Monday in Wonderland: Make the World a Prettier Place

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Happy Monday in Wonderland! It has been forever and a day since I wrote one of these babies, but I have honestly missed it. Plus, I’ll take any chance to play around with lettering and Photoshop more!

If you’ve forgotten the drill, a “Monday in Wonderland” is just an excuse for me to doodle something pretty and ramble on and on about who knows what. The original intention when I started this blog was to brighten each and every week with a Monday in Wonderland, but I set that aside for a crazy semester, better designs, and the fact of life that bad Mondays happen, no matter how much glitter you try to remedy them with. (In fact, one of my favorite Monday in Wonderlands was one that explicitly told you to be sad.) So this is the new-and-improved, do-them-when-I want-to-and-how-I-want-to version of the little feature that started this whole blog in the first place. And, in Monday in Wonderland fashion, I’ll start by explaining the seemingly meaningless, somewhat ripped off from an ancient saying quote you see above. (PS, it’s free to download, and makes a stellar computer wallpaper!)

When it comes to my opinions on things, there’s a lot I haven’t made up my mind about. I don’t like to get confrontational, but, as I mentioned in my 19 Things at 19 post, I am resolving to research and reflect and discover the facts underlying the controversies in this year of my life (and hopefully the rest of it)! I have been journaling a lot too, and although it leaves me more perplexed at times, sometimes I come away with little gems about the way I want to live my life. It may not seem like much, but I've recently realized all the joy I get from the simple, pretty things in life. The concept of making the world a prettier place also seems to connect my current passions for the planet, design, writing, and loving people.

I may shy away from political debates, and may have a lot to consider about the kind of person I want to be, but I know with some certainty that real pockets in my shorts, pink and purple sunsets, and hours spent creating art will probably always make the world seem “better” to me. Technically, making the world a “better” place could be turned and tilted and distorted, and I don’t always know what better is. But making the world “prettier?” Even with beauty eternally in the eye of the beholder, I know what I find beauty in.

Big words, and sweet, lovely, kind, people, and watercolors, and nature, and teacups are all things of maximum “prettiness” to me, and if I can do nothing else in life, at least I can create a little more of that prettiness in my everyday existence, both through the things I create and the relationships I cultivate. That’s what this Monday in Wonderland is about. Basically, without wondering what’s right and what’s wrong, what’s better and worse, I can working at bringing more things to this lovely planet that personify brightness, loveliness, and beauty. 

Stay lovely,

P.S. We adopted a new puppy yesterday, and if you haven’t seen her on my Instagram yet, you have some looking and "aww"-ing to do! Her name is Cookie *heart eyes emoji*

**Please respect my copyright policy. If you modify or use my work, link back here for attribution. Also, don’t post this content as your own download, but rather link back to me, because everyone is free to join the fun and download through this website! For more on gross copyright things, click the link in this blog's footer.**

Throwback Thursday: DIY Natural Fiber Chokers

Hey there “home-skillets!” So according to my excess following of red carpet events (via Grace Helbig of course), it appears that chokers are back in style and I think that is “slammin.”  I can honestly say that I recently purchased jelly shoes and one particular top that is very much the Rachel Green aesthetic, and am officially feeling pretty damn “fly.” Ooh ooh, and all the 90’s inspired patches and pins I’m seeing lately? “Off the heezy” if I do say so myself.

Okay, enough at my lame attempts at slang (I can’t handle it from my generation or the last one). I really am here to talk about chokers. I feel like right now fashion is trying to take it back to the 90’s but only pull out the good stuff this time, and I couldn't be happier. Since learning they were a legit accessory once again, I have been dying to add a few chokers to my jewelry collection (which, ironically, consists of mostly really long necklaces). And in typical DIY-er fashion, I decided the best route for me was to make a few! I thought it would be super fun to share the techniques I used, so you can be as trendy as I pretend to be.

For each of the chokers, you will need:

Macramé rope, ribbon, or string-like material
Ribbon clamps
Industrial strength glue (I’m partial to E6000)
Some spare chain (to make an extender)
A lobster clasp
A couple of jump rings

The process is also pretty similar for each necklace! Cut your material to a length slightly shorter than the circumference of your neck (about 12 1/2" for me). Drop a bit of glue onto the inside of the ribbon clamp, add the end of your material, & clamp down hard with the pliers, then repeat with the other end and let dry. With the help of your jump rings, attach a 1-3” extender chain to one ribbon clamp, and a lobster clasp to other. Then rock your necklace like the 90's babe you are!

For the first choker, I used some macramé trim purchased in the fabric section of my local craft store. I had to use a good amount glue and a large clamp because of the thickness of this material, but I love the subtle, earthy vibe this one give off. Also them front teeth, am I right?

Next, I thought it would be fun to channel the obsession with friendship bracelets that was my childhood and make a friendship bracelet-inspired choker--it's like 90's on 90's! Patience is definitely required for this style (and maybe a You-Tube tutorial), but I love how nostalgic it is. 

And lastly, I purchased some very fuchsia suede cording to make the last choker have an excellent color pop! Since I combined 3 individual pieces of cord, I glued it down side by side on the clamp and allowed it to dry before closing the clamp. I also took care to make sure the individual pieces of cord didn't end up twisted, so that the choker could lay flat when I was wearing it. You could also string some little gold beads onto the cord to make this style of choker even more fun!

Overall, I’d say the expansion of my choker collection was a huge success, and for very little effort. And fun fact, my wrist is about half the circumference of my neck, so these chokers double as wrapped bracelets for me! Now I just need some overalls and a scrunchie and we are good to go!

Are you as in love with chokers as I am? Actually, are you as in love with this revival of 90’s fashion as I am?

Stay lovely,

Thoughts on Living More Sustainably

I’ve always been kind of a geek for planet Earth. I blame the little trailer trips and hikes we took throughout my childhood, and all the veggies my mom made me eat. Okay, and I blame the mountains, the feeling of sunshine on my back, and all the flowers everywhere all the time.

Anyway, I do love my planet, and was even the little kid in middle school who bought WWF t-shirts and begged her parents to build her a compost pile. (TBH, I would not have taken care of it, so no hard feelings.) And recently, in a semester-long environmental health class, some of that love was reawakened, and I even joined an organization that has a literal farm right on my college campus. So as I embrace my tree-hugger nature once again, (no pun intended) I wanted to write a little about some of the things I learned from that class and that organization, and some of the ways I’ve been thinking about changing things up to help this floating green and blue orb I am living on!

1) Environmental health is a reciprocating interaction

If I had to pick a single big idea from my environmental health class, it would be that caring for the environment is not a one-way street. I honestly expected 4 months of lessons on reducing, reusing, and recycling, but environmental health is a lot more than that because our environment affects our health too. I suppose that I always saw helping that planet as just not littering or polluting because it preserves biodiversity. But living cleaner, greener lives is good for our individual health as well. By reducing resource consumption, waste, and pollution, we also work at reducing risks of respiratory and heart problems, as well as cancer. By preserving our forests we leave a slice of serenity in our lives. And actions such as greener transportation and vegetarianism can even increase our fitness and overall well-being. When you think about it, living green is better for us, and the lazy way we treat our earth backfires on more than just endangered animals.

2) Loving your planet is good for your psyche

In one of the most interesting topics we covered last semester was environmental psychology, which basically explains the great effects the natural environment has on your mental and therefore physical health. For example, natural light increases productivity, and having greenery in or viewed from a hospital room shows a decrease in the recovery time of patients. I may be a geek here, but I just think that is the coolest thing.

Personally, I can also speak to the stress reducing effects of working in and walking through nature, especially though my brief experience with Howdy Farm (that “literal farm on campus” organization). Whether it was taking some extra time to meander to my car after class, or weeding, or harvesting, I always walked away from an outdoor session feeling just plain better. I seem to remember that from my childhood too, that some of my brightest, happiest memories involved being out in nature, and I can’t think of a single time I went hiking or biking without smiling at the end of it all, even if I was dead tired.

3) Locally grown food is actually really awesome

In addition to chilling out and gardening, being a part of Howdy Farm was a super cool way to learn about (and eat a lot of) local food! A lot of the time, local food is grown more sustainably and not necessarily for the organic mark-up you would find in the grocery store. Although pesticides are extremely targeted, do a lot of good, and have an ever-decreasing environmental impact, at a location like Howdy Farm we used no pesticides whatsoever.

Pesticides and organic products aside though, the simple truth is that local, fresh food actually tastes pretty freaking amazing. You can debate all you want about nutritional benefit of GMO’s and pesticides and so on, but at the end of the day, if you are paying the same amount for food that tastes better, AND you are contributing to decreased fuel costs, AND you are learning to make a schedule like a “grown-up”, (ya know, to go buy the food) then you are kind of winning with farmer’s markets.

3) I make a TON of unnecessary purchases and trash

Although I learned about a lot more than the 3 R’s last semester, they definitely did come up in both my EH class and on Howdy Farm. And when it comes to reducing my purchases and wastes, I am not doing the environment any favors! I have recycled habitually for years, but the driving mechanisms of the reduce-reuse-recycle cycle are buying less overall, and buying sustainable or recycled products where possible. It’s great to throw things in the recycling bin, but if no one’s buying recycled products they will end up going into landfills anyway. By the same token, the more stuff you buy, the more waste you make, and the more natural resources you use.

Personally, I’ve always used paper plates and bowls for my meals as a means of convenience, and I realized just how wasteful it was as soon as I opened my eyes to living more sustainably! The same goes for paper towels in that they aren’t always necessary to clean up little messes. I also use plastic water bottles far too often (even if I do recycle), buy new clothes when I really don’t need them, and, regrettably, make a ton of trash with crafting! And so…

4) My crafting habits aren’t exactly sustainable

This was huge for me, and I think it’s part of what offset my DIY blogging for a little while, but I buy so many craft supplies that just sit waiting to be used—how awful for my beautiful earth and my cluttered headspace! Now, although in many cases home-made or restyled projects can use less materials than new purchases, crafting is still an area in my life that creates a ton of clutter and ends with a lot of unneeded leftovers. I really want to work on actually using those supplies that I already have, and reducing purchases AND wastes.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that crafting is evil and it going to kill me. I just think that in the future it is worth taking into consideration if there are ways I could reuse materials for a project, or if I have the financial resources to invest in more sustainable craft supplies with less packaging. Furthermore, when it comes to never-used party piñatas or yet another cute clutch, I need to keep in mind whether or not I will really be using the things I love to make.

5) It’s the little things.

This point is probably the most paramount one of the post, especially if you are reading this and panicking—when it comes to the environment, just do what you can. Yes, strive to buy less, recycle more, reduce your waste, and celebrate the earth, but at the end of the day you don’t have to do any more than what is within your financial and physical means. If you don’t have a farmers market, can’t afford the greener products, or just don’t have the time to wash dishes then that is completely and totally a-okay. It really is the small things that make a big difference, and half the time just considering the environment when you are going through daily life is helpful to reducing your carbon footprint. Furthermore, while being aware of your purchases is a very good thing, panicking over whether or not it is consciously responsible to buy that top you just love may not be helping anything.

There are people that devote their lives to making no trash, to creating new energy-saving inventions, and to saving the planet all on their own, but that by no means has to be all of us! Honestly, if everyone actually did what they could, the environmental health issues would be significantly lessened. The bottom line to all this is that as I continue to live my life and take part in making more of my own decisions, I want to consider the little blue planet in more of those choices. Not every food has to be organic, not every office supply has to be recycled, and not every thought has to be green. The idea is just to think about it and do a little, do your research and then do a little more where you can! And then go hiking or walking outdoors all the time because nature is just plain gorgeous and you need some time to breathe, my friend.

Do you commit to any “green” habits?

Stay lovely,

PS: I'm testing out some new visual branding and potentially some redesign for my blog (yes, again). My site might be a little bit of a mess during the transition, but I hope we will all love it at the end!

A Digital Fruit Salad Party DAY 7: Cherries and Watermelons on Some Cool Free Downloads

Happy Sunday!

You might not have noticed due the sporadic nature that is me posting on this blog, but I failed to post yesterday's set of fruity downloads--WHOOPS! The truth of the matter is that I was having too much of a jolly good time having a really lazy Saturday yesterday, so when I took up an offer for surprise plans in the evening, that post went unpublished. #lazybloggerprobs

So anyway, instead of dragging out this wonderfully nonsensical fruit salad party for yet another day, I figured that a double-whammy finale to the week was in order! And therefore, today I present today's fruits of the day-Watermelon and Cherries! I decided to save the best (well, MY personal favorites) for last!

So without further ado, I bring you the final installment of this crazy week of free things! You now have a full set of envelopes and cards to mix and match, as well as a couple ways to mix up your art prints and other downloads. I also bestow on you the power to repurpose the tech wallpapers in the most creative ways you can think of (since they are jpegs).

If you use any of this nonsense for something special or new or fun, give me a shout out on Instagram so I can see what you've created!

The watercolor printables throughout the week have used commercially free watercolor backgrounds from Lost + Taken, which should totally check out. The only exception is the peaches printable, which I found the background for in this post. Share the love guys!


Watermelon computer wallpaper
Watermelon printable envelope
“One in a Melon” punny card printable in portrait (top fold) // in landscape (side fold)
“One in a Melon” punny wall art print


“Cherry on top” punny card printable in portrait (top fold) // in landscape (side fold)
“Cherry on top” punny wall art print

The week's other fruits include Strawberries, Peaches, Kiwis, Blueberries, and Raspberries! Which fruit pun is your favorite? (Yes, I think that means you should look through all of them.)

Stay lovely,

**Please respect my copyright policy. If you modify or use my work, link back here for attribution. Also, don’t post this content as your own download, but rather link back to me, because everyone is free to join the fun and download through this website! For more on gross copyright things, click the link in this blog's footer.**

A Digital Fruit Salad Party Day 5: "Snazzy, Jazzy, Razz-berry" Printables and Wallpapers

It's Fridayyyyy! I can't believe I am already on day 5 of these little downloads! They have been really fun to share and try to get creative with, and I really love pretending that I do graphic design :P

Today I also tried to be creative with these little cards to prove that these nifty downloads go way beyond their original purpose! It may not be easy to see, but I used actual cutting and pasting to layer the background and card images to add a little 3-dimensionality to these cards.

I inserted the "cell phone background" image into a word document, cropped it to the same dimensions as the other cards, used the "washout" tool, printed in color, and cut and folded that background as it's own mini card. Then, I printed the half-color raspberry card, cut the shape out, and taped it to the front of the patterned card! I just thought it would be fun to show a way that you can alter the content I am giving you (provided that if you post about it, you link back to me), and show another alternative to the full-color stationery if you are trying to save yourself some ink!

Anyway, I hope you are enjoying this project of mine! Make sure to let me know which of these is your favorite and how you might be using them!

Strawberry, peach, kiwi, and blueberry printables and wallpapers are also available!


“Snazzy, jazzy” punny card printable in portrait (top fold) // in landscape (side fold)
“Snazzy, jazzy” punny wall art print

Stay lovely,

**Please respect my copyright policy. If you modify or use my work, link back here for attribution. Also, don’t post this content as your own download, but rather link back to me, because everyone is free to join the fun and download through this website! For more on gross copyright things, click the link in this blog's footer.**

A Digital Fruit Salad Party Day 4: Blueberry Sweet Freebies

Hey guys! Thought I forgot about today's free fruity fun? Never! I just had a busy morning... okay, and a nap.

Today, in addition to your free downloads of tech wallpapers, art prints, cards, and envelopes, I wanted to show you how you can print in black and white and STILL bring on the color. I used watercolor paints to create a gradient wash and splatter paint effect on the art prints, which is super exciting if you don't happen to have a color printer. As long as you print with toner, you can paint the cards and art prints to your hearts desire and make them your own!

Now if this is your first trip to wonderland this week, try checking back to my first post of the week to get an idea of what this party is all about! Also, don't forget I have a similar set of downloads for strawberries, peaches, and kiwis already all ready for you. (Thanks, SAT grammar!) Enjoy!


Blueberry computer wallpaper
“Don't be blue” punny card printable in portrait (top fold) // in landscape (side fold)
“Don't be blue” punny wall art print

Stay lovely,

**Please respect my copyright policy. If you modify or use my work, link back here for attribution. Also, don’t post this content as your own download, but rather link back to me, because everyone is free to join the fun and download through this website! For more on gross copyright things, click the link in this blog's footer.**

A Digital Fruit Salad Party Day 3: Kiwi-themed Downloadable Goodies

Happy Wednesday! (We are halfway through the week--yay!) For day 3 of my digital fruit salad party I chose to make you all some downloads featuring kiwis. I've never actually been a fan of the fruit myself, but they are still such a fun color and have such a darling name.

If you are wondering what I'm doing with these freebies, check out my first post of this week-long download party! (Yes, free things for you every single day of this week!) And don't forget to have fun mixing and matching the cards and envelopes that I made just for you. I hope you have a great rest of your week and don't forget to head back here tomorrow as the free stuff continues.

Watercolor background on printables found here.


“Be my kiwi” punny card printable in portrait (topfold) // in landscape (side fold)
"Be my kiwi" punny wall art print

Is there a particular fruit you're hoping will be a part of the party?

Stay lovely,

**Please respect my copyright policy. If you modify or use my work, link back here for attribution. Also, don’t post this as your own download, but rather link back to me, because everyone is free to join the fun and download through this website! For more on gross copyright things, click the link in this blog's footer.**