Friday Five | Vol. 14

valentines day

 • HUMOR – There’s nothing better than being with someone whose sense of humor compliments yours and who makes you crack up laughing at the littlest thing. Amiright? Or amiright? It’s the best feeling. If a guy can’t make me laugh, it’s unlikely I’ll be able to see a future with him. 

THOUGHTFULNESS – When you have spent a good bit of your 20’s as a single lady, you learn how to do all things on your own, whether it’s household chores, emotional support or managing finances. And, while it’s really empowering to know I can take care of myself, I’m not naive enough to know how much I would appreciate my man knowing all that I juggle and being like ‘hey, I took care of that for you.’ I’m the least dependent person you will ever meet, and I know it will always be hard for me to ask for help because I have spent so much time  on my own, but I do just hope that I have someone that wants to love me in that way. 

FAITH – Being rooted in the same faith, and having those same values, is an important foundation to stand on. I can imagine it will only make you feel even more connected to your person and make decision-making ‘easier’. As a Christian woman, I want a man who shamelessly sits down with the Word regularly, prays over me and our babies, and loves people selflessly. 

LOOKS – Okay … I said five ‘things’ not five ‘personality traits’ 😉 Who doesn’t want to be attracted to the person you end up with? And, I tend to go for the tall, dark and handsome type so let me know if you know of any respectable, eligible bachelors hah! 

HONESTY – This is an extremely important quality to me. I’ve been lied to, manipulated and deceived in the past by someone I loved so much and I never, ever want to experience that kind of abuse again. I want someone who is genuine and sweet and can sit down with me face-to-face and have an honest conversation. 

Some other things I find attractive are passion, adventurous, spontaneous, and driven!

What do you look for in the opposite sex? What are some qualities your spouse has that you never thought you would find attractive? 

 Women these days really do take on so much, and they spend so much time showing everything else their attention and giving everyone else their love. If you haven’t spoiled yourself in awhile, consider doing one of the following to give yourself so much needed love & attention:

Get to know yourself and accept her! It’s important to realize that we are all different and the differences between us make us beautiful. Every quality within you makes you unique, and allows you to contribute to this world in a way that no one else can. It’s okay to not be like her. You just be you, and I can guarantee you that there will be people that come along that will be like ‘Gosh, I love ____ about you. I wish that was one of my strengths.’ So, settle in to who you are, love her, and realize where you need to improve for the sake and consideration of other people. It’s also important to realize that all of your qualities aren’t always going to be accepted by everyone and that needs to be okay, too.

Stop comparing yourself to other women and set boundaries, if need be! It’s no secret … social media affects us mentally & emotionally, and not always in a good way. It can inspire us, absolutely, but … it can lead to depressing thoughts and lower self-esteem. It’s important that you realize that you’re looking at someone’s highlight reel. They don’t always look the way they do on social media and everyone goes through struggles. So, chin up! You’re not alone. You’re just as beautiful as she is. And, if you’re noticing that someones feed negatively affects you every time it shows up as you scroll, then set a boundary and unfollow! Simple! 

Book a spa day! I used to NEVER go to the spa. Ever. But, a few years ago, I was curious about what it would be like to experience a spa day so, my mom got me a gift certificate for Christmas so I could see what all the fuss is about. I went in for my massage and facial and left a changed woman! I was recharged and refreshed, and told myself that I wanted to book a spa day at least once a quarter. Well, I’m not sure I kept up with that but, I do firmly believe that spending the day turning yourself OFF to everything and everyone else but yourself is a great way to show yourself some love! 

Invest in your skin’s health! This time last year, I didn’t have a strong morning & night time skin routine. It really worried me because I was turning 30 and we’re supposed to have it all together by the time we’re 30, right? [Ha, right … ] This was around the time that the wonderful team at TULA asked if I was willing to try their skin care products. That ‘yes’ has completely changed my skin. It always looks and feels hydrated and I rarely ever have a pimple. I also love that, unlike other skin care companies, you’re not paying an arm and a leg just to try it. They have a small discovery kit that’s only $52 and if you purchase any TULA products before 3/1 … you can enjoy 20% off with code haleywinter20

Allow yourself to rest! I use to be so go-go-go all the time. On top of that, I would allow my happiness to depend on how much I was able to get done in a day. Eventually, I realized that that isn’t where happiness comes from and I was so tired from all the hustling that I came to a decision about how I wanted to move forward. I want to hustle, be productive and get sh** done … but I don’t think it should come at the expense of the rest my body needs. I know a lot of women who are in the same boat that I used to be in, and I shared how to wake up feeling more restful in the morning earlier the week because I think it’s time that we stop glamorizing this crazy, busy, tired life. We can be successful but we don’t need to be draining ourselves entirely.  

friday five

I got this adorable faux leather tote with scallop detail along the top! The faux leather is soft but sturdy, and there’s a little pouch inside to keep some of your smaller items together. This adorable white dress is perfect for Spring. I bought it in red last year and wore it in Miami for my birthday! I just got it in a blue color because I like it so much, but found this one is marked down under $100 with all sizes available! Score! I wore this hat a lot last Spring & Summer so snag it now before it sells out!

If you’re scrambling to find something for your special someone, consider one of the above OR maybe snag him concert tickets or YOU treat HIM to a nice dinner somewhere, instead of the other way around 🙂 Show him how much you appreciate all that he does for you!

Jesus – My life has been forever changed since I decided to get baptized in June of 2013 after I accepted Jesus into my life as my Lord & Savior. It has given me clarity, strength and peace in so many situations, and has made me a much better person. I’m far from perfect but, that’s why I need Him and why I’m thankful for what He did for you and I on the cross.

LondonCan a city be considered a love? I think so. I’ve never felt so happy being in a place before, especially in a place where I barely knew anyone! Inspiration was everywhere. I loved the diversity in people that I met, the energy of the city, the way I got from point A to point B, that I could walk everywhere and it not be weird, the architecture, the history, the endless number of places to explore and discover, the endless places to take blog post photos (hah!), etc. I have no shame in admitting that I ugly cried the night before leaving London and a few times during my time there because I felt so strongly for the city of London. I am still settling in to the disappointments that occurred while I was there. I am still settling in to the fact that it might not be where I’m supposed to be forever, and the reality of currently being somewhere that I don’t hate but I don’t love. And, I’m settling in to that saying ‘better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all’. I know the saying is applied a little differently here but, I really am… thankful for the opportunity I was given to be there for the time that I was. And … super excited to be going back sooner rather than later 😉 More to come on that later!

Sharing & connecting – If there’s one thing I realized in my 20’s about myself, it’s how much of a sharer I am. If something is going wrong in my life, I cannot internalize it. It gives me anxiety. And, I realized one day that that anxiety is automatically alleviated by being able to just share it with someone whose opinion I value and whose space I feel safe in. It makes me feel safe and it makes me feel less alone that what I’m feeling or going through is valid and okay. I think it’s one of the reasons why I love blogging so much. There’s a community here, that has developed over time, and I appreciate you allowing me in to your hearts and lives in the way that you have. You’ve allowed me to just share and be myself, and while that might not be everyone’s cup of tea … I am okay with that. But, if I am someone you enjoy following, I am thankful I have the opportunity to hopefully make you feel like we’re connected through my ramblings. My hope will always be that my readers feel like what you’re going through is valid and okay, even if we aren’t sitting right in front of each other. 

My friends, family and the S&T team – I feel like this goes without saying … the closest people in your life are the closest ones for a reason. They all add to your life in even the smallest way to make you feel known, happy and like you’re living a fulfilled life. To all of those people in my life, who call, check in, show up, help, and encourage, I love you and am so thankful for you. Also … special shout out to my sweet Dad … HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! You’re the best!

Fish – I think this little baby takes up the softest space in my heart. He came into my life unexpectedly at a really stressful time in my life, after I graduated college and was struggling to prep adequately for my nursing licensure exam. I had been in college for SIX years [that’s a whole other story in and of itself!] and was just really burned out. I was in a relationship I knew wasn’t right and was feeling really lonely as a lot of my friends were leaving Jacksonville. I passed my licensure exam and got a job on a neuro / neurosurgery unit at one of the biggest medical centers in Jacksonville. It was the most physically and mentally exhausting job I had ever had, and yet, I constantly signed up to work overtime. I decided to move to Colorado to live with my best friend, and experience life somewhere else for awhile. God made it very clear that He didn’t want me there. I didn’t even know God at the time but I knew it was Him tugging on me to head back home. I moved back in with my parents at the age of 27, and didn’t have a good relationship with my Dad at the time. I went back to my first job that I left before going to Colorado. I started this blog to share my love for style, putting outfits together and finding good deals. Some of my friends thought it was awesome. Others thought it was weird. My Mom died suddenly. Out of nowhere. With no warning. My whole family was completely shaken, broken and rocked by it. Her passing has left scars on our hearts and made us dig up old hurts and bring them to surface. It’s made us honest with each other, which has provided so much healing, even though we will always hurt over her not being here. After living with my Dad for awhile, Fish and I moved into an apartment with my good friend, Kristan, right as I decided to leave the nursing profession to pursue blogging full-time. This career change has been the scariest thing I’ve ever done but it has allowed me to learn and discover new things about myself, and about so many careers I never thought I’d have. It also allowed me to live in a different country for awhile and chase after love. And, the sweetest thing about all of that – the good and  the bad – is that I’ve had Fish along for the ride. I’ve always loved dogs, but never would have sought out to own a dog at the time he had been abandoned and needed a loving home. Saying ‘yes’ to adopting him – despite how terrified I was – was the BEST decision I ever made. Looking back at all that has happened in the last seven years that we’ve been together, I cannot imagine how I would have been able to go through some of those things without him. He has brought me more smiles than anything else in this world and was the only thing bringing me light and love during the darkest days. He knows when something is up, when I’m in a funk, when I’m sad, when I’m missing my mom, etc. It’s weird the intuition these babies have. He’s always the silliest little thing and makes me laugh with how spunky he can be. I truly believe Fish was given to me at just the right time, when things were about to be a bit of a rollercoaster. I’m so thankful for how Fish has enriched my life but, sometimes, if I’m honest … I step back and wonder if I’m doing everything for him that I can, to keep his life enriched and FUN and happy.

So … a few weeks ago, when the opportunity presented itself …


Fish and I decided to bring another baby boy into the mix that needed a loving home!

So, everyone … MEET CHIPS! 🙂 Will be sharing more next week, so stay tuned!

Thanks for stopping by today, lovelies! Appreciate y’all so much! xo.





  1. LizaLiza wrote:

    Aaahhh, I knew it! I’m so happy you found a friend for Fish (although I’m guessing he might not have been so happy at first), and it sounds like he’s a rescue as well? Something I strongly believe in! And I love the name, so perfect! Congratulations!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
    • AlysonHaley wrote:

      Aw, thank you!! It’s been fun for Fish and I. Can’t wait to share more about him and our story next week 🙂

      Published 2.10.17 ·
  2. Kaitlyn Hicks wrote:

    Oh my goodness! I squealed when I saw this! I am so excited for you and Fish!! Chips is one lucky boy!!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
    • AlysonHaley wrote:

      Haha! Thank you! We’re LOVING having him! xo.

      Published 2.10.17 ·
  3. Chelsi Campbell wrote:

    Omg, I literally gasped at my desk when I saw your new little pup! How sweet is he?!? How are you ever going to leave the house with these cute little guys around?!

    Thank you so much for this Friday Five, I’ve been struggling with the whole “self love” situation, especially after leaving a not so great relationship and I really love the tips you provided.

    Hope you have a great weekend!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
    • AlysonHaley wrote:

      Hahah, I honestly haven’t left my apartment very much lately and, when I do, I’m trying to be quick about things hah! They’re so fun!

      And, girl, I have totally been there! It’s crazy how a relationship can either build you up or knock you down. Try your best to get out of letting him and your relationship define YOU. You have a lot to offer and, while y’all might not have been the best fit for each other, this relationship was just a stepping stone to get you to the one you are certainly going to feel SO very right about 🙂 xo.

      Published 2.10.17 ·
  4. Becca wrote:

    Loved this post!!! Congratulations on the new fur baby he is absolutely adorable!!! They are so cute together Fish and Chips I love it!!!!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  5. Tabitha wrote:

    Not to curse, but he’s sooo damn cute! From a fellow doxie owner!!❤️

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  6. Lisa wrote:

    Awwww!!! That is so exciting! Chips is absolutely adorable 🙂 Hope he’s enjoying his new family!

    Thank you Haley for sharing your heart with us.

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  7. allie wrote:


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  8. Sarah wrote:

    Fish and Chips!! Soooo cute! Congrats on your newest little fur baby!

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  9. Amanda wrote:

    FISH AND CHIPS! You can tell London really is a love of yours!! My reaction was *GASP* then *HAHAHAHAHA* after I saw his name. So cute and good luck to your growing family!! 🙂

    Also, amazing post all around!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  10. Nicole Giaquinto wrote:

    Ahhhh! I screamed like a little school girl! Welcome Chips ???? Love the name!

    Beautiful Friday 5. Thank you as a reader for how open and honest you are with your posts. I swear that’s what makes you different from others I follow. You welcome us all into your life.

    Congrats again!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  11. Fish and Chips!! Omg congrats!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  12. Kelly wrote:

    Literally started (happy) crying when I read you got another pup. So precious!! Can’t wait to see more of Fish and Chips 😉 on the blog. Always love love love the Friday five!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  13. Britany W wrote:

    What a wonderful little blessing for you and Fish. Chips is so stinkin’ cute! Congratulations on your new wittle baby!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  14. Oh my word, Chips is like a hairier version of Fish and they are both THEEE cutest!! From one obsessed dog Mama to another…I so get it. They make our worlds such happier places. Yay for your growing puppy fam! XOXO

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  15. Kelly K wrote:

    Oh my goodness! Loved everything about this post! Puppies bring soooo much joy to life so that is so beyond exciting that you’ve added Chips to your family!!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  16. Dana wrote:

    Fish & Chips….that made me smile on a Friday! Congrats!!

    Such a great post that just got better and more relatable the more I read. Thank you for sharing!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  17. Maggie P. wrote:

    EEEEEPPP!!! So exciting!! He’s adorable!! I’m interested to hear how Fish and Chips are getting along.

    Huge congrats!!!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  18. Erica Arroyo wrote:

    Congratulations on your new baby! I have two doxies, both wire haired, and I feel incredibly blessed to have them in my life! Enjoy and thank you for sharing.

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  19. If Chips isn’t a tribute to London I’m not sure what is ????!!! I feel the exact same way about that city- it was so incredibly hard to leave- There is no other place I have been where I have been as happy!! Loved the post.

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  20. Lindsay wrote:

    Fish & Chips! So freaking cute I love them both… how exciting.

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  21. I know I’m a broken record in your comments but I ABSOLUTELY LOVE your Friday Five’s. I’m was happy to see your post this morning. I can’t believe you got another pup and could keep it quiet! So much willpower! Something tells me that Fish (and now Chips) have a wonderful life! Have a great weekend!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  22. Oh my goodness gracious… what a cute pair they make! So happy for you all!

    xo, Stephanie

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  23. Kristenristen wrote:

    Aww how cute, love it! Fish and Chips, precious! Thanks for being so transparent and brave with sharing some of your story.

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  24. Glee wrote:

    Fish and chips ???? How British! Love that. I can so relate on your last section of the post, and my heart goes out to you. I love your blog, and I wish you much happiness!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  25. Omg!! How cute! And I love the play on the name fish n chips! Ha! Thank you for sharing your personal stories with us!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  26. Paige wrote:

    Seriously, this post just made me the happiest of all, Haley. So much love for Fish and now for Chips. Happy for you!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  27. Paige wrote:

    Seriously, this post made me the happiest of all, Haley!! So so much love for your boy Fish and now for Chips! Couldn’t be happier for you three!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  28. K wrote:

    Awe- another Doxie- is he wired hair or a Terri-doxie mix?
    I’ve got a Doxie too ????. Wish mine was a thin as yours, mine is obsessed with food and keeps losing and regaining the same 5 pounds.

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  29. Andrea wrote:

    Yay!!!!! So happy you got another dog and I LOVE the name!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  30. Emily wrote:

    Best news of the day!! And that name… just made me heart smile… needed that in a big way????

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  31. La Bijoux Bella | by mia wrote:

    Beautiful thoughts …. what a beautiful post! 🙂

    ❤LA BIJOUX BELLA❤ | BY MIA | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  32. Jane Ann wrote:

    Dawwwww my goodness yay! Chips is so handsome! This post was so sweet and nice to read!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  33. Erin B wrote:

    Awe so excited for you adding another member to your family! Chips is adorable just like his brother Fish! Love the names! I always say you can never have enough puppy love! I have 3 furry babes 2 French bulldogs and 1 English bulldog and they are the true loves of my life! Congrats on the new babe I hope Fish and him are the best of friends! You look so happy with them both on your lap!!!!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  34. Morgan Slechta wrote:

    I am mostly a snapchat viewer and hardly find the time to go to your blog, sorry! But your snapchat brought me here today because I just couldn’t wait to find out what the big news was! I was thinking you were going to say you were heading back to London already! Take me with you ???? hahaha I met a few people on a cruise I was just on and they happened to be from London (I’m living in Jacksonville at the moment) and I could just talk to them all day everyday and I consider them good friends now and I can’t wait to take the leap and visit there. I’ll definitely have to catch up on some blog posts before I do go ????

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  35. Kandi wrote:

    SO sweet!!! Love his name, it’s perfect!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  36. Mindy wrote:

    Great Post! Thanks for always sharing so much about yourself – It’s one of the things I love about your blog! Fish and Chips is genius, I’m excited to hear about their adventures with you!

    Published 2.10.17 · Reply
  37. Nicole wrote:

    Congrats on the new puppy, what a cute surprise!

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  38. S wrote:

    Oh my god! Fish and Chips that’s so adorable!!! Congratulations :).

    Published 2.11.17 · Reply
  39. Dawn Belt wrote:

    Oh wow! I have loved getting to know you and Fish, and now I will get to know Chips as well. Thank you for sharing your life and sweet babies! Have a blessed day and I’ll see you guys on Snap! ????

    Published 2.11.17 · Reply
  40. CASSIE wrote:

    Omg I love this so much!!! I thought they were seriously already brothers and he was just visiting when I saw your snaps. So adorable!!! I will never have another breed. My little Molly did great her first night! Its been a long 8 weeks of waiting! So happy for you guys!!

    Published 2.11.17 · Reply
  41. Heather M wrote:

    Loved the post, especially what you shared under Fish. Hearing your struggle to find your way & how things have turned out is refreshing & endearing. Dogs are little furry angels & you guys look perfect together.

    Published 2.11.17 · Reply
  42. Hank wrote:

    Beautiful Pic. You deserve happiness and love. Cute dogs.

    Published 2.11.17 · Reply
  43. kathy anderson wrote:

    Great Post! Am a HUGE dog lover (have four little fur babies of my own) Truly believe they can help you get through anything! xoxox

    Published 2.11.17 · Reply
  44. CortneyCortneyCortney wrote:

    I always love your Friday Five posts! Just curious – Have you ever considered just doing 1 topic including 5 items versus 5 topics at 5 items each? You put a lot of thought into each one which is so appreciated but it may make your Friday Five posts quite easier on you and then could be an every-Friday post! Just a thought 🙂

    PS: Fish & chips? I mean… come on!!! So great!

    Published 2.13.17 · Reply
  45. Amy Schwartz wrote:

    Fish is precious! I adopted my Scottish Terrier, Fala, after moving across the country. He has become my rock and has seen me through the toughest of times. We recently added another Scottie to the family, and, although two dogs is a lot of work, I can’t imagine life any differently. Fish and Chips are precious – cutest names ever – and I know they will love each other!

    Published 2.14.17 · Reply
  46. Kathryn wrote:

    Oh YAY! Chips! I’m so excited about your new addition 🙂

    xx Kathryn

    Published 2.14.17 · Reply