Getaway: Kirkland, WA







A couple of weeks ago Tyson and I took a solo trip up to Kirkland, WA for a quick overnight getaway. Tyson is up in Seattle quite a bit for work, so any chance I get, I try to tag along. I love me some Seattle! 

This trip we took was so needed! Between moving houses and my business growing so quickly, everything just feels like a LOT lately. When I start to feel a bit burnt out, I always like to plan a quick getaway. It's my recharge! And staying in Kirkland and at the Woodmark Hotel couldn't have been a better place to do this. 
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Where to Eat:


Where to Stay:


Things to do:

-Rent kayaks (free for hotel guests at the Woodmark)
-Rent a boat
-Grab lunch downtown
-Run/walk along the waterfront

Key Travel Notes:

-Boating, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding
-Tons of healthy food options
-Only 20 minutes from downtown Seattle 
-Great shopping close by 
-Romantic 
-Good place for kids

Blogging Like It's Your Business


If it's time to for you get serious about blogging, then you are in the right place. While my full-time job is to manage successful bloggers and influencers (shout out to Parker Management) while keeping up my little blog here too, I'm still no expert. Blogging world is a very young world, and what works for one person, doesn't always work for another. However, there are always some basics to success, and that's what we are going to dive into.

You all sent me some really great questions, so I'm rolling this into a series. From branding and working from home to all things social, I'll be posting a lot of this stuff over the next few weeks. Get excited!! ; )

1. Treat it like a business. This may seem like a bit of a no-brainer, but honestly, if your goal is to turn blogging into a potential business, then you have to treat it that way. That means, if you are employed full-time, you are going to be spending some late nights after your day job, working on your "other business." It might sound a bit daunting, but don't let it discourage you. That setup isn't forever!

2. Subscribe and learn. I recommend downloading podcasts to help educate you. While you drive to work, fold laundry, go for a walk... it's easier to make time for these than say, read a book. My favorites are:

The Influencer Podcast
Being Boss
Him & Her
Girl Boss
How I Built This

3. Make it look like a business. This is probably one of the most important points. If you truly hope to make this is a profitable business, it has to look that way. From your website and branding to your social media feed... it needs to look like a brand! Your own, personal, awesome brand. For something like Instagram for instance, I completely understand that "real is in" and less contrived feeds are better to some extent. However, if your goal is to profit from your business, one of the big contributors to that will be partnering with other brands. A brand needs to be able to envision their company in a post that YOU create. So in my opinion, to get paid accordingly, your images need to be top notch! Learning how to take a good photo is so important. It is also SO easy to edit photos from your phone now. And hey, if you aren't great at creating cohesive feeds with great images, then hire some help! It will be worth it.
For example, I love @bethanmenzel's Instagram. As a brand, you can easily see your product or company fitting in nicely with her feed; you know she will do a great job. But her feed is also not "too perfect." It's just simply, well done.

Remeber, a cohesive, well-edited feed doesn't need to look forced.

A Self Check-In


We are finally (mostly) settled in at our new place and I feel like I just want to let out the biggest exhale. I don't remember moving being this stressful! I think the combination of moving while sick, moving out of the first home Parker was ever in, and running a business while doing it all was a LOT. I felt like I hit pause on life (and summer) and I'm finally pressing play again.

Somewhere in between all of this, I started to take a good look at my whole life. I just started to go through everything: Am I exercising enough? Have I been taking the time to simply breathe? Have I been unplugging after 5pm most nights? I did this big evaluation, not to be hard on myself, but to just check-in. Do you ever do this? I really feel like checking in with yourself is one of the simplest, most effective things we can do. Almost as if an alarm needs to go off every few months to say "hey, let's take a good look at things."

Anyway, my internal alarm went off and I tried to think about all of the things I'd love to work on. I'm obviously not going to be able to do all of this, but it was a simple reminder of the things that are important to me and to try my best to do as many as I can. See the list I made to myself below:

Marionberry Nice Cream


One of my favorite things to do this time of year is to go berry picking. There is something so nourishing to the mind and body to be able to pick your own food and then enjoy it. I cry a little inside because we don't have much of a backyard to grow anything right now. But, I sure am grateful to live in a place like Oregon, that has endless areas to get fresh, seasonal produce.

We are big blueberry fans at our house, but lately, I have been loving marionberries. They are actually a blackberry that was developed at a college here in Oregon (pretty cool, huh?). They call it the "cabernet of blackberries." Ha! It has a strong flavor, so I typically like to bake with them. This time, however, since the weather has been so warm, I opted to make an "ice cream" with it.

This is a really refreshing twist on ice cream and I can promise you that you won't have that yucky post-ice cream feeling. It is also a big hit with Parker, so this is very toddler-friendly.

 Marionberry Nice Cream

2 frozen bananas
2 cups of frozen marionberries
1/2 cup coconut cream 
Maple syrup to taste
Top with chia seeds

Directions:

Place banana, berries and coconut cream in a blender and blend on high. 

Add in maple syrup (I would start with 1 teaspoon and add more if needed). Blend again.


Pour mixture into 4 small ramekins or a large glass tupperware dish. Cover, and place in freezer for 3-4 hours. 

Once frozen, stir the nice cream, and serve with chia seeds sprinkled on top.

You can't really go wrong with 5 ingredients!

Enjoy! xx

My Summer Home Sale Picks