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The Root Collective Spring - Summer 2015 Collection Launch (1)

All photography by Em Grey

So, you remember how a few weeks ago I told you about a company I have fallen in love with called The Root Collective? Well, I had the unbelievable privilege, honor, and pleasure of being a “model” for their spring / summer 2015 collection photoshoot! AHH! GAH! When Em (the photographer) and Bethany (founder of The Root Collective) asked me to be a part of it, I was seriously blown away and so humbled.

I, of course, jumped at the chance and had a BLAST doing the photoshoot. As strange as this sounds, it was actually very much out of my comfort zone and all that… but it was really so much fun.  Continue Reading →

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RECIPE | Easy Creamy Tomato Soup (with Young Living Taste of Italy Essential Oil)

Since the weather ’round these parts the last few weeks has been less than stellar, we’ve been stuck in the house A LOT. Last week when the snow just started coming down and it was so gray and dreary out, I had a serious hankering for some tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich. I was CRAVING one.

I knew I didn’t have MUCH in my pantry so I knew I was going to have to get creative.

I just started pulling stuff out to see what could work and I ended up throwing this soup together, tasting it along the way to see how it was turning out.RECIPE | Easy Creamy Tomato Soup (with Young Living Taste of Italy Essential Oil) Continue Reading →

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March Stitch Fix Review

My March Stitch Fix fix actually came in February… it came a few days early which was a really nice surprise! But, to keep things consistent and not throw off the schedule, I still counted it as my March fix… even though it came in February. These are details I realize you guys probably don’t care about, but I figured I might as well put it out there. Haha!

This was my 13th fix! I can’t believe I started getting these a year ago… I love it!

My stylist was Kimberly again… I’m so glad that I’ve been able to keep her for so long. I specifically request her each month! I really hope she never leaves Stitch Fix because I love her and she totally “gets” me!

This month my specific style requests for this fix were:

  • A great pair of classic, everyday jeans / denim
  • Pieces with a flowy / “boho” feel. I am loving that style and would love to add more pieces to my closet!

I think Kimberly totally nailed it and I loved the items she picked out! Keep reading to see which ones I kept and which ones I returned!

The weather here has been awful at best so these pictures just weren’t going to happen outside… so, inside it was. As always, I share my first impressions of each item, the size, price, what I thought of it, etc. and whether or not I kept it!

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Liverpool Talullah Pant, buffalo plaid top, denim jacket (1)

Blouse: C. Wonder (similar) | Denim Jacket: Belk c/o | Leather Detail Pants: Liverpool Talullah Pant / Stitch FixShoes: TOMS for Target (similar) | Bag: Stitch FixWatch: Vierra Watches (use code BEINGMOLLY for 10% off!) Earrings: Nickel and Suede

Photography by Em Grey

I don’t know why I used to associate buffalo plaid with the Brawny man. Whenever I saw the print I’d just think of a straight up lumberjack. But, I will say, that I have totally and utterly fallen in love with this print and I’ve loved that it’s been so popular this year!

I picked up this buffalo plaid blouse at C. Wonder before they closed (before they’d even announced they were going out of business) and I’m so glad I got it when I did! I LOVE it and I wear it all the time! It was originally like $98 and I think I bought it for $20. That’s a WIN, y’all.

Liverpool Talullah Pant, buffalo plaid top, denim jacket (2) Continue Reading →

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Molly's Money | Coming to a Budget Agreement with Your Spouse

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!

I posed the question on social media the other day: “What are some finance or personal finances topics you’d like to see me talk about or cover on my blog?

One topic that came up MULTIPLE times in various forms was: “How do you set and create a budget IN AGREEMENT WITH your partner / spouse?”

Now, I’ve written before about how to combine finances after marriage, and sharing your financial situation with a significant other, and I’ve talked about how money doesn’t have to be a relationship killer, or the tough money talk in marriage, or even about combining finances after marriage whether or not that has an effect on your credit.

So yeah, you could say I’ve addressed the money-in-relationships topic a few times.

BUT, I’ve never specifically addressed ways to sit down, talk about money, and come to an agreement TOGETHER about your joint budget. And obviously, every relationship is different and you know your own relationship dynamics better than anyone… BUT, there hopefully are still a few things you can take a way from this post. :)

The first thing is understanding that the money is OUR money. Not his money and her money. It’s OURS.

This is THE BASIS for the entire financial discussion. (I am obviously talking to the married folks here… BUT, if you’re maybe in business with someone and you’re trying to come to an agreement on a business budget, this could apply). If you and your spouse are still not in agreement over the fact that the money is YOURS, collectively, then we have bigger fish to fry.

This is one of those things that I won’t back down and and cannot agree with those that disagree with this… when you got married and you said those vows, your ceremony officiant probably said SOMETHING to the effect of “For RICHER OR FOR POORER” and / or “TWO ARE NOW ONE.” The officiant did NOT say, “For when he has money and she doesn’t or when she has money and he doesn’t.” 

Marriage is about becoming ONE with your spouse… and that INCLUDES your finances. This is tough for some people… and I TOTALLY get it. But this is the first major step when it comes to finances in marriage. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. This is what can make or break a marriage.

molly's money: how to create, set, and MAINTAIN a working budgetThe second thing is to sit down and do the budget TOGETHER.

If you don’t currently do a budget, you should start. Now. And it needs to be done together. You need to both sit down and make the rules… together.

If only one of you is creating the budget, then the other is basically in the dark and that can create friction and resentment. That’s no bueno.

So, take one day a month and sit down and do it together. Figure out what are your necessary, inflexible expenses. What HAS to come out of the budget every month… these are things like rent / mortgage, cell phone, water, health insurance, etc. Those are things that have a fixed expense attached to them.

Then you start to talk about the necessary, FLEXIBLE expenses… things like groceries, gas, etc. Those are things that are necessary, but can be adjusted according to how much you do or do not eat out, couponing, carpooling, etc. Discuss those things together and come to an agreement.

And then you get into the area of OPTIONAL expenses… things like eating out, going to the movies, shopping, your own individual “cash” budgets, etc. This is the toughest category but the one that needs the most discussing.

This is where you need to LISTEN to each other and hear each other out. If you want to go buy yourself a new dress this month, you need to put that want out on the table and figure out if it’s plausible in the budget. And then, when he asks to go to Home Depot and buy a new saw, then you need to hear THAT want out. You see what I’m getting at?

You need to HEAR each other and figure out if what your optional expenses are are, in fact, possible! It’s ALL about communication. Do not get defensive. Do not get aggressive. The key is to LISTEN.

Understand that you are BOTH setting the rules. TOGETHER.

When you’re creating the budget, you’re creating the rules together… the budget is your RULER and you have control over it… UNTIL the budget is set for the month. Once the budget is set for the month, the budget controls you and you follow the rules of the budget.

Know what I mean?

Know that you’re a TEAM.

You are both captains of this ship. You can sink or float TOGETHER depending on the attitude you take. It’s so, so, so important to realize that just like with anything else in marriage, it’s all about being a team and being each other’s support system. It’s about talking through the tough stuff, even when you know it’s going to be hard.

I share all of this because this is what John and I do in our own marriage. And no, we don’t get it right all the time… in fact, I probably screw up regularly… but instead of attacking me or getting mad, we sit down and John points out where we’re going over budget in one area and we figure out how to fix it! TOGETHER. We communicate regularly about the budget and we make sure we’re both on the same page.

So what do you think? Do you agree or disagree? Is there anything you do in your own relationship that works for you?

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Seven Ways to Wear a Leather Moto Jacket

 

First, right quick, I want to say thank you guys for the messages, comments, emails, etc. on my post yesterday. Sharing that post was really tough for me and I felt super vulnerable and I was nervous about how it would be taken… But you guys reminded me how awesome you are and further confirmed that I have the best readers. Ever. Thank you for your encouraging words. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

basic gray dress, tights, boots, leather jacket, blanket scarf (1) Continue Reading →

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Admitting When Enough is Enough

I feel like I’m repeating myself over and over and over again, but I guess when you’re sorting through things and making changes, the same feelings are going to manifest themselves over and over and over again… just in different forms.

I’m about to get very honest and raw with you guys…

For years, decades even, I’ve struggled with body image issues. Now, I’m not saying I think I’m crazy obese or anything like that, but I know I’m not “small” by “conventional” standards. I’ve never been super skinny. I can’t even remember the last time I weighed less than 150 pounds. MAYBE high school?  Continue Reading →

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7x7 Challenge Recap | #MaNouvelleMolly7x7

Last week my friend Natalia from Ma Nouvelle Mode and I hosted our first ever 7×7 challenge! We called it (cleverly…) the #MaNouvelleMolly7x7. Haha! The challenge was to pick seven items from your closet and create seven outfits with those items for seven days. Accessories, outerwear, and shoes did not count. Especially this time of year when it’s SO COLD.

We had so many fun people participate and we had a blast looking at everyone’s outfits!! I hope that for those of you who participated that you had fun, too!

7x7 Remix Challenge

I wanted to recap my outfits from the week and share my thoughts on the challenge. (My 7 items are pictured in the top photo).

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lilly-polkadot-edited-8

After Lilly turned a year, I decided I wouldn’t do monthly updates anymore because I didn’t want to bore y’all with my proud mom moments… hahaha! Just kidding… I just didn’t want to bombard you guys with updates about the little things… BUT, I did think it would be fun to do “check-ins” or update posts at 18 months and two years and then every year after that… MAINLY because it’s a good way for me to document the major things and I can look back on these posts and remember the fun details of her life.

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I also know so many of y’all have loved watching Lilly grow and would love to know what she’s up to! So, with that in mind, I thought I’d share a little update of what’s going on in her life! I can’t believe our girl turned 18 months old yesterday!! It’s CRAZY to me how fast time is FLYING.

John and I are more in love with this girl every day. She just blows us away with how much she’s grown and how smart she is!! We are so lucky to be her parents.

Lilly girl, we love you so much!!

Lilly’s 18 Month Update!

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View More: http://johnandmolly.katelynjames.com/

Today is our third wedding anniversary. In so many ways I can’t believe we’ve been married three years, and then on the flip side, I can’t remember my life before marrying John and it feels like we’ve been married forever (in a good way :)).

View More: http://johnandmolly.katelynjames.com/ Continue Reading →

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