What I'm Reading


Vlog Monday 1/19: Reading from Natalie of Good Girl Style on Vimeo.

I have this bad habit of recording vlogs on Monday and not posting them until Friday, just to confuse you. I really should just wait until the next Monday, but...I'm terrible at waiting. And you need to know about these books!


Living Well, Spending Less 
(provided by BookLookBloggers)
by Ruth Soukup
4 stars
Ruth Soukup's popular blog (I read it myself!) has been translated into a book by the same title. Blog-to-book direct translations can be hard to manage, but Soukup does a great job here of bringing more fullness and personal stories to the book, along with action steps. Best of all, Soukup doesn't shy away from her Christian faith one iota, which is so refreshing. I also really appreciated Soukup's honesty in sharing her own relatable life stories. This is not ground-breaking information, but if you like Living Well, Spending Less the blog, you're sure to enjoy the book. What is at least slightly ground-breaking is her use of QR codes throughout the book to give readers direct access to extra resources on her blog. I wasn't sure about this, because I was under the impression that QR codes never took off, but then again, I only got a smart phone a few months ago. It was a quick read that's sure to glean one or two things that add value to your life. Then, pass it along to a friend so she can get a few tips to add value to her life. Plus, this cover is so pretty, and...well, sometimes I judge a book by its cover. I know, I know.

Make it Happen
(provided by BookLookBloggers)
by Lara Casey
5 stars
Lara Casey's writing comes to life and stirs the soul. There's just no other way to put it. This book is sure to inspire you to Make it Happen in your own life. And if you aren't sure what "it" is that God has called you to? Casey has the formula and the grace to help you uncover the divine appointments God has created for YOU right where you are, with what you have. Casey teaches us to be faithful with the little, but to nurture it and grow it in accordance with God's heart for us. Casey writes with heart, in a a vulnerable but grace-filled way that is easy to soak up into your soul and translate into action. The action-steps and thought-provoking questions along the way, along with the entire last section about HOW TO make it happen, beg for a pretty notebook and long, uninterrupted hours in the coffee shop. Or at least, an hour too late after bedtime with the nightstand lamp on. I highly recommend this one. Bonus: It also has a pretty cover!


Loved Back to Life
(provided by BookLookBloggers)
by Sheila Walsh
5 stars
Oh, this title just spoke to me so loudly. I've used those exact words about myself, needing to be loved back to life. Sheila Walsh had it all together before...well, it all fell apart. See it's funny that our facade of perfection crumbles so quickly, isn't it? The thing we most wish to protect (our image) is the first thing that goes tumbling down, bringing our worst fears to life. Depression, anxiety and recovery are very touchy subjects to write about. Sheila is able to share her story in a tone that is incredibly motherly and yet sisterly at the same time, with finesse. She is beside you, but has gone before you. Her own story gives strength and hope and a sense of God's divine plan for every person. To live with peace and in an intensely intimate relationship with Him, deeply dependent upon Him. I had never heard of Walsh before (I don't have a TV, ha!), but appreciate her story and her sharing it.

And a bonus not in the vlog that I just finished:

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
(provided by the local library, ha!)
by Mindy Kaling
4 stars
I've been reading a lot of deeper, self-help and/or business books and was looking for something lighter. This definitely fit the bill. Mindy Kaling, from her start on The Office to her new Mindy Project, has always been a fun one to watch...her personality shines through and she just is. I love that she doesn't apologize for who she is. The first half of this book is hilariously funny (I wrote a bunch of alternate titles over on Twitter of the best lines), but the book drags a bit in the middle as she gets more biographical about her start on The Office and as a writer. This book is half tell-all, half comedic romp and all Mindy. If you love her, this is a gem of a book. I highly recommend reading it on an airplane so you can snicker out loud and everyone will be annoyed and wonder what you're up to. Or read it in bed with meatloaf for dinner on your lap because that's what I did. I feel that both of these would be Mindy-approved reading scenarios.
*Bonus: Mindy went to Dartmouth like I did, so I'm pretty sure we're best friends. #duh #obvs

Happy reading, my dears!


Valentine's Day with Minted: Sale Shout

A Valentine's Day outfit from a few years ago! 

OOoo, it's almost Valentine's Day! It truly is one of my favorite holidays. It's the turning point of winter in my mind, when spring feels like it is possible, love is celebrated, and chocolate is doled out. Could it BE any more fun? Well, yes, with some of Minted's Valentines and Gifts.


 They have Valentine's Day Cards and, for the kiddos, Classroom Valentines cards that are unique designs, high quality, and many incorporate the gold foil trend that is tres chic. Ooolala!

 faves for the kids at school:
Treat Bag
All-Star (love this for little boys!)
You're So Cool


to send love from the kids/babe:
Lil' Baby Love
Sunset
Big XO

to showcase your love (+ that delicious gold foil that is 20% off!):
Jotted Love
Hearts Aflutter
Luxe Heart

And quite possibly my MOST favorite, this little gem for those with new darlings:

In Love 



Are you feeling the love? I soooo am. Love Minted's products, the quality and customer service are truly unbeatable. Order now for delivery in time for your sweethearts, classmates, family, friends, and...well, I'd love one too :) Email me for my PO box! Tee hee, but seriously.


Catch Up!

Time for a catch-up post! 

A day-late vlog: 


Featuring:
DaySpring (affiliate link)
 GroopDealz (affiliate link)
(my shirt from there, but no longer available)

I've been busy on the interwebs lately! New poems for Darling Magazine:



And I've been baking up some goodies around the web, too: 

Candy Cane Meringues that would be perfect for Valentine's Day!



and, for a lighter, New Year's dessert...Bruleed Grapefruit with Honey-Yogurt Sauce


Tell me what you've been up to lately in the comments!

Have a great week!



Birthday Pretties

birthday 030

So I'm a year older now :) 
And I happened to have the most lovely dusting of birthday snow (I always hope for just a light powdered-sugar snow!)
to add to the blue skies!

As usual, I'm such a fan of birthdays and simply MUST dress like a confection of some sort as evinced by years past:
see here, here, here and here! I call this my "birthday skirt" because I have worn it for many birthdays!

Of course, if I am dressing like a macaron or cupcake or some such delicious baked good, I have to have my "frosting hair"
as I call my swirly bun, this time accented with a rosette ribbon headband.

birthday 037

Candy pink lipstick, cozy collar, and wind-blown hair! It was so windy the power was out until 2pm!

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Sprinkle cookies (recipe from Averie Cooks) were in order, of course! Delicious and these taste just like funfetti cake!

But cookies are no substitute for a proper birthday cake, and this year I tried piping ombre pink rosettes
(3 colors of pink frosting, though it's hard to tell since this picture was taken at night): 

cake1

Harder than it looks to pipe these delicate flowers! But SO PRETTY!

cake2

3 layers of white cake inside, though I think I should combine the rosettes with the ombre green inside I made a few years ago, yes?!


Little goodies popped in throughout the day: this lovely sparkly Zoya nail polish from the boyfriend, and this
Audrey bag and pearl bracelet from his mom...

photo
(oh such pretty, happy things!) 

Notecards, lipstick, flowers, a For the Makers subscription, pink champagne, and more.
These are just things, though, and really, I am so grateful to have amazing family
and friends who love me and support me.
That means more to me than any pretty little thing ever could.

And I always choose a birthday song, so this year's was, of course, Taylor Swift. I'm still obsessed
with the music video for Blank Space with its gorgeous costumes, scenes and imagery.
Just keep in mind it's a parody of what people say about Taylor,
and that no animals, actors, automobiles, trees, or anything else were harmed in the making of the video :)


Can we talk about the clothes for a sec? 
Vintage schoolgirl meets Town-and-Country meets Grace Kelly meets Taylor Swift and I am in loooooove. 

So there we have it, the birthday roundup! 
Now, into a new year!


Make it Happen Book Review & Book Club

(Book courtesy of book look bloggers)

Oh I dearly love Lara Casey and watching her online life is so inspiring. But this book of hers, which I know was written with tears, guts, vulnerability, and lots of grace, is even more inspiring. Fair warning that I haven't finished the book entirely yet, but I wanted to share the review-so-far so you can get your copy ASAP and read with me in our Facebook Book Club (details below)! 

Not going to lie, the introduction made me cry. I have already underlined and highlighted so many phrases in this book. Be sure to keep a dedicated notebook handy, as this book is part work-book as well, and leads you through exercises on almost every page to get to the bottom of surrendering your own fear, taking the leap, and living on purpose. Lara doesn't just tell her story, she gives actionable tools to help you live the BEST of your story. This would be a fantastic group read or Bible Study book, which is exactly what we're going to do!

Lara confesses in the intro, "I feared my anxiety would hold me back from the things I was created to do. I was afraid I would always be stuck." 

Can we cue the tears? 

Then she says, "You were created for a purpose, and it's time to make it happen."

This is one of those life-changing books if you let it and you do the work. This is one of those books you have to engage with, cry over, discuss with friends, and ultimately, be free to fly. 

So let's get to know each other and read this book together! Join our book club on Facebook and we'll start in-depth January 12th. Plenty of time to get your book ordered :)

Make it happen, my dears!


The Last of the 2014 Books

I had a couple of books from 2014 that I haven't had a chance to post about. Here are my reviews! 

courtesy of booklookbloggers

Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary
This is one beautiful new reference book I was thrilled to add to my collection. The pages are thick, glossy, richly illustrated color pages that add depth to any Bible study time. This is a hefty tome, to be sure, both in content and size. My boyfriend was enthralled with the beauty and detail found here, and I fear the book may end up living at his house! For any scholar or serious Bible lover, this is one of the most stunning Bible Dictionaries out there. Not to be confused with a concordance, though this edition is cross-referenced, this book gives contextual info and historical background on Biblical terms, feasts, figures, and more. You can find such interesting things as a list of diseases in the Bible, photos of discovered historical ruins, and detailed definitions of all of those hard-to-pronounce Old Testament places/names/facts/figures. This is an essential for your bookshelf.

courtesy of bloggingforbooks

Make Up by Michelle Phan
Have you heard of Michelle Phan? Who am I kidding, if you're a female with internet access, of course you have. She is one of THE biggest YouTube beauty gurus, and this hardcover shares her story along with actionable tips to be your best, beautiful self. 
Michelle runs her YouTube channel and blog, her makeup line Em, her beauty subscription service ipsey, and her television company FAWN, along with being Lancome's beauty guru. Can we say BUSY?
While Michelle's tone is a bit elementary, there are some interesting stories and tips to be found from poring over this book. I was pleasantly surprised. Her story is interesting (she started out as an art student) and I enjoyed seeing a behind-the-scenes peek into her life and routine. I was expecting this to be a thumb-through book but I enjoyed spending time with the book. Michelle covers a LOT of ground, from makeup and skincare to job interviews, etiquette, and finding your online persona. I think this would be a great gift for any teenager or twenty-something. A beautifully presented book, and looks pretty in any stack or bookshelf, too, which is a huge plus in these visual days! 

Sale Shout: Extra 60% off Dayspring Clearance


Dayspring is hosting their annual After Christmas sale, and ALL clearance is an extra 60 percent off with the code 60CLEAR through 12/31. *affiliate links

I LOVE Dayspring's products and the way they bring scripture into my home in modern and fresh ways.
Here are my top picks and a few things I picked up myself:


Fullness of Joy - Pillar Mug with code this is $2.00 TWO DOLLARS!
I LOVE cheerful Dayspring mugs with scripture on the sides. I picked this up :)


   Um, how perfect is this for a brother, boyfriend, nephew, son, etc?
With code it is 80 CENTS, ya'll.  Bearded Wonder - Spiral Notebook


I love this Everything Beautiful - Padfolio for FOUR dollars.
I picked one up to keep me organized and energized this year. 


Such a cheerful headband, and a steal at only $6. 

Happy shopping and enjoy the beautiful Dayspring products!


Rain + Red Lipstick + Christmas-ing


rainandred

This has pretty much been my uniform lately: jeggings + flannel + cozy cowl + pretty makeup = foolproof. Between the rain, snow and sleet it has been a pretty mucky few weeks.

raiandnred2

But no matter, nothing some red lipstick, a polka dot umbrella, and a second cup of coffee can't fix. It's Christmastime!

rainred3

I sent out my Christmas cards this week!


See that pretty vintage-y card in the corner? I adore them. 

AND I have my first-ever Christmas tree this year. Isn't it funny how grown-up things like that make us feel? But don't worry, it's not too grown-up, it's red and white and all sorts of vintage-y and lovely. 



See the little fluffy bird on top of the Merry Christmas sign?! That might be my favorite part :) 

rainred5

So now it's back to hot-chocolate-drinking, present-making and Hallmark-movie-watching.

To the Merry Christmas-ing, my dears! 


Warby Parker Home Try-On Winter 2014

(this post is sponsored and contains affiliate links that help support Good Girl Style at no extra charge to you!) 

It was high time I gave the Warby Parker Home Try-On Program another go with some old favorites and some new frames from the Winter 2014 Collection. If you're eyeing some new eyeglasses or sunglasses for the holiday season and brand-new year ahead, I highly recommend Warby Parker.

The Home Try-On Program is the best I've found, and I've tried just about all of the online glasses places for you! Warby Parker makes it easy and smooth. It does require a credit card as insurance (just in case!) but they don't charge you a cent and shipping is free both ways.

Now, on to the 5 frames I selected for my Home Try-On box:

holcomb
Holcomb in Pearled Tortoise
This is definitely my favorite. It's just so darling and a combination of heavy rim with the feminine cat-eye shape is undeniably fun.


laurel
Laurel in Tea Rose Fade
I can't lie, these fun glasses have a bit of a Steve-Urkel's-Girlfriend-Myra-Monhouse vibe.
That said, I'm not hatin' on them. It's quite adork-able.


wilkie
Wilkie in Sugar Maple
Your classic studious eyeglasses. Goes with anything, which is a huge plus for everyday eyewear.

Now, on to the sunglasses, always my favorite part of any Warby Parker collection! 


reilly
Reilly in Sparrow Grey
I adore, adore, adore these. I cannot tell you how much I adore these. So utterly chic in a fading gray.
A must-have.

jennings
Jennings in Whiskey Tortoise
These have SUCH a Kennedy vibe, don't you agree? I think anyone in the Kennedy family could wear these, male or female, and be rocking the Hyannis-Port-chic thing.

Have you ever tried the Warby Parker Home Try-On Program?

Ok, which one is your favorite? Are you hoping for new glasses under the tree? 



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