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In vs. Out

Nope, no Friday Picks today! Instead, I'm participating in the In vs. Out linkup by the lovely Allison of Because I Said So! Basically, every week, Allison recaps her week by sharing what is in and out in her life - and she started a linkup, too! It's the last Friday of every month, so Friday Picks will be back next week. Go check out her blog, and it's not too late to participate in the linkup too!

This month was such a good month. The weather finally turned cool and I got to do a lot of fall-ish things - and then I wrote blog posts about them! On a side note, I am so proud of my blog this month. My page views were double from what they were last month, and I have so many fun posts and collabs coming up. Anyway, back to October. Tomorrow is Halloween, and I'm so excited, because duh. It's the only day of the year where it's socially acceptable to take candy from strangers.


Hunting for the perfect Halloween costume

Planning the Thanksgiving menu (hey, it's never too early!)

Obsessing over Scream Queens

The #galpalholiday linkup

The hot weather

 The first 9 week grading period 

Summer clothes

Computer hunting (decided on the new Chromebook when it comes out!)

Running out of post ideas

And in case you missed it, here are the top posts on Live The Prep Life this week!

I hope you liked this different post and have a great Halloween!

Pumpkin Inspiration - #galpalholiday

Every year, a few nights before Halloween, my family and I always decorate pumpkins. It's by far my favorite part of Halloween. There are so many different ways you can decorate your pumpkins and you can be so creative with it! In years past, I've just carved pumpkins, but this year I got really creative and expanded my horizons. I've been pinning a bunch of ideas (follow me on Pinterest @preplifeblog) and I finally started recreating some of my favorite pumpkins I've seen floating around the internet.

This post is the first of many to come in the #galpalholiday linkup, hosted by Cathleen, Rachel, and Cristina! I'm so excited to be part of this linkup and I can't wait to read everyone else's Halloween posts. Go check out their blogs right now and all of the amazing people who linked up!

You may have seen this picture on my Instagram (@livethepreplife) earlier this month, but I just had to share it again! I decorated these pumpkins these last year, and they were the easiest thing ever! All I did was stick Micky and Minnie in pumpkins and put the googly eyes and mustaches on the others. It took about five minutes and it's such an easy way to decorate pumpkins if you're bad at carving (that's me) or painting, but still want to get in the Halloween spirit.

This pumpkin is my favorite out of all of them! I spent the longest time looking for a white pumpkin, and I was so excited when I finally found one, because I'd really been looking forward to painting this little guy. I painted the top half pink and when it dried, I painted sprinkles on it to look like a donut. I'm obsessed with this!

I had a couple friends over to paint pumpkins, and the paint didn't stick that well so this project turned out kind of messy, but in the end I still thought it was cute. The colors on this one are more traditional for Halloween so it stands out among the others. 

Disclaimer: I can't carve pumpkins to save my life, so my sisters and I just came up with the design and let my stepdad do it. He's really good at this kind of stuff. The fangs were kind of flimsy but once we stuck the other pumpkin in his mouth it was all good! (And just ignore the mess in the background - I tried to blur it out but you can still see it. This one was from last year too so I don't have any more pictures.)

When I heard the idea for a heart-eyed pumpkin on Erin's blog, duh I was gonna make it! Again, my stepdad carved this one, and we used the seeds inside for Elly's recipe and it was AMAZING.

And that's it! I hope you enjoyed reading and got some ideas for this year (if you're last-minute like me), or next year, or any year after that. And to all my new blogger pals from #galpalholiday - welcome! So glad to meet you!

Favorite Fall Treats

Fall is my favorite time of the year for so many reasons, but one of them is definitely all of the food. From pumpkin to cinnamon and everything in between, I just can't pass up fall treats! Lately, I have been obsessed with anything and everything pumpkin flavored especially. I've also gotten really into cooking, and I get so excited whenever I find a new recipe to make. I've made so many fall treats that I couldn't resist sharing them! There's still a whole month left of fall, and I'm sure I'll be making a lot more treats. I I do, I will add them and let y'all know through Twitter or Instagram!

Halloween Sugar Cookies

Okay, so sugar cookies obviously aren't pumpkin flavored, but I was baking the other day and we had ghost and pumpkin cookie cutters, as well as orange icing, so I had to decorate some Halloween sugar cookies! I love how these turned out and how customizable they are! I just used whatever toppings we had in our pantry, but you can obviously do whatever designs you like. Get the recipe for the cookies here! 

Pumpkin Spice Almonds

I can't take the credit for making these but I can confirm that they are amazing! They are by the brand Planters, and they are to die for. I'm actually not a big fan of almonds, but the spices on these are so good that I could eat the whole can in one sitting... get them here.

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Waffles

I really like these because they're whole wheat so they are really healthy and have a lot of protein and fiber. They also have a lot of warm spices in them, like pumpkin, and nutmeg, so they are the perfect comfort food! I paired it with the pumpkin spice latte at the bottom and it was like heaven. Get the recipe here!

Hungry Spice Girl Pumpkin Latte

There are few things that I love more than a Starbucks PSL, but even the light version scares me. Why? It's loaded with sugar, and they only just now started using real pumpkin. Um, no thank you. These lattes taste just as good, and you have the pleasure of knowing how good it is for you. I get a lot of good tips from Hungry Girl, so check out her website after you make the latte here!

Crazy Brownies

I first saw the idea for these in the Halloween edition of Taste of Home Magazine, but I've seen variations on a lot of different websites too. The ones in the magazine were blondies, but we made brownies instead. Once they cooled, we put caramel sauce on top and topped them with pretzels, candy corn, and fall colored M&Ms, but you can add whatever toppings you want. These were a big hit at the party I took them to, and I know you'll agree after you try them! Here's the brownie recipe I used.

Let me know if you make any of these! I love them all, and I hope you do too!

Friday Picks

62 days and counting... yes, I've already got Christmas on my mind. It's been raining here since Thursday, and it's supposed to all weekend, so I've got my fuzzy socks and sweatpants on and have been going pin crazy on Pinterest 24/7 with Christmas trees, decor, and treats, so you may see a couple Christmas links on here... #sorrynotsorry. And if you follow me on my personal Pinterest (@brookekbutler) sorry for flooding your feed with what I'm sure is at least 1,000 pins. But, hey, if you like that stuff, go check it out! (and be sure to follow my blog Pinterest too, @preplifeblog, although I'm so unactive on there that it's not even funny.)

So Back to The Future Day was this week...

 The best part of Christmas is the food, especially this peppermint white hot chocolate!

Absolutely in love with Catherine's little gold necklaces! 

Whew! This has got to be one of the longest link lists on Live The Pep Life so far! And apparently these posts are really popular, because if you look on the sidebar they're kind of dominating my "What Others Are Reading" section. I'm glad you all like them so much! Anyway, happy weekend - I'll be on Netflix, Pinterest, or most likely, both if you need me!

I Am That Girl...

It's crazy to believe that I've had my blog four almost six months now. Well, more like a little over four months, but still! That's a long time for me to be publishing content and you reading it without you really knowing who I am. Sure, I've shared a lot of facts about myself, whether it be little tidbits in posts or if you've seen my about page, but that's kind of the generic statement about me. "Hi, I'm Brooke, I'm a blogger in Dallas who plays soccer, volleyball, clarinet," blah, blah, blah. If I had a dollar for every time I said that I could've bought out Apple years ago. Just sayin'. So, as a special treat for you today, you get to learn all about me - and I don't mean the boring stuff. I mean the most unusual, random facts you could find out about me - kind of like the Versatile Blogger Award except x 100! Enjoy!

I am that girl who...

Is always asking to borrow a pencil, a piece of gum, or most likely, both.

Wears shorts in 45 degree weather but is cold beyond belief in a 70 degree classroom (seriously, I live in sweaters and jackets)

Is always taking pictures of everything, no matter what the situation, and always asks, "Can you send that pic to me?"

Gets annoyed with people chewing loudly. Like, "I have to sit on my hands so I don't slap them" annoyed.

Uses dashes, parenthesis, and ellipses way too often in her writing... see, I'm doing it right now.

Loves to shop but hates to spend money.

Puts off homework that has been assigned for weeks until the night before, or the morning of.

Lives in t-shirts and shorts while everyone else posts pictures of them running to Target in a dress -  I'll be in my Norts and jandals, thank you very much.

Hates wearing her hair up more than anything else in the world.

Spends five minutes on her makeup so she can spend thirty on her phone in the morning.

Loves Starbucks but hates coffee.

Let me know if you can relate to any of these!

Friday Picks

Happy Friday... even though in a couple hours it will be Saturday. Whoops... tonight I was so busy and didn't get home until thirty minutes ago, so I just now got the chance to finish this post up. Up until now, I was at the pumpkin patch with my band, and before that I was baking brownies to take. (Hint hint - they might appear in a post later!) These past 24 hours have been so busy, and writing this post has been one of the most calming moments I've had so far. As I write this, it's late Friday night, but you're probably reading this on Saturday morning while you sip your coffee and go through your email - meanwhile I'm getting ready for volleyball. 9AM games, woohoo! Anyway, happy weekend and I hope you enjoy these links! (And now I had to republish it because the images didn't show up, which I didn't find out until Saturday morning.)

P.S. Expect lots of pumpkin patch pics, because I took tons tonight and I'm going again on Sunday! If you couldn't already tell, the pumpkin patch is one of my favorite places to go in the fall time, especially now that it's finally getting cold!

Have you signed up for TheSkimm yet?

How good do these pumpkin recipes look... I'll take them all please!

I use my phone too much but hopefully these tips will help me cut back.

Crossing my fingers this works... I'll let y'all know

I'm not that artistic but I would love to start Bible Journaling!

Kind of in love with the new Kendra Scott collection, and Megan obviously agrees!

BRB... going to make this. 

How To Get Free Preppy Stickers

It's safe to say that I have an obsession with preppy stickers. Not only are they so cute, but you can stick them on so many different things to customize just about anything and make it unique and personal. Today I'm sharing how I grew my sticker collection and how I get preppy stickers - enjoy!

This blog post is by far my most popular one, so if you're new to my blog, hi! I'm Brooke. Click here to learn all about me - I hope you decide to stick around!

If I were to estimate my sticker collection, I'd say I've accumulated a few hundred over the past couple years. They're so easy to obtain, and they're a great way to promote companies and brands you love!

There are three main ways you can get stickers. Some companies, like Jadelynn Brooke, will have a form where you can fill out your information and stickers will arrive in the mail shortly.

The second way is to email companies asking for stickers. You will not always get a reply, but more often than not, it works. Just say something along the lines of, Hi! I'm (your name here) and I love (company name here). I was wondering if y'all would send me some stickers to show my support for your brand. If you are able to, my address is (your address here). Thanks so much! Just remember to express your love for the company and politely thank them. Companies get a lot of emails, especially if they're bigger companies, but they will usually reply and send a few stickers your way.

The third way doesn't always work, but you can trade with other bloggers or Instagram accounts. You will have to give up some of your stickers, but you can get new ones that you wouldn't have gotten otherwise! I've done this with a few people to get limited edition stickers (mainly Vineyard Vines whales) or stickers that companies no longer sell.

Also, a lot of companies will give out free stickers selectively with purchase, so keep that in mind if you are ordering anything from anywhere.

Below are a few places I have gotten stickers from in the past. (NOTE - these all work as of October 2015, but may no longer work depending on when you're reading this post)

Vineyard Vines - If you have a Vineyard Vines store near you, just go in and ask them for stickers. They'll give you a bunch! You can also try emailing them, but they recieve a lot of emails so it may take a while for them to respond.

Jadelynn Brooke - Fill out the form linked to receive some free deer stickers.

Sperry Top-Sider - Email customerservice@sperrytopsider.com.

Southern Girl Prep - This one is a bit unusual. You have to do a couple things on your Instagram or Facebook, and then they give you a promo code for a free sticker. It's so cute and you get to pick your sticker out so it's well worth it. Click here to get started.

Southern Tide - I think that they used to have a sticker form but you can fill out their contact form here.

Thirty A Threads - They do free sticker giveaways every Friday on their Twitter. I haven't won one yet but I hope to soon!

Mobile Bay - Fill out the form and they will send you stickers. Once you get them you can email them pictures for a chance to win a $100 shop credit!

Once you get these stickers, you can do about anything with them. Check out my post on What To Do With Preppy Stickers for some inspiration!

If you know of any other places that will send you free stickers, leave them in a comment below - I love discovering new companies! Thanks for reading!

Friday Picks

Oh Friday... there you are. It's been a long week and I've been feeling tired for the better part of it.  Tonight I can guarantee you'll find me in my bed surrounded by blankets, hot chocolate, and Netflix, because what better way to spend a Friday night when you're feeling extra tired and in the mood for something cozy?! If only it was cold outside...

Also, I've said this in a couple posts already, but I  might be starting a weekly linkup soon. If you'd be interested in participating and/or spreading the word or want to know more about it, comment or shoot me an email at livethepreplife@gmail.com.

My birthday haul is (finally) up!

Cathleen shares her top movie picks... there are a lot that I haven't seen so I can't wait to catch up!

I love it when Maxie guest posts for Carly, and this one doesn't disappoint


Hope you have a great weekend (hey, maybe it will cool off! Or not, you know, I live in Texas so I should be used to the heat by now.) and I'll see you next Tuesday!

Birthday Haul

About a month after my birthday, here it is, finally! I was waiting until Afton and I swapped gifts until I posted this, so I could get everything in a post all at once. Before I begin I just want to say I am surrounded with the most incredible friends and family ever and I am so blessed to have all of the amazing people who gave me gifts in my life. I am not trying to brag in any way and if you think I am, you know how to close this tab. :) Thanks for reading and once again thanks for all the birthday wishes!

Can a girl really ever have too many preppy t shirts? I think not! All of them are so cute and cozy, especially the Lauren James one. That is seriously the softest t-shirt I've ever owned so go buy one right now if you haven't tried them already. The JLB is a sweatshirt material and is so thick making it perfect for the winter. And last, but certainly not least, is my Ivory Ella which I kind of have an obsession with just because of how cute it is.

I don't really have a lot of jewelry so this was really great because I practically doubled my collection! The Kendra Scott necklace and Lokai bracelet were on my wish list but the others were a complete surprise and they could not be more perfect.

Bath & Body Works
Cucumber Melon - Shower Gel | Body Spray | Lotion
Sweet Pea -  Shower Gel | Body Spray | Lotion | Gift Set
One of my friends got me a set of shower gel, lotion, and body spray in the scent Sweat Pea, and another friend got me a set in Cucumber Melon. Both of these scents are some of my favorites and I am so excited to use them!

Art Package

This incredible gift basket with a DIY Marquee, canvases, and paint was such a cute and well put together idea. I'm so excited to paint and create new additions for my room, and I will definitely be posting pictures on social media so follow me here and here!

Beauty Package #1
One of my friends put together an adorable goody basket in a Starbucks cup with nail polish, a Starbucks gift card, and a Baby Lips. Can we just talk about how perfect that polish color is for fall?

Beauty Package #2
I love this cute package with lip gloss and nail polish in this adorable owl mug that I drink coffee and cocoa out of every chance I get. (By the way, E.L.F has the best lip gloss if you've never tried it)

A family friend of ours also sent me this adorable Jon Hart makeup bag and I also received this stationery from a friend! (So snail mail buddies, you may get a letter featuring these notecards soon!) I am a stationery addict and this was the perfect addition to my collection! I also got a giant bag of York peppermint patties that I may have already finished... #sorrynotsorry.

Package From Afton

 How could I forget about the amazing package that Afton got me?! She and I discovered we shared a birthday, so we decided to swap gifts and I actually have a whole post on all of the contents so go check it out! And her blog is really amazing as well, so be sure to check that out too!

I really wish I had gotten pictures while I opened presents so you could see the cute wrapping, but NO, I somehow managed to forget! I didn't even think that it was possible for a blogger to forget to take pictures of amazing wrapping, but it was so late at night and I was tired. Oh well. Anyways, thank you so much for all the birthday gifts and wishes! I am so blessed to have the best friends and family but also to have the best readers who make this blog possible, so thank y'all for supporting me!

Friday Picks

Finally, the weather has started to cool down, bloggers are going crazy with pumpkin pictures on Instagram, and oh yeah, HAPPY OCTOBER! I'm so ready for summer to be done. Don't get me wrong, I love it, but can you believe there's only 80-something days until Christmas?! It seems like a lot, I know, but it will get here fast! Anyway, here are my favorite links from this week and here's to a great fall! (Because fall didn't start until yesterday, even though I'm already on top of things with my fall posts.)

I FOUND MY BIRTHDAY TWIN... and we swapped gifts!

Can I redecorate my room already so I can add some of this amazing decor?

Oh, so National Coffee Day was this week! 

I loved getting to know Olivia better!

Thanks for reading and here's to a great weekend! Today is actually my sister's birthday so it's off to dinner tonight and preparing all day tomorrow getting ready for her party. It's fall carnival themed and you might just see a blog post on it coming soon...