For the past couple of weeks my daughter has been on holiday from her job. She planned a "stay-cation" but then suggested we go away somewhere. Since I couldn't get away for more than a few days, a big trip wasn't feasible.
Instead, we took a day last week and went shopping across the border in Washington. We had a great day but since we don't live that near each other, and I was doing the driving and had to drop her off before coming home, I didn't get home until after midnight. Long day!
However, we had so much fun that she talked me into going again, only this time staying overnight. On the first day we walked our feet to the bones at a big outlet mall but only bought a few things. I finally found the perfume that I love, Tommy Bahama St. Barts!
We drove out to Whidbey Island and spent the night in Oak Harbor.
We stayed at the Auld Holland Inn that I booked through Booking.com. (Disclaimer: I joined the Booking.com affiliate program because I love their service. I've got so many great deals there.)
The hotel was super cute with little character touches like the pretty front entrance with hanging baskets. It's so easy to add pretty touches with only a few changes. After checking out the shops in historic downtown Oak Harbor, we carried on to Coupeville, one of my favourite villages.
Coupeville could give lessons on how to do cute. This is one of my favourite stores, Collections. It was the setting inspiration for my short story, Brown Santa, in Sweet Christmas Love.
The owner, Cheryl Nunn, has done such a perfect job of making her shop (above) pretty, inside and out. Be sure to stop in next time you're in the neighbourhood.
Just up the street is Aqua Gifts, another example of over-the-top pretty. Oh, my goodness! Take a look inside. For a beach lover like me, this is a little bit of heaven.
I found lots of ways to pretty up my house in the room overlooking the water.
La Conner was the next stop on our cute town shop-a-thon. It was getting to be mid-afternoon by the time we stopped here and, given how late I'd arrived home the previous week, I didn't want to spend too long before the big drive ahead.
But really, folks, you can't take La Conner quickly. Its prettiness alone demands that you slow down and enjoy all the delightful touches.
This is just one example of how pretty this town is. I bought a couple of lovely cotton summer tops that I'd been looking for everywhere—and got them at half price!
Then to top off the day, it was time for rocky road ice cream which we shared, sitting in the sunshine and overlooking the channel. You can see the map of La Conner here, too.
The perfect ending to a perfect little getaway.
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Earlier this year, I went looking for a planner to use for my business, projects, and appointments. Because I'm a visual person attracted to fun images, the ordinary "strictly business" planners that you can buy at an office supply store just don't do it for me. They bore me so much that I don't look at them, forget to write things in them, and consequently find them no help at all.
Then I discovered the Happy Planner! This planner is like recess and art class rolled into one. And because it's so much fun, and the visuals are so eye-catching, I use it all the time, and have become much more organized as a result.
There is so much I can do with my planner. You can buy pads of stickers to decorate the pages, or to highlight important events. Naturally, I loaded up on those, and then some.
This week I had an idea (brilliant, of course). A few years ago, I had painted a series of miniature watercolours that I framed and made into fridge magnets. You can see the originals, above and below.
My idea was to create planner stickers from all these pretty mini watercolours. It takes a little while to re-size and tweak them in Photoshop so they're printable, but I've made an entire sheet of stickers that are now available in my shop. I started with the flowers series and created 20 different stickers from the original eight images.
I'm ever so pleased with how they turned out and can't wait to format the other categories for you: Container Gardens, Fruits, and Vegetables.
All you need is some sheets of sticker paper, your printer, and you're ready to go. You can use these pretty stickers for your scrapbooking projects, to make quick gift tags or cards, or to label things around the house. Click here to see more now.
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Where I share creative ideas, uplifting thoughts, and spread sweetness to help us all make life pretty.