Soundtrack to spring

crate & barrel spring playlist 2crate & barrel spring playlist 1crate & barrel spring inspiration catalogI’m not going to lie…today I was feeling less than inspired. After work, I found myself in that uncomfortable restlessness in between simultaneously feeling like taking a nap and working out (which meant I was probably leaning more towards taking a nap).

Despite myself, I found myself calling Lydia for a walk along along the Katy Trail, followed by guacamole and an early birthday margarita at Katy Trail Ice House. On beautiful 75 degree days like this and some endorphins later, I have to admit that I kinda see what all the fuss is about Dallas. Seeing my city from along the Katy Trail is a unique vantage point that really made me appreciate Dallas. I love that I can walk two miles on tree-lined paths over busy streets and highways, then sit under the stars and lights surrounded by other people and their pets, just having a great time with good friends, food and drinks.

The warmer weather is getting me excited to spend as much time outdoors as possible, so it’s extremely fortunate I happened across these spring-y playlists by Crate & Barrel today. So far, they’re just the right mix of new yet nostalgic, light and optimistic – and oh yeah, did I mention free?

Download the playlists…then tell me you’re not just a little more inspired, too.

Inspiration: Creative Folk

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This week I was inspired by three powerfully creative people, and it is totally worth waiting for this page to load with all its images and videos to make your day too.

Like Sarah in her in Media High + Finding freedom post, I was also inspired by some industry genius. This week was another installment of DSVC [Dallas Society of Visual Communication] meeting. Now, folks, I am not a designer. But I love learning from designers about communication, as it all plays into my passion for branding. (I also happen to secretly wish I had the natural inspiration for the perspiration it takes to be an artist and/or designer, but I digress). Our speaker this week was Erik Marinovich, a letterer and designer. Aside from his amazing talent, what I also found interesting about Erik was his initial career path. When he graduated he couldn’t get a job or internship (preach it). So he took to following in his father’s footsteps and taking over the brick laying business and had completely let go the idea of being a designer. Until his girlfriend, later turned wife, told him she was selling all her things and moving to NYC. He could either do the same, or she was breaking up with him. So he went. He took an internship, worked till 6 AM most nights, had some amazing mentors, and went on to becoming this amazing letterer. I think all young career driven people love hearing these stories, the ones that sound like theirs. It gives us confidence that if we do continue to work hard, we will succeed. And the fact that no one would hire us straight out of college, has no bearing on our lifetime success. I think I speak for Sarah and I when I say that we both had a rougher time than expected finding positions in our industry, and it was such an initial blow to our confidence and determination. We, as a 20-something, often struggle with the idea of why am I not there yet. Or at least, I do. To survive, we need mentors and role models like Erik to tell us to calm the freak down. Erik also reminisced about his time interning as a time of learning and great inspiration, he was young and still finding his way. Erik reminded me to work hard, work smart and stay passionate. In his presentation he instructed us to follow up on an idea. If you have a good one, go for it. Worst case scenario, it won’t work out, and life goes on. Erik was incredibly relate-able and truly put some fire under my feet this week at work.

Also, a quick note on the images above. They are from a site that Erik and Aaron Carámbula started one night a few years back around 4 AM via iChat, called FriendsofType.com. It’s awesome and you will no doubt get stuck clicking through the pages for a few hours. So be sure to only visit the site when you have at least 10 minutes to spare. Kidding, kinda. The wood one featured above was actually painstakingly carved into wood. Talk about dedication to a craft.

The following two videos are other nuggets of inspiration for me this week. I’m going through a Beethoven phase and believe everyone should be in on it too. It also happens to be fantastic work music. The other is poem by the Austin-based poet, Anis Mojgani, that a friend posted on my Facebook page. I love his message and the almost rap-like style of presentation. I haven’t had a real opportunity to explore his work further, but it is certainly on my list.

Have a great weekend everyone!


 

Inspiration: Media high + Finding freedom

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I have had the kind of work week that makes me incredulous that my job is actually considered a job. I got to go to digital media conference in Dallas for two days, which basically means I got to learn (yes!), hear different perspectives on the industry I love and meet new people. For an introvert, it’s amazing how exhilarating it is to walk up alone to a circle of people I’ve never seen before and not only make unawkward conversation (always a win), but also some new friends.

It’s given me a much needed refresher on work life this week and reminded me that I’m lucky to be where I am right now, even though I don’t always remember that. Maybe I’m an optimist (okay, I know I’m an optimist) but when I think back on the different phases of my life so far, no matter how much I struggled or thrived during them, my rose-colored glasses are definitely on. I don’t usually think, “wow this sucked” or “I regret doing this or doing it this way;” for the most part I think, “I’m so grateful for that time because ___.” It helps shift my perspective to tell myself how I’m going to look back on this time of my life and really appreciate it…so I better be appreciating it now!

Feeling ‘free’ has been a bit of a theme for me this week, as you might pick up on from my pinning spree below. These photographs and quotes have been reminding me to take a deep breath, rest a little then get out there and embrace life. I’ve been in a resting phase for a little while now, trying to avoid too many social plans, etc. Now I’m just ready for all that the very busy month of February has planned for me, starting with this weekend: Valentine’s/couples dinner at the very hard to reserve Lucia in Bishop Arts (!), freelance work and celebrating life with friends at a big post-church brunch. Can it just be Friday afternoon already?

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Just Dance

Is this video not the best thing you’ve seen all day and possibly ever? Maybe you’re needing a little encouragement today (like me). Maybe you’re needing a little life-spiration to make something of your lazy Saturday…or get through your busy weekend. Maybe you just like to smile, laugh and/or dance (in which case you should probably watch some more Kid President videos).

In the words of Kid President (and Kevin Bacon/Kenny Wormald), this is our time! What do you want to do with it?

For me this question has a somewhat illusive, always evolving answer. The consistencies in that answer include spending quality time with people and learning. Learning about life, health, being a better person, other cultures, audio/visual skills. I’ve always been more of a planner and dreamer though, so I am constantly appreciative for friendly reminders about the action part of things. Writing this blog, this video and friends like co-Tiffany’s blogger Lydia (whose enviable talent is making things happen) all help hold me accountable.

All of Kid President’s videos are really great about bringing their big ideas down to an actionable level. His platform is all about dancing – both literally and figuratively. Helping people, helping yourself and making the world a better place are all ways to “dance”.

Kid President website

So. How are you going to dance this weekend? I’m getting organized financially and work-wise with a budget and long overdue inbox cleaning. I also have plans to brunch with a friend and help another strategize for her business.

I’ll leave you with what is clearly the most important question from this whole deal: “What would have happened if Michael Jordan had quit?” He wouldn’t have made Space Jam. And then where would we be?

Inspiration: All The Little Things

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On Finding Tiffany’s, we talk a lot about realizing goals and exploring life, but we’re only telling half the story if we don’t spend some time talking about all the things that help us get there. Inspiration is contagious and can come from anywhere. Starting this week we’ll be bringing you more about all the things that inspire us…pictures, quotes, links, random details from daily life.

This week has just been one of those weeks where inspiration has been a little harder to appreciate and hold on to…between not enough sleep and some pesky health issues, the below have been even more valuable for my sanity!

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Italian kitchen art from Etsy that will be hanging in my kitchen: “If you want to live long, you have to eat, drink and sleep” and an Italian idiom that essentially means “At the table with friends and family, one does not grow old.”
The weather this week has been California-worthy. Driving with the windows down in the 65 degree weather instantly brightens my mood.
The weather this week has been California-worthy. Driving with the windows down in the 65 degree weather instantly brightens my mood.
Truth. If you've ever been sick (and it seems like everyone is these days) you know it, too. I've been inspired to take charge this week: revamping my diet (no sugar, lots of green tea, vegetables and protein) and finally meeting with some doctors.
Truth. If you’ve ever been sick (and it seems like everyone is these days) you know it, too. I’ve been inspired to take charge this week: revamping my diet (no sugar, lots of green tea, vegetables and protein) and finally meeting with some doctors.