Buying a Home and other random rants

I love this rustic meets modern home I found on pinterest. Totally my style!

Can I just take a minute to say how grateful I am to have such a sensible and frugal husband? Without him I would probably be a Carrie Bradshaw with all of my money hanging in my closet. We recently started the adventure of buying a home. After renting for years, we are finally in a place where we can settle down. We are done with school, and looking for our first place and the whole process should probably be more exciting but stuff like this tends to just stress me out. Trevor is very practical, while I of course dream a little bigger. I want something "more" while my husband talks me back down to reality. The only debt Trevor and I have is student debt, which is pretty common for people our age, and in an effort to get that sorted out as fast as possible it is important that we don't just live within our means, but below our means.

I have never been someone that really cared about Keeping up with the Joneses, but with the rise of social media I feel like that has infected a lot of people, even me a little bit. "But why can't I have the gorgeous all white kitchen right now?" I am embarrassed to admit I even have thoughts like this sometimes, but I am just trying to keep it real here. Let's be honest, I know a lot of us have thoughts like this. Thankfully my husband is nothing like me in that regard, and he is grounded, smart and savvy. I guess we make a good match in that way, he brings me down a little bit, and I lift him up, meeting somewhere in the middle where we both become better.

And while we are on the topic of day dreaming and wanting things, have you all seen Lauren Conrad's digs? I mean, hello. It is Lauren Conrad after all, and she has always done everything right, expect that one time she picked that one boy over going to Paris with Vogue, but we all make mistakes once in awhile so I forgive her for that one.

Anyways, for those who have gone through the process of buying a home, bless your hearts. It is going to be an interesting adventure over the next few months. It will be nice to finally paint a wall without having to ask someone else for permission! I am looking forward to that place called HOME.


Nashville Tennessee - National Funeral Directors Association

Bag: C/O Nena & Co.

You may have noticed a lack of blogging on my part, and for that I apologize. My new job has taken up a lot of my time and energy. By the time I get home at night I don't have as much time to give to it as I have in the past. Speaking of my job, I don't know if I ever formally mentioned what I have been doing since moving to Salt Lake. If you read my blog you know that while living in Provo I worked at Aveda, which they just opened up a brand new location by the way that is amazing! But I was not about to commute from Salt Lake to Provo everyday, so I found a new job and made the change from working in Marketing for the beauty industry to Marketing for the funeral industry! Yes, you read that right. In fact, this past week I attended the National Funeral Directors Association in Nashville, Tennessee. I saw that several of you on instagram were confused, or curious about what my new job was, so I thought I would share some of the details.

I work for a Financial Corporation called Security National in their Life department. I am a part of the Marketing team here, and have had a lot of fun the last few months learning all about the funeral industry and the insurance side of all of that. I recently started a side project for the company and started a funeral industry blog. Funeral Guy's Bow Tie is a source for funeral industry news; publishing insightful information, industry trends, and staring conversations that can educate not only funeral professionals but all those who have dealt with death in their personal lives. It has been a lot of fun and if you want to learn about some pretty funny and cool related things to death, you should check it out. Like this infographic about death ;)

So as I mentioned, I just spent the beginning of the week in Nashville, Tennessee. No, no Taylor Swift sightings, much to my dismay. But even without a celeb sighting, I had a blast. Of course getting there and going through the Dallas airport and hearing all about Ebola every five seconds was unsettling. I have yet to show any signs, but I will keep you posted.


Remix Your Fall and Winter Wardrobe With No Nonsense Patterned Tights + $100 Giveaway!

One of my favorite accessories for fall and winter are tights and leggings. Not only are they functional, because I live in Utah, but it also adds such a fun element to an outfit. You can easily add color, texture, or prints to a basic outfit with the use of tights and leggings. For example, these adorable black polka dot tights from No nonsense. I paired them with these booties and skirt to give it a little something, and play up the polka dots in my top. Not only does this add a fun element to my outfit, but I have also covered up my extremely pale winter legs! HA. 
The No nonsense tights and leggings are high quality and extremely comfortable. Normally with tights I feel like I am going to get a snag just putting them on, but not with these. They just slid right on! No nonsense also has a large selection of patterned tights which include everything from Fishnet, Rose Floral, Diamond Mesh, Cable Knit, Basketweave, Bold Diamond and Ribbed; ALL of them coming in a wide variety of colors. I want to get my hands on a pair of the Cable Knit Sweater Tights and wear them with my knee high boots for fall! 
Tights and Leggings are such an easy way to remix your wardrobe, and lucky for you, today you have the chance to get a hold of some of your own from No nonsense! See below for ways to win a $100 No nonsense gift card!
You can enter by visiting No nonsense on Pinterest, checking out more Style Remixes and re-pinning a look you love, see below for full sweepstakes rules.

Sweepstakes Rules:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
  1. Leave a comment in response to the Promotion prompt on this post.*
  2. Tweet (public message) about this Promotion, including a disclosure that your tweet is a sweepstakes entry (e.g., using a hashtag such as #SweepstakesEntry or #SweepsEntry); and leave the URL to that Tweet in a comment on this post.*
  3. Re-pin (publicly) a pin from the client’s Pinterest page here: URL including exactly the following unique term in your pin’s description: “#nononsensestyleremix” and a disclosure that your pin is a sweepstakes entry (e.g., “I am entering the #nononsensestyleremix sweepstakes” or using a hashtag such as #SweepstakesEntry or #SweepsEntry); and leave the URL to that Re-pin in a comment on this post.
  4. Purchase a pair of No nonsense Leggings at www.nononsense.com and create your own Style Remix. Share a link to the public image in the comment section on this post.
  5. Blog about this Promotion (including a disclosure that you have received a sweepstakes entry in exchange for blogging about this Promotion), and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post.*
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 10/8/14 – 10/27/14.
Be sure to visit the No nonsense brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!


A Girl's Weekend

September was a super rough month for me in many ways, and I just needed a time out. My bestie Jamie and I have been missing each other and wanted to have some girl time so I figured the timing couldn't be more perfect. Trevor was going out of town to go hunting and her husband was going to be gone as well, so we decided that last weekend we just needed to make it happen. So I drove down to St. George to spend the weekend with her.

Friday night we went to dinner and stayed up talking for hours like usual. I don't know what it is about certain people but Jamie is one of those ones that I could never be done talking to. We slept in Saturday morning which was absolute perfection. It was such a gorgeous day in St. George and we decided to head out to brunch at Breakfast At Tifiny's at the Green Valley Spa and Resort. By the looks of my creme brulee french toast you can tell it was delicious! After we did some shopping, which totally brought me back to our high school days. Jamie and I were mall buddies and always went shopping together. I forgot how good we are at it ;) 


all about me, the hubz, and this blog :)

It has been a long time since I updated my About Me section, and thought I would refresh it since I have a larger readership!
Hi! My name is Alycia Crowley pronounced crow (like a bird) -lee. I started this blog when I moved to Utah for school and my Dad, who was an avid blogger, kept bugging me to start one. My family has always been incredibly close, and they wanted me to give them more than just a phone call update. So I obliged, but didn't post that often. Then one hot night in August I met a cute boy named Trevor and all of a sudden felt like I had something to blog about. Nine months later we were eating dinner watching an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie and Trevor got down on one knee and proposed. After I said, UM, YES! Trevor got up, hugged me tight and said,  "We are going to have so much fun!" That has become a motto in our little family, we think life should be a party and want our life together to be just that. Hence the blog title Crowley Party.
While this blog started out documenting our life together, it has since grown into a creative outlet where I can share everything from the daily happenings of my life, to my personal style and favorite beauty products.
I also have a YouTube Channel as an extension of my blog where I post about my life, style, and beauty products. 
And if you aren't sick of me yet, you can also find me at...
Twitter @alyciagrayce
Instagram @alyciagrayce

Basically, if you search Alycia Grayce, you can find me anywhere. 

Still want to know more? Well, I do aim to please. Here is more of the nitty gritty...

I am a sister, daughter, aunt and wife. I have a big family whom I love. I was born in Canada but raised in San Diego, California - I am a California girl through and through. I am loud, I enjoy eating, cuddling, movies, reading, working out, the beach, lacrosse, and anything the involves sunshine. In fact, sunshine was my nick name in college. I like donuts, ice cream, cheeseburgers & pizza. I could, and have, eaten a box of mac n cheese every single day for a straight week. I also love the color of mac n cheese :) I love the smell of the sea, my husband, &all that glitters. I have a serious case of wanderlust & love celebrating life! I graduated from the University of Utah with a Social Science Teaching Composite degree and a Teaching History Minor. I have a passion for education, learning, culture, travel & pretty much everything the world has to offer me! I have spent the last several years working in Marketing, putting my husband through Law School. He recently graduated, started a job at a firm, and now we are both working and wondering if this "we are now adults" thing is really actually happening!

We don't hear too much from trevor on this blog. Maybe someday if we are all really lucky he will grace us with some words. While on that subject, I might as well tell you that Trevor is a man of few words. His passion in life is music, guitar to be exact. Our apartment is covered with guitars, and recording equipment. Trevor grew up in St.George, Utah and is a lover of the hot heat and anything that includes water and being outside a.k.a skim boarding, wake boarding, boating... you get the idea? Trevor likes to eat whole pizzas by himself, but don't let that fool you, most of the time he is a total health nut! (which is good since I have the mac-n-cheese addiction thing going on) Trevor served an LDS mission in South Africa, and graduated from the University of Utah in Political Science and Jazz Guitar
Performance. You can usually spot Trevor in a crowd pretty easily, just look for holes in his t-shirt and clothes (he wears things until they literally fall apart) a 5-o-clock shadow that grows back every 24 hours, and a pretty impressive cow lick on the side of his head that resembles Alfalfa :) He recently graduated from Law School and became an Attorney. He loves his job, and is constantly an example to me of what incredible hard work can accomplish!




Seeing that today is the last day in September, I figured I better get this post in. While I originally started this blog in 2008, I rarely updated it. Behold, my first blog post ever... riveting no? haha In fact I have taken several posts from 2008 and turned them into drafts, Pre-Trevor days, what can I say ;) I didn't really start "blogging" in the term that you know it now until September 2009, exactly five years ago this month. 

I started a blog because my Dad who was an avid blogger at the time and had been encouraging me to start one. My family has always been very close and involved in each other’s lives, and they wanted me to give them more than just a phone call update. I always enjoyed seeing my Dad’s blog posts with pictures and fun written details about what he and my family were up to. It was a great way to get a little glimpse into his life when I wasn't able to be apart of it in that way. I was never very good at keeping a journal, and figured since I was always online as it was, blogging would be a great way to document my life. So my original goal for blogging was to share what was going on in my life with my family as we all were living far apart from each other. It is pretty fun to go back and see the early day blog posts. I love that I have a handful of posts of Trevor and I dating documented on the blog. The first blog post where he shows up on my blog was about him being my date to a dance, how cute is that? From the end of 2008 through 2009 you can see a bunch of our dating posts, engagement, (I did a more detailed story about the proposal a year later) bachelorette partywedding and honeymoon. Man we were babies! Back then my blog was called, Alycia's World! haha September 2009, just after we were married, I decided to change it to Crowley Party, to document our new lives together.

Before I knew it I was enjoying other people's blogs online. I loved reading about what other people were doing, reading their thoughts and see what they were sharing. Soon people other than my family and friends started reading and commenting on my blog. I really loved this new community of bloggers who were sharing and creating together. Along the way my blog turned into a creative outlet for me. While my blog has always been my space for sharing my thoughts and documenting my life, I started getting involved in collaborations with other bloggers and companies. My goals are still very much the same as when I started, with some additions. I still use my blog as a place to share my life with my family who lives all over, as well as share my thoughts and experiences. But along with that, I also use it as space to share the things I love with readers. I love being able to share everything from the daily happenings of my life, to my personal style or favorite beauty products. I love the conversation and community that can exist online. Have I expressed enough how much I love blogging? haha

While I have loved blogging, there have been some downs to my ups. Putting your life and thoughts out for the whole world to see means you are opening yourself up for whatever comes back. I have had so much good come back, but sometimes there is bad. I wouldn’t say I have ever had to compromise anything with blogging, but because I have been so open about who I am and my experiences I have opened myself up for public opinion. Doing that comes with unique challenges that a lot of people don’t experience. I have learned so much about myself and really feel I have grown in a way I never would have if it hadn’t been for blogging. It has made me a stronger more compassionate person, and someone who knows exactly who she is.

Since I started blogging, the blogging world has really changed. Social Media really blew up when I was blogging. A lot of people feel like Instagram killed blogging, and in a lot of ways I would have to agree. It is a faster way for people to get a taste of what is going on in your life, which is usually why they read your blog in the first place. While social media grew, there were less comments and lower engagement on the blog. While my readership stayed about the same, my comments went from 50+ to maybe 10. Readers have been given so many different ways to engage with bloggers that sometimes the blog isn't even one of them. I now not only feel a community and connection on my blog but on my Instagram as well.

When I first started blogging I just posted whenever I felt like it, but as it became more of a "business," I had to start creating some kind of schedule. Consistency is key when it comes to blogging. Because of this I have had to overcome the challenge of finding the time to fit it all in. Not having enough time and learning to organize my time has been one of my biggest obstacles. Time management and organization are two areas I continue to work on.  I work full time and when I come home my spare time is spent managing my blog and online obligations as well as errands, gym, cleanings... you get the idea? If I am not careful with how I manage my time it can feel like I am constantly working and don’t have any free time. I never want my blog to feel like it is becoming a chore. Blogging is a lot of fun, but it can also be a lot of work. While blogging is a priority for me, I want to make sure my family and friends are always number one. I mean, isn't that why I blog in the first place? I blog about my life, I don't live to blog.

I won't lie, there have been many times I just wanted to delete this blog. But then I remember all the amazing things that have come from it. I have documented my life in a way I never would have without it, I have gotten two of my full-time jobs from blogging, and have made some incredible friends. And one of my favorite parts of blogging is being able to share my opinions and thoughts in a public forum and starting a conversation with readers. The comment sections in some of my posts have been a place for real discussion with people and their opinions, and I love when that happens!

So I guess this is a reflection on the last five years, and my way of saying THANK YOU. Some of you are new readers, some of you have been reading from the beginning, but I want to thank you for being apart of my journey here in the blog world. I look forward to what the future brings with all of this blogging and social media craziness, and I hope you will continue on the journey with me!




Today I have such a fun giveaway for you all :) You know I love me some lipstick - Check out my Lip Stick Addict Tag on my YouTube Channel. And I figured, how fun would it be to get a bunch of bloggers together and have us share a favorite lipstick with YOU, and when I say share, I mean, literally GIVE THEM TO YOU! I have teamed up with some lovely local blogging ladies and we are each sharing our favorite lip stick to be apart of a giveaway. ONE winner takes ALL the lipstick! I wish I could win this giveaway... just saying! Read below to get to know the ladies and why they love their lipsticks, and enter in the Rafflecopter :) GOOD LUCK XO

a Rafflecopter giveaway