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Inspected By Jon

1.31.2014
Friday, you are here again before I can even bat my eyelashes! #craycray. My weeks have been flying by. I honestly can't even figure out where January went. But I'm grateful to be nearing the end of one of the most hectic months of my life. Starting AND finishing our remodel and creating a new business all in one month wasn't our brightest idea yet, but now we can sit back and rejoice in our accomplishments!

So I'm linking up with Darci, April, Christina and Natasha today.
Obviously my biggest excitement this week was the grand opening of my online boutique! This was a dream of mine for a long time and it feels like such an accomplishment to finally have it open after months of hard work to get there. Plus you all have made it that much better for me with your awesome response! I've loved shipping out orders this week. Owning another business is going to be a roller coaster, but I'm read to enjoy the ride!
I found this stamp in the process of moving.
I really don't feel like there is much need for words here other than #imstilllaughing.
You will never ever have to hear about the remodel again after this weekend! *Insert cheers here* Well, unless I decide to snap a few photos and share them with you. Which is the least I could do since I've bored you to death over the last month whining about it. Today (well tomorrow) is the final move in day and we can put all this behind us. Hip-hip-HOORAY!
I Crave Jewels made my little heart so happy this week! Aren't these stunning? This picture with my trusty ole' iPhone doesn't even do them justice! I bought the last pair, but she has other stunning options such as these. She is always making the prettiest jewelry. Not to mention it comes in gold wrapping with a lollipop. Girl knows her way to my heart!
 And last, but not least. Dear snow, I loved you once upon a time, but now I am over you. Dear Spring, you can come anytime now.

Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy!

1.29.2014
The sermon this past Sunday was focused on "Joy-killers". Those pesky little things that can creep into our lives and minds and kill our joy that we deserve to feel. It was one of those sermons when I felt like the pastor and I were alone in the room and he was speaking directly to me. I have a love/hate relationship with those types of sermons. I hate them because I have to recognize my weaknesses and failures as a human. And I love them because I walk out uplifted and feeling like a new woman.
 
The three "joy-killers" he mentioned were:
1. Complaining
2. Comparing 
3. Self-Centerdness

I don't know about you, but all three of these hit close to home for me! I am constantly whining about being too busy or not getting things done. When in reality it's a blessing that we have businesses to keep us busy and focused. Comparison is huge for me. I struggled (and still do occasionally) with comparing myself to other women, bloggers especially. It's so easy to do. But how can we experience our own joy if we are too busy chasing after someone else's? And being self-centered is a a no brainer. We all do it. It's just so gratifying to focus on someone else rather than yourself and see their reactions.

At the end of the message, the pastor encouraged us to write a "joy list". Taking time to note the things in life that bring you joy. From the biggest events such as marriage to the simplest of things such as a warm baked chocolate chip cookie. I actually found joy in writing this list (maybe because I find joy in writing lists...?)
 
I think I may just have to print this and put it on my desk so I am reminded daily. So I'm interested, what brings you joy? And I encourage you to try and focus on not letting these "joy-killers" weasel their way into your thoughts. It will be a daily struggle, but so worth it!

Be joyful!

Post Chaos Plans

1.27.2014
Gah! Where do I even begin with you all? I just want to wrap you up and squeeze each and every one of you! You have made my heart swoon with all your sweet words of support, tweeting about my new boutique and sending me precious texts and emails. I just adore you all and this wouldn't be possible without your support and prayers, so thank you from the bottom of my heart.

It's like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders having my boutique completed, but there is still much work to be done in the Mill's household. We are coming down to the last week of moving in. January 31st I am one free woman!!!! Here is how I plan to celebrate...
Spa, Relax, Girl Stuff

I am IN LOVE with this bathtub caddy. I've already told the hubby it would be the perfect Valentine's day or birthday present. And all I want is a bubble bath and with our long days, as soon as I get home it's a quick shower, blog post and bed. So I look forward to my post craziness bubble bath with some glorious bubbles.

A good manicure. It's all I can do to keep the dirt out from under my fingernails and keep them from breaking. I'm starting to feel extremely tom-boy and it's just not my thing.

I normally keep flowers all over the house. They bring me joy :) So I look forward to having them all over again once I'm home to enjoy them.

A good glass of wine and some extremely cozy booties never hurt anybody, right? 
Sounds like I have a good night ahead on February 1st. After my bubble bath I'll curl up in my pj's and booties with a glass of wine and give myself a manicure. It's the simple things.

*Enter the $75 Victoria Secret giveaway going on now.

It's Reveal Day!

1.26.2014
FINALLY! The day has come! Are you all as excited as I am? It has been extremely entertaining to see how many people were dying to know my news once I threw out that Instagram picture last week. I am so grateful you all expressed your interest and were so ready to share in my joy!

Sooooooooooooooo......... drum roll please!


I AM OFFICIALLY A BUSINESS OWNER OF MY OWN ONLINE BOUTIQUE!
 
After a BIG dream, a TON of hard work and an EXTREME amount of guidance from my husband I now have my very own online boutique called The Modern Tulip. Remember when I changed my blog url? Well that's because my new baby needed www.themoderntulip.com. So that's where she can be found :)

I can't believe this is a reality for me! I've always wanted to own my own business, but I never knew where to start. Jon started his business over 5 years ago and has turned it into something big and it's only going to be bigger. I've loved working together for our business, but selling outdoor power equipment parts was never my dream ;) So after many mentions of wanting to start a clothing boutique, Jon finally just came out and said, "Why don't you just start one?" I was taken completely off guard. "Uhhh because I don't even know where to start? That's why." Jon said, "Well, than let's figure it out." And that night we started the process. A couple months later, here she is! He didn't just push me, he shoved me off the cliff I was hiding on. I love his go-getter personality because it compliments my play it safe personality so perfectly! Without him this would have never been possible.

So after many months of frustration, anxiety, hard work, confusion, impatience and major excitement I am so proud to welcome you to shop The Modern Tulip. I promise quality clothing and great service :) And right now, for your first purchase, I'm offering 25% OFF with code NEWSHOP
 
Which can also be found under the "shop" tab
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In other business don't forget to enter to win a $75 gift card to Victoria Secret. V-day is just around the corner if ya know what I mean...

And I'm also a part of a giveaway at Living In Yellow giving away a scarf from my boutique, so make sure to enter!


Modeling, #tulipsbigreveal Talk & A Giveaway

1.24.2014
One. We have 8 more days left until we have to be moved in to the remodel and out of our old business location. YIKES! This is both exciting and nerve wrecking. 8 more days of 12 hour days and running on exhaustion. 8 more days until freedom! I feel like my motto is, "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming!"

Two. Did you know I'm a model now? #totaljoke. Even though I'm still waiting to hear from Lowe's on that modeling contract... But fo reals, the photographer who shot my bridal portraits and our engagement photos is offering glam sessions and she used my face for her advertisement. I can't lie, this made me blush. If you live in the Boone, NC area check out Elias Photography. She is passionate about what she does and extremely talented!
photography
Three. If you follow along with this blog or on Instagram, you know I have a really big reveal for you all -aka- #tulipsbigreveal. I can't hardly stand waiting any longer to tell you. But the t's are being crossed and the i's are being dotted. I'm a perfectionist and I can't stand to show something until it's done. So this teaser is going to have to wait until Monday! Clarification: NO BABY MILLS. (When you've been married any amount of time at all you can't mention anything about a surprise because that's everyone's first thought).

Four. I get to spend the day with my niece on Saturday for her 1st birthday. Bring on the waterworks! Where does time go? Even though I'm not looking forward to spending 10 total hours in the car, she is totally worth it!
neice
Five. Valentine's Day = Victoria Secret. So I have previously expressed my feelings on Valentine's Day, but I know many of you feel differently about it. You are looking forward to the flowers, chocolates, the breakfast in bed, a day focused on you and your lover, the romantic dinner. What comes after the dinner? Well, myself and theses lovely ladies below thought you could use a little extra cash for the "after". Happy early V-day from us to you!
Giveaway, victoria secret
Allena Mistral // Elle Sees // A Little Too Jolley
The Modern Tulip // Happy Is A Choice // Yellow Mango Life // Sweet Southern Sparkle

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Linking up with Lauren.

I've Never Seen My Wedding Pictures |Part 2|

1.22.2014
So yesterday I shared my wedding video and the handful of beautiful wedding pictures I took away from 600 pictures my photographer took. 627 to be exact. And I walked away with 15 decent photos. Something about that ratio just ain't right.

So as promised and without further adui... my wedding album #ifthatsevenwhatyoucallit
Yes, by all means show off my gorgeous moldy steps. As for those ugly things inside the jewelry boxes, don't show em'!
If she had just said to me, "Maeg, the lighting just won't work in here". I would have gotten my entire wedding party to move their party butts outside. No questions asked.
We all look like we baked too long in a tanning bed.


Showing our faces would have been lame. That green carpet sure does look nice.



 I lost my hand apparently.

That's a wrap, folks. The way I see it, I have proof and advice for all future brides in the world :) 

And, no I can't lighten these up with a photo editor. The pictures are so grainy that the shadows actually hide some distortment.

So what do you think? Would you pay for a wedding photographer? Do you feel better about forking over thousands of dollars for your wedding pictures?

I've Never Seen My Wedding Pictures |Part 1|

1.21.2014
Would you believe me if I told you I've NEVER looked at my wedding pictures and Jon and I have been married 2 years in June? Aca-scuse me? 

It's true. I've only seen the pictures the photographer shared on Facebook.

After Elise was sharing all her beautiful honeymoon and wedding photos, it stirred something inside me and I started to reminisce. And then I realized I had nothing, but memories to reminisce over.

Long story short. Jon and I skimped on paying the big bucks for a wedding photographer. We were so intentional about not going into debt and sending our parents into debt that we didn't think paying thousands of dollars for a photographer was worth it. #FAIL. Professional wedding photographers are worth every stinking penny. I ended up asking a friend from high-school who always posted unique and amazing pictures on Facebook. She was also willing to do it for little to nothing. The difference was she had never shot a wedding. It took 6 months of pestering to get our pictures from her. After a few incidents of her sending me empty envelopes, finally I got my pictures in the mail.

The anticipation killed me. Waiting 6 months and getting empty envelopes, I started to panic. Why wasn't she excited to give me my pictures? What was she hiding? I put that flash drive in my computer and flipped through the first 10 pictures. That was all the evidence I needed. I slammed my computer shut and I never looked again. Until this week.

Thank goodness for the handful of decent pictures and for my sister-in-laws husband who created this insanely awesome video for us. It's the most wonderful piece of memorabilia of our wedding day and I cherish it so much.

So here's to the good! The bad and the ugly come tomorrow...
Funny story. We forgot our wedding license and had to get it on the morning of our wedding day. Talk about last minute!
Both my dads walked me down the aisle :)
Stay tuned. Tomorrow I show you why you should pay the big bucks for a professional.