Alabama Shakes // 04.08.2015

Ever the supporter of my goals, my boyfriend got us tickets to an Alabama Shakes concert for Valentine’s Day. The group came through Arizona on their way to Coachella and played at The Marquee concert venue in Tempe. The show was last week and we had a blast!

Sunflower Paperie blog - Alabama Shakes

We had never been to The Marquee, so it was fun to see a new venue. The Allah-Las opened for them and while I generally enjoy opening acts, these guys didn’t stand out to me (I had to do quite a bit of searching to even know what group they were, because they never mentioned it when they were on stage!).

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State Capitol Series – Madison, WI

As many of you know, I am a history nerd and more specifically an American history nerd. For quite some time I had an unofficial goal of visiting all 50 states. Then in 2009, shortly after visiting state number 38, I got hung up on the fact that I hadn’t done a consistent thing in each state (like buying a spoon, haha!). This “concern” led me to restart with a more specific goal in mind – visiting all 50 state capitol buildings!

In November, I met the lovely Sarah Shotts from the Love Letter to Adventure blog. Sarah challenges her readers to share their adventures on her blog and through a Facebook page. The more I have thought about “adventure,” the more I realized that I wanted to document our state capital travels (thanks for the prompt, Sarah!).

I have decided to start with the most recent capitol we visited and work my way back. My boyfriend (and household trip planner) has the goal of hiking in all 50 states, so I will post a bit about those adventures as well!

Sunflower Paperie blog - Madison, WI capitol exterior 2

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2015 1st Quarter Goal Review

Hello friend! Can you believe that the first 3 months of 2015 have already passed? I want to take this chance to look back and see what progress I have made towards my 2015 Goals so far (and to look at what I need to focus on over the next 3 months).

A quick note before I dive in… My overarching goals for 2015 are listed first and if you click them, you can read my original posts that outlined the mini goals I would be pursuing. The “successes” and “areas of improvements” sections are my recaps of the progress made towards my mini goals.

Sunflower Paperie blog 2015 goal review

2015 Goals:

1. Growing my business

Successes: Product feature on Sage Grayson Coaching and participating in the Bonnie Christine Ribbon Tour. I feel like both of these items helped me reach new audiences and I loved getting to work with other creative entrepreneurs. I have also been posting regularly here, so I am happy with the community that is developing in this space.

Areas of improvement: Starting a digital product line has been at the top of my “to do” list all year. I have several items started, but I need to focus on finishing and launching them. I also need to start consistently sending out and promoting my “weekly” newsletter.

2. Getting healthy / taking care of myself

Successes: Weighing in here weekly.

Areas of improvement: Well, basically everything. I have been weighing in here each week, but I haven’t made my health / wellness a priority (thus I haven’t seen any results!). I have a whole list of excuses that I could share, but the bottom line is that I need to get focused (and stop making excuses, haha). I have been thinking of some additional tracking tools that will help me focus and plan to share those with you next week.

Click to read more!

Ribbon Tour Project

Bonnie Christine Ribbon Tour - Sunflower Paperie post

Several weeks ago, Bonnie Christine (one of my favorite creatives) posted on Instagram that she was looking for bloggers to help spread the word about her new line of ribbons (which can be purchased here or here). For those of you who are unfamiliar with Bonnie, she is a surface pattern designer in addition to authoring the wonderfully inspiring Going Home to Roost website.

I e-mailed Bonnie right away indicating that I was interested, and I was super excited when she selected me as one of 18 bloggers to participate in a blog hop focused on projects that highlighted her new ribbons. Bonnie provided each of us with the ribbon and fabric of our choice to use in a project of our selecting.

Sunflower Paperie blog - Ribbon Tour supplies

After a lot of debating and brainstorming, I chose to make several wall decor items that I could hang together. I found these old embroidery hoops at a thrift store in Kansas years ago and really wanted to use them, so they became a bit of an inspiration for the project. I tried to be creative in the ways I used her fabric and ribbons.

Click here to see my completed Project!

3 Easy Bridal Shower Crafts

In February I co-hosted a bridal shower for a very good friend and co-worker (hi Liz!). Yesterday was her wedding day (!!!), so I thought it would be fun to share 3 of the easy projects I created as part of her shower decor. Her wedding colors were blush pink with gold accents and since I love those colors together so much, we stuck with the same theme for the shower.

As I have mentioned before, I am the lucky owner of a Silhouette Cameo paper cutting machine, so I used it for all of these crafts, but they are also easy enough that you could create them without a machine.

1. Monogrammed vase embellishments

Sunflower Paperie vase embellishment

I purchased a bunch of the floral paper at Michael’s that the circles are cut from. I loved the paper because it was a mix of pinks and had a really pretty teal green leaf color that popped, so it was the inspiration for all of the crafts.

I started by cutting a bunch of 3.5 inch circles. The “S” is the first inital of Liz’s new last name and was cut from gold metallic paper. I used rubber cement to glue the “S” to the floral circle and then a couple of strips of double sided table to adhere the monogram to the vase (vases are cheapies from Ikea). I actually placed the monograms on the vases the morning after we did all of the flower arranging and they stayed on great.

Had I not had a Silhouette Cameo, I would have made all of the shapes I wanted in a Word document, printed them, traced them on my desired papers and then cut them out. We had a total of 6 vases and I placed a monogram on each “face” of the vases, for a total of 12 monograms. For future parties I plan to use this same idea on party favor bags!

Click here for crafts #2 and #3!

Sunflower Paperie Product Feature

Remember that really cool collaboration I mentioned awhile back?! Well today is the day I can finally share all of the details with you!

Last November I visited San Francisco to be part of a studio audience for a CreativeLive course (you can read all about my experience here, here and here). In addition to learning a TON about developing digital products and growing my online business, I met some awesome creative entrepreneurs. Sage Grayson, of Sage Grayson Coaching, was one of the entrepreneurs I met last November.

Sunflower Paperie blog - Kate and Sage at CreativeLive

Sage and I at the CreativeLive Studio

Sage is a Life Editor / Coach who offers a variety of services for her clients, that you can learn about HERE. Several of her services include AMAZING quarterly care packages, so I was super excited when Sage contacted me about including a Sunflower Paperie product in her first care package of 2015. “Grateful” is a term that resonates with her clients, so that was the inspiration for this banner! You have to click on over to Sage’s site to see the banner “in action”! 🙂

Sunflower Paperie - Grateful Banner

A big thank you to Sage for working with me! If you are interested in purchasing a “Grateful” banner for yourself or as a gift, you can access the direct listing link here. Or you can view the entire Sunflower Paperie shop collection here!

Weekly weigh-in: Week 11

Years ago (before doing a low carb diet), I had some success with Weight Watchers. I remember they always gave you a “free pass” every so often where you didn’t have to weigh in, but could still attend the meeting. This week, I am going to cash in my imaginary “free pass.”

Last week was my birthday and this week I am in a wedding, so I have been pretty busy celebrating! I am logging my stats below, but don’t really have any additional comments, but I still wanted to document this week (so when I look back over the year I can identify my strengths and weaknesses). I am reflecting on my progress (or lack there of) over the first quarter of 2015 and thinking about what I want to change going forward (more on that later!).

Week 10 weigh-in (March 24, 2015): 

Pounds lost (since last week): 0

Total pounds lost (since January 5 start date): 7.5

Total number of workouts: 0

Total number of weekend hikes: 0

Click here to check out my previous weigh-in’s.

Hop on Over to My Instagram Sale

I have a confession to make… Sometimes I am so busy with current orders, that I neglect to think ahead and create products for upcoming holidays. Clearly this isn’t the best for my business! So when a couple of my best customers inquired recently about purchasing an Easter banner, I decided to take some time and develop a new mini banner.

I have also been curious about selling items via Instagram, so I decided to sell this sweet little banner through my Instagram account. If you are interested in purchasing one of these banners, just leave your PayPal user name in the comments (either on this post or over on Instagram) and I will e-mail you an invoice. Price is $10 per banner (includes shipping) and I will ship your banner within 24 hrs of receiving payment.

Sunflower Paperie Easter Banner

Banner details:

The flags alternate between pink, yellow, blue and green floral patterned paper. The banner is strung on coordinating bakers twine and features alternating bunny and egg silhouettes. There are 8 total flags included on this sweet mini banner.

Approximate Mini Banner Measurements:
Total Length: 18 inches with an additional 24 inches of ribbon for hanging
Flags: 2.25″ W x 3.5″ L
Bunnies / Eggs: Approximately 1.75″ W x 1 1/2″ L

Happy shopping! 

Creative Spotlight – Brooke Smith

You may be starting to notice a trend in my Creative Spotlight features… All of the creatives I have interviewed have been current or former students I have worked with (I seriously work with the BEST population – college students rock!)! This week’s interview with Brooke Smith, owner of Brooke Marcella Photography, maintains this trend as Brooke is a recent graduate who I met through work.

Sunflower Paperie - Brooke Marcella Photography

The very talented Brooke of Brooke Marcella Photography

Many of you know that I work with business students at Arizona State University. As you might imagine, professional development is a big part of a business students experience while in college. I met Brooke during my first month at ASU when she was taking headshots for a group of student staffers I work with. Brooke is an Arizona-based photographer who since graduating this past December, is working her photography business full-time. She is super-talented and a delight to work with! All of the photos in this post were provided by Brooke and illustrate perfectly what a fun spirited person she is.

Click here for the FULL interview with Brooke!

Weekly weigh-in: Week 10

Last week was spring break at work and I was lucky enough to spend the week in Chicago with a great group of students. While I had a great time on the trip (and was pretty active hiking around the city), I was definitely unfocused regarding my diet. This week happens to include my birthday (which I seem to be celebrating all week long!) so this week isn’t off to the best start either. I am trying to make good food decisions as much as I can, but also cutting myself a break when I enjoy a treat.

Scenic Trail - Sunflower Paperie Blog

McDowell Regional Park – Scenic Trail

Week 10 weigh-in (March 17, 2015): 

Pounds lost (since last week): 0

Total pounds lost (since January 5 start date): 7.5

Total number of workouts: 0

Total number of weekend hikes: 2+ 

I am counting my time in Chicago as 1+ hikes! 🙂 We also did a 4.5 mile hike on Friday after we picked Hank up from being boarded. We returned to McDowell Mountain Regional Park and hiked the “Scenic Trail.” The trail was appropriately named, because after a brief elevation change, the view was amazing! Plus, since it was a weekday, we had the trail to ourselves.

Sunflower Paperie blog - Scenic Trail

McDowell Regional Park – Scenic Trail

Other health-related items to celebrate in the past week: Thanks to being in Chicago, I logged lots of steps each day, resisted soda and drank lots of water.

Areas of improvement: Getting more activity in – going to the gym after work. Focusing on low carb eating, especially during the work week (make my breakfasts and lunches ahead of time).

Click here to check out my previous weigh-in’s.

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