewhere around 8-9 years old), the font size in the copies I was given was too small for my liking and stressed me out to read so I put them away and never picked them back up even though now the font wouldn't be a problem. (Which does mean that I own them, yes. )
  3. My mom always made me and my siblings the most awesome Halloween costumes. When I was really little I requested to be Christine Daae from Phantom of the Opera (I grew up on musical soundtracks) and she made me the most awesome dress that I wore for dress up so much that it's literally in shreds now. There was one year that I was Tinkerbell and my little brother was Peter Pan, but my favorite costume from our family's archives is the year my sister was a bird's nest. It was seriously the best.
  4. I was homeschooled through high school.
  5. In highschool, I was in a production of Fiddler on the Roof and played a bottle dancer during the wedding scene (we had run out of males to play all of the male roles, so all the dancing roles were done by girls dressed up as guys.) I got a beard and we did the whole dance actually balancing the bottles on our heads. No tricks.
  6. Because of my experiences with the beard in Fiddler, whenever I smell spirit gum, I get a little nauseous and my face hurts from memories of getting all my peach fuzz ripped out. 
  7. When I was 5 or 6 I got my first cat and named her Duchess Odete Rosebud Ruby.
  8. In high school, I learned to juggle for a production of My Fair Lady
  9. My family has incubated chickens, button quail and desert tortoises. I think the tortoises were the most fascinating to me. We still have them and they are so much fun!
  10. When I was 4 or 5 my mom took me to a book signing by Mr. Rogers. I remember waiting in line for hours in hopes that he wouldn't leave before he got to sign my book, which he did, but as he was leaving he gave me a hug and that's still one of the highlights of my life. Recently I learned that all of the cardigans he wore in the show were knit by his mother. Isn't that just amazing?!

What is something not many people know about you?

xoxo, Stacia