Five on Friday


If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen the picture of my brand new iPhone 6! If you don’t follow me on Instagram, and want to rectify that problem, you can find me here  😛 

The phone arrived yesterday. We were expecting it on Tuesday, but it got stuck in Tennessee because of the winter weather. I’m super-duper excited about it. I’m loving the thinness and the big screen. Unfortunately the SIM card in my iPhone 4 did not fit into iPhone 6. Sooo Dave had to run out to the AT&T store last night to get us new SIM cards while I made dinner. Anyway – I still need to find a cover. I had a soft silicone cover for my iPhone 4 and it served me well. I’m not particularly hard on my phones – I’ve never broken one or had water-related accidents with them (knock on wood). I’ve been having trouble finding soft silicone cases for the iPhone 6 online, and now that I have the phone I can see why….it has so much stuff on the bottom and the button is also close to the bottom so it would be difficult for a softer case to envelop the phone like they did in the older model. So I’ll probably be switching to a hard case that snaps on the phone. I don’t know how I feel about that….we shall see! 


All the Joys - Blogger Love

Time for Blogger Love! I didn’t post last Friday, so these are some of my favorite over the last TWO weeks!

Blogging 101: Creating an Email Template – Love the Here and Now
Anne’s done it again, and provided some great info that you might just not have known about. 

How Much Does a Blog Cost? – Hey Kerri Blog
I’m really lucky – most of my blog costs aren’t an additional expense for us because Dave already has to have a hosting service for some of the websites he’s built in the past. He has different agreements with different people, but I’m pretty sure at least one company continues to give him some compensation for that hosting service. Plus he already had a blog of his own when I started up A Diamond with Sapphires….not that he ever uses it, but whatever. He can add an unlimited number of sites to the hosting service, which means this little space didn’t cost us anything more to host. The only additional cost is for the domain, which is pretty inexpensive. But yeah, Kerri breaks down what it costs to start a blog, which is definitely handy for anyone who might be considering starting a up a blog! 

It’s Me…A to Z – All the Joys
Sometimes I really enjoy getting to know my favorite bloggers a bit better, especially when I discover that we have even more in common than you had realized before! 

10 Book Related Problems that I Have – Seriously, Sarah?
If you love to read (like I do) you will probably be nodding your head and laughing at this list.

Behind Every Great Man Is… – the new wifestyle
Chelsea’s views on marriage and being a wife are refreshing, to say the least. According to her, behind every great man is…potentially a woman who is quite tired of hearing this quote. AMEN to that!

Let’s Go On a Blate! (Why You Should Visit Me in Fargo) – Notes from a Newlywed
I have not yet linked up with Amanda for her “Tell Me About Your Town” series, but I PROMISE you Amanda, I’m linking up next month. After all, the topic next month is “best restaurants.” Everyone who knows me knows that I LOVE the restaurant scene in Indianapolis. It’s going to be a long post. Anyway, I’ve spent a bit of time in Fargo. Fargo and Grand Forks are popular destinations for people in my hometown of Winnipeg. Both cities are significantly smaller than Winnipeg, but they have shopping opportunities that just aren’t available in Canada! These days I’m usually just driving through town and not actually stopping for a stay, but one of these days Amanda and I might have to arrange a lunch or dinner blate when I’m passing through!


Let’s talk weekend plans. Tonight is the “Cabin Fever” event at Dave’s company. Basically it’s a family night that they have every year in the winter. There are games and food, and general hanging out with co-workers and their families. Thankfully Dave’s company has a really great work environment in general, and all these extracurricular events at the office include adult beverages….even if it is a family event. (Note to the cousins….IT’S A FAMILY EVENT! Inside joke….). So we’ll be hanging with friends tonight. 

Tomorrow we’re heading to a little party hosted by our friends Adam and Lacey. You might remember that we spent Halloween with them. I’m soooo happy they moved down from Ft. Wayne to the Indy ‘burbs to hang with us. Unfortunately we haven’t seen them since December….when I found out that they’re expecting! They’ve got two boys, so this baby makes #3 for them! I’m very excited for the gender reveal that is going to be happening on Saturday. Usually I have a feeling about these things, and I have a decent track record for being right….kind of like a weird sixth sense. But with Lacey, I can’t make my decision. She already has two boys, so I feel like the odds are with her having a girl. That said, it seems like all of our friends who have had kids in the last few years have had girls, so it’s time for us to celebrate the birth of a boy! Those are the only two options soooo…we shall see!  


I’ve had Ed Sheeran’s song “Thinking Out Loud” in my head a lot lately. My solution? Listen to it on repeat over and over. Ok, sometimes I stop listening to it and play a few other tunes too. I’ve been in a pretty mellow music mood recently. Every once in a while I put together playlists of songs that I want to listen to a lot. This is my current little winter playlist:


I’ve got back into reading with a vengeance lately. It’s helping me get through this cold snap of winter weather! I’m planning on posting more about this lately, but for those of you who are curious, this is what I’ve loaned from the library lately. I’ll probably do reviews of some of these books, but not all of them. If you want me to review one in particular, I would love to take requests!

Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm Ravaged Hospital – Sheri Fink (finished reading)

Orange is The New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison – Piper Kerman (currently reading)

One Plus One – JoJo Moyes

Me Before You – JoJo Moyes

The Mysterious Affair at Styles – Agatha Christie

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close – Jonathan Safran Foer

Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

Anyone think I might have a reading addiction at the moment!?

That’s all for now, folks. Have a wonderful weekend!

Until later, Ashlen 

  • thanks so much for including my post in your round-up! i appreciate your kind words too ashlen! have so much fun at the get together tonight…i love any free food and booze i can get my hands on!

    • You’re welcome! Our get together on Friday was lots of fun, definitely in part to the free food & booze. It kind of makes me miss my college days when you could always find free food around campus!

  • Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close has been on my list FOREVER. My college roommate, whose taste is in line with mine, keeps getting after me.
    I never watched oranges the new black, but I did read the novel/memoir. I’m interested to hear what you think, coming from a non-law-enforcement perspective. The only other person I know who’s read it is an FBI agent. And we both had similar thoughts.

    • Ok, so I picked up Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and read a little of it. From the small amount I’ve read, the writing style seems different than anything else I’ve read. It’s almost like you’re in this kid’s head – and it’s all over the place! I’m intrigued by the premise of the book, so I’m going to keep going with it, but I think it might be kind of hard to read for that reason. I wonder if it would be easier as an audio book!
      I have a lot of thoughts on Orange is the New Black, so I’ll probably make that my next book review. I feel like it’s blasphemy to say this, but I think I might like the show better than the book…

  • Here from a link up! Oh my gosh, that Ed Sheeran song has been on repeat in my car LOL Also, Ellie Goulding’s Love Me LIke You Do. I’m bouncing back and forth from the two songs. 😉


    • I really like Ellie Goulding too. I actually just added that song on to a different playlist a couple days ago!

  • Mae

    Isn’t finding covers for your phone so hard?! At least I think it is. I ended up buying a Spigen case and screen protector! Best case I have ever owned! And the screen protector is basically an extra layer of the glass screen. It is supposed to break first instead of the real screen. I love them both so much

    • We had another friend just mention the Spigen cases to us! I ended up going with Kate Spade even though it was a hard case. It’s really cute, and it seems to provide some decent protection. Unfortunately the buttons are a bit stiff, so I might end up changing it out eventually. My husband is still looking though, so I’m definitely going to steer him in the direction of the Spigen cases. He’s much harder on his devices than me so he needs some good protection!

  • Thanks for sharing my post! Hope it helps you! So happy your new phone arrived…you will LOVE it! I went with the white too. As for the books, I have read quite a few on your list. Just watched Gone Girl and as always, the book is better than the movie. I did like Ben Affleck in the lead though!

    • The phone is FANTASTIC! You’re right, I love it. I’m excited to read and watch Gone Girl because I’ve heard so many good things about it (more on the book than the movie, but I still want to see the movie!). I’ll probably finish Orange is the New Black today or tomorrow then pick up Gone Girl next 🙂

  • Yay, I’m so glad you’ll be joining us next month for the linkup. Thanks for including me in your list this week too. And YES, we need to meet up for sure, whether it’s up here or down there. I am coming down to Indiana for my reunion this summer after all! Idk how much free time I’ll have though.

    • You’re def. welcome to come visit us down in Indianapolis any time! I’ll let you know the next time I’m planning on driving through Fargo. We don’t have any concrete plans to head back to Canada in the future, but a visit in the summer is always in the cards!

  • Great links, and thanks for sharing mine! I’m debating on an iPhone 6, every time I see one I really want one for myself!

    • I needed a new phone BAD. I don’t know if I would have jumped to get the iPhone 6 otherwise, but now that I have it I LOVE it. I probably should have jumped to get it sooner! I wouldn’t trade it for anything 🙂