Elegant Holiday Updo

holiday updo

I’ve been looking for the perfect Thanksgiving hairstyle.  One that was super easy and didn’t require too much random pinning.  I also wanted one that would look great without extensions and I wanted it to take less than ten minutes from start to finish.  Inspired by Cute Girls Hairstyles Pull Through Braid, this simple Holiday Updo has quickly become one of my favorite hairstyles!

What do you think?  Are you going to give it a try this holiday season?!

Click through for the step by step instructions, the video and of course, more photos.  WINNERS ANNOUNCED AT BOTTOM

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Below Freezing

12345Plaid dress  40% off using code “shop”| Aztec Cardigan | fleece lined leggings c/o Oakleigh Rose Boutique | similar booties | c/o Lily Jade Bag | c/o Stella and Dot Bracelet | c/o Lilli and Tori Druzzy Bracelet


I’ve been trying to take outfit photos aaallll week and every day the subzero temperatures have literally prevented me from leaving the house, let alone tromp around outside in less than 17 layers.  Today though, today I was brave.  You should have seen Brian and I — I’m pretty sure the people driving by were like, “what are those crazies doing”?! — we’d jump out of the car take two photos and then jump back in the car for five minutes to warm up.  Oh the joy of living next to a lake in the dead of a northeast Ohio winter!

These leggings I’m wearing are as thick and warm as pants.  I wore them with a tunic a few posts back, remember?  This plaid shirtdress is a tiny bit shorter than what I’d normally wear with tights, but because I wear these leggings as pants (remember to cover the bum haha), I’m okay with the length.  The dress does have a good 2″ hem that can easily be undone if you need some extra length.  I absolutely adore this shirtdress from Gap.  Every year when the weather gets cold, the flannel and plaid come back into style.  This is that perfect seasonal dress to add to your closet because it has this laid back and comfortable fit so it’s very casual, but by adding a belt and some heels it can easily be dressed up for work or church.  It’s 40% off right now so if you want one go snag it asap!

And ONE more thing that will just make your entire weekend!  My best friend in the entire world has written this hilarious parody to Can’t Hold Us.  I don’t know where this skinny white girl from Utah gets her rapping skillz, but she ain’t messin’ around!!  You guys — I’m not even kidding — watch this video and I promise you’ll laugh your head off!!  Can you not understand why she’s my best friend?!  The freedom banner, hahahah oh my gosh!

Alright ladies, I hope you have a fabulous friday night and weekend!  MUAH xoxo

Twisted Pull Back | Hairstyles from Reign

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Today’s hairstyle was inspired by the CW show Reign.  Have any of you seen it?  I pretty much watch it just to see the amazing costumes and hairstyles!  I was inspired by one of the looks I keep seeing over and over this season, I hope you guys enjoy the tutorial.  Also, if you watch the video you’ll know I’m giving away ten copies of The New Braiding Handbook (watch the video for more details).  I don’t feel like I talk enough about my books!  I’ve worked so incredibly hard on them and I’m SO dang proud.  The New Braiding Handbook was released this Spring and I don’t think I’ve talked about it or even mentioned it on my blog more than once.  Abby, pull yourself together!  It’s been so fun to get tagged in pictures of readers who see it in Urban Outfitters and bookstores!  The other day someone sent me a picture of it in, I think it was Sweden!  Pretty cool.  And the first book I came out with in 2011, The Ultimate Hairstyle Handbook is still the number one hairstyle book on Amazon.  I honestly can’t believe how well it’s done and I’m just so thankful for everyone who has taken a chance on me over the past few years.

Here’s my plug.  If you have a daughter, a sister, a neice, a cousin, a best friend, a girl friend or a wife.  Buy this book for her.  It’s such a perfect book to keep in the bathroom on those low inspiration days.  I just wish something like this had existed when I was a teenager.  I totally would have had sleep overs with my friends and done manicures, facials and braided hair all night long!  What I like about my books too is that they are real step by step photos.  There aren’t any confusing drawings and it’s not just an inspiration book with beautiful styles.  It will literally teach you how to get each look.  Anyway, if you’re looking for the perfect gift, here’s a cheap one that works so well by itself or that you can combine with a nice straightener or curling wand if you’re wanting to spend more.  No more bad hair days!

hairstyle book

There are a handful, maybe 8-10 repeated hairstyles in the second book.  They’re basic styles I felt like needed to be in both.  They really are totally different books with different looks and inspiration.  I can’t choose my favorite but I must say the new one is better quality.  It was published by an actual publishing house and it’s on beautiful glossy paper.  The first one though was designed by me… haha can you tell?!!  Okay okay, I’m done.  Sure hope you guys will take a look!  Here’s the video I promised and make sure you watch till the end because there’s a hilarious video you won’t want to miss!!  First hairstyle inspired by Reign can be found here

Crazy For Christmas Party on Pinterest and Giveaway!!!

Mark your calendars and SAVE THE DATE

for December 4th!

Cozy up with some cocoa and get ready to PIN Everything in Sight!

Because we are pleased to announce the…

Crazy for Christmas Party ON Pinterest

with your Favorite Bloggers!

So there is this MUST-FOLLOW Pinterest Group Board filled with extreme craftiness, beauty & fashion tips galore, genius organizational & DIY ideas, plenty of kid-entertaining and hubby-lovin suggestions, and ways to SAVE more moo-lah? Basically EYE-candy at it’s finest! (Following this board ensures your Pinterest feed will be on a balanced diet of daily inspiration!)

Well… I’ve been invited to be a part of this Pinterest board and {with 13 FANTASTIC other bloggers} throw a LIVE PARTY on PINTEREST!

So pull out your virtual party hats and get those pinning-fingers ready because we are ready to par-tay


NEW - Save The Date

That’s right- this party is alllll about Christmas! Come get lots of pinspiration on: easy Christmas gift ideas, yummy holiday recipes, fun family traditions, festive home decor, free holiday printables, and SO MUCH MORE!

OH! And…

We should mention, there is a GRAND PRIZE GIVEAWAY too, of course with TWO winners!!

{Keep scrolling down to enter!}

Giveaway Prizes

But that’s not all… EVERYONE’S A WINNER!

That’s right- everyone who parties with us will also get their hands on some gorgeous party favors!! {Designed specially for you by the oh-so-talented Kristin of Yellow Bliss Road!} Just you WAIT!!!!! They are to die for & you will DEFINITELY use them for Christmas! Sneak peek will be emailed to you once you register!

Ummm….I’d attend JUST for those alone!

So, mark your calendars for December 4th!

…and check out all of bloggers involved in the meantime! You are gonna fall in LOVE with them!

The Dating Divas / The 36th Avenue / Somewhat Simple / Lil Luna / Mod Podge Rocks / One Good Thing / Maskcara /Kids Activities Blog / Twist Me Pretty / The Crafting Chicks / Yellow Bliss Road / Simple As That / Thirty Handmade Days / Living Well Spending Less

A FUN Christmas-themed pinning party that all of you can attend from the comfort of your own home- what’s not to love?!

**IMPORTANT: Fill out the form at the bottom of this post to get your OWN invite to the Crazy for Christmas Party on Pinterest and information on how it all works! You will also receive a few reminders to make sure you don’t forget! AND registering will automatically hook you up with the amazing FREE digital party favors made by Kristin of Yellow Bliss Road that you will receive at the close of the party!**

**All you need to worry about today is entering this

FABULOUS KICK-OFF Giveaway below and RSVPing for the party!**


**Winners will be announced at the close of the party.**

It’s SUPER easy to enter!
1. Follow ALL of the bloggers in the widget below {you get entries for each blogger you follow}
2. Be present at the party (a.k.a. watching the pinning countdown on our group board from your computer or mobile device) to claim your prize!
Crazy For Christmas – Pick Your OWN Prize


**You will get to see your “official” party invite AND read all about how this works once you click “submit.” If you don’t “RSVP” – you will not receive reminders OR get the freebie printable party favors. **