Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Tuesday Treasures 53

Hey, thanks for stopping by for Tuesday Treasures, my weekly collection of favorite finds from around the web! Not only are these handmade high-waist floral panties so, so pretty, but doesn't the amazing product photography over at Ohhh Lulu just take the cake?

This week I am totally obsessed with the colorful, imaginative, nature-inspired artwork by Kristina Sostarko and Jason Odd of Inaluxe! These two artists have blended together to create a style so truly unique, and as a result have had the opportunity to collaborate with brands like IKEA, Urban Outfitters, and Kate Spade New York!

I can't say I'd mind a cute little handbag that requires a key, even if it's not for locking! This brown bag from Modcloth is called the Keystone State Bag, and it's definitely got me daydreaming about being back home in Pennsylvania as I'm typing this now!

The simple but stunning stoneware by J.D. Wolfe Pottery are the kind of pieces that not only make a house a home, but can really bring personality into a home as well. The tiny little cloud-shaped sushi plates are almost too cute to use; I'd rather hang them up on a pretty blue wall!

This gorgeous navy blue infinity scarf is just one of the many amazing brightly-patterned voile scarves from Peddling Panda, but those cute little foxes stole my heart right away!

Thanks for reading! If you've enjoyed Tuesday Treasures, be sure to 'like' Brittanibus on Facebook to receive updates on each and every post. See you next week!

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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Blogging Via Smartphone: Pros & Cons

I finally got myself a new smartphone! I've been without one for over a year now, so yeah, I'd say this is pretty exciting news. Although I've needed one for quite some time, (I basically feel like I'm writing from the Stone Age) I finally cracked and got a little LG Optimus Fuel because of all the traveling that Brad and I have been doing for work lately. Needless to say, it's been much easier to stay connected with my blog and get more done! Well, there have been some ups and downs, to be completely honest. But, rather than focusing on all of the bells & whistles on my new phone, I thought I'd discuss the specifics of getting my blogging done on the go, and how this little guy helps me out along the way!

  • I can get more blogging done! This one makes me incredibly happy, as I've been having more difficulty finding time to do my writing since we've been on the road.
  • The phone was actually pretty inexpensive. I am but a frugal, frugal baby.
  • This allows me to get a ton of smaller tasks done away from home, such as responding to emails and comments, which would typically cut into my writing time.
  • I can improve my social media presence! I'm finally back on my Instagram account again, and Twitter is so much easier to keep up with when you can access it throughout the day. You can follow me at @Brittanibus on either of these sites!
  • And then, of course, there are a million billion apps out there to make blogging easier and to increase my productivity that I've just been neglecting. Some of my favorites (for Android) are Todoist, Evernote, IF (If This Then That), and Google Analytics. I'm also looking forward to trying out Hootsuite, as well as testing out various photo editing apps!
On the other hand, there have been some realizations (and already too many mishaps) regarding this silly little device that have been keeping me from wanting to take this plunge wholeheartedly.

  • I have to be honest: I was enjoying being disconnected. When I had my own cell phone, I allowed myself to get really wrapped up in what was going on online, and I became distant from the people and experiences that were happening around me. Now I have to make a conscious effort to only check my phone when necessary so as to keep from getting too wrapped up in social media.
  • There's no "Swype" feature, so texting and blogging kinda take forever. I wonder if there's an app I can download for that...
  • Oh, and the official Blogger app decided that it was going to revert this week's already-published Tuesday Treasures into a very rough draft while syncing. So I immediately deleted the application and had to find a way to restore my blog post. So fun.
Ultimately, as a blogger, I'd say it's been really silly of me to have gone this long without a Smartphone. Despite all of the tics and horrible learning experiences that come along with having one, it's proved itself invaluable in assisting with many blogging-related tasks and goals, although I can't say it functions well enough to provide access to the most basic building blocks of blogging: writing and publishing content, and improving your user experience. Do you do your blogging via Smartphone? What are your favorite apps to use for blogging and productivity?

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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Tuesday Treasures 52

This beautiful gold ring set is so stunning! I love the attention to detail in each of the one-of-a-kind rings in this set, which are created with recycled 14k gold by Marilyn Brogan of Meander Works!

According to artist Tamara Phillips of Deep Coloured Water, the circular shapes in these paintings are meant to represent cellular life, and the way the watercolors run through one another is representative of the way all life on Earth is bound. This brings another level of meaningful wonder to these paintings, and I can't help but allow myself to become entirely captivated.

This accent wall by Mallory of Classy Clutter is too perfect! Inspired by a wallpaper by Joy Cho, you can learn how to DIY your own patterned wall using a Silhouette machine and this step-by-step tutorial!

If you're looking for a super cute way to refashion a boring old t-shirt, then be sure to check out this completely adorable cross-stitched collar DIY by Ines Melo of The Sewing Rabbit!

This pretty floral swimsuit from Anthropologie is undeniably gorgeous! I seriously can't express how much I love this thing. Is it selfish to put swimwear on my wedding registry?

Thanks for stopping in for another great issue of Tuesday Treasures! Be sure to follow me on Pinterest for even more of my favorite discoveries from around the web! What was your favorite find this week?

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Friday, February 13, 2015

7 Steps To Battling Blogger's Block

Do you take blogging breaks? As much as I hate to admit it, it happens to me far too often: a post takes longer than expected to write, so it gets published a day later than planned. This cuts into time spent writing my next post, and so on and so forth until I find myself staying up late, night after consecutive night, until I inevitably reach the point of creative exhaustion and spend an entire week without publishing a single thing.

This sort of blogging burnout happened more frequently when I began, so I know that it's the kind of mistake that can really crush your spirit when you're just starting out. Eventually, I noticed that the gaps in my blog schedule formed a trend, and now I really strive to recognize when a burnout is coming on and combat it. Unfortunately, it doesn't always work, and then there are weeks like this one - which is exactly why I was inspired to provide you with some great tips that I've picked up along the way on keeping your creative writing juices flowing - I hope you enjoy them!
  1. Create a template and/or outline for your post. If the words aren't flowing from your fingertips, perhaps you just need a little structure. I like to start with a strong image, follow up with an introductory paragraph, and then I leave an open area labeled "content", a conclusion paragraph, and end with my signature. Template's done! If I'm still stuck, I use the content area to jot down a few main points that I'd like to include in my post, and transform these bullet points into topic sentences for individual paragraphs. That empty blog post is starting to look less and less sparse, yeah?
  2. Don't bother writing a whole sentence if you haven't figured out how to word it. I used to get writer's block because I'd get stuck on how to perfectly phrase something, and in the process I'd lose the very stream of thought that I was attempting to jot down in the first place. Over time I realized that if I can't decide on the exact wording to just add an ellipsis, skip it, and move on with my train of thought. This method also leaves a nice little template to start filling in once you've got most of your ideas down.
  3. Proofread, proofread, proofread! This one should be a no-brainer: if you catch yourself staring blankly at your word processor and drooling for an indefinite amount of time without writing anything down, you might as well check your grammar and punctuation.
  4. Have a few drafts on hand already. This post by Dana of Wonder Forest makes two great points: write down whatever you can when you've got the creative juices, and keep those blog posts around as drafts to finish up when you're experiencing a block!
  5. Stop writing and do something else! Even when I am not actively writing and publishing content, I still like to take time catching up on some behind-the-scenes sort of tasks, such as improving my blog design, making changes to pages, and studying Google Analytics reports. If you're getting some blog work done anyway, just go ahead and write about it - your readers will love knowing if you've spruced something up, and this affords you a great opportunity to ask your users what they think of the new changes!
  6. Write sponsored content. It goes without saying that you should never base your blog's content solely on sponsorship opportunities, but if you're having trouble figuring out what exactly to write about, then challenge yourself to take a creative approach on a predetermined topic - especially if it'll be worth your time in the long run.
  7. Take a break! Sometimes we just need to take a step back and enjoy some time off, even if it's not by choice! This past week, for example, Brad and I have been staying and working on Long Island and enjoying some hotel rooms that are either completely creepy, yucky, or entirely lacking a detectable wifi signal, and that really didn't help my creative process. That's when I decided that it was just too stressful to focus on, and that the world wouldn't end without one week of Tuesday Treasures
Hopefully these ideas will help you to keep those posts coming - even when the going gets tough! When all else fails, sometimes you've just gotta take a little "me time" to de-stress and collect your bearings to create better content in the long run. However, these moments of weakness can lead to a substantial decrease in blog traffic and can even be disappointing to those wonderful returning readers we love so much, so be sure to take these mini-blogging-breaks as sparingly as possible. For more blogging tips, be sure to check out & follow my Pinterest board: Blogging 101! Thanks for reading!

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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Etsy Treasury: My Quirky Valentine

This Valentine's Day-themed treasury is inspired by gray days, chilly nights, and the things that keep us warm throughout them, including the company of that special someone!

Cosmetic Bag with Stitched Heart, Red and Gray Makeup Bag for Valentines Day
Red and Gray statement necklace, Gray pearl bead and red fabric flower bridesmaid necklace
Vintage 60s 1960s Mod Red Leather Shoes Mary Jane T Bar Present Party Size 4 37 Womans Clothing
Two Red poppy red and grey handpainted 16x16 silk throw pillow covers Made to Order
SALE - 60% OFF Funny Valentines Day Card for Couples - Cute Fart Card - Funny Valentines Day Card for Him
Custom cashmere lingerie set - neutral grey red heart bra and panties set - washable
Red & Gray Garter, Red Garter, White Lace Garter, Gray Garter, Bridal Wedding Garter Set, Toss Garter, Keepsake Garter, Garter Set W28-21
Red & Gray Fan Enamel Earrings - Handmade enameled copper earrings with sterling sliver ear wires
Rustic wedding favors red hearts magnets cottage chic guest favors shabby chic bridal shower brown grey
Kiss me hard before you go DIY printable poster typographic wall decor typo typography elegant wall decor white red and grey poster triangle
Puzzle brooch pin  -  funny whimsical jewelry - Love is in the air  ... - many colors - egst - europeanstreetteam -123team
Graffiti Heart Art, Red & Grey Art, Urban Wall Decor, Wedding Gift Ideas, Graffiti Art, Heart Photo, Love Print, Heart Nursery Decor
Red Grey Knitted Boot Cuffs, Heart Legwarmers, Red Boot Cuffs, Heart Knitted Cuffs, Love Heart Red Grey Socks, a gift for Valentine's day
Red and Gray 5x7 Coffee Print Watercolor Art Print Good Morning Caffeine Kitchen Decor Kitchen Watercolor
3 Red Glass Pomegranate

Thanks for stopping by and having a look at my latest Etsy treasury! If you're still on the hunt for that perfect Valentine's Day gift for him, be sure to check out My Manly Valentine, a treasury I've curated full of wonderful handmade gift ideas for men! Now it's time to do your part and go support some of the amazing handmade businesses featured above!

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If you've enjoyed this treasury, feel free to share it by pinning the image below to your favorite board on Pinterest - thanks!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Tuesday Treasures 51

I just can't get enough of these simply remarkable felt-scaled beasties, hand-crafted by Jordan in Cleveland for her Etsy shop, Horrible Adorables! Her cruelty-free fantasy taxidermy is an art form all its own!

The paintings of Anne Siems have truly captured my heart this week, particularly the wispy, translucent dresses painted in her works that wondrously meld landscape and portraiture into perfectly-subtle surreal scenes. Her gallery is so unique and vast that I couldn't choose just one favorite to feature:

I love this one-of-a-kind set of hexagonal shelves by Jennifer Perkins! You can see the full DIY over on her blog, using easy-to-hang Ikea mirrors and bright, colorful boxes; I'd love to see this project reworked in different shapes and sizes!

The gold-leaf-covered Oreo olallieberry chocolate layer cake by Stephanie of Desserts for Breakfast is definitely one of those divine delicacies that is oft-referred to as "too pretty to eat".

Seeing as I'm terribly fond of foxes and all things geometric and tribal-printed, of course I can't stop swooning over this pretty wrapping paper from Prism of Starlings! A paper this amazing would definitely be put to use for something less disposable than wrapping presents in my house; if I get my hands on this stuff, pretty cards with matching envelopes for everybody!

Thanks again, folks, for stopping in for yet another edition of Tuesday Treasures! Feel free to share some of your own favorite finds in the comments section below, or get a sneak peek at some of my very favorite finds by following me on Pinterest! See you soon!

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