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2/15/2017

Meet the Blogger Behind: Contessa Grigia

Meet the Blogger Behind: Contessa Grigia
Hello 2017 Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog. Sooooo......it's about the middle of February and I am finally getting around to posting a new MTBBTB post for this year. I haven't posted much of anything this really as I got a new job at the very beginning of the year and things around here needed quite a bit of adjusting to so my blogging has been sitting on the bench for a bit. But after some adjusting and a new blog design ♥ I am finding the time to get back into my blog.

So lets start the year off by meeting a new blogger shall we. This week we are meeting Contessa Grigia (a name that she was given by her friends in college) which also happens to be the same name of her blog. She also happens to live in my home state of sunny California. She mentioned that they are are transplants from the SF Bay area to the beautiful Central Coast.

1.       What or who inspired you to create your blog? 
We were starting our move from the SF Bay as city people to pursue our dreams, collectively as a family.
My husband wanted at least 5 acres with no one around him. We have a 500 acre ranch, where we run Angus.
My son wanted a vineyard and hotel. We own San Marcos Creek Vineyard and Winery. The campus includes Reale Leone, which is a four suite bed and breakfast. It also includes a loft, that is a vacation rental, and a 5000 square foot house that is a vacation rental villa.
My daughter wanted a farm, so we have a 40 acre farm with chickens, goats, heifers, miniature donkeys, dogs, cats, and bees. We also have an orchard.
I wanted a museum and art center. We will open our art center this Saturday “Casa Dell Arte”, a place to discover your inner artist. We are going to have paint and sip classes, crafts, dance, yoga, kids classes, offering art and science, and lectures where people can learn something new.
My museum will open in 5 years. (It will happen)

2.       What is your #1 favorite thing about blogging and why?
I love writing, we have a lot going on, and it is so cathartic to just put it on a blog.

3.       What main topics do you blog about?
Our farm, art, San Luis Obispo, Photographs, winery, and life.

4.       When you’re not blogging, what do you enjoy doing?
Relaxing.

5.       What has been your favorite place to visit and explore?
I love adventures, since we are relatively new to our area, I explore our beautiful county.

6.       Do you blog as a hobby or is it your job?
It is my hobby.

7.       Where would you like to take your blog in 5 years?
I would like to grow my blog, and take it to another level.

8.       What has been the hardest thing that you’ve encountered since you began blogging?
Name changes…I had so many followers when I began.

9.       From your experience, what’s one tip that you would give to a new blogger?
Find a name you love, and stick with it. After you have done the research for it to be YOURS!

10.   What are your top 3 must watch tv shows?
How to get away with murder, News, and Big Bang Theory.

11.   What is something about you or that you that makes you unique?
I don’t give up on my dreams.

12.   Do you have a historical or currently living icon that you look up to? Why?
Thomas Jefferson, Cicero, Leonardo Da Vinci, Vannozza Dei Cattanei, Oprah, Cosmo de Medici
They were so well rounded in so many aspects of life. Vannozza had inns, winery, vineyards, she also had brothels…but she was a business woman. She was also married to the Pope. She wasn’t perfect, none of us are. She prospered in a time that was extremely difficult for women.

13.   What is the one blog post that you are the most proud of hitting the publish button on? 
https://contessagrigia.com/2016/08/08/cow-parade-slo/

14.   What is your favorite season and the one thing that you look forward to during it each year?
I have learned to embrace whatever life brings me, and be grateful!

15.   Is there anything else that you would like to share about yourself, your life or your blog?
We are only given this one life, so make the most of every single day. Some days are going to be hard, but you got this. Call a friend, or write about what is bugging you instead of taking it out on another human being. Share joy with others, the love of life will spread. Chip at your dream every single day. I came from poverty. There are heartbreaking stories in my past, and they got me to this point.
A month after buying our vineyard and winery I cried for a whole day…I hid in the inn (that was making no money), and cried until I couldn’t cry anymore for that day. More on this when I post about owning our winery for a year, which is September 9th 2016.

Thank you Contessa Grigia for sharing some things about you and your blog and letting us get to know you. You can keep up to date with Contessa Grigia by following her on: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and of course her blog. Stop by next Wednesday for another "Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog" to meet another amazing blogger.

2/13/2017

Pirate Rubber Duckies Free Printable Download

Pirate Rubber Duckies Free Printable Download
For Christmas this past year my mom gave me a Cricut Explore Air and so I have been creating and coming up with ideas for various types of stickers to use in my planner. I've also been making ones that my son likes and can use for whatever he would like to. Needless to say I have been having a bit of fun creating and my child self is a bit envious because I was obsessed with stickers and had or rather hoarded so many.


One of the first stickers that I made were these cute Pirate Rubber Duckies that are just too cute and fun. Originally they were just going to be a tester to see if I could actually make anything and be for my son to play with but I ended up liking them so much. So since they are the first ones that I created they are going to be the first ones that I am giving away here on my blog for you to download for FREE.

Yes, these are a free download for you and everyone around the world. You can print them out on any kind of paper that you want whether it be sticker paper, copy paper, card stock, etc.. If you don't have a fancy machine that will cut out the stickers for you don't worry, a nice pair of scissors will do the trick if you'd like. Use them in your planner (I track when my son takes a shower or bath-boys are so stinky) your scrap-booking or they would be super cute for a pirate themed kids party or baby shower.

Description:
1 zip file that contains 4 different files.
2 PNG files - 5.5 x 3.75 and 8.5 x 11
2 JPG files - 5.5 x 3.75 and 8.5 x 11

The PNG files have a white border around each ducky so a "bleed" would not be necessary when cutting them out while the JPG you can cut away the white background and use a "bleed" during cutting if you choose to do so.

Please Note:
These files are for personal use only and cannot be used for commercial purposes. If you enjoy these and I hope you do, and want to share them please link to this post and not to the download itself. Thank you.

2/11/2017

Another Year Older at Disneyland

Another Year Older at Disneyland
These pictures from my birthday trip to Disneyland last year are far overdue. I shared some over on my Instagram but never got around to sharing my favorite ones that I took here on my blog. I didn't take that many pictures of the trip since I took more video footage but I thought I would share my favorite pictures with you and a big thank you to the Disneyland PR team for giving me two press pass tickets for the day.
For me, the moment I see the parking garage at Disneyland I get excited and then my excitement just escalates immensely from there. From the moment I come down the escalator from the garage and see the tram that takes you over to the park, to walking through the bag check area so I can get to the other side and be in the middle and have Disneyland on one side of me and California Adventure on the other, up to the moment I walk through the turn style at Disneyland and see Mickey's head in front of me that is made out of flowers. But when I get the most excited is when I walk down Main Street and see Sleeping Beauty's castle. My trip just seems far more real at that moment and I'm reminded of the times that I spent my birthdays there as a kid before we moved away from California. 











Meeting Kylo Ren was the absolute highlight of my birthday. I've watched Star Wars the Force Awakens many times because I have a thing for the dark side. I've also added the playlist from my YouTube channel that has all of the videos from my birthday trip, including the day before my birthday that we spent at Knott's Berry Farm, and if you watch the video in there of when we met Kylo Ren I look like a giddy little school girl. 

1/05/2017

The Curated Closet | A Book Review

The Curated Closet | A Book Review
*Sponsored Post

Thanks to the company Blogging for Book, I got the opportunity to request another book to read and review here on my blog. Previously I had read and reviewed the book "June" which I had also posted about. My closet and clothes are an absolute mess so when I saw "The Curated Closet" I immediately clicked on it and requested for it to come my way.  

This book is full of beautiful pictures of clothes, color palettes, outfit pairings and has some very helpful graphics. Before I started reading the book, I flipped through each page just to look at the pictures and look over the graphics just so I could get a feel for what the book was going to be about but also, admittedly, so I could just ogle all of the clothes and accessories. Sometimes I feel as if certain clothes won't look right on me so I don't wear them but I still enjoy looking at them and wishing that I could pull them off. Maybe I can but I just don't give them a full chance. 

While I flipped through, reading page after page, the switches in my head started clicking. I began to see the light in the closet and it meant that I needed to change some things. I started by changing the things that I already had in my closet and ended up donating some items that had to go. Out went the pieces of clothes that had holes or stains, the ones that I haven't worn since the one time I wore them after I bought them and the ones that I was holding on to because even though I have gained some weight and can't fit into them currently, I would tell myself that I would again some day. 



All of those things that didn't need to be in there were taking up so much room in the little amount of space that I have in my closet and dresser that it was a relief to get rid of them instead of sad to see the money that I had spent on them go to waste because realistically, I wasted my money on most of my clothing when I bought them originally. I say this because most of my clothes are/were of cheap quality and cheap in general.

This book talks about buying clothes that are of a higher quality and made better and yes they will cost more but there is that saying of "you get what you pay for." This does come into play I have noticed with my clothes because buying one item and paying extra for it because it will last me longer is in the long run better as apposed to buying multiple pieces that will wear out in a short amount of time because they were cheap all the way around.

So like I said, I have purged my closet of things and I am slowly going through it again to get rid of anything else that I might not need, wear or fit into now or anytime soon. If you are looking to make room in your closet or figure out a new wardrobe then I would definitely suggest this book. 

1/03/2017

Vlogmas 2016 Wrap-up

Vlogmas 2016 Wrap-up

I'm not sure if you are subscribed to my YouTube channel or not but if you are not following me there than you might have missed that I made my first attempt at doing Vlogmas. If you also don't know what Vlogmas is, it is where you vlog ever day up until Christmas about whatever you want to vlog about. I did miss some days during the month but I came back and finished it. It was a fun and interesting experience that I will probably do again but hopefully I will have more fun things to vlog next time. I have all of the videos in their own playlist that I would love to share with you in case you would like to what we did do. A quick heads up, I am a bit of a chatter ☺

12/28/2016

Meet the Blogger Behind: GeminiRed Creations

Meet the Blogger Behind: GeminiRed Creations

I cannot believe that this is the last Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog post of 2016. This series has been an incredible one and I am very glad that I decided to start it as I have found some really awesome blogs to read and had the pleasure of learning about the people behind them. If you love this series to, don't worry because there will definitely be more of them to come in 2017.

But first, lets meet our final blogger of 2016 which happens to be 46 year old Heather from the state of Georgia. Heather blogs over at GeminiRed Creations where she has her blog as well as a shop with some pretty cool things for sale. Check out my interview with her below.

1.       What or who inspired you to create your blog?
I originally started a blog about crafting, of any kind. For some their “craft” is writing or drawing or sewing or taking care of others. I wanted to be able to talk about my craft and the craft of others.

2.       What is your #1 favorite thing about blogging and why?
Learning about other people, small businesses, and charitable organizations. My goal is to fill my blog with posts about these things. I enjoy writing about small businesses and charitable organizations because my ultimate goal is to be able to help others in some small way.

3.       What main topics do you blog about?
I write about DIY projects, share an occasional recipe, and stories about small businesses and charitable organizations.

4.       When you’re not blogging, what do you enjoy doing?
I have an online shop along with my blog. In my shop I sell items that I make by sewing and embroidery, as well as some items from a few of my favorite wholesale companies. Creating these items take time and often take me away from blogging, though I would like to find a way to have more time to balance them along with my full-time job.

5.       What has been your favorite place to visit and explore?
Many moons ago my high school graduation gift was a trip to France with other students from my school and the local middle school. I really enjoyed the opportunity to see a country that I had always dreamed about. Later in life I had the opportunity to go to Negril, Jamaica to participate in a marathon to raise money and awareness for the American Stroke Association and a few years after that I participated in a marathon in Athens, Greece to raise money and awareness for the Arthritis Foundation. Those two trips gave me an opportunity to see two beautiful countries and raise money for organizations near and dear to my heart.

6.       Do you blog as a hobby or is it your job?
It’s mostly a hobby, though from time to time I do sponsored posts or posts related to affiliate companies I work with, which both can generate money toward my business. I use those funds to hosts giveaways on my Facebook page and blog that are not sponsored by one of my partners.

7.       Where would you like to take your blog in 5 years?
I would love to have a small business or charitable organization I can spotlight on a weekly basis, with increased readership that helps me to promote those businesses and organizations as well as promote my own online business.

8.       What has been the hardest thing that you’ve encountered since you began blogging?
Finding the right way to market my posts, my blog, and my website in a way to drive traffic to each post, and my site in general.

9.       From your experience, what’s one tip that you would give to a new blogger?
Have a plan. Think about what you really want to deliver and stick with it. Don’t give up the first time you write a post and 5,000 people don’t read it.

10.   What are your top 3 must watch tv shows?
I am a huge Empire fan! My favorite shows are really the old ones – Leave it to Beaver, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Newhart, Family Affair and the like. I watch a lot of that in the background while working on my projects. When I sit and concentrate on TV I watch Empire, So You Think You Can Dance, The Voice and America’s Got Talent. I’m always excited to see people enter a contest that allows them to follow their dreams.

11.   What is something about you or that you that makes you unique?
I have known since I was 11 years old that I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I have tried it in a few forms over the years, and hope to one day be my own boss full-time again. When I was 11 I had a paper route in the condo complex I lived in, and from there I grabbed some index cards and made up my own business cards to offer babysitting services to families in the same complex. I have done house and dog sitting, owned a salon and day spa, and now own GeminiRed Creations. I would love to have a brick and mortar space that is a co-op to sell my handmade items as well as the items of other awesome small business owners.

12.   Do you have a historical or currently living icon that you look up to? Why?
I love the people, like those who have been on the TV show Secret Millionaire. They have become successful people and went to low income areas or similar, and worked undercover and at the end they rewarded the people they worked with by funding initiatives they were working on and things like that. While I don’t aspire to be rich, I would love to have enough money to help others as often as I’d like without fear of budget even if it’s only a small amount here and there.

13.   What is the one blog post that you are the most proud of hitting the publish button on?
I love any post that spotlights a small business owner or charitable organization because both things are so close to my heart. But, one that I posted recently really meant something to me. It was about All or Nothing Day which highlighted a woman, Heather Von St. James, who was diagnosed with mesothelioma which ultimately caused my grandfather’s death in 2005. Cancer is a major concern of so many today, and I have had several people close to me pass away from this evil disease.

14.   What is your favorite season and the one thing that you look forward to during it each year?
I love spring because the flowers are starting to pop out so there is a lot of color around, and the weather is nice – not too hot and not too cold! I especially love when the weather is at that perfect in between stage where you can have the windows open!


15.   Is there anything else that you would like to share about yourself, your life or your blog?
I am currently working through the publishing process to publish my first book that should be ready to “hit the shelves” (or at least my other website) by the end of October. It’s a funny, lighthearted book about reasons not to have kids based on the things I see my friends, who have kids, encountering with their kids. I hope it is successful enough that I am able to donate a portion of the proceeds to local children’s charities. The title is Just Say No…To Kids and our website is www.SayNoToKids.com Prior to that I was a contributor to the book The 20 Project which has advice for 20-somethings from the other side of 20.

Thank you Heather for sharing some things about you and your blog and letting us get to know you. You can keep up to date with Heather by following her on: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and of course her blog. Stop by next Wednesday for another "Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog" to meet another amazing blogger.

12/21/2016

Meet the Blogger Behind: Moms Best Friend

Meet the Blogger Behind: Moms Best Friend

Wednesday is upon us again which means, another Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog post. This week we are meeting 32 year old Tiffany Goddard from Virginia and her blog "Moms Best Friend." She shares yummy recipes and fun things to do and for kids so check out her interview below and be sure to check out her blog.

1. What or who inspired you to create your blog?
Around New Year’s I realized I wanted a creative outlet. I didn’t know what it was but I needed something to express myself and give me some ‘me time’. I stumbled across a blog and fell in love with the idea!

2. What is your #1 favorite thing about blogging and why?
The ability to write about my challenges or challenges my mom friends have and offer solutions to other moms who are in the same situation. 

3. What main topics do you blog about?
Healthy lifestyle tips (recipes or workouts), crafts, product reviews, local event updates and everyday timesaving tips and tricks

4. When you’re not blogging, what do you enjoy doing?
I love spending time with my husband and 2 year old (I am due with #2 in 10 weeks!) and like to cook, dance, workout and admittedly watch reality television when I have time!

5. What has been your favorite place to visit and explore?
I love Hawaii. It has such a unique culture from the people to the food to the sites to the beaches. The history is amazing and I loved visiting Pearl Harbor. Hoping to make it back soon!

6. Do you blog as a hobby or is it your job?
Hobby

7. Where would you like to take your blog in 5 years?
I would love to publish an ebook to help other moms who need creative ideas on crafts/ activities to do with their children. I have started posting ideas but would love to do it consistently and collect my ideas into an ebook!

8. What has been the hardest thing that you’ve encountered since you began blogging?

Growing traffic. It is frustrating sometimes to your work into a post that you think it AWESOME and having your mother be one of the only people that reads it (although I appreciate the support mom!)

9. From your experience, what’s one tip that you would give to a new blogger?

Don’t get frustrated if you are in a rut! Keep researching and look to other successful blogs for inspiration or even ideas!

10. What are your top 3 must watch tv shows?
Blacklist, Game of Thrones and Bachelor (I told you I like reality TV!)

11. What is something about you or that you that makes you unique?
Consistent positive attitude. It takes a lot for me to look at a challenge and STIL not see the glass ‘half full’

12. Do you have a historical or currently living icon that you look up to? Why?
I really look up to Oprah because she took a skill she was good at (journalism) and created an entire empire around it. She also  does so much for others that it is easy to look up to her

13. What is the one blog post that you are the most proud of hitting the publish button on? 

Momsbf.com/metime because I surveyed other moms and incorporated their tips and tricks into my post!

14. What is your favorite season and the one thing that you look forward to during it each year?

I love the summer time and my family takes a yearly beach trip. I am obsessed with warm weather and am so relieved that my son is also in love the with sand and ocean

15. Is there anything else that you would like to share about yourself, your life or your blog?
I have been blogging for 6 months and am truly a beginner. I enjoy it and am constantly thinking of ways to improve it – if you stop by… enjoy!

Thank you Tiffany for sharing some things about you and your blog and letting us get to know you. You can keep up to date with Tiffany by following her on: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and of course her blog. Stop by next Wednesday for another "Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog" to meet another amazing blogger.

12/16/2016

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is EPIC

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is EPIC

*Sponsored post

Monday I received a press pass to the press only screening of this film to review it and I walked out of that theater feeling so many things at once. The film is full of so many mixed emotions and feelings and here I thought it was just going to be another Star Wars film that the nerd in me was going to go nuts over. Well I did go nuts over it since I am a nerd and absolutely love Star Wars but it filled me with so many different emotions.

I can't give anything from the film away but I will say a few things about it. Do not take a bathroom or snack break. If you miss any part of the film you might get a little lost as to what is going on. The film goes back and forth between many different character stories and if you miss one or two you might get confused when you get back. Also, this is a Star Wars story so it's not like any of the other films and their stories and characters but keep your eyes and ears open because you never know who might show up. Can we take a moment to talk about the amazing graphics because they were beyond fantastic. I love the original films but could you imagine what they would have been like if they had had the graphics ability of today back then. The Death Star never looked so good.



This film has so much to it and an incredibly large dose of action. I wasn't sure how much I was going to enjoy it but I ended up liking it a lot even though it hit me so hard in the feelings department. It's a pretty epic film and definitely one of the better Star Wars films and definitely blows episodes 1-3 out of the water. If you love Star Wars, definitely go watch it and watch it in the best theater that you have because we watched it in out Dolby Digital theater and it made the experience for more amazing and I cannot wait to add this film to my collection.



12/14/2016

Meet the Blogger Behind: One Fed Up Mommy

Meet the Blogger Behind: One Fed Up Mommy

Happy Wednesday friends! This week on my Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog series we are meeting 44 year old Heather from Texas and her blog "One Fed Up Mommy." She's a mom with beautiful children that she shares stories of and also how and what they eat on a dye free foods. Check out my interview with her below.

1.       What or who inspired you to create your blog?   
My kids actually. I have 4 kids and our daily life is nothing short of insanity. Nearly 6 years ago we decided to ditch artificial food dyes in our diet and since we are a one income family, shopping for dye free foods on a budget was what spurred me to blog again, because people kept telling me to eat like we do was expensive. But it's not, and I show them that in my posts. I blog today mostly about life, family and living dye free with kids on a budget. 

2.       What is your #1 favorite thing about blogging and why? 
The chance to express myself through writing. I know that sounds corny, but I've been a writer since I was 15 and there's nothing more therapeutic than putting your thoughts down on paper. I also love the fact that this is somewhat of an online diary for my kids when they are grown. 

3.       What main topics do you blog about?  
Family life and living dye free on a tight budget in the real world.

4.       When you’re not blogging, what do you enjoy doing?  
Volunteering at the kids school, home diy projects and reading. 

5.       What has been your favorite place to visit and explore?  
Texas, believe it or not. There are so many different areas of Texas and each is just as beautiful as the one before it. 

6.       Do you blog as a hobby or is it your job?  
It's a hobby that I hope becomes a job. 

7.       Where would you like to take your blog in 5 years 
I would love to be a leading blogger in the dye free niche, showing parents they too can do it, and it's not as hard or expensive as they think. 

8.       What has been the hardest thing that you’ve encountered since you began blogging?  
Generating traffic. Getting readers. It seems only my mom and a few close friends actually read my stuff. 

9.       From your experience, what’s one tip that you would give to a new blogger?  
Don't give up. I have to remind myself daily that the big bloggers didn't get there overnight. Slow and steady wins the race. 

10.   What are your top 3 must watch tv shows?  
Orange is The New Black, Grace and Frankie, Little Women LA

11.   What is something about you or that you that makes you unique?  
I am one of the few tattooed PTA moms driving a minivan. I even have Peace sign and Harley Davidson stickers on the back window. 

12.   Do you have a historical or currently living icon that you look up to? Why?  
I actually look up to my mom. She has lost so much in the past 2 years and still finds the strength to go on. She's a true testament that life does go on and you can do it. 

13.   What is the one blog post that you are the most proud of hitting the publish button on? 
The post I wrote about my teenage daughter. She is growing up so fast and even though we butt heads often, I know she only has a few more years before she grows up and moves on. This post was about that constant reminder.    http://onefedupmommy.com/2016/07/16/i-dont-need-reminding/

14.   What is your favorite season and the one thing that you look forward to during it each year? 
Fall, I love how festive and beautiful everything becomes. To me there's not much more amazing than when a tree turns its leaves. 

15.   Is there anything else that you would like to share about yourself, your life or your blog?  
I think I said it all in the answers above, I'm just a stay at home mom of 4, living a crazy life day to day and trying to keep my head above water. I realized one day that it IS my circus and these ARE my monkeys. 

Thank you Heather for sharing some things about you and your blog and letting us get to know you.You can keep up to date with Heather by following her on: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and of course her blog. Stop by next Wednesday for another "Meet the Blogger Behind the Blog" to meet another amazing blogger.
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