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The Chic Bag Chick

I love Jesus, am married to a firefighter, am a nurse, learning to cook (while dealing with a gluten allergy), sew, and keep house, love to crochet, and am a planner fanatic, as well as run several small businesses. This is my life…a little bit of everything, which you'll find here on this blog!

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New blog mishaps

Well, I started a new blog, but it accidentally got completely erased! This self-hosting thing is all new to me, so I’m fumbling through it the best I can.

In the mean time, we had to restart our Whole30, but that’s ok! Hubby and I have lost 20 pounds combined, so I’m excited!

If you’d like to follow along with our adventures, and my crafting, random thoughts, and recipes, head over to jessprinkle.com and subscribe. πŸ™‚

Free printable 2017 calendars!

I love printables. Anything and everything that can be printed, I WANT IT ALL. lol

Ok, it’s really just something about mixing cuteness and organization that I adore. So, on my recent quest to find a printable rest of 2016 calendar until our new Star Wars one starts, I found these adorable printable calendars, and I love them so much, I might use them instead of our Star Wars one! ha! Well, I’ve settled on at least hanging them in my office, since the other one is downstairs for general use.

I present, for your “ooo-ing and ahh-ing,” these lovelies:

2017 printable calendars

I’m totally following this chica, I can already tell I like her! πŸ˜‰

Enjoy!

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Valentine’s Day on a budget!

Ok, the back story to this is that we are in the middle of moving, but due to life, couldn’t get our new bedroom set up in time for Valentine’s Day…which bummed me out at first, but then I decided to just make the best of it, and that’s how some of this plan was born. 

Normally, we’ve escaped to a themed hotel room and just hung out for a whole weekend, no distractions. But this year, money is super tight, due to a surprising lack of work for my husband for a couple of months, coupled with our moving expenses and the cost of fixing up the house. 

This was our first Valentine’s Day on a budget, and I must say, even though I was wary, it turned out to be the most fun we’ve ever had! I don’t think I ever want to rent an expensive hotel again! Lol, ok maybe eventually. Just not every year. πŸ˜‰

Here’s how it went:

My sweet husband  asked me to go for a walk with him at sunset Saturday night (the 13th). This is significant because we both have been trying to be more active, logging steps in our fitbits. So it helped me get some steps in, but was a wonderful time together (even though it was freezing), and the sunset was gorgeous.

I carried my camera and water in the everything crossbody from Thirty One Gifts (www.mythirtyone.com/jessbruner), and it was perfect. We got our steps in, and I got pics of the sunset. 

  

I had been working hard for some time on this project, the idea of a little indoor camping getaway for us in our new bedroom. I dragged our tent up to the room (it barely fit lol), and got to work.

 

I strung up some Christmas lights inside the tent, and blew up our air mattress and added a soft blanket and pillows. I used some chocolate to make a heart on top that we could eat later. ☺️ 

I got LED flame less tea lights on Amazon, and lined pathways, and lit up a TV tray table. I filled a square storage bin from Thirty One with extra blankets and pillows.  

I bought some firewood (although it would’ve been cool to save some sticks for this purpose, and reduce the cost further), and used some clear decorative stones on top of an old poster board (there are pictures on the other side lol) to keep the floor somewhat debris-free, and placed the LED lights inside. They are flickering  candles, so it looked more like a fire. πŸ™‚ 

I put some of our favorite sparkling peach wine on ice, with some water bottles, in my favorite family fun thermal (Thirty One) by our mattress.  
 

I set up my computer on a TV tray table, for watching movies and Netflix/Hulu, and paired it with a Bluetooth speaker for movie-like sound. 
 

Here is what it looked like:

The original plan was to just hang out in this on Valentine’s Day/night, but since he had to work Monday (most have off because of Presidents’ Day), we decided to make a whole weekend of it, and started our getaway on the eve of Valentine’s.

We ate a simple dinner of leftovers, traipsed up to our grown-up fort,  and watched Hulu.  

Now, lingerie is always a part of Valentine’s Day right? Except it costs SO MUCH. πŸ˜– So I decided to make my own, and here is how I did #1 and #2 of my very own, homemade lingerie outfits for lounging through the weekend!

The hubs loved that I made them, and he laughed when I told him how cheap they were to make, and how I had used a coupon, and said “if you tell a girl you used a coupon on a gift to her, it’s an insult, but to a guy, it’s music to their ears!” πŸ˜‚ He speaks the truth lol.

  

 We had fun, stayed up way late, and slept way in on Valentine’s Day, which was super nice. We made a quick breakfast of scrambled eggs and pre-cooked bacon, and then ran to the store for milk (for the dessert).

I quickly put some new sparkling wine on ice, and then ran to start dinner and dessert.

 
  

Like my cute apron? 😁

 

For dinner, we made this recipe (to help make up for dessert a little bit lol): 
    

My friend had sent us a coupon for a free Redbox, so we watched a movie and ate dinner and dessert!


 

For dessert, we made this recipe , which tastes delicious, and looks amazing!  
   

We even opened our February date box, but fell asleep right after the movie lol. I guess we will just have to have another date. ☺️

 
So there was our date night. I estimated the total cost of the weekend to be around what we would have paid for a nice dinner with dessert and drinks at a decent restaurant. And it was loads more fun!

I hope this inspires you to plan a fun date night/weekend! πŸ™‚

An open letter from a direct seller…

Dear world,
We are all inundated with people selling stuff. Everywhere you look, there are ads! They even collect our browsing history to give us ads we are more likely to click on!
And now, more than ever, with the rise of social media and online ordering, Direct Sales is sweeping the nation. But with it comes pi**ed off people, frustrated Facebook-ers, and irritated Instagram-ers. Why? Our news feeds are blowing up with people selling stuff.
Most people are annoyed because they think everyone sells junk, and is just trying to make a quick buck.
While there are a few of those out there, I’d like to give you a little insight into our lives. πŸ™‚

~We love our products. Most of us try to limit our social media posting to separate business accounts that people can follow if they choose. But we REALLY LOVE what we sell (or we wouldn’t have signed up!), so please understand if you see a ton of our faves show up in our instagram feed, or our Facebook family vacation pics. We love our stuff, we use our stuff, and it’s in our pictures. Your favorite stuff is in yours, too…you just don’t sell it. πŸ˜‰

~While we are more than happy to help you with your products, the polite thing to do is to direct your customer service questions to the rep you purchased from, since they get the commission. I’ve had several people (who purchased exclusively from other consultants) spend hours asking questions and need lots of customer service help, and their reason for asking me is that they “don’t want to bother” the rep they purchased from. You paid them…to be your consultant and help you. You wouldn’t buy something from Walmart and then call Best Buy to help you with a return. πŸ˜‰ That being said, we do know that some consultants just are not good at customer service. At that point, I’d advise giving your business to a rep who will actually earn her commission by being your personal consultant and help you with any issues. You shop at the stores you know have good customer service…why not do the same with consultants? πŸ™‚

~Most of us have to pay the full retail price at checkout, so please don’t ask us to front the money until delivery, or ask for discounts up front…those come out of our own pockets, and sometimes business isn’t good enough to do that.
We love you, but this isn’t a C.O.D. situation. πŸ˜‰

~Most of us work REALLY hard for the (usually small amount of) money we get! It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme (although some still join in hopes of being rich in a month lol). We pour our lives and hearts (and money) into our company and customers. We want you to be happy. We make follow up phone calls and emails because we want to ensure that you are extremely satisfied, and that you feel comfortable coming to us with any problems. We really are not trying to annoy you!
I’ve heard people complain about “no customer service” and “she never asked if my order was right…it was missing something!” And in the same breath they talk about “how annoying she is, always calling and emailing me! If I have a problem, I’ll let her know!”
The majority of us try and walk the fine line between good customer service, and annoying you. Please be understanding. Some of us actually ARE checking to make sure you’re happy because we care, not because we are just trying to make another sale.

~When we ask if you want to have a party, please tell us the truth. If you say “maybe later,” we will be following up with you, a lot. Because honestly, many people who truly mean “maybe later” just forget, so they need us to keep checking back until a time works out for them. So if you never ever want to have a party, just be honest, so we don’t annoy you by asking again every month.

~Please don’t be annoyed when we work our business. We try not to be pushy or annoying, but we are working our business! We’ve all come to expect that from large corporations, and don’t even bat an eye at the junk mail and email and phone calls we receive, but somehow are irritated beyond belief at our friends and family who are trying to work their small business by following up with us as potential customers.
Most of us joined our companies first because we loved the products. Naturally, women want to tell their friends about something fantastic. I still tell my friends about other things I love that I don’t make a buck off! I also tell them about my direct selling friends’ products that I use. Naturally, I’m also going to tell them about my absolute favorite products (because we all sell our favorites out of the mix!), which also happen to be the ones I sell.
So just remember, we are women sharing our favorite things!

~The second biggest reason most of us are working our business, is to build something that keeps us from having to work for Corporate America.
Some of us are college students, and can’t fit a 9-5 job around college schedules.
Some of us have health problems that necessitate us taking time off that doesn’t mesh with the typical vacation time allotment of a regular job.
Some of us are stay at home moms who want to be there for our kids, but also bring in a little extra income for the family.
And a lot of us just really love seeing happy customers. We were overjoyed to find our cool product, and we love sharing that excitement with women everywhere.

~We know that our products cost more than Walmart. Most of them are MUCH higher quality than Walmart, though. And the biggest reason for the little extra cost is that you are getting a consultant with your products.
If you have questions about ordering, you don’t have to fumble around on a big- company website with outsourced tech support. Give us a call, we will help you…and in a perfect American English accent that you can understand. πŸ˜‰
If you have problems with your order when it arrives, we will take care of it all!
If you need suggestions for your long Christmas list, we can help!
If you are not sure if colors would go well together, we can show you pictures or a preview!
If you want to know how to care for your products, you can pick our brain for tips and tricks!
We know our products better than anyone, and you are getting first class service (if you’re not, then switch consultants!), and that is why you pay a little extra.

By buying from Walmart, you line some CEO’s wallet. By buying from a direct seller, you help support women like you, women who want to spend more time with their kids, women who are trying to go to school to fulfill a dream, women who want to have a successful home business so they can enjoy time out with other women.
Don’t get me wrong, there are still things I buy at walmart because I can’t get them anywhere else.
But I have a mascara and makeup gal, a candle warmer gal, a jewelry gal, a skin care gal, a health products gal, etc. I buy those things exclusively from them, because I support their business, and they give far better service than I could ever get at any chain store, and they are my SISTERS. What ever happened to women supporting each other?
I say let’s bring it back!!! πŸ™‚
#sisterhood
#BetterTogether
#homebusiness
#directselling

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