Happy New Year!

I have always been a big fan of the New Year because it is a time to reflect on the past year and brainstorm for the new year. I know a lot of people complain that you shouldn’t only use the New Year to better yourself and set goals for yourself and that you should be doing that throughout the year. While I do agree that you should strive to better yourself throughout the year, I also think it is more than okay to set goals and resolutions for the New Year. I also think you should set attainable resolutions and mini goals in order to reach your bigger goals.

What I learned from 2018: 

  • Stop saying yes to everything and everyone

I think this was the biggest and hardest lesson of 2018. While it might seem really small and not of importance, this lesson really impacted both my mental and physical health this past year. As most of you know, I started my masters in public health at the University of Arizona, continued working full time, continued blogging, and started planning a wedding. Crazy, I know. While taking all of this on, I still had a hard time saying no when I was asked to go places and do things with friends and family. I was at a place in life where I was saying yes to EVERYTHING and EVERYONE, had a full calendar seven days a week for months at a time and eventually burned myself out and started having panic attacks because I was unable to manage my already full schedule. Once I started strategically planning my weeks out and started saying no to events and outings I didn’t absolutely need to attend, it significantly improved my overall health and now I feel like I’m back to where I need to be.

  • Take risks and take chances

This is another major lesson I learned in 2018. I’m usually one of those people who just plays it safe and doesn’t take too many risks or chances. This year I decided to get uncomfortable and did a few things that scared me. In October of 2017, I began talking to an advisor about grad school and started praying about it. Before I even graduated from undergrad, I knew I wanted to go to grad school and made it a goal of mine. I was really scared and nervous to apply because I didn’t know if my GRE scores would be good enough or if I would get into the program, but I decided to just go for it. I then thought about how difficult it would be to balance working full time, going to grad school, and blogging, but again, I just trusted God’s plan and went for it. I got into the program and then started school in May! I’m not going to lie, it’s been really difficult at times, but I’ve stuck it out thus far and it’s been really rewarding. I’m eight months into the program and can’t wait to continue learning and work towards another goal of mine, getting my MPH.

  • Be present

This was another tough lesson I had to learn throughout 2018. With how much I am balancing on a day to day basis, I am constantly on my computer or phone. 90% of my day job is on the computer, I go to school online, and blog online, which means I spend allllll of my time connected to a device. This made it really difficult to be present with friends and family and I would regret going places and just being glued to my phone 24/7. I then realized I needed to set aside time in the morning and at night to be on my computer and phone (unless we didn’t have plans for the day) so that I could be present with my loved ones. I now plan my posts for the following week on the weekends so that I am not overwhelmed during the week trying to plan posts, do homework, and go to work. Being present is SO important, especially when you’re with your loved ones because you will never get that time back and every minute is so precious. Make a conscious decision to be present and put down your devices.

Highlights of 2018:

  • Rang in the new year in Vail, CO
  • Sandy Toes and Salty Hair turned one
  • I attended my first Mayo Clinic Infectious Disease Conference
  • Spent the weekend in LA and went to California Adventure
  • We got our puppy, Ella
  • Spent Easter in Anthem, AZ with my family
  • Went to Country Thunder for the first time
  • Went on a cruise with Charlie and my family to St. Maarten, Puerto Rico, and Haiti for my mom’s 55th birthday
  • Started my MPH at the University of Arizona
  • Went to Tucson, AZ with Charlie’s family to watch some U of A baseball games
  • Went to LA again for the weekend to visit Charlie’s family and brought Ella for the first time
  • Went to Dana Point with my dad for a quick weekend trip
  • Went to Lake Powell for Charlie’s 26th birthday and the fourth of July
  • Spent the weekend in Scottsdale for a weekend getaway
  • CHARLIE PROPOSED in Flagstaff, AZ
  • Went to LA for a weekend getaway to visit Charlie’s family and attend our friend’s wedding in Pasadena, CA
  • Spent my 24th birthday in Scottsdale with my best friend and Charlie
  • Had our engagement party with our closest friends and family at our wedding venue
  • Moved to our townhome
  • Went to Carlsbad, CA to visit my best friend before she moved to Italy
  • I said yes to the dress
  • Went to Orlando, FL for a work conference and Charlie and I went to Disney World
  • Spent Thanksgiving in Sedona, AZ with my family
  • Went to Disneyland and spent Christmas in LA with Charlie’s family
  • Partnered with amazing brands and companies throughout the year

I accomplished and did so much during 2018 and can’t wait to see what 2019 brings! I have a feeling 2019 is going to the best year yet and I have some big goals for the New Year. Here are a few of my goals:

I know these goals might not sound attainable, but I’m confident that I will be able to complete my goals for 2019. I made it a goal to completely cut out soda for 2018 and I stuck to my goal throughout the year. I am hopeful that I can at least complete three of my five goals for 2019 and hope I can complete all five of my goals! I hope you all use this first week of 2019 to reflect on 2018 and set goals for the new year.

Xoxo,

Jonica

NYE 2018 Dresses

Happy Friday and happy almost NEW YEAR! Where in the world did 2018 go?! It seriously flew by and I cannot believe all of the exciting things that happened the past year. I will be posting a 2018 reflection post in the next week so stay tuned for that. Today I want to focus on NYE dresses since it is coming up so soon! I linked all of my favorite NYE dress options below and most of them are either 40% off or under $50. I love hearing everyone’s exciting NYE plans and whether you choose to stay in or go out so comment below and tell me what your plans are! I will be going to my cousin’s wedding and I am so so excited. It will be so fun to be with all of my family for NYE and have a big party for my cousin and her soon to be husband. Shop all of my NYE dress favorites below. The dress I’m wearing in the photo above is also featured in this list and I am wearing a size medium for reference.

I hope you all have a fabulous and safe NYE!

Xoxo,

Jonica

Holiday Gifting with the Smile Brilliant cariPRO

Holiday gifting can be difficult, especially when shopping for your parents, siblings, friends, and loved ones. I love finding gifts that are perfect for everyone and the Smile Brilliant cariPRO is exactly that.The cariPRO is the perfect universal gift that can be used all year long and has so many benefits.

I have been using an electric toothbrush since I was little because dental hygiene has always been very important to me. I chose to get a cariPRO because it is affordable and suits all of my dental hygiene needs. I had been looking for an electric toothbrush with a long battery life since I am constantly on the go and the cariPRO has a 30 day battery life!

Here are all of the some of the additional cariPRO that I love

If you are a wine or coffee lover like me, have plaque build up, or hard to reach places in your mouth, I highly recommend using the cariPRO electric toothbrush because the cariPRO:

  • Removes 7x the plaque
  • Improves gum health in less than 2 weeks
  • Ensures you will have noticeably brighter teeth in a single week

If you have additional questions about the Smile Brilliant cariPRO, click here to visit the FAQ.

Use the code: sandytoesandsaltyhairblog20 at checkout to receive 20% off of your cariPRO!

I am also doing an exciting giveaway with Smile Brilliant to gift one lucky reader a cariPRO for themselves or to give as a gift. Enter the giveaway by clicking on this link: https://www.smilebrilliant.com/gb/sandytoesandsaltyhairblog. All you need to do is enter your first name and email to enter and for an additional entry, you may enter your Instagram username. Good luck!

I hope you all love the Smile Brilliant cariPRO as much as I do!

Xoxo,

Jonica


Engagement Party

Hi everyone!

I am so sorry I have been absent from the blog for awhile. I have been trying to focus on school after getting home from work and we have been on the go every single weekend, which hasn’t left me much time for blogging. I will be getting my first break from school since I started my graduate degree in May and it is almost a month long, I am so looking forward to it and can’t wait to catch up on blogging! We have also been so busy wedding planning and I can’t wait to give you all a wedding planning update soon. I originally wasn’t going to post about our engagement party because I didn’t know how many people would be interested in reading about it, but I received so many questions about the party and it turned out beautifully so I wanted to share all of the details with all of you.

Why we really wanted to have an engagement party:

Charlie and I got engaged on July 22, 2018 and were so beyond excited! It was honestly one of the best days of my life thus far and it was such a blur. I was so in shock, even though I knew he was planning a proposal, but I still could not believe it had actually happened. Read more about the proposal here. Charlie and I currently still live in Flagstaff where we both attended college and none of our friends live here anymore. All of our friends live in the Phoenix area or out of state, which made it difficult to have a small celebration or go get drinks to celebrate our engagement. Charlie’s family also lives in California and we really wanted to be able to celebrate with his family and all spend time together. We figured it would be best to have an engagement party so we could celebrate with all of our closest family and friends. We also knew we wouldn’t get married for over a year and wanted to get everyone excited for the wedding, which is another reason we decided to have a party.

Where we had it at:

We had our engagement party at Poco Diablo Resort in Sedona, AZ. At that time, we didn’t know that Poco Diablo Resort would then become our wedding venue as well. We chose Poco Diablo Resort because my parents are members there and we always go there to golf, swim, go to the gym, and go out to dinner. Poco Diablo is also close to my parents house and was convenient for planning purposes. Poco Diablo Resort also has amazing views and has a hotel and villas connected to the property, which was convenient for all of our out of town friends and family. Poco Diablo also catered the dinner for the party and we chose to have a Mexican food themed party with fajitas, salad, veggies, tacos, and chips and salsa/guac. All of the food for the party was amazing and all of the guests really enjoyed it! Since it was an engagement party, we decided to do buffet style and have a more casual meal, instead of a formal sit down dinner. Poco Diablo also took care of setting up the venue and provided the chairs, tables, linens, silverware, plates, etc. It was so nice not having to rent everything prior to the event.

My future mother in law also set up the most beautiful entry table at the party and it was the highlight of the engagement party. Everyone, including myself could not believe how beautiful the table turned out and how incredible it made the entire party look. The table had pictures of Charlie and I throughout the years behind it, the most beautiful fresh flowers, floating candles, balloons, a sign with the number of days until our wedding, a drop heart box to remember all of the names of those who attended, lights, tulle, and wooden initials. It was seriously amazing as you can see from the picture below!

Who we invited:

We tried to keep the party under 50 people because we didn’t want it to be too large of a party. We chose to invite our families, of course and our closest friends. We had about 40 family members and friends attend our party and it was the perfect amount. We appreciate everyone making the journey to celebrate our engagement with us and had so much fun! After the party ended, we kept the party going and played card games and drinking games at the lounge in the lobby.

What we wore:

I got soooo many questions about the dress I wore for the engagement party and I am so happy you all loved the dress so much! I knew I wanted to wear a white dress for the engagement party and started looking for a dress a month before the event. I found the dress I wore online at Red Dress Boutique and will link it below for you all to shop. It is the perfect dress to wear for your bridal shower, bachelorette party, engagement party, or rehearsal dinner! Charlie wore a white button down polo and shorts with loafers, which was the perfect outfit because it was still hot in Sedona at the time, but he still looked very handsome (like always). The dress code was very casual since it was so hot out at that time and we wanted it to be a low key event for everyone to enjoy. I would definitely decide if you want to have a more formal or casual engagement party because that will help you decide the venue, the type of food you’re going to serve, and what you and your guests will wear.

I also chose to do our engagement party the same weekend I did my initial wedding dress try ons. I chose to do this so that my bridesmaids would not have to travel two different weekends, but would still be able to attend both events. I will link my outfit and some of the decor we used for the party below! Thank you to our friends and family for making our engagement party the most amazing night for both Charlie and I!

Shop the look here:

Xoxo,

Jonica

 

Black Friday & Cyber Monday Sales 2018

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your friends and families. I had such an amazing day relaxing and eating with friends and family, which is exactly how I love to spend Thanksgiving. Since it is Black Friday & Cyber Monday is coming up, I thought I would round-up my favorite items from the best sales! This post is focused primarily on fashion and a little bit of beauty products. I received a request to share sale items for the home, since many of you are getting married or moving into a new place! I thought the request was such a good idea so I have decided to do another round-up of the best home/electronic sales before the weekend ends. I hope you all find a clothing item you love for yourself or to give as a gift. Black Friday & Cyber Monday are the best days to shop for gifts for the holidays, it is definitely when I do all my shopping for the holidays. You will find all of my favorite retailers and sale items below, simply click on the desired image and you will be redirected to a page to view or purchase the item(s).

Abercrombie & Fitch: 50% off entire store + free shipping- no code needed

Baublebar: 30% off entire store- no code needed

Express: 50% off entire store + free shipping- no code needed

Loft: 50% off entire purchase- use code FRIYAY

Macy’s: Save 20-70% off select items- no code needed

Nordstrom: Up to 60% off select items- no code needed

T3 Micro: 25% off entire store- use code FRIDAY18

Happy shopping!

Xoxo,

Jonica

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