March 27, 2015

Official Instagram

Hello followers! I've got some exciting news...Small Town Girl now has an official instagram!

I was searching the big vast internet and I came across some blogging tips. One of them especially stood out to me, and that was social media. My blog has always been under the radar and almost none of my friends know about it. I've told a few close people in my life and I've gained beautiful friendships through blogging, but I decided why not spread out a little bit?

So I'm excited to announce that the official instagram for my blog is: smalltowngirl_michlyn

I would love for you guys to follow along and join all the adventures to come here on my blog. Go scroll through my beautiful & messy life in pictures! Thanks for all the support everyone!


March 24, 2015

Small Town Life

I grew up in a small white house on five acres of open land. A long driveway off a street that wasn't traveled often and next door neighbors that owned john deere tractors. The first born of high school sweethearts, in a small three bedroom house. Eighteen months later and I had a sister. We were best friends from the start. We went to school in our sundresses and tennis shoes. We played barbies, rode our bikes up dirt hills, and climbed trees together. Equally girly girls and tomboys.

In kindergarten, I began going to a small private school and that winter my first baby brother was born. For Christmas we braved the snowy roads two days in a row and drove to our grandparents' homes. Including annual cookie bakes with the cousins and sledding down hills in the backyard.  In the summer we visited the farm next door to my mom's parents' house and fed the horses and went on bike rides to the park.

For Easter, we alternated each year with which grandma and grandpa we would get to see. There were easter egg hunts, frilly dresses, and new white shoes. Occasionally my parents would brave the crying pictures with the easter bunny and too much chocolate. Before church, we woke up early and looked around the house for our Easter baskets.

When I was seven, my little sister Laura Grace was born sleeping and went to heaven in May. Every year we celebrate her birth and go see her beautiful stone at the cemetery. Full of releasing balloons into the sky and planting new flowers. The only thing I remember from her funeral was singing Jesus Loves Me and watching my family cry. I was still too young to understand everything.

Through the years, both of my siblings joined me at the private school. We had our favorite teachers and the school lunches were actually good. Our classes had less than fifteen kids in them and we all grew up together. The boys ran from the girls because they had cooties. We raced on the swings to see who get the highest. Every Wednesday we had chapel and in class we had coloring contests. Twice a year we had a musical and performed for family & friends.

By the time I was nine, my second baby brother was born. Mom & dad and four kids. We went on camping trips, saw fireworks on the fourth of July, and went to the beach in the summer. When school started in the fall we took "first day" pictures and mom drove us in the suburban. We raked leaves piles and jumped in them. In the winter we drove snowmobiles and went ice-skating in our backyard.

After a few years of trying to homeschool and eventually switching to a charter school, we adopted from Ethiopia, Africa when I was thirteen. Adding a fifth to the bunch just made life more beautiful and messy. We moved from our childhood home and took our swing set with us. Youth group trips, family trips to the big city, growing up, and moving again.

Seven. Together we live this life. We navigate the ups and downs. Whether it's dirt roads or a college campus. 8 years old or 18 years old. Living a small town life is what we know. We learn, we grow, we live.


March 20, 2015

My Favorite Fashion Blogs

It seems to be more and more popular these days to have a fashion blog. Whether it's OOTD's (outfits of the day), fashion photo shoots, makeup tutorials, or shopping hauls. I've seen these blogs become more common throughout the last couple years. Let me mention, I LOVE fashion blogs! The ladies who have fashion blogs all have such unique styles and I love reading them and scrolling through their pictures.

So today, I thought I'd give a little shout out to my favorite fashion blogs. I'm going to do my best and find ones that all have different styles preferences so there are different varieties. They will be numbered in alphabetical order, not by most/least favorites.

#1: belle vie
Haley is a college student who just got engaged. She finds incredible deals at thrift stores and let me tell you, she rocks at finding the cutest clothes for the best prices. Besides style, she talks about her college experiences, wedding planning, and her favorite moments in life.

#2: Classy Girls Wear Pearls
Sarah is an international blogger who reaches thousands of people with her beautiful style blog. She has an elegant and classy sense of style and she expresses it perfectly. Besides her wardrobe she includes pictures of her friends, beautiful vacations, and exciting parties.

#3: The Freckled Fox
Emily is a gorgeous mom of soon to be 5 kiddos and an incredible lifestyle blogger. She is most popular for her many hair tutorials and trust me, you can find any hair style ever on her blog. Including her beautiful hair, she blogs about maternity, her family, and her busy life.

#4: Into the Woods
Alexandra owns a beautiful vintage fashion blog. She often makes some of her own clothes and creates the perfect classic outfits. Aside from pictures of her style she wears the cutest jewelry, creates makeup tutorials, and her photos could be on the front of magazines.

#5: Rachel Lately
Rachel is an Austin, Texas fashion blogger. She shops at popular places but finds the trendiest ways to put outfits together. She loves her hometown, showing pictures of her travels, and gives great advice.

If any of these blogs seem to interest you, go ahead and click the link and it will bring you right to the homepage of the blog. These ladies know their fashion!


March 18, 2015

Printing Your Instagram Pictures

I don't do this very often but sometimes I like to pretend I'm artsy and write out tutorials for my blog. Today, I'm going to show you how to print your instagram pictures. I've seen this pinned on pinterest or on other blogs, but those tutorials required photo paper and fancy printers which I do not have the money for.

So as I searched for tips or tutorials on printing instagram pictures with good quality and within a reasonable price range, I noticed that there weren't too many that I found to be quick and easy to follow. Then, I finally came upon this post and it was perfectly laid out and I instantly started to follow along to get my pictures printed!

So now, I'm going to do a tutorial just like the one above and give you feedback on how my pictures turned out and hopefully you find this useful for your own experience.

First go to Persnickety Prints and you can either instantly upload your pictures or create an account that takes about 1 minute and then upload your pictures. Depending on how many you upload (I chose about 30), it could take a few minutes for all of the pictures to load.

Next, the pictures will load into a separate album and then you can name it so you remember what pictures you print. Once they all appear you can select "All" or individually select them to be printed for your order.

Since I wanted all of my uploaded pictures to be printed, I selected all of them and then a tab popped up to customize my order. It will show you all of the pictures that you intend to order and if you need to delete any then they have those options. Once you review your pictures you can click "order prints".

For the best quality, you want to choose a "photographic print" since your pictures will be printed after-all. Also, since instagram pictures are completely square you want to choose even dimensions so they are printed proportionally. Since they don't show you any prices, I'll give you a heads up and tell you that the 4x4 photographic prints run at about .50 cents a piece.

Make sure you only select the quantity to be ONE because that means you're only ordering 1 of each picture. I made the mistake of choosing 30 (because I had 30 prints) and my order got mixed up and I had to go back and change it. Finally, it will ask for your shipping address and payment info and you'll be set to go.

Ok now here's for the review part - You guys I'm in love!! They came within 3 business days and everything was packed neatly and perfect! They come in a small package that fits right inside your mailbox and they are protected just as pictures should be.

The pictures are packaged in two separate bags and the overview of your order is inside as well. They even sent coupons and a little thank you card! (you guys should know, I LOVE coupons)

At this point I was kind of holding my breath just waiting to see how my pictures turned out because despite the coupons, the pictures are what I payed for. They turned out beautiful! The quality was excellent, just like they would be shown on instagram. The size was perfect...not too big not too small. Whether you like to instagram square pictures or you're trying the new trend "rectangle instagramming" like me, the quality doesn't change.

Square, rectangle, borders, designs, name it and they all turned our perfect! With my 30 prints, plus regular shipping, my order cost about $15 and they also had a deal going on. Just google "persnickety print coupons" or check out their social media for any ways to save a couple dollars. All in all, I'm so happy I did this and very satisfied with the results. If it's not obvious I'll be doing this again very soon!