Sunday, January 29, 2012



Do you love scrapbooking? You probably have filled many scrapbooks full of photos, fun stickers and memories. Recently, I found out you can do this on your computer as well! My Memories Digital Scrapbooking emailed me and asked if I would like a free download of their software to do a review and host a giveaway AND discount for my readers! Very cool - I love having giveaways for you guys!

It is really cool software! In fact, the only complaint I had was that it made my computer a bit slow when I was using it, but my computer isn't the newest. You can set up whole scrapbooks based on different themes and even add video, music, website links, make calendars and much more. It is pretty much endless the way you can customize the pages with photos, words, etc. I think I could spend hours and hours and waste away my day making scrapbooks on there!

It would be great to use to make an online portfolio as well since you can add any text you'd like, photos of yourself, videos, etc. Here are some examples of pages I whipped up:

 Here's an example of what the software looks like when open:


If you want to win the giveaway, please visit, look around and comment on this post what your favorite digital paper pack or layout is that you saw on the site. Tell me why you'd want to use this digital scrapbooking software! :)

You must be following my blog to win as well!

If you want extra entries, you can follow me on Twitter as well as My Memories software!

As a special for all of you lovely readers, I give you your very own Share the Memories code that provides a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite Scrapbook software and a $10 coupon for the store - $20 value!)
Please use this code when shopping to get $20 off!!!: STMMMS32098

I will pick a winner in about a week and you can use the coupon code any time! 

P.S. Check out this great giveaway from Just a Carolina Girl - I want to win so bad! :)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Movie Review: "The Vow"

Last night was definitely an adventure. My friend got free tickets to an advanced screening of "The Vow" and asked me to join her! So exciting - both of our first advanced screening of a movie! The adventure began driving to another town about a half an hour away trying to find the movie theater. We spotted bright lights of a theater and figured that has to be it! Nope. Apparently one small town needs two movie theaters within two blocks of each other. Regardless, we eventually found it on time and sat in the plush, reserved seats (yeah, we felt cool!) and waited for "The Vow" to begin.

Cue the intro. Leo (Channing Tatum) and Paige (Rachel McAdams) exit a movie theater and head home in the snow acting all adorable. Then smash! A slow motion crash sends Paige flying through the windshield of the car and both of them into the hospital. Leo narrates, talking about memories and moments. How the people you know become your memories which make you who you are. How true is that?

Then Paige wakes up with no recall of the last few years of her life, the years filled with memories of Leo. The last thing she remembers was a dramatically different life: being at home with her parents, going to law school, being engaged to a guy named Jeremy (who has a lovely Cockatoo hairdo and stirs up drama in the movie occasionally) and basically being a sorority type girl. Keep in mind, in actuality, she quit law school and went to art school and is now an artist, married to Leo, no longer speaks to her parents and Leo has never met them, is now a vegetarian, etc. It was a little crazy to me how much she had changed and I'm not the only one. Paige wonders why the life she now only remembers is so different than the life she is apparently now living.

Leo desperately tries to get Paige to remember him, convincing her to come home with him and try to re-learn her life, despite the pleas of her demanding parents. The plot now goes to a plethora of highs and lows as Paige eventually settles back in to her "Stepford wives" life with her parents and sister and keeps dismissing Leo but at times starts to fall back in love with him as they re-create their first dates. At times I wanted to smack Paige for the way she was acting, but if you stop and think how hard it must have been to step back into a strange life, you can calm down. Secrets are revealed that clue Paige back in to why she stopped speaking to her parents, her love of art starts coming back and twists and turns come to their relationship.

I really enjoyed this movie. You'll melt at scenes of how cute Leo acts (which made me wonder... yeah what boys are actually THAT cute?), gasp at secrets and twists, smile and cry at the same time while watching their vows and desperately want these two to get back together. I don't want to spoil any of the twists or the ending, so you'll just have to go see it and find out! I think this would be a great movie to go see for Valentine's Day with your girlfriends or even your boy if you want to point out all the cute things you wish he did. ;) Tell me: do you want to see this movie? Should I reveal spoilers?

I'll also leave you with something to make you laugh :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Every Girl Needs These Friends!

I think every girl needs a variety of different friends. Here are the five types I think are important:

The best (girl) friend: This is the friend that you spend the majority of your social life with. You can tell this girl anything and you two always have fun together. Your best girl friend(s) may change as you age, but I think it is important to have one or a few best friends at all times. They are there to lift you up when you're feeling down, help you with your problems and just chill and hang out during the week/weekends.

The sister: This person doesn't need to be your actual sibling. Most likely it is a girl you've been friends with for a long time and is one of your very best friends. But your bond is even closer than the best girl friend! She is the first friend you call with good or bad news and will be your Maid of Honor one day. This is a great bond that you need to cherish!

The best (guy) friend: This guy isn't your boyfriend. If you have a boyfriend he should be your best friend, but I think you should also have a close guy friend. Some boyfriends can get weird about their girl having a close guy friend, but if the relationship is innocent I don't see anything wrong with it. It is great to have a best guy friend who can give you great advice on relationships from a guy's perspective. Not to mention, most guys don't fall into the traps of drama that can happen so often in girl friendships. This guy is great to just hang out with.

The lunch/movie/dinner/shopping buddy: You know those friends you just get lunch with every month or so or go see a movie together every few weeks? You aren't super close with these friends, but you really enjoy their company and care about them. These friends are great because you probably won't have any major drama or fights with them and are able to simply enjoy some good times with. The downside is you may not be best friends but they are still important to your life.

The co-workers: Since I am a freelancer, I don't really have co-workers, but I have in the past. These are great friends that get you through the work day. Sometimes you might even hang out with them after work. I have made a few friends from previous jobs that I still hang out with occasionally. These relationships may not be very deep, but they are crucial to having a healthy work balance and fun time at work.

Any other types of friends I'm missing?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Valentine's Day Fun Facts!

Have you ever seen an infographic? An infographic is a graphic made to share some type of information. Today's is shared from, a cool jewelry website perfect for what today's infographic theme is: Valentine's Day! Enjoy these fun facts!

Which brings me to similar news: I will be bringing you Valentine's Day themed posts in the next few weeks before the day! If there is anything you'd love to read, comment here or tweet me: @lrstewar!

Monday, January 16, 2012

My Favorite Workouts

Growing up, I was lucky. I was never into team sports or really that into exercise but I was always skinny and one of the tallest in my class. I was more into drawing, reading, writing and watching movies.

Now, at 22, I realize more and more how important exercise is even if you have a great metabolism. It has so many benefits including better immune system, a release of happy endorphins, makes you smarter, wards off disease and the list could go on and on!

So needless to say I am trying to exercise more. Luckily, my schedule is pretty flexible so I have the time to put into it.

I never used to enjoy running or jogging much, but now it is one of my favorite ways to sweat. I've been working my way up, right now running about a mile without stopping. I eventually want to work myself up to be able to sign up for a 5K.

I also really enjoy yoga these days. I started going a few years ago but never really stuck with it. One of my goals for this year is to keep going at least once a week. I think yoga is a really gentle way to exercise, get flexible, relax and stay stress-free.

When it is warmer out, I like riding my bike, rollerblading and running outside.

I also think a great and fun way to work out is using the Wii (what I own) or any other game console. Playing Just Dance or other exercise games actually do make you sweat if you really get into it!

Some workouts I would love to try are Zumba, Kickboxing and Pilates. Are you into any of these workouts? What should I expect and which should I try first?

Friday, January 13, 2012

Update: I Just Wanna Buy Those Boots!

It has been about a week of my no shopping challenge. I have been trying to keep busy so I don't have the urge to shop, but that doesn't always solve the problem.

I've realized the things I most desire to buy are makeup and beauty products. Probably because I love magazines and there are so many beauty ads in magazines and on TV with constant new products! I love trying new beauty products.

Another thing I've been lusting over is new boots. Right around the holidays, I found the perfect boots. I am pretty picky about shoes so these seemed to be everything I wanted. I don't really have great shoes for going out on the weekends for the winter months. Unfortunately they didn't have my size at a local DSW, so lately I've been dying to go see if they have them yet and see how they fit. Then I realize I am not supposed to buy them.

This week all I've spent money on is food a few times, gas for my car and supplies for my cake decorating class. Today I'll be spending some money at the chiropractor but I think that will be it, hopefully for the weekend!

What advice do you have for me?

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Cancer Prevention Starts Today!

First of all, check out my new weekly column on! Like them on Facebook so you get updates with great articles every day. :) Here's my second article (the first was similar to the goals for 2012 I posted on here but you can find it on here.)

Okay, I will admit it. I’ve always been a bit of a scaredy-cat. I still close my eyes during scary movie previews and get paranoid driving home late. There are so many scary things out there in the world, but I do try to focus on the positive and happy parts of life. Even if you spend your days with the most positive and optimistic outlook, sometimes things happen that make you take a second look.

This month on we are focusing on cancer prevention. I think everyone knows someone who has cancer or has lost someone to cancer. I am in both camps.

Cancer is probably one of the scariest things life can throw at someone and I definitely always have that fear in the back of my head. We can’t always completely prevent ourselves from getting an illness or prevent something horrible from happening in life, but you can take positive steps to keep yourself healthy and safe.

Thankfully working here at has definitely made me more aware of my health. I still do not have a perfect nutritional diet or work out every day, but I am more aware of my health and my body thanks to ASK. Here are some steps I take or work on taking to hopefully keep myself cancer-free:

1. Eat a healthy diet. I’ve been reading articles on how sugar is so bad for your health. Sure, I always knew this but I didn’t really know how much it played into cancer and that if you have cancer, you shouldn’t eat any sugar. Unfortunately, I have a big sweet tooth. I want dessert after lunch and dinner. This month I’ve been working on a goal of no shopping and I think next month I may tackle no sweets to see how it affects my health.

2. Exercise has so many benefits. The more I read, the more benefits I find for exercise! My goal has been to go to yoga at least once a week and I try to take advantage of the treadmill or elliptical in my basement a few other times a week. It can be hard in the winter months to exercise inside but if you make it fun, work out with a friend, or schedule workouts in your planner; you can do it! In a few months it will be spring again and you can bike, run, walk and enjoy the weather again!

3. Use organic products. Since working for ASK and reading articles on organic products, I try to incorporate more of these into my life. It is crazy to think how many dangerous chemicals can be lurking in your makeup, beauty and hygiene products! I have been slowly but surely working towards using all organic or natural beauty/hygiene products. I may never totally go organic, but I figure the less chemicals I put on or in my body the better!

4. Be kind and believe in karma. This may sound crazy to some people but if you believe in karma, you believe that the more good you give the more good you get back and vice versa. Be loving, gracious, kind and helpful and live your life happily. This will increase your mood, the mood of people around you and even keep you healthier. Sure, this philosophy doesn’t ensure you don’t get ill someday, but it certainly can’t hurt you.

Please join the conversation: Do you ever think about cancer prevention? What steps do you take to keep yourself healthy?

Monday, January 9, 2012

Planning/Organizing Love & Goal Update!

I love organizing! It was kind of a funny coincidence I ended up working at a store called Organize-It for a few years. I love getting new planners, note cards, etc. Before Christmas and my no shopping goal, I ordered some adorable items from, items I've seen floating around the blogosphere and fell in love with! Here's what I got:

With my name of course...

 There's a section in the back to hold papers, address labels, etc.

 There's tons of room to write for each day (morning, day, evening). I love writing in it!

Of course I had to get a cute leopard print! :)

On another note....

I'm going to try to keep track of my spending for all of you!

Started my goal of no shopping somewhat randomly on a Wednesday so here's how the rest of the week went:

Thursday: Had to buy a few essentials (contact solution, vitamins, etc.) for around $30 then bought a few supplies for the cake decorating class I am taking that I needed for the next class.

Friday: I had to drive a few hours for a work meeting so the only money I spent that day was for gas and parking which I will get reimbursed from work.

Saturday: Saturday was somewhat rough. I went to a mall with my boy because he was buying me a new charm for my Pandora bracelet.

Funny story, I was cleaning the other day and found an index card from him that said "This coupon is good for one charm whenever you want it"... can't even remember what the occasion was that I got it from! So he said we could go over the weekend. :)

Anyways, so walking around the mall, knowing if I went in any stores I would be so tempted to buy something was rough! I told him all about my goal and I think he agreed it was good for me, but would be tough.

Sunday: Sunday, a lazy day where I would normally get bored and ask my mom or a friend to go shopping or simply go walk around some stores myself. This ended up happening so I did go to Target and use my gift card because "The Big Bang Theory" Season 4 was finally on sale for more than 50% off and I wanted to make sure I got the sale price!

Any advice? Luckily my week ahead looks fairly busy and when I am busy I don't even think about shopping because I don't have time!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

First Goal of 2012: No Shopping!

I love reading The Minimalists blog. Their blog entries are short and sweet but give real life advice and wise ideas. One of their recent entries talked about failure and went back to the main author's resolution for 2011: to not buy anything for one year.

Doesn't this seem crazy?! It does to me a little bit. Of course he still bought food, hygiene products and things like movie tickets and gym memberships that are considered experiences.

But this idea does bring me back to something I've always wanted to do: not buy anything for at least a month. In fact, it is one of my goals for the year.

I simply love shopping. I love the thrill of looking in a store, finding something new and taking it home. However, I do not love looking at my bank account or wallet after I purchase something, even if it is just $20.

If I really think about it, most of the things I buy I do not need. I always think I need new clothes, but my closet is bursting with clothes I rarely wear. I always think I need new makeup or beauty products and I do love to test new items and share them with you on my blog, but I can do this much less often than I do.

So for now, I do have gift cards from Christmas I have yet to use, so I am allowing myself to use those if I want to since it was not my money, but I will not shop for at least a month and see how I do.

This will definitely be difficult. It is so easy to go down the street to Target when I'm bored, go shopping with a girlfriend to hang out, or find things online or in catalogs that I want so badly. I am going to do my best to ignore my impulse to buy and concentrate on spending money on experiences and saving. So here goes...

I will not buy anything unless I truly need it (example: running out of something like deodorant that is necessary!). I will be allowed to buy food, experiences such as a movie with a friend and I will take a close look at everything I spend my money on.

...I'll keep you posted! Give me some tips or advice!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Make Delicious Smoothies at Home!

I love smoothies! They are so creamy, refreshing, delicious and if you do it right: healthy! I just got a new blender for Christmas because my old one wouldn't blend very well and it was so frustrating. Now, I've already made a few smoothies. Here are some recipes I love as well as a smoothie kit if you're short on time.

A healthy way to make smoothies:

Pick at least two of your favorite fruits! For example, I made one with frozen blueberries and a banana. Bananas are always good to add for the consistency.

Add a great liquid: organic apple juice, orange juice, milk, soy milk, etc.

You can add ice but it is not always necessary, especially if you have a liquid in there.

Try a fun twist by adding sherbert, low-fat yogurt, frozen yogurt, or a flavoring like vanilla extract!

Make it even healthier by adding protein powder, superfood powders or even vegetables like dark, leafy veggies.

These smoothie kits are so easy to make and really delicious and blend well! I've only tried the Mango but I want to try them all :) Read more about them here!
What kind of smoothies do you make?