Grace, Not Perfection

Emily Ley’s book, Grace, Not Perfection launches next week, just days before I will meet her in person among the lovely ladies at MTH. She is hosting a virtual book signing tonight at 8 EST, which can be viewed here if you’d like to join in on the fun! You can visit this page to learn more about the book and read a preview here. It has been so fun to watch Emily’s book-writing journey (which included many nights in her local Starbucks after her little ones went to bed!) and see the heart behind her story through the snippets she’s shared on social media (this sweet video is my favorite!).


I share this with y’all because I’m passionate about living a meaningful, intentional, engaged life, and Emily has modeled this well for me. She worked hard to build her dream job one step at a time, from designing monograms on her MacBook Air to launching the Simplified Planner and building a well-loved brand that encourages women to hold themselves to a standard of grace, not perfection. Her book is sure to be a treasured one!

See my favorite products from Emily Ley’s fall launch here.

Emily Ley Fall Launch

Y’all. I’m so excited. Yesterday was Emily Ley’s fall launch day and she’s announced that they now offer monogramming on their planners! I purchased my first Simplified Planner this year and I like it so much that I mentioned it in my summer favorites post last week. I’ve been following along with Emily’s cheerful posts on family and business for the past few years since before she announced that they were expecting their twins. Her sweet spirit is my favorite and her products are both beautiful and intentionally designed to help ladies focus on what matters most. I’m so excited to meet her at the conference I’m attending later this year! To celebrate launch day, I’m sharing my favorites from her shop.


all product photos borrowed from Emily Ley


Simplified Planner ($58)  – I’ve used the gold pineapple daily planner this year and I like it even more now that they’ve updated the front title area to be navy instead of teal, but I also adore the happy stripe. Which do you prefer?

Pineapple Pen Cup ($24) – This product sold out in nine minutes! Undoubtedly because of how cute and chic it is.

Flag Sticker Set ($10) – My friend Annmarie uses these in her planner and they are a simple way to stay organized and add color to the pages. I’d like to add a pack of these to my order when I choose my planner for next year.

Gold Notes Mini Notebook ($10) – I would tuck this into the front pocket of my planner to keep track of shopping lists and running to-dos.

Navy Page Marker ($5) – This is so sweet and would surely make me smile to see ‘best day ever’ at the top of the page each day.

Pineapple Paper Clips ($12) – The EL team found a way to make even the most basic office supply adorable!

Washi Tape Set ($20) – How cute is this? The gold rolls are my favorite.

Gold Ruler ($24) – This ruler surely wouldn’t be tucked away in the junk drawer. I would probably measure everything I could get my hands on!

Home Base Binder ($48) – I have my eyes on this product for when I’m establishing my own home next year. I appreciate the concept of having one place to keep everything organized and accessible.

What is your favorite product from her shop?

If I Could Hug Y’all In Person

December 30th. One year ago today I clicked ‘publish’ for the very first time. I was scared to put myself out there, but I had wanted to start my own blog for a while. I started to read more blogs each day and to leave comments on posts when I found something I really liked. There were patches of time this year where I doubted if I should continue blogging, and times when I wondered if there was some ‘commenting ettiquette’ that I needed to be aware of. There were months where I posted and interacted often and then months where I lacked consistency with it.
In November, in a hotel room in North Carolina, a switch flipped and I was spurred on toward making something of this blog, even if only for myself. Since then I have been posting more frequently and I just bought the domain and began hosting my site independently over the weekend. I am now working on updating the design and working with a web developer to create a space that suits me. It’s exciting and a huge learning experience for me and I’m enjoying it quite a bit!

If I have learned anything from my year of being interactive on the web, it has been that it doesn’t have to be distant and impersonal. Community can be found there. It is really fun for me to find content that encourages me and then to learn more about the heart behind it. People get vulnerable on the internet, sharing their stories, advice, struggles, and hopes. There is an endless supply of free inspiration and guidance online. It is really important to me to thank people for the work they do and the pieces of themselves that they are sharing. This year I took some time to reach out to bloggers and professionals whom I genuinely respect and admire. At first I felt hesitant, wondering if I would seem strange or it was appropriate to contact people directly. Then I put myself in their shoes and I decided that it meant a lot to me to let them know how they are making a positive impact in my life. Over the past year, God has introduced me to the hearts of these women and used them to help teach me, shape me, inspire me, and grow me. Through emails, love notes, and a few delightful in-person conversations, I feel like I have been able to treat some of my favorite bloggers and professionals the way I treat my in-person friends. It has been rewarding and a real blessing to me this year. As 2015 rapidly approaches, I want to share some of my favorites with you, too. If I could hug them all in person, I would. They have wonderful hearts, missions, words, and inspiration that have helped me immensely. Enjoy!

LaraLara Casey // this post, this series, her new bookthis podcast, this page, this company, and this opportunity


Jess Connolly // this class, this book, this, thisthis and this post


Nancy Ray // this class, and this series


Gina Zeidler // this, this, this and this post, and this


Valerie Woerner // this instagram post, this, this, and this post, and this product


Emily Thomas // this series, this post, this behind the scenes look, and this work


Emily Ley // this and this post


Amber Housley // this podcast, this beautiful Pinterest account


Rhiannon Bosse // this story, this and this post


Hayley Morgan // this post, this class and this class


Katie Hilbert // this and this post, this book

Photos: Lara, Jess, Nancy, Gina, ValerieEmilyEmilyHayleyKatie, Rhiannon, Amber