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19 (more) creative father’s day gift ideas

Posted in Living by

Father’s day is coming, and I love to give really unique and creative gifts. Dating a dad has given me real insight I’d never had before – the stereotypes are true, people. (If anyone would like to disagree, I have the photos of him grilling in khaki shorts and an unbuttoned Hawaiian shirt. I might have made him buy that Hawaiian shirt, but that’s neither here nor there.) Being with him has also broadened my horizons on what kind of gifts guys might like – so if you’re stuck with a dad, brother, partner, or someone else who is just hard to buy for, try some of these gift ideas for guys!

Slice off the Ol’ Pie Shirts: This is what I got for my man and his kiddo. (I couldn’t hold out until father’s day, though – they’re adorable in their matching shirts.) They’re super cute, and the seller offers additional kids shirts if there are jealous siblings to consider!

Bullet journal: There have been plenty of studies done that say writing down appointments and tasks helps you remember them better than filing them in a digital app or calendar, so set up a bullet journal (or find a ready-made planner) that can help him keep his head on straight. I still love the Passion Planner, but I’ve been using a bullet journal classic Leuchtturm1917 notebook lately.

Book: Books are really great gift options for anyone, basically anytime. If the dad in your life likes to read, here are a few options: Lost In Space studies pop culture and fatherhood, Don’t Make Me Stop This Car is a humor book by Al Roker (who I picture as an Ultimate Dad,) or Pops: Fatherhood in Pieces, a more heartfelt book by Michael Chabon, there’s a

Set of Nice Socks: Nice Laundry and Land’s End are just a few places you can order customized monogrammed socks, so there’s never a question of sock ownership, and replenishing holy or worn out socks is probably not something he’d ever really consider, even though it probably needs to be done.

father's day gift ideas

Grill Dad Set: One of the things my boyfriend finds lacking at my apartment is grill utensils. This set includes everything needed for a really great cookout, and identifies the owner so no one else tries to snag the tool set.

Wallet: I’ve been using card holder-style wallets for a few years, and I love how minimalist it forces me to be in the cards I carry around with me. This would be a great (and useful) gift for any minimalist man in your life – or maybe just the one who’s been sitting on a six-inch-thick wallet for a few too many years.

Custom Guitar Picks: If your guy is musical, custom picks would be a cool gift. Etsy has a host of different options, from photo picks, branded, or even heavier, engraved metal picks.

Insulated Growler: If your dad, husband, or other male figure loves beer (and honestly, who doesn’t,) this insulated, reusable growler is a great gift idea. Stop by a brewery to get it filled up and take it along on a picnic to enjoy some fresh, cool craft beer on the go! (Also useful for the aggressive coffee drinker. Not that I know any, or anything…)

Bose Build Speaker Cube: This could be a fun hands-on gift for a dad and his kid (or grab an adult version for a really cool DIY project for a guy who loves tech). It will walk them through the steps to create their own working bluetooth speaker to pair with an Apple device!

Still need even more ideas? Check out these past gift guides for guys:

Letters to Dad: If it’s hard to talk about feelings in your family (I was raised in a stereotypical midwestern home – no one ever has feelings ever) this “Letters to” series is a great prompt to start opening the lines of communication, reminisce on memories, or tell your dad or father figure things you’ve always wanted to share.

Dad Joke Glass: The best part of dating a dad is unlimited dad jokes – no matter how crummy they are (sorry honey,) they make me laugh every time. This glass will let everyone around him know that the joke factory is open. (Grab a book to go along with it so he’s never floundering for a joke to tell.)

Enamel Pins: These are a super fun way to customize commuter bags or hats, and there are plenty geared toward dads. Get a set of classic dad shoes, go a little more formal with a declaration of Good Dad-dom, or lean into the humor and Simpsons fandom.

Scotch-Infused Toothpicks: My grandpa has had a toothpick in his mouth as long as I can remember (not the same one, I imagine.) These scotch-infused toothpicks from Uncommon Goods are a unique gift for any whisky lover or chronic toothpick user!

Seaweed Bath Co. Detox Body Scrub: Especially in the summer, skin can get really rough. #TreatHisSkin with this gentle exfoliating scrub (I promise this isn’t sponsored, that was just where my brain took #TreatYoSelf in this case!) It helps wash away some of the dead, rough skin, and the charcoal infusion helps users get really clean.

Card Games: Playing analog games is still just as fun, and it’s more collaborative. Spend “real life” time together with card games like Exploding Kittens or the Oregon Trail card game (which I can confirm is super fun!!)

gift ideas for men

Quip toothbrushes: Bring tech into the bathroom with an electric toothbrush from Quip. Their metal brush handles are super heavy duty, and they’ll send brush head and toothpaste refills on time every three months. We’ve used these for awhile now and I really like it a lot – plus the toothpaste tastes really great.

Mugs: A classic gift, but there are some hilarious options. Baby Daddy, Best Dad Ever, Emergency Dad Jokes – they’re all super hilarious and great options for anyone.

Smart Lawn Sprinkler System: All smart home everything. This would be a super fun gift for anyone who likes technology and working in the lawn.

Sugru Mouldable Glue: Most of the guys I know are always tinkering and fixing things – this moldable glue looks really cool, and really useful for fixing pretty much anything. This would be a cool gift to keep in the toolbox, in the garage, in the car, at work – basically anywhere so he can fix it on the fly.

Do you have any go-to gift ideas for men?

June 4, 2018

why creativemarket is the best resource for bloggers and businesses

Posted in Blogging by


creative market

I’ve shared plenty of resources before on where you can find free stock photos for your blog or business – you can even get a spreadsheet by signing up for the email list! If you’re a blogger or business owner, sometimes it’s easier to create your own graphics than contracting out. There are tons of resources that make this easier than ever (like Canva). My favorite resource for building a graphic assets library is CreativeMarket.

CreativeMarket has HUNDREDS of fonts, website themes, social media templates, and anything else you need to create beautiful graphics. Best of all, every Monday they provide six freebies you can download. Some of the freebies I’ve gotten include fonts, stock photos, and even WordPress themes!

Though this post does contain affiliate links, it’s not sponsored – I just see a lot of benefit in CreativeMarket, and hope to help others with the same design needs!

creative market for bloggers

There are a lot of things to love about CreativeMarket, but these are a few of my favorites.

  • The best feature is that they store all your purchases, including freebie downloads. You can access any of your assets at any time to download them to a different computer, or just remember what the name of that one specific font is. (I use it for this more often than I’d like to admit!)
  • Since CreativeMarket keeps a record of your downloads, they also notify you when an updated version is available. Sometimes fonts get updated, graphics have spelling corrections, or stock photo packs get new photos added (yay!) Keeping your assets up to date by downloading each ensures that they’ll keep working with tech updates as well.
  • They also offer an option to sync purchases (and freebies) to Dropbox. This is great if you store your design assets in the cloud -I recommend this because I’ve lost assets before, or needed to access something on a different computer. Now, I have a pCloud account dedicated specifically to graphic design assets so I’ll never lose anything!
  • The bundles many shops offer are a great deal too. You can get entire packs of fonts or marketing mockups to get everything you need for your brand’s graphics in one pack. Bundles are also often discounted massively (think 100 fonts for less than $20!)
  • Tons of fonts from handwritten script to straight-laced sans serifs mean there’s more than one you’ll love. (I’ve more than doubled my font library since discovering CreativeMarket. Whoops.)
  • If you’re working on a client presentation, you might get bored of the same old Powerpoint looks but not have the drive to make your own. CreativeMarket also features Powerpoint templates so your clients aren’t looking at the same slides over and over.
  • It’s also easy to purchase additional licenses. Most products come with a base standard license, but if you need a corporate license or more than one, it’s easy to add on.
  • Every category has a variety of styles to fit your brand. Whether your content is feminine, artsy, “loud,” summery, or anything else, there are assets that will match!
  • Being able to download full social media packs makes it easy to bring a cohesive look to your blog without having to create your own templates. This saves time not only in creating your own but in getting your images completed and ready to post without too much work!
  • Less common design needs are also explored here. I’ve seen invitations and save the date cards, resumes and business cards, and even infographic templates and product mockups on CreativeMarket.
  • Having access to products created by the same maker ensures consistent branding across your marketing platforms. It helps to create brand recognition in the reader’s mind!

A few of my favorite products:

Do you use CreativeMarket? What are your favorite products?

June 21, 2017

where to find work from home writing jobs

Posted in Career by
This post contains affiliate links.

Do you want to hear something silly? I never considered myself a writer. I’ve had this blog for over five years, with more than 400 posts (and at least 700,000 words.) Off and on over the years, I’ve submitted to and been published by other websites and print publications. In my day job, I’m responsible for copywriting and customer service (a communication job if ever there has been one.) But until a few months ago, I didn’t think of it this way.

In addition to working remotely, I love to help my friends find writing jobs online that will pay for contributions. Today, I thought I’d share some of those sites! Some publications even pay $750 for one post!

What’s in this post? They’re typically freelance positions but could turn into staff jobs depending on the organization and their needs. I tried to stay away from any “content farm” companies as these are typically pretty low paying and might not end up paying in the end anyway. Some housekeeping and notes on what you’ll find here:

  • All of these are free websites. There are plenty of places that let you pay to access their job board, which I really recommend once you get established – often, this is where you can find the highest paying positions. If you’re just starting out, or don’t want to make a consistent career out of freelance writing, these websites are all great options!
  • They might change their guidelines or stop accepting posts – if you see one that’s not accepting them anymore, let me know!
  • Payment pricing is in USD, to the best of my knowledge.
  • There may be other blogs or websites that pay. My criteria for this list was to only add websites that publish their rates – anything that said “exposure” with no mention of a dollar sign immediately got axed.
  • I’ll try to update this semi-monthly to keep it as up-to-date as possible and add new opportunities, so be sure to bookmark or pin it for future reference!

Check out these resources and related posts that can help with getting started on your freelance writing career and get paid to write!

Tech Writing: Computers, the Internet, and Gear

A List Apart is “for people who make websites.” They accept three different types of posts: features, articles, and mini-articles, which pay up to $200 per assignment. If you’re involved in making websites from coding to design to content and community (if you’re a blogger, that’s you!) check them out.

Speaking of bloggers, Slick WP is specifically for WordPress users who know how to use the Genesis framework most effectively. They accept posts on tutorials for those two products, as well as reviews of other themes and plugins. It’s a great way to earn $100 for tech-savvy bloggers!

If you’re a UX designer or developer, check out UX Booth. They accept posts with concrete evidence and examples of ways to improve user experiences in a variety of settings.

Lifestyle & Women’s Interest Writing Submissions

I grew up reading Cosmopolitan (no shame here) and they accept submissions from anyone with a unique or crazy college experience. Published essays on their website earn $100, and they’ll keep you in mind for future assignments!

XOJane is known for more risque reader submissions for their “It Happened To Me” series. Pitch features or your own personal stories, and they’ll pay you out if they publish your post!

For a chance to write longer, higher-paying, and potentially more “controversial” articles check out Bitch Media. Their focus is on feminism and pop culture. Each of their issues has a theme announced on their pitch page, and they accept pitches on a rolling basis.

Upworthy accepts pitches on original, meaningful stories. These short posts can be seen by millions of readers and much of their content goes viral, so it can be a great way to make some money and get your name out there as well!

Her View From Home accepts posts on a variety of niches, from faith, family, and grief to recipes, fitness, and fashion. They pay on a tiered system based on how many views your post gets and pay via PayPal.

Men need all the help they can get, and website Mantelligence pays $0.03 cents per word.

LovetoKnow is a website with a lot of different categories, so no matter what your interest is, they’ve probably posted articles about it. Apply to be a writer with them and make between $25-$100 through PayPal per article.

Mommy Bloggers & Family Content

If you’re a parent, check out A Fine Parent. Payment comes via PayPal at $50 per article, and submissions open at different intervals throughout the year. They offer a signup form where you can subscribe to be notified when they’re accepting pitches again.

Family Fun Magazine has several different columns that they pay for. Check out the PDF file and submit your “idea of the month,” “how we have fun,” or other feature, and you could be $750 richer if they publish your article.

Freelance Mom is the ideal website for stay-at-home writing moms. They outline really specific guest post guidelines, so it’s clear what they are looking for (increasing the likelihood that your submission will succeed.) Depending on your post, they’ll pay you $75-$100 – and if it’s the most shared post on their website that month, they’ll reward you with a $150 bonus!

Michigan represent! MetroParent publishes posts from southeastern Michigan parents on both their website and their monthly magazine. The payment for these posts is high, so think about your favorite family-friendly activities and work send it their way.

Maybe you’re in Arizona instead. Raising Arizona Kids also publishes a print periodical and online articles. Compensation varies based on length and they may assign you stories rather than accepting a pitch.

Storkguide is a guide for first-time moms, so if you have kids, share what you’ve learned with new moms! They’re looking for short posts and pay starting at $50 per post.


In the HR or management industry? iWorkWell is looking for experts to contribute to their website. They don’t post the minimum or average payout, but they note that posts that perform well can earn $200 or more.

Horkey Handbook is a great place for new VAs to learn the industry and for anyone to find productivity and career tips. I’ve been a fan of Gina’s for a long time! They pay $75 per accepted post and may close for submissions throughout the year depending on their content load.

If you’re a small or independent entrepreneur, check out IndieMade. They pay you and provide a byline. Any indie type of business is featured here, from Etsy shops to tips on being a successful musician. IndieMade looks for articles for their resources section as well as their blog.

Consider yourself an expert on business topics? B. Michelle Pippen is looking for submissions on several areas. She’s especially interested in articles with tips on how to make money through Google+ and YouTube and getting booked for media spots or speaking gigs.

When you’re ready to kick up your freelance writing career, check out Contena. They post high paying writing jobs seven days a week!

Money & Financial Writing Opportunities

The Dollar Stretcher has been around for almost twenty years, and they’re still giving readers tips on how to save time and money. They pay $0.10 per word – depending on your article, that could be very lucrative!

If you’re a personal finance writer, check out Money Crashers. They’re looking for thoroughly researched posts on retirement and financial planning, tax arrangements, credit and debit card news, and any other money lifestyle topic. They pay monthly via PayPal or direct debit!

Doctor of Credit is a website for all things finance: credit information, budgeting, saving, coupons, and more. If you have something to contribute, they’ll pay $50 for each published post. If it’s well-received by their audience, they may ask you to be a regular contributor.

Write about your unusual ways to save or make money for Money Pantry. They accept posts from freelance writers and those without any prior publishing experience! Like many other sites, they also offer staff positions to their favorites.

The Penny Hoarder started as a very popular money saving personal finance website, and it’s exploded into a website with posts on travel, lifestyle, family, and career as well. Some writers do get paid when arranging it with the editors beforehand, but paid writers don’t get the benefit of a link back to their own website in the byline.

First Quarter Finance accepts money-related articles and notes on their website that they’re looking to hire regular contributors. They pay for referrals of successful candidates sent their way too – $50 each!

Science, Medical & Healthcare

If you’re in the healthcare sciences industry, ACHS will pay $50 for every published post on their blog. Posts should be between 600-1000 words on any holistic wellness topic.

Write for WorldStart and help people learn how to use their computer! They accept posts on Windows, the internet, and email tips and pay out via PayPal depending on length.

HowStuffWorks is a really popular website, so they’re choosy with their contributors. When they’re recruiting new freelancers, they’ll update their website.


Where was this website when I was roaming around as a lonely, lost, non-traditional college student? Back 2 College pays starting at $55 for original features for articles relating to their target audience: adult students who are going back to college. They also have an “Ask the Experts” forum that they recruit writers for as well.

Comedy & Lists

Cracked offers lots of different options for contributing, accepting writing, graphic design (both infographics and their “Photoplasty” series), and video submissions. They used to pay at least $50 per submission, but they now list on their page “we’ll pay you if it’s good.” If you’re funny, try submitting to Cracked!

Listverse is – you guessed it – a website with lists on lists on lists. If they accept your post, they PayPal you $100. Their team of editors choose any associated collateral (like photos or videos) so all you have to do is write your list (with a paragraph or two per bullet point) and send it along for review.

Have some weird bit of trivia? Share it with KnowledgeNut and make $10 per “nut.” They pay by PayPal or Bitcoin, and accept posts around 400-500 words.

Make a quick $5 by submitting an 800-word, 10-item list to Wonderslist. They pay via PayPal or Payoneer, or you can also submit a 1500-word guest post article.

Writing About Writing

The Write Life pays writers $75 per article after they first submit a published article in exchange for a link as credit. They look for posts about 600-900 words in one of their five categories: freelancing, marketing, publishing, blogging, and the writing craft.

Write Naked has two open submission periods every year, and they’re looking for posts that fit their “writing life cut open” motto. Compensation ranges from $50-$200 per post. She even provides a successful pitch for review!

Take a look at Barefoot Writer for freelance submission tips, as well as the opportunity to get published in their magazine. They have six editorial opportunities of varying lengths, and depending on the assignment, you could bring home up to $300.

Funds for Writers is a resource for writers to find – you guessed it – funds via grants, competitions, and other sources. Each of their email newsletters also includes one short article. They pay $50 (through PayPal) for original articles they purchase.

For a website with tools, courses, and a job board in addition to its blog, try Wealthy Web Writer. In addition to payment, they also offer backlink options. That helps your SEO!

Make a Living Writing is a great resource for writers of all kinds, and it’s been around for quite awhile. Carol has great courses for writers, free stuff, and lots of great tips on her blog – and she also pays for guest posts. She pays between $75 and $150 per post, and even if you’re not looking to submit, give her site a look. It’s really informative for writers!

Newsletters can also be a great source, like WritersWeekly. They pay $60 through PayPal for each article they publish – and for a weekly newsletter, they need a lot of content to keep it fresh!

Be a Freelance Blogger hosts a Pitchfest, and pays winners $100 during that time. You can submit a post anytime, but it looks like paid opportunities are only available during this quarterly contest.

WOW – Women on Writing sends out a bi-weekly newsletter, and they feature freelance submissions in these emails. Depending on the length and content of the piece, they pay $50-$75 via PayPal.

Health & Fitness

Healthy Living is looking for lifestyle posts on anti-aging, beauty, parenting, travel, cooking, and more! They also accept recipes, so clean up your favorite, make it as healthy as possible, and you could earn $30-$150.

Work From Home Writing Jobs About Arts & Entertainment

If you’re into theatre, check out HowlRound. They accept a wide variety of submissions (from show critiques to recurring blog series ideas) and depending on the content, they pay $50-$150 per submission. They also offer other options to get paid, like running a live stream or hosting a Twitter chat!

One of my favorite websites, WhatCulture, pays for content. Another one that structures their payments based on views, they accept posts on a variety of entertainment topics (including WWE.)

The Escapist is an online magazine catering to video game and comic fans, with “channels” on tech and entertainment as well. Payment is based on the author’s experience, and it appears they have a heavy editing process.

Uproxx accepts pitches for articles on music, and they also frequently recruit news writers. They especially like articles that go beyond the typical album or concert review – think along the lines of how musicians are using social media, or what innovative trends are becoming more and more popular.

It’s not a surprise by now that I love reading, so BookRiot is a blog on my list to keep up with weekly. They pay contributors for posts on living that literary life. They feature news, commentary, shopping lists, and any other bookishly content!

AnySubject will assign you books, provide a copy, and pay for your honest opinion. They make it clear that they want really honest reviews, which might make it a bit easier for someone who struggles with criticizing things they don’t love.

Depending on the book, OnlineBookClub pays up to $60 for reviews. They also provide free books, and in order to ensure that reviews are high quality, your first submitted review isn’t paid. They note that as you establish yourself, you can earn a few hundred dollars a month!

Booklist looks like a great publication to submit book reviews to as well. They assign book reviews and have a lot of content opportunities, and it looks like they even pay for rejections if you’re assigned a book they don’t run your review of.

Kirkus Reviews is looking for freelance reviewers to write 350-word book reviews. Articles are due two weeks after a book is assigned and can be published in their monthly magazine or on their website’s blog. Kirkus also hires freelance copywriters and book editors, if that’s your expertise!

Travel Writing

Are you an expat? International Living hires writers to outline basically any aspect of living abroad. You can choose your topic and send along any photos you want to include (though it’s not required.) If they accept your “postcard,” they’ll pay you $75! They have a second newsletter as well that also pays $75 per accepted submission.

Great Escape Publishing is a resource for aspiring travel writers, offering courses on how they can monetize their writing. Of course, they offer paid post opportunities. Depending on what you have to contribute, you could earn up to $200 for accepted posts!

A new magazine, Hidden Compass is paying $200-$300 per piece, depending on the department!

Travelicious.World accepts travel writing of various lengths, and pricing they pay out lines up accordingly. They pay in Australian dollars.

BootsnAll is dedicated to independent traveling, and they’re accepting pitches. If they’re interested in one of your feature ideas, they’ll pay $50.

Another website that has articles on “alternative travel” and destination tips is GoNomad. For $25 per article, they’re looking for engaging and entertaining posts on unique trip experiences or “mini-guides” for different cities.

For female travelers, Wanderful is an awesome resource (and pay $50 per posted article). They include the traditional travel tips and destination suggestions, but they also feature news on global issues. Wanderful’s “Women to Watch” series is also really interesting.

If you like these resources, check out Contena. They remove a lot of the searching and round up tons of paid writing opportunities every week!

Food & Beverage Bits

IWA Wine Accessories pays $50 per blog post on storing and enjoying wine. If you’re a wine enthusiast and have a unique tip on serving, storing, or selecting, send it their way! It definitely looks like this is a very niche blog for serious winos.

Here’s another one I can really get behind. Plum Deluxe is all about tea! If you have entertaining ideas, tea time topics, or well-being and mindfulness ideas, they’ll pay you $30 if your article is published.

Niche Blogging Opportunities

If you’re into model trains, Model Railroad Hobbyist has many options to contribute. Whether it’s submitting a video or article, or even becoming a contributing editor to receive regular assignments, this very specific niche blog is a great example of how you can even monetize your hobbies!

Theme Park Tourist is looking for Disney lovers and other amusement park enthusiasts to contribute unique, entertaining, and informative posts to their site. List posts work well for them, and they pay based on page views – you could earn up to $500 for one post (which can be a great start for your next vacation savings goal!)

Writing for greeting cards could be right up your alley if you’re a kind, creative, soulful person. Or even if you’re a talented artist or funny person! I used to work in a Hallmark store and loved flipping through the cards and inspirational books on the shelves. Blue Mountain Arts, It Takes Two, Amber LotusSmart AlexSnafu Designs, Shade Tree GreetingsNoble Works Cards and Oatmeal Studios all accept freelance submissions.

If you have an inspirational story, think about submitting it to Chicken Soup for the Soul. They pay $200 for every published piece, whether it’s a personal story or poem.

Other Free Places to Find Writing Jobs That Pay

Problogger‘s job board is one of the oldest resources for freelance writing jobs. Their job board has both paid and unpaid opportunities, so be sure to pay attention if you want to mentally filter out any that are for exposure only.

Who Pays Writers is a great resource for aspiring writers. Freelancers who have submitted to different publications can submit their experiences with publishers here, as well as how much they get paid for the assignment, which can be helpful when trying to quote your own pricing. (The Sh*t List is also a new website putting publishers on blast if they don’t pull through with payment.)

Another one of the older job boards for freelancers is Freelance Writing Gigs. They have a lot of really unique openings, like this opening for Olive Oil Times.

Some companies might post openings on sites like Craigslist – I haven’t tried it out just yet, but SearchTempest will search across all Craigslist boards!

Cold pitching to specific websites might still be the best way to land high-paying repeat clients. If you aren’t comfortable with reaching out to people, sign up for Jorden Roper’s free Writing Revolt course – she’s hugely successful and provides examples of pitch emails she has used in the past to land clients.

I hope this post was useful! If you liked this, sign up for my email list for even more tips on where to find paid writing opportunities or work from home jobs.


June 16, 2017

become location independent: Take Your Life Back book review

Posted in Career by
This post contains affiliate links. I was provided a copy for review, but all opinions are my own.

Leah Davis of The Sweetest Way knew she didn’t want to have a traditional career or life – but she didn’t know how to make it happen. Over many years, she eked out her own way to accomplish her dream: a life of travel, location independence, and entrepreneurship. She’s hugely successful in the travel & lifestyle design community and recently released an eBook, Take Your Life Back, in order to help others who dream of the kind of life she’s living make it a reality.

The beginning of the book has a nice introduction, and Leah talks about jobs she tried in order to get her remote dreams to come true. Some fit her better than others, and each position helped her hone in on her strengths and skills more and more. After an overview of what location independence is, she also walks through what to expect and what personality types tend to excel in this kind of lifestyle.

  • One thing I noticed specifically is that this book is geared more toward those with an entrepreneurial bend than those interested in working remotely for a company or organization.

Leah discusses some of the mistakes she made along the way, along with the things that really helped her build success, like seeking out mentors and engaging and interacting with them. She talks about the “comparison is the thief of joy” concept, which I think anyone (especially bloggers) can relate to. It was nice for me to hear that and not feel like I’m the only one getting jealous of the success of others from time to time.

The book is hugely informative as it goes on – once it transitions out of her backstory, she gives some actionable resources that let you start building your skills, or looking for remote or freelance positions. She even provides steps on how you could start to negotiate with your current employer to move to a partially remote schedule to start in your lifestyle transition.

Every digital nomad should definitely have some kind of passive income source set up, and I agree with her. For me, Swagbucks is a big source of passive income – since I’m searching for things online anyway, it’s nice to accumulate points to redeem for cash or Amazon cards. Leah makes some suggestions on products or other ways to generate income without much effort – both online and offline. She also provides a list of her favorite affiliate companies.

Chapter seven is on building your online presence, and I wish I’d had some of this advice back when I started my blog! If you’ve been struggling with how to brand yourself or choose a domain name, Leah has some great advice and even reviews her own rebrand. She makes a choice not to overwhelm the reader with information on how to start blogging, which is really nice since there’s a wealth of information on that topic out there.

One of the longer chapters is on Pinterest secrets, and it was a very timely section for me to find. She shares some great data on Pinterest users and why everyone should be using it for their blog and business. (Yes, your own freelance or entreprenurial career is a business!) I’ll be going back to review this often, along with the added value links, to apply the tips and up my Pinterest game.

Leah Davis, author of Take Your Life Back

Leah Davis, author of Take Your Life Back

Take Your Life Back also covers investing in yourself and networking. It’s important to build relationships as well as your skills – Leah shares her favorite courses, conferences, and books, as well as online and in-person networking communities. The book also includes interviews with many of the people she’s befriended along the way who are also digital nomads, spotlighting their journeys to entrepreneurship.

She covers some of the less “fun” parts of becoming a digital nomad as well, like financial and tax considerations. I think if you’ve gotten to the point where you’re reading a book about location independence, you’ve considered the monetary implications, but the tax information and resources are very helpful.

The book goes on with ways to stay motivated on your journey, and also staying connected – sometimes, the travel lifestyle can make it difficult to find reliable wifi! Leah also talks her favorite destinations and ways to save money – I consider myself pretty Google savvy, but she had a lot of helpful tips on how to hack the search engine to help you find deals!

The bonus chapter is her social media management contract. It can even be edited for any type of freelance position – just carefully edit “social media” to apply to your gig.

There’s a ton of value in this book. A lot of these tips are things I’m working on right now (like Pinterest marketing!) so I’m working hard to put them into practice. The links she shares for online networking are super helpful as well and I’m excited to get involved. The chapter on Legal and Tax Considerations was super valuable as well – for me, and for anyone who has dipped their toes into online entrepreneurship in any fashion.

Pick up your copy today, and be sure to visit The Sweetest Way for more great information and resources!

Are you a digital nomad, or are you aspiring to be? Share what you’re working on with us!

June 9, 2017

19 unique ideas for father’s day

Posted in Living by
This post contains affiliate links. Dollar Shave Club and TRTL provided samples for review, but all opinions are my own.

19 unique father's day gift ideas

“Desi, why are your gift guides always 19 items,” you ask? 19 is my favorite number. Always has been – probably because it’s my birthdate. Even though I consider myself a great gift giver, I’ve always had trouble shopping for my dad. Despite that, I still have some great gift ideas! Here are 19 creative and unique ideas for your dad – no matter what his interests are!

Zubaz tie: Zubaz is one of my favorite things. They aren’t just for the 90’s throwback anymore – they have a ton of great sports gear, sandals, and more. If he’s a suit wearer, this tie is a great way to add some fun and color to his wardrobe!

Hangry Kit: This one would be a hit in our house since emotions run high when blood sugar levels run low. A snack box full of sweet and salty snacks would be perfect for the garage, the office, a road trip, or even tucked next to his favorite chair when he needs a little treat.

Beer of the Month Club: After all those snacks, he’s sure to be thirsty. If he likes to try new things, deliver 12 new bottles of beer to his doorstep. He might find his new favorite brew, and you become the new favorite child.

Dollar Shave Club: I love this company, and they aren’t just razors and shower products anymore! Gift your dad the Big Cloud line – the daily face moisturizer and lip balm have SPF to keep him sun safe when he heads out for a day of golf, fishing on the boat, or mowing the lawn! (You could keep the hand lotion for yourself – it’s super creamy and luxe. I keep mine in my carry-on to help with plane dryness.)

pCloud: Similar to Dropbox, pCloud is a cloud storage system. If your dad works from a lot of different locations, this kind of digital storage can be super helpful so he can always access what he needs, no matter where he is. Or maybe he has a huge music or photo collection – no matter what it is, you (or he) will get an extra gig of storage when signing up with this referral link.

Yellow Submarine Mug: Heat-activated mugs are my favorite. If your dad is into music, grab this mug!

19 gift ideas for father's day

TRTL Travel Pillow: This has quickly become something I can’t live without, and it’s perfect for a guy who travels a lot. Much less intrusive than the normal u-shaped travel pillows, the TRTL pillow tucks away easily and provides the perfect amount of support to grab a few zzz’s on planes or trains.

May Designs Notebook: I love May Designs, and I know this doesn’t seem like the manliest gift, but hear me out. They recently added a whiskey notes insert set. If your dad likes whiskey, this would make an awesome (and super unique) gift basket with a tasting set of different whiskeys to try!

Sumojerky: Lots of food related ideas on this list – I guess it’s pretty obvious what the preferred gifts in my family are! Monthly jerky shipments from a variety of makers right to his door so he’ll always have something to look forward to.

Classy Playing Cards: Cards are such a “dad” thing, aren’t they? Up his game (literally) with these black on black cards – then spend some time with him and don’t hustle him too hard.

Lapel Torch: My dad is outdoorsy in a “non-traditional” way – he spends a lot of time in the garage working on cars, often late into the night. In a rural or under-lit area, a Lapel Torch would be a great way to shed some light on the situation! Perfect for camping too (its intended use.)

That Wrestling Club: I’ve slowly been revealing myself to be a wrestling fan – the athleticism is unmatched in any other sport. If your dad is into it, gift him a subscription – he’ll get both current and classic memorabilia (and you can bond with him over that Savage/Steamboat match from the 80’s.)

Watch: Keep him in style and on time with a fashionable and affordable watch. If he’s a chronic watch loser, Amazon even has a ton of inexpensive options so he won’t feel bad if he loses track!

Amazon Kindle Unlimited: It’s no surprise that I’m an avid reader, and the dads in my family like to read as well. Our tastes differ so much that I’d have no idea what books to pick out for them. A Kindle Unlimited subscription lets him pick his own books as often as he wants – win/win/win, to be honest.

Nice Pen: Bourbon & Boots is one of my favorite spots for unique gifts. Class up dad’s desk with a Bourbon & Boots wooden pen. The steampunk one is super cool, and would be a great conversation piece for the office! If he’s not a pen guy, check out their creative bourbon gifts!

Skin Hero balm: This hemp balm works great on a ton of ailments – bug bites, sunburns, cuts & burns, eczema and dry skin, and the list goes on. Since it’s unscented, it’s great for guys (or anyone else who is scent-sensitive.) Its small size makes it easy to tuck away in the car, desk drawer, or work bench – anywhere he might need a little bit of skin relief.

father's day gift ideas

Bag Organizer: This is definitely a product that any dude on the go doesn’t know he needs. Let’s be honest – work bags or briefcases get super messy and disorganized. A bag organizer like this will give everything its own place so he’ll always look like a pro when reaching for his phone, pen, or files!

Cheese BBQ Utensil: If he’s a grillmaster, he’s probably always looking for new and unique utensils for his domain. This is something I didn’t know I needed until I saw it: it lets you barbecue a layer of cheese. I’ll take three.

Sunglasses: These floating sunglasses mean he’ll never lose a pair on the lake again. If they fly off on a wave or while he’s pulling in The Big One, they’ll bob back up to the surface. Save his eyes from squinting for the rest of the day, and saves his wallet from replacing yet another pair!

Fitbit: I just upgraded to the Charge 2 model, and it’s really revved up my desire to get active again. Fitbits are a great way to challenge friends and family, so this could be a fun way to feel connected even if you’re far apart!

June 5, 2017