Colorfully Styled Inspiration Shoot by Jamie O’Donnell

My fiance and I featured on the lovely Pink Pearls Blog!

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Good morning Pearlies!  Remember our dream team from Florida that brought us that stunning Indigo and Gold Inspiration Shoot?  Well, they are back again with this Whimsical piece of loveliness! Click HERE if you missed it last time.

This colorful shoot is taking the cake with us over here at PPB!  We are in love with Jamie O’Donnell’s playful use of color in this whimsical styled shoot captured by KV Photography. Part 2 of our 3 part Inspiration Series has us in awe with so many beautiful details.  The gold metallic elements have been super popular this year but pairing them with these vibrant colors is eye catching and a stunning spin on traditional wedding trends.  I just love the whimsy ribbons hanging from these gold branch centerpieces.  And the place settings are a lovely touch with the metallic teal charger plate and feather detail.  We also see Indigo again…I think…

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How To Have A Chanel Look on H&M Prices

How To Have a Chanel Look on H&M PricesFirst things first, let’s just say that no one here will be hating on H&M. I have found some adorable pieces there, and I mix and match them with other items all the time. However, I do tend to get excited about great fabric, and superior cut and style, and a great fit that H&M’s budget just won’t allow them to produce. And I’m a little bit hooked on Kate Spade, Louboutin, Chanel, and the like. However, I’m not rolling in cash so I have found ways to get creative over the years, never settle for fakes, and be a little bit of a more green consumer by reusing and reselling.

Here is what I do:

Shop sales and consignment

Almost all retailers have huge sales at the end of each season. They happen at almost the same times every year. Kate Spade is having a huge one right now as you read. Put them in your calendar so you won’t forget. Google coupon codes before you check out, no exceptions. You never know what might be available.

I also like to visit my local thrift and consignment stores in high income areas of town. I have gotten some amazing items for practically nothing this way. If you can ask and find out when they release new items, usually a certain day of the week, then you will have even more luck.

There are also a number of consignment websites, but be careful with this. Check the seller and research them to make sure they are legit. If they have 50 pairs of the same kind of Ugg boot listed, then the chances are good that they are selling fakes. Read reviews. Also, research how to tell the difference yourself. There are some excellent resources on how to identify real vs. fake items from any designer you might wish.

Buy classic pieces in classic colors so that they will hold resale value well. Keep them clean, and treat any speciality fabrics, like leather, with appropriate products to keep them in the best possible condition. Store shoes and accessories in the dust bags they come with. And move on to step two…

Resell your old items when you want new ones

I utilize several different websites to sell my couture items, and replace them only when sold. eBay is always a good choice. Items tend to sell faster, and more consistently than on other sites. However, if you can be patient you will be able to get more of a return on your investment by using sites like Tradesy or Poshmark. You can even list and buy items on Amazon Fashion.

Keep receipts to prove where you purchased your items, and research how to tell real from fake couture. Highlight these differences in your item descriptions. Even though it might be painful, start with a low auction prices on Ebay. It incentivizes people to bid, and once an item has bidders it is more likely to attract more. Take amazing pictures, including some of you wearing the item. Once you build your online reputation as a great seller, then you will have even more repeat customers!

Happy shopping, guys!

photo credit: hat and zara silk shirt via photopin (license)

How American parenting is killing the American marriage


Sometime between when we were children and when we had children of our own, parenthood became a religion in America. As with many religions, complete unthinking devotion is required from its practitioners. Nothing in life is allowed to be more important than our children, and we must never speak a disloyal word about our relationships with our offspring. Children always come first. We accept this premise so reflexively today that we forget that it was not always so.

In our recently published book, Sacred Cows, we took on our society’s nonsensical but deeply ingrained beliefs surrounding marriage and divorce. We often get asked whether we will next address the sacred cows of modern parenting, at which point we ask the speaker to please lower his voice, and we look nervously over our shoulders to make sure that nobody has overheard the question.

To understand the frightening power of the…

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The Good Samaritan (Ministries)

R.L. Stollar //// Overturning Tables

After reading The Atlantic’s article “A Christian Alternative to Health Insurance”, I was inspired to fix the story of the Good Samaritan for Jesus. Clearly Jesus needed a biblical worldview class or two.

Behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted Jesus, saying, “Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”

Jesus said unto him, “What is written in the law? how readest thou?”

And he answering said, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”

And Jesus said unto him, “Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.”

But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

And Jesus answering said, “A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment…

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How to Know If You Are “Respecting Yourself” By What You Wear

I’m a huge supporter of respecting yourself. Especially when it comes to how you dress. No, really.

But what is the modern lady to do? We read about how we should “stay classy”, how we should not be slutty, how we should take responsibility for our safety by what we wear, how we should be careful of what we make men think, how we should avoid certain items of clothing that are sure to degrade our bodies. And whatever we do, we must make sure to stay pretty but avoid attracting “too much” attention!

Please, try not to attract too much attention.

Please, try not to attract too much attention.

But either these warnings are vague, or full of contradictory suggestions. Often increasing in severity. Women should not wear leggings, pants, clothing not covered by a burka. Geez louise, who is right and who is wrong? Better find out before you accidentally disrespect yourself!

Oh, no! Anything but the wrong guy looking at you!

Oh, no! Anything but that! Give me the judgey guy who will monitor what I wear instead!

Fortunately, I recognized the need among womankind for a simple, easy-to-follow guide that will allow you to know for sure whether or not you are respecting yourself by what you wear. You’re welcome, ladies.

 1. Examine your motives.

What are your reasons for choosing your outfit today? Are you comfortable with these reasons? Are you ignoring the voices of your judgey neighbor, your extra conservative uncle, that girl at work you barely know? Have you made a decision that works for you, and makes your feel confident and secure?

If you answer “yes” to all of these questions, then congratulations! You are respecting yourself instead of everyone else. Good job.

(Side note: asking for fashion advice is not necessarily discouraged. Sometimes a girl wants to get a friend or loved one’s opinion on an outfit for a special occasion, or just because. This is not the same as relying on another person to tell you whether or not you are a worthwhile person based on your clothing. And if you happen to disagree with the person giving the advice, carry on. No one will like every outfit you choose, and visa versa.)

2. Examine your feelings.

How do you feel? Are you happy? Comfortable? Confident? Do you feel attractive? Professional? Edgy? Or whatever other adjective you were going for? Does your outfit fulfill your motives that you examined in item one? Do you want to wear this outfit?


Do you wish you were wearing something else? Is someone else making you feel like you can’t wear what you want? Do you feel pressured in any way?

If you answered “yes” to all of the questions in the first paragraph and “no” to all of the questions in the second paragraph, then congratulations! You are respecting yourself by what you are wearing.

How to Know You Are "Respecting Yourself" By What You Wear

You look cute today. You know you do.

Now, go forth, you respectable woman, and conquer the day!

photo credit: Collin Key via photopin cc

Yes, All Men: Every Man Needs to Understand Internalized Misogyny and Male Violence


In the aftermath of the weekend’s ghastly events at UC Santa Barbara, there’s been plenty of discussion about our pervasive culture of misogyny, and the myriad destructive ways in which it manifests. A large part of the narrative has been that men need to shut up and listen to women’s voices on this topic, which is certainly true. But men also need to talk, honestly and amongst ourselves, about the nature of masculinity, and acknowledge our own destructive impulses. This is a problem that men need to be discussing precisely because it’s a problem with men. And it’s only men who are going to fix it.

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Recycling Used Cans For Seedling Planters

I have been trying to cultivate a medicinal herb garden lately. I have plans to start making my own tea, essential oils, etc. I have also been using fresh herbs in my cooking, and the taste difference is astounding. I recently planted lemon balm, sage, cayenne peppers, chamomile, echinacea, evening primrose, and lavender by seed. The results were so abundant that I found myself overrun with the seedlings. Not wanting to waste a good plant, I came up with a way to reuse old cans and find temporary homes for the plant babies. I plan to sell or trade (or give away) the seedlings.

It was so easy. I just used scissors to remove the top of the cans, trim the edges, and poke a hole in the bottom for drainage. Then I added a layer of soil, placed the seedling, and filled in the edges with soil. Voila!

Recycling Used Cans For Seedling Planters -- Sage, Chamomile, Echinacea

Echinacea, chamomile, sage.


Recycling Used Cans For Seedling Planters -- Lemon Balm

A tiny cayenne pepper plant.


Recycling Used Cans For Seedling Planters -- Lavender

Sage and lavender sitting side by side.


Recycling Used Cans For Seedling Planters -- Cayenne Pepper

A cute little lemon balm.

If you happen to be in the Orlando area and would like a baby plant, e-mail me at