Good Jams No. 11

Good Jams No. 11 - songs to add to your playlist | January 2017

Hot damn, been a long time since I dropped some tunes in this joint! I’ve featured a couple songs in recent Instagram Stories and had people inquire about the artists, so figured a Good Jams roundup was long overdue. Here are a few great tunes I’ve been enjoying lately.

Sleeping on the Blacktop” by Colter Walls  (Click Here to Listen on Spotify) – Love Johnny Cash? Okay then, you’re welcome. Also check out “The Devil Wears a Suit and Tie”.

(more…)

Not Everyone is Living

"Everyone is dying, but not Everyone is Living." - Free Printable Download Design by Thyme is Honey

Last week I gave my office a little facelift. Wasn’t any major overhaul, I was just feeling like I needed some fresh elements to keep me inspired. I had recently purchased a cool green vintage chair that I wanted to add to my office, so I bought this cute accent table from Target to go with it, then replaced the prints in all the frames in my office as well as hung up my 2017 Printable Calendar (get yours right here). I had been writing down quotes that I wanted framed in my office to help inspire me every day, so I finally made time to design prints for each one and I’ll be sharing them here in the coming weeks.

Everyone is dying, but not everyone is living is something I try to keep in mind each day. What are the things that truly make you feel alive and make you grateful for your time here on planet earth? I try to keep those things in mind throughout my day as a reminder of why I do what I do.

Download the free 8.5″ x 11″ Printable File

Travel the World

Travel the World Print by Thyme is Honey available for purchase on Etsy $4.

I recently got a sweet email from a reader about this old post I did in 2014 featuring the quote above, asking if it was possible to purchase it as a print so she could hang it in her livingroom. I glanced over my shoulder, at my framed print of it hanging on the wall of my office, and realized that it was kind of funny that one of my favorite prints (something I look at and read every day!) wasn’t in my shop.

Fast forward an hour or two and I had reworked the design (I had no idea where the original file was) and added it to my Etsy Shop as a digital download. The $5 purchase will give you 4 pdf files, either 8.5 x 11 or 24 x 36 sizes, either with black or white backgrounds, so you can choose what fits best with your space! The larger version can be scaled down to fit smaller frames.

You can purchase the print here, then print at home or simply take the pdf file into you local office store to have it printed. I usually ask them to print it on plotter paper, and you can have a large one done for less than $5. If you make the enlarged print you can frame it in this 36″ x 24″ frame from Target ($9.99) and voila! $15 piece of art for your abode.

My Favorite Healthy Dinners

Start eating healthier with 6 o my Favorite Healthy Dinner Recipes for Busy Nights!   | Thyme is Honey

My #21PageChallenge starts tomorrow. If you don’t know what it is, here’s a super quick summary: it’s a challenge group that focuses on filling out one of my organizational pages each day January 1 through 21 to help develop new or healthier habits for the new year. It’s free, and we use a Facebook Group for accountability and motivation. It’s fun and I’d love to have you join me! Get started by joining The Facebook Group

Meal planning can be such a drag, but part of what makes the challenge so great is sharing recipes with each other! Below are 6 of my current favorite (I switch things up a lot!) healthy meals to make for dinners throughout the week:

  1. Pesto Zuccini Noodles with Broccoli and Bacon from Perry’s Plate – We have been eating a ton of zoodles ever since we got home from Thailand, where I learned that the easiest way to make them is with a Julienne Peeler. It’s so fast and easy! I honestly have two zoodle machines/contraptions in my kitchen and this kicks both their asses. I’ve switched up this recipe by adding spinach instead of broccoli, chicken instead of bacon, sometimes salmon or tilapia etc. I also love zoodles with feta cheese (amazing). There are endless combinations and they are SO good.
  2.  Mediterranean Chicken Lettuce Wraps from Martha Stewart – These are delicious and we like to make them as lettuce wraps or as a big salad.
  3. Quinoa Fiesta Enchilada Bake from Skinny Taste -Some friends recently cooked this when they had us over for dinner. We were huge fans! They also commented on how great it is warmed up, so I think it will likely be a dish that I make on Sunday and eat for lunches throughout the week.
  4. Cauliflower Fried Rice from Martha Stewart – Another obsession we’ve had since our trip to Thailand has been Fried Rice! We love this recipe made with cauliflower rice for making it a bit healthier (I swear you can’t really tell) and we usually add a hefty portion of pork or chicken. Meat, eggs, and veggies — it’s a great meal! The leftovers are tasty on their own or in lettuce wraps.
  5. Salmon and Avocado Caesar Salad with Fried Egg from Cafe Delites – We will pretty much put a slab of salmon and a fried egg on top of anything and call it dinner. I definitely use store-bought dressing with this recipe but it’s a great example of how to make a simple, healthy, beautiful dinner.
  6. Healthy Buffalo Chicken Bowls from Pretty Providence – I love “bowl” meals. They are so easy! We’ve been making variations of this one for the past year…we switch up the type of meat

Best Photography Backdrops + Tips

The Best Photography Backdrops: affordable tips for bloggers and business owners who want to improve their photos! | Thyme is Honey

Photography is an incredible skill for small business owners, especially in a market that has become highly visual! You can save yourself an incredible amount of money if you are able to produce high-quality images for use on your website, social media, and promotional materials.

Thankfully you can hire someone to handle this for you if it’s in your budget (learn more about working with me), but for many small business owners a full-time social media manager + content creator is not in the budget. What then?

Over the years I fell into the role of content creator for many of my clients, and needed to help them fill their need for beautiful imagery while also staying within their budgets. I learned how to create quality work with budget-friendly supplies and equipment. My eBook, Learning to Master iPhone Photography, is a great resource for business owners who need to improve their photography skills. I’ve also always kept a running list of my favorite Resources + Supplies on my website for people to reference. On the list you’ll find my favorite tri-pods and lenses, but also some of my favorite props and materials. Below are some of my favorite tips for affordably improving your home studio + photography:

FOAM BOARD
The first step in a home studio is to purchase 2-3 pieces of foam board! I walk you through setting up and using your $10 home studio in my eBook, so please reference that if you are unfamiliar with how to do this.  You can get a pack of 10 sheets delivered right to your door through Amazon.
Foamboard – $24 for a pack of 10

How to Improve your Blog Photography

CONTACT PAPER
Contact paper is an incredible way to create fast backgrounds that are cheap and easy to move/store. Having a few of these on hand provides you with new options to change up your home studio and add texture to your photos. Contact paper is an adhesive paper that comes in a roll, I simply adhere it to a piece of Foam Board to create a DIY backdrop. Here’s an example where I used a faux brick contact paper as a background. Below are my favorite contact papers.

Brick Contact Paper – $22.95
White/Dark Marble Contact Paper – $9.60
White/Light Marble Contact Paper – $9.58
Black Marble Contact Paper – $12.04
Faux Wood Contact Paper – $19.99

PAINT FOAM BOARD OR TAGBOARD
A simple coat of paint on a sheet of tagboard or foam board creates a custom background. I’ve done this to create branded backgrounds for several clients. It’s a fast and easy way to get the exact color you want or need for a specific project.

ENLARGE A PRINT AT OFFICEMAX
Another one of my favorite tricks is to create a  pattern or design in photoshop, and then have it enlarged and printed on plotter paper at your local office supply store. They can usually print them out at 36″ x 36″ inches and they can easily be rolled for storage.

RANDOMLY USEFUL THINGS
Mounting Putty – great for getting your flatlay items in the perfect spot or elevating them slightly off the background.
Selfie Stick – for more than selfies! You’d be surprised how often one of these can help you get the perfect instagram shot. Try holding it above the shot with the timer on in order to get your hands into the frame.
Bottle Caps – Call me crazy, I always have a bag of bottle caps handy during a shoot! Once you have them, you’ll find dozens of ways to use them. They’re great for positioning bottles so they don’t roll away, while lifting them off the background just slightly. You can also stack them to create a little raiser for positioning plates, drinks or products.
iPhone Lens Kit – Can be great for getting close-up or wide-angle photos without needing a fancy camera. Just use your phone!

BROWSE YOUR LOCAL GOODWILL OR HOME STORE
Your local GOODWILL or SAVERS are great places to find old cutting boards, serving trays, or tables with interesting tops! Your local home supply store can also be a great place to find countertop remnants or oversized tiles that make great photo props.

Be sure to check our my Resources Page for a full list of the lighting, equipment and supplies I use and recommend! If you want to learn more about using your iPhone to promote your business, check out my eBook, Learning to Master iPhone Photography