blissandblessings.com/curlsdotnu

A lifestyle blog with a literary twist!

Choosing A Creative Photography Space

As much as I’m a wordsmith at heart, I love that our culture is so visual. Beautiful images are the ones that always stick in our minds, and typography and text will always complement those same visuals. When I’m flipping through a fashion magazine or considering visuals for my own blog, I always try and think about how images effect the text and how they help to convey my message to my audience. I know that fashion brands need to have their products portrayed in the best possible light, which is why choosing a South Beach Photo Studio Rental might be the right option for a budding fashion magazine or publication. Rentals for studios can be a more reasonable in terms of cost. All of the materials will be in place for you when you arrive, rather than dragging in lights, equipment, and so on. With a total rental package your models can come and get ready rather than trying to complete hair and makeup on the way to the studio. Having your own space with great amenities can help make the whole process smoother, and result in better photographs!

When it comes to preparing a magazine or editorial spread having the right materials at your disposal makes all the difference. A proper space falls into the category of materials! Having a great studio that also has a reputable business demeanor, tools, and amenities makes all the difference and your clients, audience, and employees will see that difference!

Sunbutter Giveaway

Happy almost Easter everybody! The sun is upon us on the East Coast, so what better way to celebrate than with ANOTHER delicious giveaway. This giveaway is sponsored by the amazing folks at Sunbutter and Red River Commodities and I received great help from Elizabeth over at the Sunbutter blog, too and she made a DELICIOUSLY AWESOME care package for me to share with all of you for this giveaway. I wrote about Sunbutter a few weeks ago because I’m an educator who is aware of allergies and food sensitivities and a health nut who loves trying new things. Now, I want to share my love of Sunbutter with all of you! Without further ado–the prizes and the rules:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

For this contest there will be FOUR winners! I’m really amping things up around here, huh? So make sure that you earn as many entries as you can and make sure that you follow and read the rules, too. You MUST like Sunbutter and blissandblessings.com/curlsdotnu on Facebook, but the other entries are free for all’s and will only get you closer to the win. Good luck and thank you again for participating!

Five Days of Sweet Teacher Outfits

Whenever I talk to my colleagues, new teachers, or friends–I’m always asked the same question: “What do you wear?” Granted, I currently teach at a university, so the dress code is more lenient than when I worked in the high school setting. However, just because the rules of what you can wear are more lax, doesn’t mean you should go to your job looking like you just rolled out of bed. So, for this blog, I’ve gathered some of my favorite staples in my closet AND some trendier pieces that work well when paired with classics. Being an educator doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your personal style. You just have to be more creative when it comes to implementing it.
Monday: Classic in Cream? I like starting the week off with something more dressy. I think it just gets me pumped for Monday in some odd way. So cream, black, and white is a safe pallet  but it can be easily updated with a funky bag (I do like big books…) and great bangles. Each of these pieces can be found easily and at a fair price. Kohl’s accessories anyone??
Black, tan, and white!
 
Tuesday: Chunky sweaters and comfy cords. I like to be comfortable when I’m teaching, but my students have said to me numerous times that I never wear color. Grey is a color, friends–so if you’re stuck in greyscale world an easy update is the colored cord. I love cords because they’re soft and warm, so pairing it with a go-to black chunky sweater makes for a nice and almost midweek outfit. Pair it with a black tote bag, studded clogs, and earrings to match the hardware. There can be spice even if you are a fan of black.
Black, red, and studs!
 

Wednesday: So you like wearing dresses, do you? You must be teaching children who know how to walk and go to the bathroom on their own! Congratulations. (I kid. I taught preschool for a short time–there is no such thing as fashion there.) Dresses can be tricky since hormone infused boys will look everywhere but the board when you’re wearing one. Trick? Tone it down with a cardigan. Show legs, cover the arms and chest, and add in these grey scale accessories and that go-to tote. Pair a dress with flats for school settings. Heels belong with pants for the classroom.

Grey Dress
 
Thursday: Love those new knee length skirts? I do, too. I also love purple, but haven’t had much success with wearing it until I came across this little combo. Same rule applies for classroom dresses. Cover the arms with a long sleeve white tee, and wear it tucked in to mimic the high waisted skirt look while still keeping those knees covered. Pair with killer accessories like this necklace and silver flats for another pop of color. Ditch the black tote for today and switch to this cream, structured tote.
Purple skirt
 

Oh, it’s Friday?? You’ve made it through your first week of teaching? Wear some jeans, darn it! You’ve earned it! Keep it classy AND casual with a classic white tee, DARK jeans, and a fun striped blazer (that can also be paired with Monday’s black trousers–how convenient!) Finish it off with heels, a cook cocktail ring, and that black tote that I own so many of.

Friday outfit striped blazer
 
Hopefully, if you’re a new teacher you can begin to add in your own style elements once you get more comfortable with your students, colleagues, and parents (if you’re in the elementary or secondary schools). I HATE when people say that teachers can’t be fashionable and professional. I’ve been doing it since 2010 (minus the plaid tweed incident of 2011…forget I mentioned it). PS – these outfits aren’t just for teachers! We can ALL benefit from a work update now and again. Happy shopping!

California Love: Traveling to the West Coast

California is one of my favorite places for a few reasons. The weather is gorgeous, the people are much more relaxed than my native East Coast community, and the culture and entertainment is amazing. I first went to California when I was four years old, hailed my own taxi cab, and the rest is history. Eventually, I plan on making the West coast my permanent place to hang my hat, but in the mean time, I try and visit at least once every few years. Last time I went was for my college graduation and my parents, Keith, and I all went together. We looked at traveling and options including a hotel in San Diego so we would be able to experience all of those fun “touristy” attractions that I love about California to begin with. Though I like to PRETEND that I’m a native (my accent usually gives me away), I find that choosing hotels that are near all of the arts and entertainment is the most convenient, especially if you’re bringing someone new along for the ride (in our case that was Keith). Shopping, museums, and of course, eateries were some of the greatest things we were able to easily experience because of ease of access. I personally loved being able to eat Sourdough Bread whenever I wanted. There are mini bakery carts on almost every pier and corner, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Overall, California has an activity for the outdoorsy person, the homebody, and the shopaholic. The next time I go will probably be in a couple of years, and I don’t think I would change a thing about how we chose our location even if we are veteran travelers by that point.

Live and Learn: My Tips After 12 Years of Blogging

When I first started blogging I was a girl at the peak of awkward adolescence: thirteen years old with a whole lot to say! Every day I logged on to my dinosaur of a computer and would dial-up the Internet so I could update the world on my day as a middle-schooler. Slowly, as I began to realize that blogs were separated into categories, I began focusing my writing on subject specific articles and daily happenings. I always wanted my blog to have a personal twist! Now, a lot of my colleagues have asked me how to blog, how to start, and if I have any tips for breaking into the blogosphere. A lot of people don’t realize that blogging takes WORK if you really want to gain a following and meet new people! For me, blogging is a balance of the right tools and the right attitude. Let me know what you would add to this blogging list, too!

  • The proper tools are imperative for blogging! The first thing I recommend is having a computer that is ALL YOURS and a good computer safety program. As a young blogger it was all too often that I would end up opening e-mails that I thought were from “fans” and turned out to be something else. So, protect yourself and your computer with something from us.norton.com/antivirus, especially if you are going to allow fans and readers to e-mail you. Try using e-mail forms and remember to scan your computer regularly if you’re a link clicker.
  • Next up, images! If you’re going to start blogging, remember that we live in a visual culture. Usually, I like to include images to go with my blogs, especially if I’m blogging about somewhere I’ve been or something delicious I’ve eaten. Make sure that you take your own photos for these posts. It lets your readers look into your life a little more. Plus, it’s always nice to have a face to place to the blogger.
  • Choosing your niche: Now, I’m torn on this topic a little bit because while I DO consider my blog a niche blog, I don’t only stick to one particular niche. You might want to have a loose niche for your blog when you begin, but remember to branch out, too. For example, my blog focuses on health and beauty, but I also write about being a teacher, being a partner, and I talk about Shakespeare, too. Just look at blogs that have already chosen a niche and see what interests you the most. Of course, you can always try and create your own niche, too.
  • Conversation: Reply to your comments and carefully read others’ blogs. If someone is coming to your blog and offering comments, feedback, and compliments then you should do the same. No, it’s not easy and, yes, it takes work–but the point of blogging isn’t just to broadcast yourself, it’s to connect with others and share information as well.

After over a decade of blogging (I’m dating myself here!), I’ve learned some very important things about materials and rules when it comes to connecting with others and living online. Bloggers who make it look easy often have an arsenal of tools that they have tested and tried throughout their careers that have helped them come to where they are now in the blogosphere.

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