Spring has Sprung

Spring is probably my favorite time of the year. Fall is great and all, but there’s nothing like the feeling that winter is finally over. For whatever reason though, I find myself absolutely dreading Father’s and Mother’s Day. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely ADORE my parents, but how am I supposed to say how much I appreciate them with just a simple gift or card? It also doesn’t help that both of my parents’ birthdays are in Spring as well (which is just rude if we’re being honest). In order to not be caught off guard for this gift- giving season, I’ve decided to list some of the ideas that I’ve had. Over the past few years, I’ve stuck with pretty generic gifts that I for sure know they would like. Well, to my dismay, my dad politely mentioned one holiday that if I get him one more coffee mug, he’s going to put me up for adoption.

Point taken, pops.

So this year I’m deciding to go with gift ideas that they might really want, but maybe wouldn’t buy for themselves.

  1. Candles-GOOD candles
  2. Pocket knife key chain
  3. Anything having to do with the University of Tennessee
  4. Nice oven mitts
  5. New bath towels
  6. Any baking supplies-they love to bake but all of our appliances are as old as the hills
  7. New wallet

Right now, that’s the best I have. They’re deciding to move soon, so house warming gifts might be the way to go this year.

xoxo,

B

Things I Wish Would Come Back In Style

Trends come and go. Some we’re happy to give the boot to, and others we cling to until someone has to physically burn them. I’ve lived through 2 great decades: the 1990’s and the 2000′, but I also have a few trends that I’d like to come back from previous decades as well.

  1. Scrunchies
    • I’m seeing more and more of these recently and I am loving every bit of it.
  2. Overalls
    • Basically a denim romper-but BETTER
  3. Charm bracelets
    • How else are you going to know someone is your best friend unless they give you a charm that says so?!
  4. Long fancy gloves
    • So what if I want to be Audrey Hepburn?
  5. Moon Shoes
    • These things provided me way too much entertainment as a child.
  6. Light up sneakers
    • Yes, as a matter of fact I DO run at the speed of light, thank you very much.
  7. S Club 7, and any boy band ever
    • I need them back, and I need them back now
  8. Sidewalk chalk
    • Do I even have to make an argument?

Here is also a list of trends I wish were NEVER a thing:

  1. Tomagotchis
    • Maybe I’m bitter because mine always ran away or died, but still I could’ve done without them.
  2. Chokers
    • You can pretend they’re cool all you want, but OW.
  3. The words: fan, bae, squad, bruh, lit, & turn up
    • Get them out of here. I’m begging you.
  4. Jean skirts
    • Not cute, not comfy, what’s the point?

xoxo,

B

A Nation Divided

As I’ve mentioned many times before, I am a northern girl who ventured to the South. There were a lot of myths that I heard before I came to Tennessee from Maryland. There are also things that I wish I would have known before hand.

First of all, everyone convinced me that everyone in the South dressed up for class. This absolutely stressed me out. I went to an all girls’ Catholic school for 7 years and haven’t had to pick out my outfit before school since I was in 5th grade and light up sneakers were still in style. So, I went out and bought as many orange sundresses as I could. Little did I know, that is a big fat myth. The thing wear to class is essentially what you wore to bed the night before: a big T-shirt and shorts in the spring and fall, or absolutely anything that will keep you warm in the winter. I was MORE than okay with this myth being false.

Next, I thought that everyone in the south was unhealthily obsessed with sweet tea. Considering that I could take sweet tea through an IV, I was upset to find out that sweet tea isn’t as big of an obsession as I thought.

There were also a few myths that people of Tennessee assumed about my northern ways. I have constantly had to clarify:

  1. No I do not say “pop” instead of “soda”
  2. No, I am not cranky all of the time.
  3. No, I haven’t been raised to hate the south.
  4. Just because I live where it snows all the time, does NOT mean I like the snow.
  5. No, I have never been “muddin'”
  6. Yes, I understand I say “you guys” instead of “y’all”
  7. I also understand that I pronounce the word “ON” like “Oo-won”, so sorry.

Being from Maryland, which is kind of in the middle, I didn’t really consider myself northern or southern. If I go up to New York I might as well be from the deep south, but if I go to  Alabama, I’m about as “yankee” as you can get.

Either way, I love my northern roots, but there’s also nothing like the south.

xoxo.

B

 

Picking Favorites When it Comes to Digital Advertising

Digital advertising has been the catalyst for so many brands in reaching specific target audiences and has made it so easy to calculate the exact ROI with each advertisement posted. At first, there were just pop-ups and banner ads, but after a while, the consumer is unable to sort through all of the clutter. In the past few years, I have come across some groundbreaking examples of companies taking the initiative to innovate the typical digital media routine.

My first example would be movie premieres on Snapchat filters. I feel that the most exposure that I have received to movie premier commercials is through TV commercials, which would make sense. However, with the convenience of streaming my favorite shows, ad free, and for such a low cost, I almost never know what movies are even playing anymore. That is,  until snapchat has entered the game. Snapchat, over the past year, has gotten very creative in the way someone can edit their snap using fun and creative filters. Some of these filters make you look like you’ve aged 50 years, and  some make you look like a puppy. However, if you swipe enough times, it will sometimes allow you to see your snap with an advertisement for a new movie that’s out. Now, I know this does not sound as cool when written down, but different movies have gotten really creative with this option!

Here’s an example from StarWars:

SnapChat has no current system for choosing a target audience aside from using geotagging, but who doesn’t love movies? I think this is my favorite example of digital advertising and just how creative it can be.

Next on my list of favorite digital advertising moves: Instagram ads. Instagram is for those who like to receive their information fast and visually. I would consider Instagram my most used social media platform. Although I primarily use Instagram to catch up on what my friends have been up to, I occasionally see a promoted ad as I scroll through my feed. People don’t like advertisements; it’s just as simple as that. However, putting advertisements on Instagram is so much less invasive than a pop-up ad on a website. The benefit of this strategy, is that people on Instagram are normally trying to waste time. It’s thought of as a quick time filler as we wait for something a little more stimulating to happen. So people might just take an extra moment to look at that advertisement, instead of looking at posts that they have probably already seen multiple times that day.

My next favorite as an advertiser, but my least favorite as  a consumer, is the idea of “suggestions” on websites. There is no denying the fact that this is an absolutely genius tactic for brands and advertisers. For me, there are virtually no downsides to online shopping. I have a search engine as opposed to a potentially aggressive store employee, I can compare different products by just clicking on my different tabs, and I don’t have to leave my bed if I don’t want to! You really can’t get much  better than that.

I don’t go online shopping often unless I really need something. The reason being when I go online expecting to buy a pair of flip flops, I end up with a cart full of flip flops, a bathing suit or two, a beach towel and sunglasses. This is all at the fault of digital advertising, more specifically the suggestions section. Once I find that one thing that I came online to buy in the first place, sites like Amazon and other stores will say “Others who viewed this item also bought:” and a list of items that I didn’t necessarily need. Except now that Amazon thinks I need them, you can bet they are in my cart.

Digital advertising is still pushing the creative boundaries and always engaging the consumer in ways that were never thought possible. It will be very interesting to see the next move that advertisers take with digital advertising.

xoxo,

B

 

If Only Dr. Seuss Wrote My Textbooks…

If I say “One fish, Two fish…” and you don’t immediately respond with “Red Fish, Blue fish”, that will tell me all I need to know about your character (and we probably can’t be friends).

Okay, that might be a little harsh, but I can say with complete confidence that you seriously missed out as a kid.

Personally, it was very hard to take the remote from my tiny hands and replace it with a book when I was a kid. Now, I love to read, but if it weren’t for these children’s books, I might still prefer to be glued to the TV for all of my free time.

It’s so hard to believe that these classics will probably seem old fashioned once it’s time for me to raise my own children. Fortunately/ unfortunately for the poor souls who have to call me “Mom”, they have no choice but to have these Top Picks on their book shelf.

  1. “Put me in The Zoo”

  2. “Hop on Pop”

  3. Dr. Seuss’ ABC’s

  4. “Fox in Sox’

  5. Are You My Mother?

  6. “Love You Forever”

  7. “Brown Bear, Brown Bear What DO You See?”

  8. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”

  9. Green Eggs and Ham

  10. Romona the Pest

  11. The Mouse on the Motorcycle

I’m sure there were many more that were the building blocks of your childhood, but these are definitely my favorite. You’re very welcome for this long overdue blast from the past. Happy reading!

xoxo,

B