Mondays with SMIJ: Imagine It

Now glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of—infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. May he be given glory forever and ever through endless ages because of his master plan of salvation for the Church through Jesus Christ. – Ephesians 3:20-21

I love the practice of visualization. Have you ever done a vision board? I do them kinda by accident. I pull articles about entrepreneurs that motivate me, vacation spots I want to visit, events I want to attend, recipes I want to make and interiors that I’m working towards. My bulletin board also includes quotes, Bible verses and calendars.

I heard this verse (above) through new ears recently.

“Highest prayers, desires, thoughts and hopes” it says. In Rick Warren’s Transformed Series, he points out that you have to HAVE “highest prayers, desires, thoughts and hopes” first.

When I began my business, I visualized all the time because it was nothing but a dream then. I pictured moms on the beach playing with their kids while being comfortable and looking effortlessly chic. Guess what? I have photographic evidence of this vision becoming reality year after year. I pinch myself every time I see a picture like this.

As the business grows, I find my mind more on fabric sourcing, production schedules and sales seasons. I love the business side of this business and it needs my attention.

But, I am going to spend some time visualizing, too. I’ve definitely gotten away from that. If you see me and my head seems to be in the clouds, just know I’m imagining “more than I would ever dare to ask or even dream of“.

5th Sundays with SMIJ

I am getting so excited for 2019. We have fun, new SMIJ coming out and big plans for you. We have always given back at SMIJ, but just recently we’ve started to formalize and plan ahead to ensure we’re making a bigger impact. You’ve probably seen our Hurricane Relief efforts with Deals or Steals lately.

In 2019, we are going to host 5th Sundays with SMIJ. I love the idea of Sunday Dinners. I do know I definitely can’t pull off a fabulous Sunday Dinner every week. But… I think I can 4 times per year! We are going to host these 4 times in 2019 (first one is March 31). The goal will be to gather, enjoy community, see friends, make new friends, introduce people and enjoy each other. This is NOT a shopping event. There will be an opportunity to contribute to the current cause, but it will be something small and optional like an inexpensive game or a t-shirt whose proceeds go to charity.

Stay tuned…

Location, Location, Location • 100 Ideas in 100 Days | 90 Shopping Days Til Christmas • SMIJ Gift Guide • Idea #11

We all have places we love.  It may be your hometown, your favorite beach town, the place you got married or where you’ve lived.  The list goes on.  I love gifts that celebrate these great places.  Here are a few ideas to give someone the gift of location.

First of all, maps.  I love maps.  There are several artists who make city maps.  I suggest doing a tag search on Instagram of #map(city of choice) to see what comes up.  Also, visit Etsy and search by maps.  There are so many talented people celebrating great cities.

Zip code hats are a fun gift, too. It’s a great gift for a guest or someone who recently bought a home or even someone moving out of the zip. This has been a popular parting gift.

Also, market and beach totes are fun because you can take a little bit of the place you love with you wherever you go.  

Recently I learned about Gunner’s Daughter, too.  They do everything from bags to scarves to mugs with maps of some of the places we love – St. Simon’s Island, Savannah and more.  

Location, location, location – you can’t go wrong!

This Time It’s For Real

So, how did you feel about your first Game Day outfit? Hopefully, since it was Labor Day Weekend, it involved a bathing suit in your team colors and a Game Day hat or Tiger scarf.

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But, if not, that’s ok. There is still time. As for many of the teams that played that first weekend, this was pretty much just warm up for the season. Now, it’s time to get serious about those Game Day looks. There are only a handful of Game Days and this beautiful season passes by way too fast. The looks run from casual to dressy, hot weather to cold weather. Such a fun time of year for outfit planning. So, get to it! 5 days until the next Game Day!

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The Wanderer • Add Chic in a Week

The Wanderer Scarf is officially in production. I will have 10 available in a week or so. We’re starting with two Tiger prints that I’m dying over.

I’ll be posting them on-line as soon as they are available. We are going to have so much fun with these little cuties.

Sneak Peak at Travel Tee

Thank you for following my blog. It’s a fun way to connect with the SMIJ Community and I appreciate you. I thought you should be the first ones to see our newest travel tees. I’ll be debuting these in Maine. I have lots of East Coast fun planned in the next year so, of course, I need an appropriate tee series to accompany me – and you – on all of our east coast adventures.

Currently Scarf Obsessed

Scarves offer up about a million possibilities. I’m currently loving them around the neck, tied to a bag, in your hair, around your wrist and wrapped around a bathing suit. Depending on the size, you can do so many fun things. Let’s talk hair alone… Tie one around your head 70’s style for a concert or beach day, go Jackie O style and cover your head for a windy ride, tie one around a pony tail to take it up a notch or use one as a head band.

I’ve made one extra of this tiger print if anyone wants it. I think it would be so fun with a black bathing suit and big gold hoops for a Resort day. I’ll be posting more options soon as I see them.

Cooking Show On-the-Go

{Carrie Peeples of Neatsmart wearing a SMIJ by Jill Apron.}

This was the most fun!🍝 Carrie of Neatsmart and Chef Nancy of Taste and Savor team up twice/month for a quick Cooking Show with relevant organization tips. 📝 Get on their mailing list to get info on the next one which promises some St. Patty’s Day shenanigans. ☘️ This was 20 min well spent.


(1) learned a 5 ingredient red sauce that will make my Friday Night Spaghetti Nights tastier AND healthier,

(2) got inspired to use “fire-roasted” tomatoes and

(3) got a quick list of cans and spices I should always have in the pantry to make a yummy meal.

I listened in on Instagram Live (they also do it on Facebook Live simultaneously and it’s recorded for later viewing) while I was in between errands. I love cooking shows. When my kids were younger and we were home in the afternoons for naps and play time, I always had Giada or Ree on in the background. They kept me sane and I learned so much. At this stage of life I’m running around to school events and after school activities and I miss those girls. I had so much fun watching this local show on the run. Tune in or watch past episodes here.

{SMIJ by Jill Apron}

The Cute Way to Carry Not-So-Cute Things – Beach Essentials Bags

When it comes to beach bags I’m in the bigger-the-better category. I love big bags and I cannot lie. I think they actually make my butt look smaller, too. Ha! Too much info there…

Anyway, back to my vanity issues later. Anyhoo… even though I like the big bags I do still like to find things quickly. Kids and the beach are quite the combo. You need lightening fast access to waters, snacks, diapers, toys, sunblock (oh, the sunblock!), SPF lip balm (I’m a little obsessed on this one. Like, I reapply the family every 20 min.), another water because that last one got sand in it (every time), keys to the beach house (how many times a day do you “just run back” for something?) and money – oh and wipes!

Anyway, I’m a big fan of cute “Beach Essentials” bags to hold all the, well, essentials for a successful beach days. Here are a few that would look great in your beach bag. Shop them here.