Sunday, December 31, 2017

Monthly Reflections | December

What I'm currently up to in life and on the blog. #currently #takingstock #monthlyreflections

"Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end." - Lucius Annaeus Seneca

It's time to say goodbye to 2017 with my final reflections. I learned a lot this year, met some really awesome people and experienced growth in more ways than I could have imagined. I hope you all make the best of the last few moments of this year and have a blessed new year to come. Peace out, 2017!

Thursday, December 28, 2017

One Little Word | 2018

Today I'm sharing the word I've chosen to be my beacon for the coming year. #onelittleword One Little Word | 2018 - A Simpler Grace

"Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing." - Pele

In the blink of an eye, another year flashed before us. What feels like just yesterday, when I sat down to write this very post for my 2017 word of the year, is three-hundred and sixty-five days in the past, and we are now preparing to jump into 2018 with both feet.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Dear 2017 | A Letter of Reflection

Dear 2017 | A Letter of Reflection - A Simpler Grace #dear2017

"She remembered who she was and the game changed." - Lalah Delia

Dear 2017,

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 104

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it." 
- William Arthur Ward

Thursday, December 21, 2017

2017 Reading Wrap Up

Let's talk about our favorite books of 2017! I'm looking back over the year and sharing my favorites. #whatIread

At the end of last year, when I sat down and planned out my 2017 master reading list, I never thought I'd be able to read so many books in the year. I set a lofty goal of two hundred books and as the publication of this post today, I've read one hundred ninety-seven. With several books still in progress, I will meet this goal by the end of the month. 

Monday, December 18, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 103

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"The mind that comes to rest is tended in ways it cannot intend; is borne, preserved, and comprehended by what it cannot comprehend." - Wendall Berry

Thursday, December 14, 2017

If You and I Had Coffee | vol 19

Let's meet and have a conversation over coffee? #coffeedates

If you and I had coffee...

We'd meet up at the brand new cafe in town - the place where they serve their beverages in mugs with inspirational quotes and phrases printed on them and big workbench style tables to encourage socializing and a sense of community. We'd order our drinks - I would get a hot tea with lemon and a swirl of organic honey to soothe a sore throat - and we'd grab a couple chairs in the corner.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

ASG Creative Corner with Mia

ASG Creative Corner with Mia - A Simpler Grace

Good day, and welcome to the third installment of the ASG Creative Corner. With the coming holidays, this will be the last post in the series until the new year but fret not, there are plenty of spaces if you'd like to share your creative passion. Keep reading if you're interested in signing up.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 102

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog. Come by and tell me what you're grateful for. #gratitude #feelingthankful

"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don't always spoil the good things and make them unimportant." - Doctor Who

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

ASG Creative Corner with San

ASG Creative Corner with San - A Simpler Grace

It's Wednesday and it's the second installment in the ASG Creative Corner! I'm so excited that this series has taken off the way it has and I'm always looking for new creatives to feature. Keep reading until the end for more info on how to join in!

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

What I Read | November

A look back at what I read last month. #ASGbookshelf #whatIread

Around here, the first Tuesday of the month is when we talk books. That day is today and I have all of my reads from November here to share with you. I read some good ones and a couple that weren't anything special for me, a few recommendations from friends and a new release that I've been counting down the days until I could get my hands on a copy. It was a great month for reading!

Monday, December 04, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 101

I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"Every job is good if you do your best and work hard." - Laura Ingalls Wilder

Hey friends! How was your weekend? Yesterday in my weekly newsletter, I asked if you were someone who needed to wait until the beginning of a new week or month or even the new year before you took the steps to make a positive change in your life. Or are you the type of person who begins right now.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

What I Learned | Fall 2017

I'm sharing the lessons I learned this fall. #whatIlearned What I Learned | Fall 2017 - A Simpler Grace

It's that time of the year where we meet up over at Emily Freeman's place and share the things we've learned this season. I've joined in on these fun seasonal prompts a few times now and I'm amazed at how much insight I've gained into myself, just by recognizing the lessons I've learned over the course of a few months.

Here's what I learned this fall:

Friday, December 01, 2017

Hello December | Goals

Tracking my goals for the month of December #goals

Here we are. The last four weeks of 2017. I am kicking it into high gear and hammering out some work over the next few weeks. I also want to finish up some projects I've been working on and spend some time working on me. Starting on the first of January, I'm going to give Whole30 another try. I wasn't fully prepared when I tried it last spring, so I want to do a lot of research this month and plan out some menus and give myself a good foundation to start from. If you have ANY tips, especially for GF/Veg survival tips for Whole30, please send them my way! Happy December, friends.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Grandma Hermits | The 2017 Holiday Cookie Swap

Grandma Hermits Recipe | The 2017 Holiday Cookie Swap #cookies #recipe #holidays #christmas

Hello, friends! Today is a day I've been planning for several months and I'm really excited that it is finally here. :) I love baking cookies for the holidays and I know a lot of other bloggers do as well, so I wanted to start a virtual cookie swap so my friends and I could share our favorite holiday cookie recipes with you.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Monthly Reflections | November

What I'm currently up to in life and on the blog. #currently #takingstock #monthlyreflections

"To love your life, do nothing with rush or resentment, but do everything as if you love it." - Ann Voskamp

Monday, November 27, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 100

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

It's been a crazy day already with lots of family stuff and I had tons of work to do today, but the internet has been out most of the morning. How true is that for the Monday following a holiday weekend? (insert eye roll emoji here) So, better to write this post late than never, yeah? Hope you guys are having a great Monday!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

ASG Creative Corner with Anthea

I am beyond excited because today is the first guest post in the ASG Creative Corner series! I am friends with so many amazing bloggers who happen to be quite creative in various mediums. Whether it's paint or film or words, my hope is to share some of their work here so you can get to know the people behind the blogs. Today, I have Anthea, the blogger behind My 30 Something Adventures, so I'm going to go ahead and hand her the keys to the blog!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 99

 Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

It's Monday and usually, I'd be on my second cup of something caffeinated by now, but I already have a pep in my step this morning. Call it a good weekend or say it's the holiday week ahead. Whatever it may be, I ain't mad at it! (Gosh, I feel weird saying that.)

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

If You and I Had Coffee | vol 18

Join me for a conversation over coffee #coffeedates

If you and I had coffee...

We'd meet up at a Christmas tree farm, one of my favorite places to go for a stroll in the wintertime. Although we won't be doing any shopping today, we would grab mugs of mulled cider from the concession stand inside the barn, then lazily wander through the paths of living Fraser Firs and Blue Spruces, inhaling the heavenly scent of evergreen as we chat about our lives.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 98

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"The human spirit lives on creativity and dies in conformity and routine." - Vilayat Inayat Khan

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

What I Read | October

A look back at what I read last month. #ASGbookshelf #whatIread

October was a month for reading. Thanks to a few sick days and the Dewey's 24-hour readathon, I plowed through twenty-eight books last month! There were some really good reads and some so-so ones, but they are all worth mentioning here. Before we jump into the books, I have a quick question for you...

If you are a reader and enjoy reading nonfiction books, I'm curious how you rate (give stars) those books. Since they are usually more informational and not a story with a narrative arc, do you star based on how interesting you find it, or the accuracy of the information discussed, or do you just go with a how the book makes you feel overall? I asked this question of a friend the other day and he had a whole method for how he rated his nonfiction books and now I'm curious about yours! If you are so inclined, please share in the comments below. :)

Monday, November 06, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 97

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

Autumn came in with a bluster this week. It is cold and rainy and the leaves are falling from the trees - some, still green. I'm definitely excited about the cooler weather. I've been waiting (not so patiently) to wear jeans and sweaters and the time has finally come. I'm brewing a cup of tea as I write this and then I'm jumping into what will be a hectic week. I hope you all have a great Monday!

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Hello November | Goals

Tracking the goals I've set both in my personal and blogging life for November. #goals

Does anyone else have a candy hangover this morning? I only had one trick-or-treater and am now stuck with a basket full of candy I don't even enjoy. I did eat two or three of the mini Twizzlers, mainly out of boredom, but they don't taste as good as they used to when I was a kid. Why is that?

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Monthly Reflections | October

What I'm currently up to in life and on the blog. #currently #takingstock #monthlyreflections

"I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers." - L.M. Montgomery

Bippity-boppity and poof! October is gone. It's been a crazy month and I'm surprised, but it's leaving me a little sentimental and wishing I were in a different place. How was October for you?

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

ASG Creative Corner Guest Post Series | An Introduction

ASG Creative Corner Guest Post Series | An Introduction - A Simpler Grace

Ok, friends. I've been hinting for two months about a new creative guest post series that I was starting and then life happened and I never got around to putting the plan in motion. Now, the time has come!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

#Collaboreads | A One-Word Title

Some thoughts on my latest #collaboreads pick. #asgbookshelf  #Collaboreads | A One-Word Title - A Simpler Grace
This post contains affiliate links. Using one of my links doesn't cost you a penny more, but it supports A Simpler Grace and allows me to keep doing what I love. As always, all opinions expressed are my own. For more info on affiliate links, please see my disclosures page(*asterisk denotes affiliate link)

I'm jumping in with a little book review today and joining Rachel and Kristin for #Collaboreads. I think it's been a few months since I've done this link up, but I'm excited to be back. This month, our book prompt is a one-word title. When I was looking through my stack of to-read books, I found several books that had single-word titles, but most of them were nonfiction and I find it difficult to use the format below when it is not a fiction book. So, I decided to peruse my library and choose from a genre I don't usually read, dystopian science fiction.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 96

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"Being busy isn't the same as being productive." - Melissa Camara Wilkins

I had a nice, slow weekend and it was much needed - especially since I looked at the calendar and realized we are exactly one month away from Thanksgiving. And then the panic set in. How in the world does it feel like we just started 2017, like spring was just here with new flowers blooming and the world coming alive again and now, here we are in the last quarter of the year?

Thursday, October 19, 2017

#MeToo | A Memoir of Rape Culture and Unwanted Advances

#MeToo | A Memoir of Rape Culture and Unwanted Advances - A Simpler Grace

To the boy in junior high who made a game of snapping my bra to see if he could get it to unfasten...

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

In Love on Instagram | Fall 2017

Friends, this is quickly becoming one of my favorite series to write. I love Instagram because it is so inspiring, visually, but I've also had the pleasure of connecting with some people who talk about real life in a very encouraging way and share some of the wisdom they've gained on their journey. Below are the four Instagram accounts I'm loving this season. These are just snapshots of what they have to offer, so I hope you'll click the links to check out their full feeds and follow along.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Dear Comparison | A Letter of Resignation

A letter ending my life-long relationship with comparison. #letters - Dear Comparison | A Letter of Resignation - A Simpler Grace

"Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we'll ever do." - Brené Brown

Dear Comparison,

Monday, October 16, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 95

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"We are called to meet Emmanuel here, in the nitty-gritty of our ordinary, surrounded by our actual circumstances." - Alexandra Kuykendall

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

If You and I Had Coffee | vol 17

Join me for a conversation over coffee? #coffeedates

If you and I had coffee...

We'd meet up on my back deck because it still feels like summer outside and the trees have only just started to change from their greens to the rich goldens, crimsons and oranges of fall. I'd kick my feet up on the wrought iron glider and sip on my frozen PSL - the ONLY one I will have this year. I'd tell you that I've never been a big fan of the trendy drinks at Starbucks but I grant myself one treat a year.

Monday, October 09, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 94

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

Good morning, friends. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, does it currently feel like fall where you are? The temperature here is about 15° warmer than it usually is around this time of the year. Is this the definition of an Indian Summer? I believe it is, although I hate that term.

Saturday, October 07, 2017

What I Read | September

 A look back at what I read last month. #ASGbookshelf #whatIread What I Read | September - A Simpler Grace

It was quite a month with quite a lot of good books to read. I haven't had this many four-star books in a long time, so I was pleased with what was on my bookshelf in September. Sadly, I did have to abandon one book, which I hate doing, but it leads me to a question...

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Hello October | Goals

Tracking the goals I've set both in my personal and blogging life and reviewing how I did in September. Hello October | Goals - A Simpler Grace #goals

I'm getting off to a late start this month, but better late than never, yeah? September started off great then about halfway through, it quickly went downhill, so I decided to take a little breather. I did want to hop on and share my goals for the month because I wouldn't be me without a list of things I want to accomplish. Do you set goals on a monthly basis? 

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Monthly Reflections | September

What I've been up to in life and on the blog. #currently #takingstock #monthlyreflections

Hey, friends. I took a couple weeks away from the blog and social media to spend some time dealing with a few things and regrouping. It's good to do that every now and then, right? I'm back today to wrap up the month but I'm not sure that I'll be writing here in the coming weeks as frequently as I normally do. I'm hoping to be back soon, but only time will tell. Thanks to everyone who checked in. I really appreciate it. Hope you all have a great start to October. 

Monday, September 18, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 93

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"Sometimes we spend so much time and energy thinking about where we want to go that we don't notice where we happen to be." - Dan Gutman

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

If You and I Had Coffee | vol 16

A conversation over coffee #coffeedates

If you and I had coffee...

We'd meet up for a paint night. You know, one of those places that outfits you with an apron, canvas, brushes, pigments and a big glass of wine? I've been all about expressing my creativity lately, so a night painting would be so much fun. I'd grab a glass of white zinfandel and we'd choose two easels near the back of the gallery so we could still chat without disrupting the class. I'd tell you that the smell of paint and the feeling of wearing a smock reminds me of being in primary school when we'd all wear an old button-up shirt (donated by the dads) to paint in and how that has always been a very nostalgic feeling for me.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 92

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

Good morning, friends and happy Monday. Today's post will be short and sweet because I have a lot to do and a limited amount of time to do it in. Hope you have a great day. Keep those coffee mugs full!

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

What I Read | August + FREE Fall Reading List Printable

A look back at what I read last month. #ASGbookshelf #whatIread

Hey, bookworms! It's time to chat about the books we read in August. I have quite a list and there are so many good books on it, so I can't wait to share those with you. Also, since we are beginning a new season, that means I have a new colorful reading list printable as a special gift just for you. It's my way to thank you for being a loyal reader. There are more details about how to download your own copy later in this post. Now, let's jump into the books!

Monday, September 04, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 91

 Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

Good Monday morning, friends. If you are in the U.S., I hope you are enjoying an extra long weekend on this Labor Day. If not, I pray your coffee is strong. :) For realz though, I hope you have a wonderful and productive day and that it kicks off a good week for you. 

Sunday, September 03, 2017

What I Learned | Summer 2017

Sharing lessons learned this summer in a linkup with Emily Freeman. What I Learned | Summer 2017 - A Simpler Grace

With every season of life, comes new lessons to learn. Some of them are good while others are difficult experiences but each is valuable in its own way. Today, I'm joining the lovely Emily Freeman (author and blogger) in her What We Learned writing prompt and sharing the lessons I've learned this season.

Saturday, September 02, 2017

Hello September | Goals

I'm sharing the monthly goals I've set both in my personal and blogging life. #goals

"You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream." - C.S. Lewis

It's Saturday and I'm working. This is how September starts. I can't complain, though. I had planned on working this weekend because I have a lot of writing and reading to do. So, hello September. Let's get to it.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Monthly Reflections | August

What I'm currently up to in life and on the blog. #currently #takingstock #monthlyreflections

Well, the month is over and I feel indifferent about it. There were highs and lows and although it was a tough month for me physically, professionally, it wasn't that bad. I was in and out of the hospital having a lot of testing done and slept a good portion of the month away, but I read a lot of books too. There was the eclipse and then there was Harvey. August was full of lots of other things too, but I must say, I'm glad September is here.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 90

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn."  - Harriet Beecher Stowe

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Go Big or Go Home

The secret to being an overachiever in an underachieving world. Go Big or Go Home - A Simpler Grace

I was born an overachiever. It's in my blood. Woven into my DNA. I grew up before the days of participation trophies, the days when you had to work hard for what you wanted. I have a type-A personality and I thrive on competition. So what's a gal like me to do in this new world of underachieving?

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

#Collaboreads | A Book in a Series

A bookish link up with friends #collaboreads

First of all, can I just share how I wish I was staring out onto blue water like the header photo above? That, obviously, is not the case... It's Collaboreads day and that means I'm linking up with Rachel and Kristin to talk about my book in this month's prompt - a book in a series. I had several ideas about the book I wanted to read, but a few of them are waitlisted at my library, so I decided to pick up a very popular author whom I have never read anything from, James Patterson. I know, I'm way behind the game, but keep reading to see what I thought.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Simple Gratitude | 89

Today I'm sharing my #gratefulheart on the blog #gratitude #feelingthankful

"Keep your face to the sun and you will never see the shadows." - Helen Keller

Happy eclipse Monday! Are you planning on watching the solar eclipse today? I will not be. I need to make a trip to Costco and the grocery story then I have a few projects I need to finish up. After all of that is done, I'll probably need a nap! Hope you enjoy your day!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

If You and I Had Coffee | vol 15

I'm inviting you to join me for some conversation over coffee! #coffeedates

If you and I had coffee...

We'd meet up our regular little spot in town where there is never a long line at the counter and the atmosphere is cozy chic. We'd order our drinks off the hand-lettered chalkboard menu - I'd get a rooibos tea with a dash of cinnamon added to it - and we'd grab a few of the club chairs near the modern floor-to-ceiling front windows. I'd comment about how the natural lighting is perfect for an Instagram shot and we'd both playfully reach for our phones.