May 2016 | A Pretty Penny

Black, Pink & White Bachelorette Party...

Yesterday I threw my little sister Emily a bachelorette party. She is getting married on May 27th and I couldn't be more excited! Since she is my only sister I kind of went all out, but parties are my favorite anyway. I had so much fun putting it together and surprising her. It took quite a bit of time, but it was so worth it!

The backdrop is just cut up tissue paper taped onto butchers paper. I learned how to do that wonderful craft from the lovely Meg Livingston. She's a gem. (instagram: @meglivingston

The golden mylar balloons were purchased at Zurchers and you can blow them up yourself. The pink, black, and white tassels that were on my entertainment center I also purchased at Zurchers. they come packaged separately, but I put them onto on string.

The gold sequin tablecloth which I am so in love with I purchased on Amazon! For $12!!!!! It was worth every penny.

I purchased all three cake stands at Target, because Target has all the best things. (here, here) I also got both candy jars that held the bubble gum and rock candy at Target as well. (here) You can never have too many decorations. Especially when they are that cute.

The drink station was one of my favorite parts. I purchased the cute 'cheers' cups at Target for a reasonable price. Then I got the idea to put sprinkles on it from (@meglivingston). She is the best party planner. I got white candy melts from Michaels, melted them in the microwave, put the chocolate on the edges of the cups and then put sprinkles on top so they would stick, and they turned out darling! I got all the cute straws at Zurchers and just put them in one of my glasses.

Miscellaneous party items: Gold dot confetti I purchased at Target($2 a bag), black & pink confetti gems were purchased at Zurchers, fuchsia table fringe I purchased on Amazon, pink plates were purchased at Zurchers, gold napkins were purchased at Target.

My mom put together those cute party favors full of treats and Essie's "Bachelorette Bash" polish, because, how fitting is that?


Dining Room Table: Desert Wood Works...

As we were planning on moving into our townhouse a few months ago I started to think of what I wanted in our living room, dining room, bedroom etc...I came across Desert Wood Works and instantly fell in love with their work. 

We talked back and forth and they presented this table as an idea. I loved it immediately! They began crafting. We got to pick the size and stain. It was so fun to work with them and know that this table was being made just for us! I have absolutely loved having this table in our dining room and it has so much character.

We don't have much up on the walls yet, and I promise we have 4 chairs...just for photo purposes I took the other 2 out.

I would highly recommend Desert Wood Works if you are looking for a table or other wood inquiries. They don't only make tables!
Check out their work:


What Makes Me Strong...

Strength. When I think of that word a toned gym rat comes to mind. We associate the word strength with physical appearance. That is not always the case. I know so many strong women around me and I love finding new ones, especially since BodyGuardz has launched their "The Case For Strong Women." There are so many amazing stories. It made me think, "How am I strong?"

Strength to me, has to come from the inside, before it can ever come from the outside. It is so important to feel strong, and it doesn't have to be in the physical form.

Over the years I have had to rebuild my mental strength. I have struggled with feelings of depression, insecurity and inadequacy. I dealt with it in all the wrong ways. In high school I dealt with it by not eating. In college I dealt with it by sleeping excessively and not getting out of bed.

I would constantly tell myself I wasn't good enough, that I would never succeed and that I would never be happy. It was like trying to swim with a lead jacket on, and every new thought like that only pulled me lower.

My life dramatically changed through one girl. She might not even know it to this day, but it is her that I thank that I can see the happiness around me. She said she took a challenge from her friend to find the happiness in each day by writing down every single thing that made her happy that day. I decided to try it, and it was the best decision I ever made.

I made a blog to keep track of all my happiness. It was before I made this blog, and it was called "Happiness Is..." My lists seemed silly at first, being filled with the most mundane or simple things, but they were always the best. Because it is really all the small things that make up the big things in life.

My lists would go as follows:

Happiness Is...
- freshly cut strawberries
- knowing there is only 20 minutes left in the work day
- coming home to a clean kitchen
- shaved legs
- when my favorite song comes on spotify
- painting my finger nails
- catching a glimpse of my wedding ring
- that last goodnight kiss from my husband

I would make one of those every single day until it became a habit, and the more I did it, the happier I became. The less I would dwell on why I wasn't good enough and the more I recognized the amazing things that made up my life.

I am strong because I don't let my insecurities and inadequacies overtake my life anymore. I am strong because I let happiness win. Somedays are still harder than others, but I gets easier.

While I was at the Lantern Fest at the end of April I decided to remind myself that I am strong and that I can and deserve to be happy. Luckily I have a pretty amazing husband who is good at reminding me.

Even if you don't think you are strong, or strong enough. Remind yourself that it is all the little things that make you strong. You can't ever have something big without all the little things making it up. So you remind yourself to be strong, and to be happy.

I challenge all you out there who are feeling the same way to try The Happiness Challenge and I promise you'll start to see a difference in the way you think and view your happiness. 


$100 Giveaway with Sister Missionary Mall...

Outfit 1: SHIRT: Grace Top / SKIRT: Sister Missionary Mall (not listed online) / SHOES: Valentino / BAG: Amazon / SUNGLASSES: Forever 21 / NECKLACE: old, similar here

Outfit 2: SHIRT: Lucy Top / SKIRT: Adeline Skirt / SHOES: Christian Louboutin

I am so excited to be teaming up with the Sister Missionary Mall to give one lucky winner a $100 gift card/credit to their store! It can be redeemed online or in store. And guess what? You don't have to be a sister missionary or a Utah Valley local to shop there. Plus they have a great selection of cute modest outfits.

It is so hard for me to find modest skirts or dresses that are modest. When I visited there store I loved how many different options they had, and they were all cute.

How to enter:

1. Follow @sara.andd & @sistermissionarymall on Instagram
2. Like my photo on Instagram (@sara.andd)
3. Tag 3 friends in the comment section of my photo on Instagram

The giveaway will end Wednesday May 11 at midnight, and the winner will be announced by 7:00pm (Mountain Time) on Thursday May 12. GOOD LUCK! 

*also a really cool thing about the Sister Missionary Mall is if you need anything altered it is free! And it takes about 2 days to get back to you. How neat!

Also head on over to their STORE to see what cute things they have!


Blush Shirt: 2 Ways...

OUTFIT 1: SHIRT: Forever 21 (similar here) / SKIRT: old, (similar here) / SHOES: Valentino / BRACELETS: Stella & Dot, J Crew (ON SALE), H&M (similar here) / BAG: Michael Kors (ON SALE) / SUNGLASSES: Forever 21

OUTFIT 2: SHIRT: Forever 21 (similar here) / PANTS: Forever 21 / HAT: Forever 21 / SHOES: Forever 21 (out of tan, similar here) / NECKLACE: Dot & Evelyn / RING: Dot & Evelyn

I recently purchased this blush blouse from Forever 21. I love the color blush during spring and it has been the perfect spring shirt, especially since it has been a little chilly. It is the perfect shirt to pair with a skirt and be formal or for a casual day outfit.

My turquoise accessories in the casual outfit have been my favorite new discovery. I have always loved turquoise rings and was so excited when I found Dot & Evelyn. It hasn't left my finger since I got it. It is the perfect accent. I am so excited to share that since I love it so much you can now get 20% off Dot & Evelyns shop by using the code: SARA20. So head on over HERE to check out their shop and get 20% off.