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    Welcome to vmac+cheese. Here I'll share with you my love for all things food, interiors, design and style. I like to think of it as musings on a life worth living.

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Some Notes + This Weekend

My oh my what a week it’s been. To say that I was overwhelmed by all of your support after Monday’s announcement is an understatement. You guys. I can’t tell you how much your comments, emails and tweets mean to me. Truly, I am so humbled by your words of encouragement. And I feel honored too. I told Joe that the part about all of this that means the most to me is that I am inadvertently inspiring so many of you to keep chasing after your goals. I am promising you now that I will continue to do everything I can to inspire and encourage you. Let’s start with this: Don’t settle. KEEP GOING. Have faith in yourself and in your future. Okay?

Now, on to a few other notes and ramblings (including the winner of the Refinery 29 + Herringbone giveaway, and why the above photo references Friday when it’s Thursday…): Continue reading


It’s been waaaay too long since we took a proper vacation. There have been the weekend getaways, even the short road trip we did last October through California, but not a REAL vacation. I’m talking passport packed, gone for two weeks, thousands of miles away from home vacation.

We’ve decided we are going to make this type of trip happen this year, perhaps in the very late spring or early summer. But here’s where we get tripped up — every time we start trying to plan what we want to do and where we want to go, we can’t decide if we’d rather visit the gorgeous coastal cliffs of the Amalfi Coast in Italy, or if we’d rather do a tour of Southern France, hitting up the lovely countryside in Provence and ending by the sea on the Cote d’Azur.

If we did Italy, we’d likely fly into Rome, train it down to Naples, then make our way from town to town along the coast. Capri is an option too, though I hear it can be touristy. If we did France, we’d fly into Paris and spend a few days (and yeah, that gives this itinerary bonus points, because hello, it’s Paris), then train down to the south. We’d tour the countryside for a week or so, then spend several more days in Nice, Antibes, Cannes, the works.

So if you had two weeks off and had to choose between the two…where would you go? And if you’ve been to one or both, share your thoughts in the comments for sure. I have a feeling Italy might be a hit with many of you, so Francophiles, put in your two cents!!

PS — My column ‘Double Take’ is up over at Young Sophisticates! Check it out here.

{Image Credits: Amalfi Coast 1 2 3; Provence 1 2 3}

Herringbone Bags + Refinery 29 Reserve Giveaway!

Continue reading

Blog Tip of the Day

“Do you know where this photo is from?”

I’ve read that (and typed that myself) so many times since starting a blog. Sometimes it feels like the battle to properly credit photographs (that is, not listing Pinterest, Tumblr, or some other photo sharing site) is never ending. It’s tough these days!

Last week Meg posted a great Alt Summit recap that included her own notes on image crediting. I am in complete agreement with her that it’s vital to pin and source from a permalink. Oh, the number of hours I’ve spent combing through someone’s Tumblr because an image credit listed just a Tumblr page versus a post URL…

Sarah turned me on to a great bookmarklet recently that can help you source images, because it integrates with Google Image Search! It’s not foolproof, but it’s worked better than any other photo searching resource I’ve tried, including TinEye. I was a little confused the first time I opened it, so here’s what you do. Once you open the page, drag the blue link that reads ?¿src-img to your bookmarks bar. Then, on any webpage (it can even be a Pinterest or Tumblr page), click on the bookmark whenever you want to try and source an image. Question marks will appear on every image on that page — click the one you want to source. A new window that contains a Google Image Search will open up! For some images, you’ll have to comb through pages and pages of re-pins and Tumblr posts, but if you’re sleuthy, you can often pick a couple blogs and odds are that one of them will mention where the photo is originally from. Give it a try!

PS — The response to Mini-Alt Week ‘n such was so good that I decided to keep the momentum going. So I’ll be popping in now and again with a blog tip of the day. Do you love it??

{Image Credit: Lonny Magazine, Nov/Dec 2011. Photograph by Patrick Cline}

Because if you don’t bet on yourself…

You asked for it, so here it is! A snapshot from my whirlwind few days at the Altitude Design Summit.

It’s honestly kind of hard to describe the experience. Maybe it’s better to describe what it’s like after the conference. I’ve been dubbing it my “Alt hangover.” Symptoms include fatigue, feelings of excitement, a to-do list that’s a mile long, pining for blogging friends, wishing I still had room service and a steam shower, and more than anything, being unable to sleep because I have so many ideas floating around in my head. Fellow Alt-goers: sound familiar?

Beyond all the learning, my favorite part was getting to spend time with ladies that I’d previously only known online. My roommates Molly and Chelsea? Insta-connection. These girls were so fun, so sweet, and the best roommates I could’ve ever asked for. I honestly don’t know what I would’ve done without them! Chelsea even bought me a bridal magazine when she got to the airport, before flying in to Salt Lake. I mean, how cute is that? We had a blast getting ready for all the events and staying up late gabbing about our lives. Hello, multi-day sleepover.

Melissa | Megan | Jeanne | Erin | Visual Supply Co.

The sessions I attended included The Business of Blogging, Building Relationships With Ad Networks and Sponsors, From Blog to Book, Growing a Readership, and How to Make Yourself Press Worthy (you can see what all the sessions were here). Also of note was Ben Silberman’s keynote talk. Who’s Ben Silberman? Oh, you know. Just the co-founder of this little thing called Pinterest. Here are some notes I took that I thought you mind find useful (after the jump). Continue reading

Mini-Alt Week: The Miscellaneous Stuff

Jeanne, Shop Sweet Things | Bradley, Luella & June | Alex, Things That Sparkle | Gabrielle, Savvy Home | Liz, So Much to Smile About | Lara, Simply Irresistible | Alyson, The Average Girls Guide | Amber, Amber Interiors | Grace, Stripes and Sequins | Julie, Julip Made | Irene, designstILes | Liz, Sequins and Stripes | Lauren, L.A. in the Bay | Christine, Bijou and Boheme | Molly + Sally, A PIECE OF TOAST |

Blogging Bliss eBook
Blogging Your Way to the Front Row
Independent Fashion Bloggers
This post on Blogging Resolutions from Grace
Blogging Your Way
The Blog Stylist

So…what did you guys think of Mini-Alt Week? I’m guessing by the comments that you liked it, you really liked it!, and I can’t tell you how happy that makes me. I hope you’ll be able to refer back to this series of posts early and often, and that it not only helps you and inspires you, but that perhaps you’ll be able to make a connection with one of these bloggers too. For your reference, I created a category for all these posts, so they’ll all live at this URL. Bookmark it!

I’m back from Alt very late tonight, and will see you back here on Monday, when regular non-how-to-blog posting will re-commence. A lot of you heard about some very personal, exciting news that happened last Friday, and your patience will pay off — the full story will be told Monday.

{Image Credits: Les Composantes, Pocahontes Tumblr, Out of Sight Out of Mind}

Mini-Alt Week: Collaboration, Sponsorships, and Giveaways


Christine, Bijou and Boheme | Alyson, The Average Girls Guide | Molly + Sally, A PIECE OF TOAST | Lauren, L.A. in the Bay | Tamra, Walks With BellaEver Swoon | Alex, Things That Sparkle | Gabrielle, Savvy Home | Liz,So Much to Smile About | Grace, Stripes and Sequins | Irene,designstILes | Rebecca, Young Sophisticates | Liz, Sequins and Stripes


Blogging Your Way to the Front Row
Lucky Style Collective
ProBlogger: Make Money Blogging
Amazon Associates

***BIG UPDATE ON GIVEAWAYS: Live from The Altitude Summit, I learned today that doing giveaways on your blog is actually rife with legal complications. In that, doing it for free, or having people follow/like you on another platform, may not be legal or may bring about all kinds of issues that you should address with the brand before ever giving anything away on your blog. This is a relatively new issue in the blogosphere, and apparently one that the FTC is starting to monitor and crack down on. I am gathering more information on this and will report back to you all!

{Image Credits: The Sartorialist, Dottie Angel FlickrA Gadabout Tumblr Bardot Database,  Garance Dore}

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