Feminist Gift Guide

November 20, 2017

I don’t know about you, but there are so many gift guides floating around right now and sometimes I think, “wow, none of this stuff is me!” So, I decided to make my own style of gift guides, starting with my Harry Potter Gift Guide last week.

Over the past year, my already “girl power” attitude has turned into a full-fledged feminist and I want to literally wear it on my sleeve… or chest… or mug. If you’re like me and want to spread the good word, check out these awesome gifts from some super rad ladies (and there may or may not be coupon codes below!)

Feminist Gift Guide - The Observant Turtle

Feminist AF Phone Case $15.99 – Rose Gold Rebel is one of my favorite shops for sassy gear on the internet, and it doesn’t hurt that it is headquartered right here in Charlotte! This phone case is right up my alley: not too bulky, pink, and a kick-ass message. The best part? You can get 15% off using the code “FeministAF15” because RGR is just that awesome.

Fierce Feminist Sweatshirt $30 – The first of many items on this list from Everyday Unicorns, this sassy sweatshirt is perfect for anyone: male or female! Valery has some AMAZING Black Friday deals, so make sure to head over to her website and sign up for the email list for the latest details. She is offering free shipping to y’all ’cause she’s my girl. Use code “TOTFREE.”

Feminist Poster $18-32 – To me, feminism is helping all women of all colors. Building other women up is something I try to commit myself to every single day. This poster would be perfect in my office as a reminder to myself and a statement to others.

Feminist Note Pad $10 – I don’t know about you, but I’m constantly having to write things down. I have a terrible memory and have to keep lists all the time. I love this notepad and the yellow color is awesome!

Blooming Uterus Pin $10 – I’ve been super into pins recently and I love this uterus pin. Now I just need to figure out a place to put all of them!

Barrel Rolls Not Gender Roles Mug $12 – This mug is for the feminist old-school gamer. (Star Fox anyone?) As soon as I saw this mug, I knew I had to have it. This design is also available as a sweatshirt or hoodie! It’s also from Everyday Unicorns, so make sure to use the code “TOTFREE” for free shipping!

Feminist Embroidered Baseball Hat $14.99 – I love wearing hats on the weekends, especially one that has such a bold statement. Definitely hoping to get this one in my stocking this year!

Intersectional Feminist Lapel Pin $12 – I love Scrabble, I love gold, and I’m an intersectional feminist. Need I say more about why I love this pin? (Check out this article if you’re not familiar with the concept of intersectional feminism)

Set of 6 Pencils $10 – The feeling I get when I write with a freshly sharpened pencil is ridiculously soothing. You can buy these individually, or in a set of 3, 6 or 10!

Female Symbol Handstamped Necklace $20-36 – I’m a huge fan of understated hand-stamped necklaces, and this Venus symbol is perfect!

Ladies Don’t Start Fights Mug $13.99 – Real talk: I’ve been a fan of Marie from The Aristocats has been one of my favorite Disney characters ever since I saw this movie when I was a kid. This is totally a

Intersectional Feminist Sweatshirt $30 – Another awesome sweatshirt from Everyday Unicorns that’s also available as a t-shirt, long-sleeve tee, tote bag, and phone case! (Don’t forget to use code “TOTFREE” for free shipping!)

Who would these gifts be perfect for on your list? Any other items you’d add to the list?



Harry Potter Gift Guide

November 9, 2017

If you know anything about me, you’ll know that I’m absolutely obsessed with everything Harry Potter. I’ve been a fan of the books and movies since I was 13 and now, 15 years later, I still love the magic behind it all. And I know I’m not alone!

If you’re looking for a gift for the Harry Potter lover in your life, check out these 12 items that are sure to enchant any of the witches or wizards on your holiday shopping list.

“It’s Real for Us” Charm Necklace – $18

Any Harry Potter fan will tell you that it’s more than a book or movie series. We’re over here still waiting on our Hogwarts letters… (This necklace is made by a local Charlottean!)

Hogwarts Crest Ceramic Mug – $18

This red clay mug looks like it belongs in the Great Hall. Fill it with pumpkin juice or Butterbeer and it’s the perfect gift for any thirsty wizard.

Hallmark Resin Ornaments – $7.99 each

We have a tradition in our family to buy at least one “nerdy” ornament for our tree each year. We have a TARDIS and multiple Star Wars characters, so I think it’s time to add some Harry Potter love to our tree this year.

Constant Vigilance Tee – $25

Take heed of this warning from our dear friend Mad-eye Moody! If you’ve never purchased a tee or tank from Jordandene, you’re in for a treat. These shirts are the softest on the market – I promise you!

Marauder’s Map Scarf – $19.99

While this map won’t come to life or tell you where to find your friends, you can show your love for Messrs. Moody, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs with this scarf. Mischief managed!

Harry Potter Spells Coaster Set – $16

Since we don’t have magic to clean up water rings on tables, we have to rely on good old Muggle tricks. This coaster set is absolutely going on my wish list this year! It’s such an easy way to inject a little magic into your home without going overboard.

Hogwarts Letter Zip Wallet – $29.99

We may be too old to get our Hogwarts letters now, but imagine the joy on your (and your friends) face when you pull out this wallet. It won’t replace seven years of good memories at wizarding school, but pull out that cash and make your own memories!

Hogwarts Express Print – $27-32

If you ever dream of passing through Platform 9 3/4 to head across the countryside for Hogwarts, this print is the perfect way to bring that dream to life. I love that this print could easily be confused for a real travel poster. (I mean, Hogwarts is real, but shhhhh)

Yer a Wizard Tee – $25

Another favorite from Jordandene. We love Hagrid and this quote from his first interaction with Harry is just the beginning of the adventures for our young Mister Potter. This tee also comes in tank form!

Harry Potter Makeup Bag – $22-27

Carry your love for the series wherever you go! This makeup bags comes in two different sizes, and can even be purchased as a set. You even get to pick the color of the lining.

Deathly Hallows Water Bottle – $19.99

I’m trying to stay in shape, and with Quidditch season coming up, what better way to stay hydrated than with this Deathly Hallows water bottle?

Golden Snitch Pin – $12

Pins are coming back into style and I absolutely love it. Grab this golden Snitch pin and show off your super stellar Seeker skills!

Which of these items are you dying to find under your tree? Anything you’d love to see appear at the foot of your bed?


November 2017 Goals

November 7, 2017

It’s been quite a while since I did a goals post, but I really enjoyed doing these a few months ago! Not only did it help to write them and get my head in line for the coming month, it helped to put everything out there. I felt accountable, especially when I checked in with my goals the following month. Have you tried writing out your goals for the month? Did it help?


Here’s what I’m working on for November:

School –

Complete my research paper. I’m almost done! Just need to add in my Works Cited page and I can submit before Friday’s due date.

Complete my process portfolio. This one is easy, I just need to upload all of the assignments I’ve done to my Google Drive.


Home –

Organize and store all Halloween decorations. I’ve moved all of our decorations into our spare bedroom. Now I need to organize them!

Evaluate current Christmas decoration inventory. This is our second Christmas in our new house, but we didn’t really decorate last year other than having the tree up. I need to get a ~*~look~*~ going on.

Purchase a new Christmas tree. I’m looking for something that’s at least 7.5 feet tall and less than $150… think that’s possible?


Advocacy/Community Engagement –

Attend at least one event with Moms Demand Action. I signed up to attend an event Nov. 16… I’m putting it out there so that I don’t back out.

Research my ballot and vote in the Nov. 7 election. It’s important to me to vote in all elections, whether they’re local or national level.


Life – 

Make a list of everyone that I need to purchase Christmas gifts for and start researching gift ideas. I’m bad at waiting until the last minute, so I want to get a jumpstart on this in case I need to order things online.

Work out at least three a week. This should be easy since I have a membership to Orange Theory Fitness. Really I should be working out more than this, but this is a good start.


Blog/Social Media – 

Blog at least twice a week. Trying to hop back on the bandwagon and pump out some regular content is daunting!

Post on Instagram at least twice a day. Sometimes I go days without posting, so I want to be more consistent.

Grow my new Facebook group (Southern Influencer Network) to at least 100 members. If you live in the southern US, I hope you’ll consider joining our group! It’s laid and a way for us to connect with other influencers across the region!


What are you trying to accomplish this month?


My Girls – Partnering with Elaine Turner for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October 18, 2017

I consider myself extremely fortunate: I have multiple groups of girlfriends from all from different points in my life.

In high school, I hung out with four other ladies. We bonded over our love of school (we were nerds), reading (particularly Harry Potter) and world events. We participated in Model UN and hung out on the weekends going to skating rinks and shopping malls. Each Christmas, we get together for brunch and swap gifts and life stories. We live all across the globe but when we’re together, it’s like no time has passed.

In college, I joined a sorority and quickly bonded with a handful of girls in my new member class. We experienced things alongside each other from our days of living in the freshmen dorm on campus to crush parties to mountain retreats. The years went on and we remained close. Now we text each other almost every day, go on yearly mountain trips together, and have welcomed a total of 5 little boys and one soon-to-be born little girl into our circle.

When I moved to Houston, I met the most incredible group of women through blogging. We kept up with each other through social media (and still do) but met up for monthly brunches, blogger events, and conferences. They supported me when I was missing my other girls who were over a thousand miles away (or more). I try to see these women at least once a year since I moved back to the Carolinas.

Lately I’ve been thinking about these women in terms of our experiences. We’ve laughed together, cried together, gotten into (mild) trouble together, attended each other’s weddings and baby showers. We’ve had our fair share of ups and downs.

Then I start to think about my friends in terms of statistics.

Out of these fifteen women, including me, it’s likely that two of us will be diagnosed with breast cancer in our lifetime.

Breast cancer is something that we have heard about for years. I won’t spout facts or figures off because I know we’re well-aware of the effect it has on women all over the world.

Today I wanted to share with you about a brand that I love, Elaine Turner, and their fundraiser this month. 20% of all proceeds from two custom jewelry pieces purchased online, in stores or with your Elaine Turner Elite Stylist will benefit National Breast Cancer Foundation’s mission of providing help and inspiring hope to those affected by breast cancer through early detection, education, and support services. Through partner and donor support, NBCF provides free mammograms across the country. Elaine has decided to take on this cause because of her mother’s breast cancer diagnosis, so it’s something close to her heart.

I’m wearing the Peggy Bracelets, and wore them to see one of my high school friends get married just last weekend. It was a reminder to embrace the moments we have together, however fleeting they may be.

I received this bracelet as part of a partnership with Elaine Turner. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog!

One Room Challenge –
Master Bedroom: Week 1

October 5, 2017

If you’ve been following my blog for any length of time, you’ll likely know that I don’t have a shred of interior design savvy in my body. My mom is one of the best people I know who can bring a room together and, unfortunately, I didn’t inherit that trait from her.

When we moved into our new house last November, moving from a 1400 sq. ft. apartment to a 2100 sq. ft. house and having to undertake the challenge of pulling it all together into a cohesive look was quite the task. With the help of my mom and husband, we have been mostly successful in setting up the entire house. Only a few rooms remain, and one of them is a room we use every day: the master bedroom.

Thankfully, many of my blog friends have undertaken the One Room Challenge in the past, so I decided this year was MY YEAR. (If you aren’t familiar with the challenge, hop on over to Calling It Home and learn more.) So, over the next six Thursdays, I’ll update you on what progress has been made.

Let’s jump right in! Here’s what the room looks like currently:

The bedroom set we have currently, we bought in 2014 from Ashley Furniture. We don’t have plans to replace it anytime soon. I also just bought this bedding set after getting some inspiration from Pinterest. Prior to that we had just a plain white down comforter with *gasp* no fancy pillows. I’m still trying to convince my husband that the additional six pillows on the bed do serve a purpose, but I think that’s going to take a while.

My current inspiration on Pinterest can be found by visiting my “master bedroom” board. Here are a few of my biggest inspirational photos:

(Pinterest link)


(Pinterest link)

(Pinterest link)

The biggest things that need to happen in our current room are paint, curtains, maybe something above the headboard, lamps on each nightstand, and decorative items on the walls.

Stay tuned for the next updates coming next Thursday!