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Elegantees, Mighty River Project Necklace, White boyfriend jeans, Root Collective Peep Toe - North Carolina Fashion Blogger (1)

Shirt: Elegantees (the Chelsea) c/o (Use code “MOLLY” for free shipping!) | Jeans: Old NavyShoes: The Root Collective c/oNecklace: Mighty River ProjectBag: The Root CollectiveRing: Rocksbox c/o (Use code “stillbeingmollyxoxo” for one month FREE)

Photography by Em Grey

One thing I talk about all the time is how much I love companies who are using their wares, their passions, their products, and their platform for good. I love companies that are dedicated to providing resources, opportunities, and empowerment where needed.

Elegantees, Mighty River Project Necklace, White boyfriend jeans, Root Collective Peep Toe - North Carolina Fashion Blogger (2) Continue Reading →

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Six Things About Money We All Need to Learn

If this is your first time here, Molly’s Money is a regular series I write on this blog that includes ALL things personal finance – debt management, budgeting, home buying, savings, investment, etc. I am NOT a financial advisor, but I am married to one! These are just things that I have learned over the years as I struggled with my own personal finances and ultimately, became debt free in 2012. Got a question about money that you want answered? Leave it in the comments below or email me!

In my own personal experiences AND in the past almost-three-years that I’ve been writing this particular money series on this blog, I’ve learned that money is a TRICKY subject for people… it’s awkward and for some reason has become taboo, in many ways, to talk about it!

That’s gotta change. Whether we like it or not, money is everywhere and we need to do a better job of educating ourselves on certain things so we can learn to really be good stewards of it.

That’s basically the whole goal of this money series… I want to share lessons that I’ve experienced, lessons that I’ve learned, etc. and share with y’all so that you, too, can learn to be good stewards and managers of your own finances!

Here’s are six money lessons that everyone should learn and know.

First, learn how to talk about money.

In our relationships with our spouses, our significant others, or with our families… talking about money can be really difficult because it can often lead to conflict. But, I’ve found that, more often than not, the conflict arises when money ISN’T talked about. It’s basically like a bubbling volcano… it’s there, it’s active, and eventually, it’s going to erupt. So, instead, why not just address it head on and let it “flow” naturally rather than ignoring it and thinking it’s just going to go away.

When I found myself $36K in debt after college and when I started working towards eliminating all that debt, NO ONE knew my situation. It was awful. My friends, family, and significant others had no clue. And so when I said I couldn’t go to things or couldn’t do things or whatever because I was so broke, it was so awkward and created tension because I didn’t just explain to people my situation.

The second I shared my struggled with my now husband, John, is when the weight was lifted off and I was able to actually start REALLY working towards fixing my situation.

So, instead of keeping all your money worries, thoughts, whatever all bottled inside… TALK about them. Regularly.

Second, learn how to budget.

Yep, you knew I was going to say it. But it has to be said. Learn how to budget. If you don’t know how… now’s the best time to do it.

Third, learn how to treat money.

We need to learn to treat money with care and respect. I don’t believe it should be worshipped, ever… but it can either be used as a tool or as a weapon. We need to respect it for what it is and what it can do… and we need to be smart with it.

Think about things we treat with care and respect… our friends, our spouses, our families, etc. We don’t throw them around. We don’t abuse them. We don’t take them for granted. Etc. It’s the same with money. It shouldn’t be abused. It shouldn’t be thrown around. It shouldn’t be taken for granted. It should be spent wisely and carefully. The moment we drift into a pattern of treating it like it’s nothing is the moment we open ourselves up to getting into bad financial habits.

Fourth, learn how to prioritize your spending.

This is something I’ve talked a lot about when it comes to budgeting, but it’s something that needs to be addressed on its own.

This basically falls into the category of learning the difference between needs and wants. I believe that those two things have become VERY blurred in our culture and we often confuse the two. NEEDS are things that are basic necessities. Food, clothing, shelter, utilities, paper towels, toilet paper, etc. WANTS are things that we, well, WANT.

A new handbag? Not a need. That’s a want.

A new car? …When the one we have currently runs just fine. Not a need. That’s a want.

Pasta sauce and milk and bread etc.? Those are needs. You know, because they are food.

You get the point.

Learn to prioritize what is actually a need and a want in your life and adjust your spending accordingly.

Fifth, learn the importance of saving.

Saving has, in many ways, become a lost art. Or something. I just don’t feel as much importance is placed on it as I think there should be.

Save for that emergency fund. Save for retirement. Save for vacations. Learn to save and learn to save wisely. If we spend every dollar we earn, we’re doing ourselves AND our future generations a massive disservice.

Sixth, learn the JOY of giving.

I get no greater joy than giving financially to causes I am passionate about. I truly believe that our money is best spent helping others… and that is something that I didn’t always understand because I spent so much of my life clinging on to every dollar that came my way.

We need to learn what it really means to GIVE and give generously and we need to learn how much JOY it can bring us to be able to bless others with our finances.

Now, what about you? What do you think? What money lessons do YOU think people need to learn?

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Altar'd State White Tee, Mavi “Freida Ankle Length Skinny Jean”, Root Collective Peep Toe, Ooh Baby Designs foldover clutch - North Carolina Fashion Blogger

Shirt: Altar’d State (similar) | Jeans: Stitch Fix (Mavi Jeans) | Scarf: World Market | Earrings: Nickel and SuedeWatch: Vierra Watches (Use code BEINGMOLLY for 10% off) | Cuff: Your Words Cuffs c/o (Use code MOLLY for 10% off)Clutch: Ooh Baby Designs c/oShoes: The Root Collective c/o Flower Ring: Rocksbox c/o (Use code “stillbeingmollyxoxo” to get your first month of Rocksbox FREE!)

Photography by Em Grey

There’s just something about that perfect accessory that makes you feel like an outfit is complete. You know what I mean? Sure, a cute t-shirt and jeans is fine and all… but that extra pizzaz (yes, I just said pizzaz) of a printed scarf or a gorgeous clutch are what MAKE an outfit.

Altar'd State White Tee, Mavi “Freida Ankle Length Skinny Jean”, Root Collective Peep Toe, Ooh Baby Designs foldover clutch - North Carolina Fashion Blogger

My girl Stephanie over at Ooh Baby Designs  just launched her newest collection of foldover clutches and they are amaaaaaaaazing. If you’ve been around this blog for a while, you know my love for Stephanie’s shop runs deep… she’s been a sponsor and dear friend of mine for almost three years now and I just love everything she makes. But when I first got my hands on this newest clutch of hers, I fell in love!

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RECIPE |Baked Cajun Rutabaga Cheese Fries

I have been having a blast in the kitchen recently. Last month John and I started receiving our first CSA boxes. CSA stands for community supported agriculture. Basically, each week we get a box of fresh, organic local produce, a dozen eggs, and some protein (pork, beef, and chicken)… ALL straight from a local farm here in the area. It’s awesome!

I love being able to support a local farm AND know that we’re eating healthy, sustainable, organic protein and produce!

BUT, the challenge is you don’t always know what you’re getting in your produce box AND it may be something totally off the wall that you’ve never cooked with before… enter… the rutabaga. Continue Reading →

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March Stitch Fix Review (x2)

So, you may (or may not) be thinking, “But Molly, didn’t you already do a March Stitch Fix review?” Yes, yes I did. But you see, that fix actually came early in February. I just wrote about it in March. And then my March fix came… and well, you know. I get a fix once a month but they just started coming a little earlier and now it’s one of those things where everything got shifted and the OCD in me is all kinds of off.

Now you’re thinking, “Seriously Molly? I don’t care about these unimportant details.” 

You’re right. I’m just spitballing now.

So, regardless. I got my actual March fix last week and I just couldn’t wait to share it with you guys!

As always, I share with you guys what I got, my first impressions, size, price point, quality, and whether or not I kept it. It was pouring rain when I got my fix so I was stuck taking try-on pictures inside again. Oh well! I know y’all don’t mind. :)

Without further ado… here’s my actual March Fix!

Brixon Ivy “Azurre Lace Overlay Blouse” – Size XL – $68

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Five Ways to Wear Leather Detail Pants | Liverpool Talullah Pant

I LOVE doing these style-roundup posts. They’re my favorite to read on other blogs, so I hope you guys love them as much as I do! I mean, that’s what a working closet is all about – having items that you can mix and remix and wear and rewear. No one likes to have an item in their closet that they can only wear one or two ways.

Today, I’m showing y’all five different ways to wear these Liverpool “Tallulah Leather Detail Pants” from Stitch Fix. I got these in a recent fix and I LOVE them! I never realized how versatile they could be! :)

I also have some great options at the end of this post if you’re looking to snag a pair for yourself!

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Living for a Sunny Day
*This post is sponsored by Suntrust Bank*

If this is your first time here, Molly’s Money is a regular series I write on this blog that includes ALL things personal finance – debt management, budgeting, home buying, savings, investment, etc. I am NOT a financial advisor, but I am married to one! These are just things that I have learned over the years as I struggled with my own personal finances and ultimately, became debt free in 2012. Got a question about money that you want answered? Leave it in the comments below or email me!

When I was working to become debt free, working on my savings was something I really de-prioritized. I am not even 100% sure that’s a real word, but I like it and I’m sticking with it. Let’s just say, savings weren’t a priority because every dollar that came in was PRECIOUS and needed to go towards something right that very second.

Once I really started working on my budget and working on changing the way I viewed money and interacted with money, I realized that I desperately needed to start saving. Why? Well, because life happens. Stuff happens. Your engine breaks or you need new tires on your car or the heat pump or air conditioning goes out or your dishwasher goes kaput… you just never know and so I really learned the importance of that emergency fund – aka: that “rainy day” fund. 

But, as someone who lived in the trenches of severe broke-ness for many years, I knew how depressing it was and completely unmotivating to pour every penny towards debt and towards the emergency fund. It feels kinda “womp womp,” if you know what I mean. You just always feel like you’re living for the future and the “oh no!” moments.

It’s not very fun.

And let me emphasize this right quick… I realize that I got myself into debt and I had to pay the price, literally, to get out of it. I made too many financial mistakes because of impulse purchases and things I wanted to do or buy but couldn’t ACTUALLY afford. So, let’s get it straight that it’s important to learn from those mistakes so that you don’t make them again.

With that being said, one of the things that John and I have started trying to do is create a separate savings fund… for the SUNNY days.

You know, the things in life that you look FORWARD to!

Tips For Saving Money While Traveling & Why You Should Use a Travel AgentThe SUNNY days…

 

  • Like a trip across the country
  • Like a Dave Matthews Band concert… at Red Rocks in Colorado! (Life dream… :))
  • Like a trip to Africa
  • Like a shopping spree on Fifth Avenue in New York
  • Like a shiny new car
  • Like COLLEGE for your children… seeing my daughter walk across that stage to get her diploma would be awesome
  • Like a new set of golf clubs
  • Like a missions trip
  • Like a family vacation to Disney World! (I’ve ALWAYS wanted to go!)
  • Etc…

Why don’t we SAVE for those days? 

Come to think of it… why don’t we LIVE for those days?

Let’s be honest…. no one saves and looks FORWARD to the day your car breaks down. No one saves and looks forward to the rainy days.

So, let’s flip the whole idea on it’s head and start saving for the SUNNY days. I’m not saying you shouldn’t save for the rainy days… you absolutely should… but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy life and LIVE for the sunny days either.

If we constantly live in this world where we treat money like it can only be spent on life’s horrors… well, then we’ll start to build up a sense of bitterness towards it and that doesn’t do you any good, now does it?

So, it’s time I think we all start living and saving for the sunny days.

What do YOU think? 

  • What would “living for a SUNNY day” mean to you? How is it different from saving for a RAINY day?
  • How would “living for a SUNNY day” make you feel?
  • What steps would you take to live for a SUNNY day?
  • What SUNNY day are you living for?

In the meantime, if you’re looking for more great financial tips, tricks, money inspiration and motivation… sign up to receive the Suntrust Bank SHINE Newsletter! It’s a great resource that will help you to set a plan to achieve your financial goals!

At SunTrust Bank their purpose is lighting the way to financial well-being. When you feel confident about your money, you can save for your goals and spend knowingly on what matters most to you.  They know we all live for the sunny days and want to you help you live yours.

Subscribe to the Shine newsletter and receive inspiration and advice twice a month to help you live for a sunny day.  Subscribe here

Want to get your sunny day started now?  Visit the SunTrust resource center anytime for help achieving your financial goals.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SunTrust. The opinions and text are all mine.

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Liverpool Talullah Pant, Pixley Striped Tee, Denim Vest (1)

Denim Vest: Old NavyPants: Stitch FixShirt: Stitch FixBag: C. Wonder | Shoes: TOMS for Target (similar) | Earrings: Nickel and SuedeCuff: Your Words Cuffs c/o (Use code “MOLLY” for 10% off!)

Photography by Em Grey

Until this year, I’ve never really done the whole “word of the year” thing. You know, the thing where you pick a word and that’s sort of your mantra for the year… your goal for the year… your focus for the year.

Without realizing it, I, ironically, unintentionally stumbled upon my word of the year… and the word is: intentional.

See what I mean about the irony of unintentionally coming across the word intentional? :) 

Liverpool Talullah Pant, Pixley Striped Tee, Denim Vest (2) Continue Reading →

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triFABB March Madness Meetup Recap! (2)

thanks to Em Grey for all the images!

Last week we had our March triFABB (Triangle Area Bloggers) meetup – it was EASILY our best meetup EVER. In two and a half years of hosting meetups with local bloggers, I can honestly say this was one of the most unique AND most fun meetups we’ve ever had.

We wanted to do something totally different… so we partnered with Briar Chapel and hosted the meetup in a GORGEOUS, stunning model home designed by Garman Homes. Literally, stunning. You guys, this home was amazing!!

We also had seven amazing vendors who sold their wares, promoted their small businesses, and handed out samples to all the attendees. We had wine and chocolate pairings, delicious hor d’ourves, a PHOTOBOOTH, and so much more.

I look forward to these events so much and this one definitely didn’t disappoint. Here are some images from the evening:

triFABB March Madness Meetup Recap! (1) Continue Reading →

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Andrew Marc Faux Fur Hood Coat, Red Jeans, Leopard Print Loafers, Aztec Sweater (1)

Coat: Andrew Marc via Stitch Fix | Sweater: LaMaLu Boutique c/o (old) | Red Jeans: Stitch Fix | Blouse: The Limited | Flats: Target (similar) | Earrings: Nickel and Suede c/oClutch: Stitch Fix

Photography by Em Grey

You guys know my undying love for Stitch Fix. I share my monthly “fix” reviews with y‘all, I shared my recap of my trip to the headquarters in San Francisco, I’ve talked about tips for getting your perfect fix… I sometimes feel like a broken record with how much I share my love for Stitch Fix. haha!

Well, as if I needed another reason to lurve them so, they just announced last week that… Stitch Fix is now carrying MATERNITY and PETITE clothing!! GAH!! This is so exciting!

Andrew Marc Faux Fur Hood Coat, Red Jeans, Leopard Print Loafers, Aztec Sweater (2) Continue Reading →

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Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (1)

Jacket: Lilly Pulitzer | Blouse: Lilly Pulitzer (similar) | Bag: Lilly Pulitzer (similar) | Shoes: TOMS | Jeans: Stitch Fix | Earrings: Nickel and Suede c/o

Photography by Em Grey

Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (2)

Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (3)

Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (4)

Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (5)

Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (6)

Lilly Pulitzer Destination Jacket, Lilly Pulitzer pink tunic, Casual, Fashion, Style, Weekend, TOMS, Lulu, Nickel and Suede earrings (7)

This has been one of my favorite, casual around-town outfits this winter! So often “wintery” outfits feel so dark. Who says you can’t wear bright colors and prints in the colder months? Silly people, that’s who! :)

What about you? What’s been a go-to casual weekend outfit for you this winter? 

Happy Friday!

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