December 13, 2016

'Tis the Season to GIVE BACK with CenturyLink and MN Vikings!

I was incredibly fortunate to be able to spend my afternoon today with CenturyLink and the Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs as they helped connect underserved youth by donating new computers, software, studio equipment, iPad Minis and other upgraded equipment to Pillsbury United Communities.

December 10, 2016

Awesome Gift Ideas from Spark Naturals

Spark Naturals Essential Oils are AMAZING! They are like the major essential oil companies that are out there, but without the multi-level marketing, AND without the monthly minimums! They offer all of the quality without the hassle:
  • 100% customer satisfaction
  • Pure and natural essential oils
  • Highly focused research and development
  • Best luxury pricing in the industry

December 9, 2016

Awesome Gift Ideas from Natural Life!

I love, love, love Natural Life! It's my favorite online destination for any gifts... they have the very best stuff for the person in your life who isn't the "department store" type. Their products are boho chic, unique, fun - and they promote happiness! They make perfect gifts for strong and unique women, teen girls, moms... you name it! It doesn't get any easier than ordering from Natural Life, so I'm just going to jump in and show you all of the goodies!

November 22, 2016

DIY Rustic Organic Autumn Wreath

I haven't filled my planters out front with evergreens yet, and my front door has been looking mighty bare since all of my flowers are finished for the year. I wanted to create something for Thanksgiving that could last through the holiday season, and I went to my backyard for inspiration!

November 17, 2016

The Art of Thanksgiving // Gathering During Challenging Times

How do you handle it when in just one week you know that you'll be gathering with friends and family during one of the most difficult political times this country has experienced in my lifetime? When you're "unfriending" people on Facebook, "unfollowing" on Twitter, and really being careful to surround yourself with like-minded people, the thought of sitting down with a roomful of family members you KNOW voted differently than you can cause nightmares!

When you take a step back and focus on the reason for gathering - the giving of thanks for the abundance we have, the friends and family we share it with, and the home we have opened to share for the day - you can look beyond the current political climate and create a truly special day. You can use your home, your shared gratitude, and your love of pie to come together again and heal the great political divide!

November 9, 2016

Safe at Home // Creating Sanctuary for the Spirit

© Crazy80frog | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images
A Beautiful Little Life is not a political blog. I haven't expressed my views thus far, and I didn't plan to. But today I am one of the many women in America that are afraid. Afraid because our new president (#notmypresident) is a sociopath. Afraid because he has fired up hate across America for months. Afraid for women who felt secure and valued in a society with a presidential candidate that promised them equal pay and protection from sexual assault.

Afraid because when Hillary told us that we needed to decide what kind of country we wanted to live in, we did NOT pick the kind of country that would choose Trump as our leader. As I work to come to terms with reality, I know that - as a Hillary supporter - I have my work cut out for me. And yet, I don't know where to begin to claim my role in creating a safer country.

I do, however, know how to help women create a space for themselves in their home that is a sanctuary, a place where they feel safe and able to protect their families, and a place that empowers them to move forward with their work to create the country we want!

September 23, 2016

Mediterranean Nachos Recipe from The Hungry Fan's Game Day Cookbook

Looking for a healthier alternative to serve on game day? Need an appetizer that is gluten free? Then you are going to LOVE - LOVE - LOVE these Mediterranean Nachos! Pita chips are crunchy, salty, gluten-free, and delicious. They make the perfect base for these nachos. Add a little hummus, greek olives, and fresh veggies and you have a healthier snack that is easy and yummy.

September 1, 2016

Craft-It-Yourself Books from Capstone Press

One of the most popular blog posts I've done in a long time was a recent post about the book "Lazy Crafternoon" by Stella Fields. Today I'm featuring another great book from Capstone Press called "Origami Chic" along with all of their other awesome Craft-It-Yourself books.

August 12, 2016

Cast-Iron Cooking Cookbook Review // Dutch Baby with Blueberry Sauce Recipe

I'm always looking for new ways to cook and new recipe ideas for our family. When the new book, Cast-Iron Cooking: Recipes & Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Cast-Iron Cookware by Rachael Narins came across my desk, I was super excited!

August 11, 2016

Major Issues: The September Fashion Issues

Every year I POUR over the September issues from the big magazine publishers. It started with Teen Magazine and Seventeen Magazine back in the '80's when that September "Back to School" issue would land in my mailbox - and this small town girl was mesmerized by the glossy pages!

August 3, 2016

Back to School Shopping // Saving Your Sanity & Your Money

Assorted back to school items from Target reports that parents will spend an average of $179 per child for back to school shopping this year - and I think that sounds like a LOW estimate. When you consider clothing, shoes, and school supplies, I can imagine it could add up to closer to $300-$500 in the weeks before school starts - and that doesn't include the fundraisers that come home immediately after!


You can make your own custom school supplies with just a little help from a brand new book by Stella Fields! It's called "Lazy Crafternoon" and it's a great guide for tween crafters (or tween at heart crafters) to help create amazing projects!

July 26, 2016

DIY Oatmeal, Milk & Honey Bath Bombs

It's so easy to overdo it during the hot summer months. You spend just a little too much time in the hot sun.  Your natural bug spray wears off mid-hike and you come home full of mosquito bites. You have a great day at the pool, but the chlorine has completely dried out your skin.

July 22, 2016

Change Your INBOX and Change Your Morning

This morning, as usual, I spent about an hour going through my email inbox. I learned what the heck a BRONZINI is from Whole Foods Market. (It's a fish. And it's on sale for $6.99 a pound this week.) I received a coupon for a brand of dog food that I no longer buy. I discovered 9 Cool Things to Do in Providence, Rhode Island, just in case I ever go there. And I found out that I am most like the Star Trek character Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy.

July 21, 2016

A Beautiful Little Life & The Business of Blogging

© Sandy_maya | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images
Make no mistake about it, this little blog is my business. Yes, I share tips on self-care, health, and home decorating, but the work that I do researching, writing and publishing actually helps to pay the bills around here!

So what do you do when suddenly your business seems unimportant?

I've struggled lately. I feel like it's almost disrespectful somehow to continue to post about fashion and beauty and crafting when there is so much nastiness in the news.

July 2, 2016

Summer Escapes With A Good Book // 15 To Read

There is nothing like the escape that a good book can provide, and I've been a reading machine this summer! I've got a ton of great book recommendations for you, so without further ado...

July 1, 2016

Dishing Up Minnesota: 150 Recipes from the Land of 10,000 Lakes Cookbook

If you're a Minnesotan, (or if you just WISH you were a Minnesotan,) you'll love this new cookbook by Teresa Marrone from Storey Publishing. I know I do!

June 15, 2016

Sometimes More is More! The Maximalist Twist

I come by my hoarder tendencies naturally. My Grandma Squires, though she didn't have much, she saved EVERYTHING and her "little blue house" was a glorious collection of everything she loved. Although I can appreciate minimalist style, to me it just doesn't feel like HOME unless I'm surrounded by the things that I love.

June 13, 2016

On Tragedy, Our Need for Sanctuary, and Sharing Beauty

© Popocorn | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images
After yet another tragedy over the weekend, today has been a difficult day for me to write a blog post. It's easy to allow the news to become overwhelming when so many personal stories are everywhere I look. All I can do is keep the TV and radio turned off, avoid social media, and pull the covers up over my head, so to speak.

But it's not just the violence in Orlando that has gotten to me. It's "The Donald", "Hill", and "Bern". It's the Stanford rape. It's the bathroom boycotts. At some point don't you just want to make it all stop? I DO!

June 8, 2016

Summer Reading with Book of the Month

I know I've been missing in action for a while... I have been READING like crazy and I'm happy to have just gotten an email that my June selection from the Book of the Month Club has shipped and is on it's way.

My June book selection was Modern Lovers by Emma Straub but MAN I was torn between that selection and Before the Fall by Noah Hawley. Thankfully, I got a review copy of Before the Fall from the publisher and I've already started it. (and WHOA! It's sooo good!)

May 20, 2016

Birdcage Succulent Planter from Garden Therapy

You might remember me talking about the book Garden Made by Stephanie Rose last fall and I wanted to circle back to their blog, Garden Therapy today for an awesome project!

May 17, 2016

The Bee-Friendly Garden by Kate Frey and Gretchen LeBuhn // Book Review

For every gardener who cares about the planet, this guide to designing a bee garden helps you create a stunningly colorful, vibrant, healthy habitat that attracts both honeybees and native bees.

In The Bee-Friendly Garden, award-winning garden designer Kate Frey and bee expert Gretchen LeBuhn provide everything you need to know to create a dazzling garden that helps both the threatened honeybee and our own native bees. 

May 12, 2016

Simplify Your Move with These Tips and CORT

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of CORT. All opinions are 100% mine.
Let's face it, whether you're moving across the country or across the street, moving is STRESSFUL! Taking time to prepare can make the difference between looking forward to your move and making a mess out of your move!

Where do you even begin?

May 4, 2016

What I Read Spring 2016 // 12 Books Reviewed

I realized that it's been a looong time since I posted any book reviews and I have read 11 books in the last few months since I my last book post! Here's what's going on in my book world!

May 3, 2016

Eating in the Middle by Andie Mitchell // Cookbook Review & Lemon Poppy Seed Cupcakes with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

I've been a fan of Andie Mitchell for a looong time. If you haven't read "It Was Me All Along" you SHOULD definitely check it out! It's her journey struggling with obesity, weight loss, and finding balance. 

When I had a chance to receive a review copy of her latest book, "Eating in the Middle" I jumped at the chance! Andie's philosophy on healthy eating is so perfect, and this book is full of recipes that aren't diet recipes, but instead, like the cover says, "Mostly Wholesome". These are the recipes that helped her reach her weight loss goals and helped her to maintain that weight loss!

April 28, 2016

Seven New Beauty Ideals from Happinez Magazine

I found this wonderful list on the Happinez Blog. Make sure that you head over there to check them out, and check out their awesome new magazine. Their message is SO IMPORTANT! In fact, this post is so good, I didn't want to change a single word of it, so I'm copying it verbatim.

April 26, 2016

A Murder Mystery in Minneapolis...

So ever since I saw Neil and Sam on "Married at First Sight" go to a Murder Mystery Theater on a date, I wondered what it would be like... And when I had the chance to check it out for myself right here in Minneapolis, I said "Heck, yea!"

April 13, 2016

Taking Up A New Hobby // Vintage Tarot Sets

If you're a fan of vintage games and particularly table games - the chances are you're going to love vintage Tarot sets. The whole world of Tarot kind of lends itself to the vintage world given its mystical ancient nature - lost in the mists of time. What's more - they're a great addition to the look of a vintage queen looking for that mystical "Gypsy Rose Lee" or general ancient seer type of vibe; a great Tarot set really finishes things off to perfection - and allows you to foretell a few futures along the way.

March 23, 2016

Konenkii Discovery Box Review

I had the pleasure of receiving a Konenkii gift box in the mail last week, and it wasn't even my birthday! What's Konenkii? Konenkii is a quarterly gift subscription box for the modern woman—north of 40—who wants to age fearlessly and have some fun along the way.