20 Quick Tips for New Broadcasters on Periscope

20 Quick Tips for New Broadcasters on Periscope

"You're not going to be very good at it, so why even try?""You're better off playing it safe and sticking to what you know.""You just don't have what it takes." Have I introduced you to my inner critic yet?  She's a real peach, ain't she?  (Note the verbal irony.)We've gotten to know each other rather well over the years, she and I.  In truth, she's a lot less chatty now than she was when I was in my twenties...and practically mute compared to how verbose she was during my Read more

Why Periscope is Going to be a Game-Changer for Bloggers & Business Owners

Why Periscope is Going to Be a Game-Changer for Bloggers & Biz Owners

Just two weeks ago, I didn't even know the Periscope app existed.And here I am today with six broadcasts under my belt, an Ultimate Periscope Resource Page to share with you all, and now, a deeper discussion into why I think this app is worth exploring.As we've already established, I've caught Periscope fever!  And while this is still a very new medium, and I have a lot to learn, one thing is very clear to me:I don't think Periscope is going to be just another fad.  I think it's here Read more

The Beginner’s Guide to Periscope

The Beginner's Guide to Periscope

"I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more Periscope!"  {Cue the cowbell.}Have you caught Periscope fever, too?  If not, I have a hunch you'll catch it by the end of this three-part series.  {Wink.}Periscope is one of the fastest growing new social media platforms since the app first released for iOS devices this March and for Android this May.  In fact, it's still so new by app standards, that for some of you, this may be the first time you're hearing about it.No Read more

5 Strategies for Conquering the Fear of Public Speaking

5 Strategies for Conquering the Fear of Public Speaking | Most people fear public speaking more than they fear death. No joke! However, I believe that you don't have to let that fear hold you back, but rather you can channel that fear into positive energy that leads to success! And here are the 5 strategies I have employed in my own experience and in my teaching/directing to conquer the fear of public speaking...and even have FUN when speaking in public. It's totally possible! {Post includes video replay of a Periscope broadcast!}

The fear of public speaking is very real, people.And don't just take my word for it.  Allow me to hand to the mic to your friend and mine, Jerry Seinfeld: According to most studies, people's number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death.Death is number two. Does that sound right?This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you're better off in the casket than doing the eulogy. Ba-dum tss.But here's the thing: rather than letting fear of public Read more

DIY Scarf Camera Strap

DIY Scarf Camera Strap Tutorial: Upcycle a scarf into a snazzy camera strap that will quickly become your new favorite accessory. This sewing tutorial will walk you through each step of the fun refashion. Happy Scarf Week 2015!

Of the all 4 Scarf Week projects I took on this year (1 | 2 | 3), this is the one that intimidated me the most.It would involve running through my sewing machine a nylon camera strap, faux leather, and scarf material all at the same time.  If we're honest, it had the words "scarf fail" written all over it.  Or at least "someone's-asking-for-a-new-sewing-machine-for-Christmas-because-hers-died-from-scarf-refashion trauma."But that's not the story I'm here to tell today.No, friend, Read more

Wire Head Scarf Tutorial for the Beginner Sewist

DIY Wire Head Scarf for the Beginner Sewist | Another inspirational Scarf Week tutorial that is fun, easy, and will open you up to a whole new world of head scarves that actually stay on your head! Lots of step by step photos help make this project extra do-able!

I love me a good head scarf.  Especially on day 2 (or 3...cough) of unwashed hair.But either I have to tie it on headache-tight or assault my scalp with bobby pins just to get it to stay on.  Ya feel me?So...when I learned that you could line head scarves with wire to make them moldable to your head, well, I did a little heel click and to my sewing machine I went!Now, before you navigate away because I just mentioned the forbidden word, "sewing," let me stress that I still consider Read more

D.I.Y. Galaxy Print Infinity Scarf

DIY Galaxy Print Infinity Scarf: Just one of the many inspirational tutorials during Scarf Week 2015. This creative project uses the power of bleach on a dark t-shirt to transform it into a fabulous galactic accessory! And you likely have most the supplies you'd need already lying around the house!

"Can we pretend that bleach spots on a navy tee are like shooting stars?  I could really use a scarf right now, scarf right now, scarf right no-ow-ow!"Just some parodied lyrics to a classic hook that played in my head as I pulled my D.I.Y. Galaxy Print Infinity Scarf out of the dryer and wrapped it around my neck.You see, some of my bleach spots had smeared, so what I intended to look as "stars" really did look like they were shooting through galaxy of my scarf.  That's what I like to Read more

10 Minute Fringe Infinity T-Shirt Scarf

10 Minute Fringe Infinity T-Shirt Scarf - - one of the quickest, easiest, and most fun DIY projects you'll ever do! Oh, and the best part? Supplies are FREE if you raid your closet for an old t-shirt to upcycle! Just another inspiring tutorial from Scarf Week 2015! Stop by to check out all 7 DIY T-Shirt Scarves.

Did you hear the oh-so-exciting news?  While Shark Week takes over your TV screens this week, Scarf Week will be taking over blogland.  That's right: you've got 5 fun-filled days of scarf-tastic inspiration ahead of you, and it all kicks off today!Today's theme? T-Shirt Scarves! And I'm joined by 6 other bloggers who are all sharing t-shirt scarf tutorials today, so be sure to stick around to the end of this post and explore their killer projects!  (And oh-my-gills, are they Read more

Scarf Week 2015: A Week of Killer Inspiration

Welcome to Scarf Week 2015! Bigger, better, scarfy-er. July 6 - 10, 2015. We've got t-shirt scarves, dyed-painted-stamped scarves, scarves for sewists, knitted & crocheted scarves, and scarf re-fashions! It's going to be a killer week of inspiration, no fish-bones about it.

We live in a crazy world.  So, it can be a relief to know there are a few constants we can rely on.After winter, must come spring.What goes up must come down.And when Shark Week comes back with a vengeance every summer, so does Scarf Week return!  That's right.  Today at 10 a.m. eastern, we are kicking off the Second Annual Scarf Week here in blogland, and this time it really is bigger...better...scarfy-er.  That's because I'm joined by not one, not two, but a whole gaggle of Read more

Flip-Through Video Tour of My Journaling Bible

Flip-Through Video Tour of My Journaling Bible | Join me on this fun lil' video tour of the first 10 entries of my E.S.V. Journaling Bible in which I share tips, tricks, favorite supplies, techniques I've been exploring, and why this has been such a meaningful way for me to study the Bible these past 3 months. I hope it's an encouragement to you wherever you find yourself in your journey.

It has been a little over three months since I first started pouring my heART into the margins of my *Crossway E.S.V. Journaling Bible...and to say it has revolutionized my Bible study experience is an understatement.My introductory blog posts this spring were met with such enthusiasm and some great questions, so I thought it might be worthwhile to do a lil' flip through video tour of my first 10 entries.  My hope is that this might serve as inspiration for some of you who are also at the Read more

Reader Showcase: A Look Back at Winter & Spring 2015

Winter & Spring 2015 Reader Showcase at The Thinking Closet | Prepare to be amazed at the creativity and inspiration in the craft and DIY tutorials found in this round-up! Reason #597 why The Thinking Closet readers are the best readers in blogland!

Happy weekend, friends.  And better yet, happy summer!You know what that means...school's out......the grills are heating up......and in between those thrilling summer thunderstorms......the beach is calling your name!Well, when the seasons change, I like to do a little event here at The Thinking Closet called The Reader Showcase.  What's it all about?Well, some of my favorite emails to receive are the ones where you send me photos of creations y'all Read more

How to Build a Loyal Blog Following Through Storytelling & A Giveaway

How to Build a Loyal Blog Following Through Storytelling | Blogging tips by Lauren Lanker from The Thinking Closet. How can we craft opening sentences that rise above the noise? Through storytelling. It's one of the most effective ways to build a long-term relationship with loyal blog followers. Here are some practical exercises to help bloggers draw out their own stories and find their voice through writing killer hooks!

In kindergarten, my friends and I would crouch down on the big black rocks and dedicate our recess hour to scraping the shiny mica with our fingernails.  It came off in small, thin sheets that we collected in our jacket pockets.  To the teacher looking on, we were just kids being kids.  That mica wasn't worth much.But to us, it was worth a lot.It was pirate's booty for our treasure chest.  It was currency for our game of house.  It was magical fairy dust that could make us fly.And Read more

DIY Burlap Chair Signs for the Bride & Groom

DIY Burlap Chair Signs for the Bride & Groom | Step by step freezer paper stenciling tutorial including FREE Silhouette cut file! These "his beloved" and "her beloved" chair banners are the perfect addition to a rustic wedding!

"Oh they say when you marry in June you're a bride all your life!" My dear younger sister Lisbeth is getting married this June.  And it only feels fitting to be humming along to a song from one of our favorite movie musicals, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, as I work on some of her reception decor items.Now, "chair signs" weren't originally on my "to make" list.  But when I discovered some burlap chair banners and signs in my Pinterest-perusing, I was gripped with an inspiration I just Read more

“Should It Stay or Should It Go?” | A Decor Date

"Should It Stay or Should It Go?" A Decor Date | Inspired by Free Decorating by Jackie Hernandez, my hubby and I dedicated an hour long decor date to assessing our furniture and accent pieces as items to stay or go - - keep or lose. Thanks to some handy dandy printables, it made what could have been an overwhelming process quite fun! Stop by the blog to hear the full run-down and download some free printables!

Here's a new first:This past Tuesday, Mark and I planned a date to discuss decor.Yes, you read that correctly: my dear hubby and I dedicated an entire hour to assessing each furniture item and accent piece in our living room and kitchen area, asking ourselves, "Should it stay or should it go?"And yes, it was a fun enough process to merit the title of "date."  I'm not kidding, we both left that decor date more excited and fired up than if we had gone go-cart racing.Now, I know Read more

Our Cash Budget Envelope System: 3 Month Update!

Our Cash Budget Envelope System: 3 Month Update! | They say it takes 90 days to form a new habit...well, here's the full run-down of our first 90 days of using our new cash budget envelope system, from the highlights to the challenges and adjustments we've made. We hope our story is an encouragement to you in your own journey toward financial peace. via thinkingcloset.com

They say it takes 90 days to form a new habit.Well, I'm proud to say that as of this May, Mark and I reached 90 days of using our new Cash Budget Envelope System.  And we are still goin' strong, people!Now, paying for our unfixed expenses with cash instead of plastic hasn't been easy breezy.  We've had to maneuver some bumps in the road and learn some hard lessons, but overall, these first three months have been a truly positive experience for us.  We're seeing the fruits of this new Read more

The Art of the Etched Casserole Dish: Your Questions Answered!

Glass Etched Casserole Dishes: Personalized Wedding Gift Idea - - Plus Your Questions Answered about The Art of Glass Etched Bakeware!

I'm giddy as a pig in mud when a project creates such a buzz, that it merits a follow-up post.Ever since first publishing my Personalized Etched Glass Bakeware Tutorial, I've encountered a slew of "frequently asked questions" about it.  I think that the strong chemicals and rubber gloves amp up the intimidation factor.  It kind of feels like you're doing a mini science experiment in your kitchen.But with each glass etching project I do, I'm continually amazed at how very do-able it is to Read more

50 Do-Able DIY Photo Backdrops

50 Do-Able DIY Photo Backdrops | An inspiring collection of inspiration from across blogland for bloggers and shop owners looking to shoot professional-looking photos using backdrops they already have or can easily and inexpensively make themselves! A goldmine of information!

There's a myth about blog photos - - those bright, crisp images on non-distracting backgrounds (you know the ones).The myth goes that those blog photos are shot in professional studios with expensive lighting equipment and fancy backdrops.  Oh, and the bloggers behind the cameras have about 20 different lenses to choose from for different effects and compositions.  And they most certainly all have spunky assistants with a non-descript accents (think Franck from Father of the Bride) who shout Read more