Friends toasting champagne,wearing Christmass hats

What Not to Wear: Work Holiday Party

Friends toasting champagne,wearing Christmass hats

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This topic came up recently as my coworkers and I discussed what we are wearing to the Camden holiday party. Since fashion trends come and go, I wanted to share a basic guide as to what is appropriate for a holiday party involving your boss and coworkers.

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3 Reasons You Should Become a Yelper

Camden apartments reviewsEveryone knows the world is gradually leaning more and more on technology. Whether it is social media, online shopping, or streaming movies, everything and everyone are starting to depend on reviews to know where to go and what to do. Here’s where you come in!

Yelp was founded over 11 years ago to help people find great local businesses through reviews. It’s crazy to think that Yelp had a monthly average of 89 million users who visited Yelp via their mobile device in just Q3 of 2015 alone. Another fun fact: Yelpers will have written more than 90 million reviews by the end of Q3 2015.

So, why should you become a “Yelper?”

  1. Experience – by sharing your experience, you really let whatever or whomever you may be reviewing know what you liked best and what they need to change. Whether your review is good or bad, it will let the owners/employees know how they impressed you and also how they need to improve.
  2. Value – we all know there are some amazing things and companies out there that we can’t live without. Share what you love so that others can find what they may be lacking! If your eyebrows are #OnFleek and you love the people that did them, share a picture to show the world just how amazing they are!
  3. Trust – if you go and review a service or product as well as 2,000 other people, clearly it’s a popping place or product. Whereas, if there is only a description and no reviews it looks a little sketchy. Put your opinion out there! It really does matter!

All in all, Yelp is a global review site that most everyone relies on. Whether you and your significant other are stuck in a never ending argument about what you want to eat, or if you just need some cool place to go shopping, Yelp basically has it all. It’s the #TotalPackage where you can find everything you will ever need.

If you are just dying for your voice to be heard, you should definitely look into getting your Yelp account set up. Your review really does help, no matter what. Whether it allows for an improvement or just gives someone a shout out for doing an awesome job, put it out there because your opinion of your experience matters. It can be a great source of motivation and encouragement as well as getting a product or service out there so people know about it. We only have one world so we might as well all talk about it.

Now that you are completely immersed in Yelp culture, there are several things that will help get you the prized super yelper status you desire. First off you have to create an account. Luckily for you, below are several steps explaining how to do that!

How to create a Yelp account:

  1. Visit or download the Yelp app on your SmartPhone
    1. Click here if you have an Android
    2. Click here if you have an iPhone
  2. Create an account by clicking ‘Sign Up’
  3. Add a photo, write a quick bio, and connect with some friends!
  4. Write and read reviews, get directions, view menus or browse nearby offerings.
  5. Utilize the ‘check-in’ feature to unlock special discounts at participating businesses.

There it is! Super simple and easy, there really isn’t a whole lot to it. Yelp really does help. So as soon as you’re ready, create your account, add some friends, and get to reviewing! Review your favorite restaurants, your favorite stores, and any other business you might have in mind.

Oh, and if you happen to be a Camden resident, or are looking at any Camden communities, stop by their Yelp page and give them a review! For further reading check out this blog about apartments and review sites!

Letter from the tooth fairy

What is the going rate for the Tooth Fairy

My oldest daughter is 6 years old and desperate to lose a tooth. I guess most of the kids in her class have already lost a tooth. She has had a super wiggly tooth on the bottom front but it just won’t work its way out. We just went to the dentist and he said that it will be any day now. This made me a little worried as I was not sure what the going rate is for the tooth fairy these days. I started to ask around and I got really different answers.

I even blogged about this topic last month just to ask for advice on this subject. Well the big night came Haley has finally lost her tooth. So I logged onto Pinterest to see what is the best way to show her that the tooth fairy came while she was sleeping. So I found a super cute note and went to my craft box and grabbed glitter of course. You can’t leave a note from the tooth fairy without having fairy dust! I also made sure that I put glitter on the money as well. We left her $5.00 as it was her first tooth and then we will give her $1.00 or the gold one dollar coin from now on. We will pay more for a front tooth or if she loses it in a crazy way. I also need to make sure that I have the money ahead of time as I don’t keep cash on me very often. It might be a good idea to have money hidden away for events like this.


Letter from the tooth fairy

Letter from the tooth fairy

I waited until she fell asleep and snuck into her room to grab the tooth and place the note under her pillow. I will tell you that my heart was racing as I was worried that I would wake her up. I saw a lot of people have little tooth pillows online and now I know why. My hopes are to find a cute pillow before she loses another tooth. That way she puts the tooth in the pillow and hangs it on the corner of her bed.

When Haley woke up she was so excited and into our room to show us what she got. Then she immediately began wiggling the tooth next to that one to see if they can lose that as well. She said she wants to lose her two front teeth by Christmas so she can sing all she wants for Christmas is her two front teeth. That night when I was headed to bed I saw this note left out for the tooth fairy.

To the tooth Fairy,

Letter to the tooth fairy

Letter to the tooth fairy

I love you. You are good.

From, Haley

This made my heart smile. I guess the best thing to do is just give what you think is right and your child will never know the difference. Always make it about the experience as they are not going to remember the amount that they received but they are going to remember the way it made them feel.

I’m Sick and Tired

That’s about it: I literally am just sick and tired, but tis the season for flu and colds! With that in mind I wanted to take the time to remind everyone about some good practices for flu and cold season.germ-clipart-no-germ-zone-hi

  1. Hand Sanitizer – Sadly, people are not very conscientious when they are sick. At that point they’re miserable and aren’t necessarily running to the bathroom to wash their hands every time they sneeze or blow their nose. Because of this, assume that everyone is walking around with a handful of germs at all times (because they pretty much are)! You will need to be responsible for keeping your hands clean and for goodness sake do not touch your face!germ-clipart-toonvectors-854-140
  2. Check your heater and appliances now – Especially if you live in an apartment community, call in those service requests early. There is nothing worse than not feeling well and realizing that your heater is not working in the middle of the night. Luckily most companies (like Camden) offer 24-hour emergency service but who wants their heater, or anything else, being worked on in the middle of the night?!
  3. Get plenty of sleep – This is a no brainer, without sleep your body cannot heal. I know it is easy to stay up sniffling and sneezing but you really need to find a way to get to bed early.
  4. Stay at home – None of us want to get sick either. Isn’t it better to take a day and recover instead of spending days at work in a sick haze making mistakes and getting nothing done? Take care of yourselves people and don’t spread your germs!

These are just a couple a tips/pleas from me (coming from someone who is currently sick). Wishing everyone a safe HEALTHY holidays.

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Taking the Work Out of Workout

Have you ever been to a Zumba Class? It’s like a super fun dance party with easy choreographed moves that make you forget that you’re even working out. The best part is, that you don’t even need to know how to dance to join in on the fun!

One thing you should know about Camden is that we really like to have fun! We had brain stormed so many fun ideas for resident events.-food trucks, pool party, etc. when we came across the idea of hosting a Zumba class here at Camden Plantation. We figured being that we have this enormous racquetball court, why not take advantage of our wonderful amenities?

We started to research local Zumba instructors in the area and reached out to a few of them. I emailed Catherine and immediately she was on board. We started promoting the event through our Facebook, Twitter, and flyers. We asked residents to RSVP through the portal.

There were 25 people RSVP’ed for the class, and we were so eager to see the turnout and ready to have some fun. Cristina, one of our amazing leasing consultants, and I decided to stay and take part of this awesome event. People that were registered and even some that hadn’t, showed up and were ready to get their dance on. The class was so fun and the instructor was great too! She was very patient and involved and danced with us and in between us. It was only one hour and you wouldn’t even think that with all the laughter and smiles that you we were burning calories. The group had  such a good time, that they asked for an encore!

We will now be hosting Zumba classes at Camden Plantation every Thursday at 7pm starting December 3rd. So if you haven’t taken a Zumba class yet or are looking for a great place to have fun with your neighbors, come to our very own Zumba class!


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4 quick steps to self-improvement!

My brother once told me that there is always room for self-improvement. I believe that self-improvement is essential in our busy lives! Whether we kick out bad eating habits, take better care of our bodies, work on our friendships or relationships- we can do it in a positive way! If you’re anything like me, you are guilty of desiring these things yet not actually working on them. However, I recently contemplated on what is important to me, and what I need to change, I want to share what I came with to get that improvement going! It’s a simple 4 step process:

  1. Set aside some time where you can sit down and truly relax. Take a few deep breaths and clear your mind.
  2. Think about your daily bad habits.
  • Do drink too much coffee? Perhaps make it a rule to drink one coffee and one hot tea in the afternoon.
  • Are you eating unhealthy? If it’s convenient to grab fast food rather than packing a lunch, set your alarm a few minutes earlier in the morning to give you enough time to pack a nutritious meal.
  • When is the last time you did something for you? Life is short, buy the shoes! Or plan that vacation to the beach!

We are all so guilty of the smallest bad habits that eventually take a negative toll on our day. Think about the things you want to change in your lifestyle. What’s in the way of you reaching your goals?

  1. Make small changes to your daily routine to keep your motivation and goals realistic.
  2. If you want to begin a fit lifestyle, you can do it! Typically gyms have monthly specials but if it doesn’t fit your budget to sign up for a gym membership keep in mind that almost every Camden maintains top of the line fitness equipment and facilities.

We are all so guilty of the smallest bad habits that eventually take a negative toll on our day. Think about the things you want to change in your lifestyle. What’s in the way of you reaching your goals? The answer is simple…nothing, nothing at all, except maybe convenience.

If you want to get educated on gym workouts and healthy eating there are great websites to visit, such a, and be sure to check out this Simply Camden blog post for further reading on meal prepping!

If you recognize bad habits in your lifestyle, it’s time to knock them out of your way because you’re on a path to a better you! Reach out for support because truth is, we all have our bad habits and getting support from your closest family member, friends, or colleagues might just do the trick!


My Official Pumpkin Pie Primer- The 3 Main Components to Consider for Successful Pumpkin Pie Making

When most of us think of Thanksgiving, some of us will automatically picture a turkey and all of the trimmings. For those of us who like our dessert, first, we think of PUMPKIN PIE. And, if you are like my husband, you dream of pie with a pound of whipped cream on top.

For most of the population, it does not matter to you how your pumpkin pie gets to the table. I, personally, agonize over how I am going to make mine each year because I am just that kind of person. I have a goal that each year I will try to do something slightly to my pie different in hopes of topping the year before. I drive my family crazy, but they enjoy the results.

A basic homemade or semi-homemade pumpkin pie has three main components: crust, pumpkin filling, and whipped cream. Each component can be store-bought, semi-homemade, or homemade.

  1. The Crust: The crust is the foundation upon which a pie is created. In the past, I have opted for a premade crust because they are beautiful and all that you have to do is pour your pumpkin filling in. Plus, there are so many types of premade pie crusts available if you like variety. However, for the past few years, I have opted to make my own homemade crust that I would find off of Pinterest or out of my old Betty Crocker The basic ingredients in a homemade crust are eggs, butter or shortening, flour, and a liquid. The ratios of each of these ingredients determine the texture of your pie. This year, I am going to make The Pioneer Woman’s “Sylvia’s Perfect Pie Crust”. What makes it different than other recipes that I’ve tried, before, is the addition of vinegar. We’ll see how it goes…
  2. The Filling: The biggest decision you must make…
    1. Pumpkin: There are three options in choosing what type of pumpkin to use- canned pumpkin pie filling, canned pureed pumpkin, or fresh pumpkin puree. Libby makes a mighty fine pumpkin filling with wonderful self-explanatory instructions printed on the label that is pre-seasoned. No fuss, no muss. I was perfectly fine with using this method and grew-up with our homemade pies being made using this type of filling. Two years ago, I had a lot of time on my hands and decided to buy a pie pumpkin. I then roasted and pureed it. I made my pumpkin pie using this fresh pumpkin and I fell in love! In my opinion, the fresh pumpkin is much lighter tasting. A word of caution, make sure to strain your fresh pumpkin puree. I made that mistake the first time by omitting this step and it made for an almost burnt pie crust and watery filling. Another word of warning, pie pumpkins might be hard to find in your area so you may have to shop around. I purchased my pumpkins at Whole Foods this year.
    2. The other decision to make in regards to the filling is whether to use sweetened condensed milk or evaporated milk with sugar. That’s a tough one- I have made my pies with either. I personally feel that sweetened condensed milk makes for a richer tasting filling.
    3. The last major component of the filling is the spices. When you opt to use fresh or canned pumpkin puree, you have the opportunity to adjust your spice ratios to your liking instead of its taste being predetermined. This is a great option for those who are sensitive to over-spiced pies. In my case, I am going to toast my spices- I just saw that on TV and it looks like a good idea.
  3.   Whipped Topping: When you are ready to eat your pumpkin pie, you have to think about what you are going to top it with. The nice thing about the times that we live in is we have so many options for whipped topping: Cool Whip, canned, or homemade whipped cream. My family likes all options, sometimes in massive quantities to the point that I must hide it. I just made a pie a few weeks ago and I used Reddi Whip. This Thanksgiving, since my mom will be there and making it for me, we will use homemade whipped cream. I am such a nice daughter…


Making a pumpkin pie is not a daunting task- anyone can do it. Have fun and get creative. Another option is to switch it up and instead of making one big pie, make mini pies. Or, just skip the pie making altogether and find yourself a great bakery that will pile your pie high with whipped cream. There are also other ways to enjoy pumpkin if you are not a pie person. Either way, have fun and please enjoy your Thanksgiving!

Dinner table thanksgiving

Easy DIY Holiday Recipes!

Gobble gobble gobble! Thanksgiving is quickly approaching and you know what that means! It means yummy goodness to overfill your belly and cause that traditional tummy misery that we all love so very much. It is that time of year where over eating is expected and encouraged and diets and calorie counting is absolutely not allowed. This is one of my favorite times of the year and I cannot wait to get together with my loved ones and over indulge.

Here now comes the dread question… What do you bring to the family dinner? Do you opt for paper goods and drinks? Or do you go for the store bought desserts?  This year you will go for neither! I have some great quick recipes that are super simple to make and even faster to whip up! These are great recipes that you and your family are sure to love!

Grape Salad: This will make a large salad. Feel free to cut the ingredients in half for a smaller salad)

What you will need: 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened, 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream, 1/3 cup sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract,  2 pounds seedless red grapes,  2 pounds seedless green grapes (I like both types of grapes),3 tablespoons brown sugar,  3 tablespoons chopped pecans

Directions: In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar and vanilla until blended. Add the grapes slowly and toss/stir around until covered in the mixture. Once all of the grapes are in, keep blending until they are all coated with the mixture.

Transfer into the serving bowl you want out on display. Cover and refrigerate until serving. Sprinkle with brown sugar and pecans just before serving.


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No Bake Snicker Pie: This is one of my favorites that my aunt makes for our holiday get together. Actually, we have her make this every time we get together if we can talk her into it. I am sure it will be a favorite at your table as well!

What you will need: 1 Oreo cookie pie crust (store bought is the easiest) , 1 (8 oz.) block of cream cheese, ½ cup dulce de leche, 1 cup powdered sugar, 1- (8 oz.) package Cool Whip, 3 Snickers candy bars (you will need to chop these up into smaller pieces)

Directions: Spread 2 tablespoons of dulce de leche on the bottom of the pie prepared pie crust . Sprinkle 1 of the chopped Snickers bars over the bottom of the pie crust.

In a large bowl, beat ¼ cup of the dulce de leche with the cream cheese until smooth. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add in Cool Whip and beat mixture until creamy and fluffy, scraping the sides as needed to ensure everything is fully incorporated. Add in 1 chopped Snickers bar.

Pour filling into crust, evening out the top with a knife or spatula. Dollop the remaining 2 tablespoons of dulce de leche around the top of the pie and swirl in with a knife. Top with remaining chopped Snickers. You can also choose to add additional peanuts to the top or drizzle with chocolate for added flavor.

Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.


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Cornbread Casserole: I am a lover of cornbread so this is a recipe I use all year long! I have this at my own dinner table often and I am sure you will too.

What you will need: 1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained and 1 can cream-style corn, 2 eggs 1  (8 ounce) package dry corn bread mix (I like Jiffy), 1 cup sour cream 8 ounces Shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees, lightly grease a 9×13 inch baking pan.

In a large mixing bowl, combine corn, reserved liquid, eggs, corn bread mix and sour cream; stir until blended. Pour batter into prepared pan; sprinkle with cheese.

Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and let it cool some before serving.

Corn casserole

I hope these quick and easy recipes will help ease the stress level as your wonder aimless in stores trying to figure out what to bring to the holiday dinner! These are always a favorite at our dinner table and I am sure that they will be at hit at yours as well. The real meaning of the holiday is to simply gather around and be thankful for all that we have and most of all for one another. We all need that reminder every once in awhile… click here for one. Enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday and what it really means as you turn these moments in your Camden home into life long memories. Eat up and enjoy!

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5 Activity Trackers For Your Pet? YES!

My Miniature Shnauzer Shadow

My Miniature Shnauzer Shadow

Pet owners love their pets, as we all should! Our pets are members of our family, another child, and in some cases, our only children are our fur-babies. I know I would do anything for my fur-babies, and if they were ever lost I would want to find them now! We all know, or have heard, of people who have lost their beloved pets. It’s devastating to the whole family! You get your pets collars with tags, and even chip them, but if they get lost they may never come home or be found! What if there was technology out there for you to put on your pet today to know exactly where they are at all times? Even monitor their health activities! If your pet got out, you could just open an app on your phone and track exactly where Spot is! Or if your pet was sick, you would get a text message or email! Yes! There are such devices on the market right now! Some are all-in-one collars and others attach to your pets current collar. Smart collars are the wave of the future, and every pet owner will have one for their pet sooner than we think! Hey, we didn’t think we would be wearing activity tracking devices that could tell us our heart-rate, calories burned, etc., but millions of people wear some form of these devices every day, and now, so will our pets! Here are 5 awesome devices ranging in price and capabilities so you can decide which one is right for you and your pet.


Fitbark is an activity monitor for you dog! Super simple to use, by just attaching it to your dog’s collar, it’s ready to go. It comes in five different colors, great size so your pet won’t even know it’s there, and one size fits all! The FitBark monitors their activity, sleep, helps keep track of your dog’s health…like FitBit for us! You can use the app to see if your dog’s activity level is normal from day to day, and even compare your dog to their breed. Comparing your dog’s day to day activity lets you know right away if something is wrong with them. If they are sleeping more one day, maybe they are getting sick and need to see their vet. This really would come in handy when you move, or have a life changing event to make sure your pet is adapting well.  The FitBark is waterproof with a rechargeable battery which lasts up to 14 days. The only downside to this device – no GPS tracking yet. On the plus side, you can pick one up today at Best Buy or order one from Amazon!


Pet Pace

Pet Pace is a collar for dogs and cats of all sizes. This is more of a health tracker for your pet. It monitors your pets in real time. If you want to know what Spot is up to or how he is feeling, you just open the app and it will tell you! It can tell you if he is playing, running, eating, drinking, laying down, AND in what position! It can give you your dog’s temperature, pulse, and respiration rate, and track calories burned. All of these monitors create a trend for your pet, which it will then alert you if your pet should fall below the normal trends. Should your pet’s heart rate drop, respiration slow down, or even if your pet is in a new body position, Pet Pace will tell you so you can get your pet to the vet as soon as possible in case this is due to an injury or illness. This collar has a rechargeable battery that lasts for up to 6 weeks between charges! As for the downside of this device, it’s only water resistant, and no GPS tracking. However, if you just want to keep an eye on your pet’s health, this is the collar for them! Pet Pace does have a 30 day money back guarantee, so if you try it and don’t like it, at least you can return it for a refund!


The Voyce is a collar your pet of any age can wear to monitor their health. This collar has many sensors in it to track heart rate, respiration rate, activity and intensity, calories burned, distance traveled, and sleep patterns. You create a profile for your pet and the tracking begins! Once the battery is charged, it lasts for about a week before it needs recharging. The app allows you to share the information Voyce gathers with your vet, and you can even print it out to take to your vet or a specialist if needed. The Voyce gives your pet a voice for their health as a preventative tool. It is waterproof, dustproof, and very light weight at 6 ounces. The downside to this collar is no GPS tracking, but for a health preventative, it is awesome with lots of great reviews.


The Whistle GPS is a device that attaches to your pet’s collar and combines monitoring your pet’s activity with GPS tracking! You can create zones or “safe areas” for your pet in the app, so when your pet leaves those areas you will get an alert right away to your phone! So if Spot gets out of the back yard, a message alert will come to your phone saying, “Spot has left the Whistle Zone.” For those of us who live in apartments, the worry about their pets getting out when someone enters their unit to fix something is always there. This will give peace of mind knowing they are still safe and sound at home. The Whistle also keeps track of your pet’s activities and sleep patterns, health trends for your pet, and sends notifications to you if there are any significant changes. This device has a long lasting battery which needs to be charged around every 10 days, it’s waterproof, and durable. Always know where your pet is with the Whistle GPS!


The Pod is a small light weight device which attaches to your pet’s collar of any size to let you monitor their activity and locate them easily with their app. The new Pod 2 has WiFi capability as well as Bluetooth so you can track your pet indoors too (for those sneaky pets who like to hide or someone has your pet in their home). You can also set up “safe zones” in the app for your pet with the Pod which will send you alerts when your pet leaves those zones. Pod records their activity level from rest to walk to run! You can see if your dog is the fastest at the dog park (if there are other Pod pets there) or how they compare to their breed! Bonus about this device is it comes with 2 rechargeable (interchangeable) batteries so it will always be working! Plus each battery lasts about a week. The Pod can also be used for all animals such as birds, cats, dogs, etc.

All of these awesome smart pet trackers are available for your pet to begin using today! The future is here fur-parents! Make sure your fur-baby has the best chance of being healthy, happy, and always safe with one of these great devices! Help me decide on which one I should consider for Shadow by answering the poll question below!

P.S. Keep an eye out for the continuation of this blog about the awesome smart collars not yet released! They are so awesome you’ll wish your fur-baby could get one today!

Why I Enjoyed My Camden Internship Part Three: The Culture

A company’s culture is key to personal and team growth. Camden Property Trust has a unique entrepreneurial spirit and differs from many other companies, in that it allows employees to have complete control of their career path. It’s also a company that prides itself in working hard, but also enjoying what you do. Camden’s mission is to provide “Living Excellence,” which not only relates to the quality of life we provide to our residents, but also relates to the quality of work life for  employees.

Continuous growth. Camden’s work culture fosters respect, hard work, and fun. During my first few weeks, I was assigned a mentor who was also a leasing agent in one of our sister communities. She was so supportive and helped answer the millions of questions I had when I first started! By either taking Camden University courses, becoming a mentor, taking on different projects, or simply being open to new ideas and locations, there are many ways to grow professionally and personally.

Extra Perks. Besides monetary compensation, Camden helps pay for graduate school, gives discounts on rent, and offers $20 a night employee suites in hot vacation spots around the country. There is even a share purchase program where you can buy shares of Camden stock (NYSE: CPT) at a discount. Special company events are fun and unique, like the ACE Awards and a roller skating party. Employees who exemplify Camden’s values are honored at the annual ACE Awards, which I thought was so cool! Birthdays, anniversaries, and other holidays are always celebrated. For example, on August 10th, it was National S’mores Day and several Camden communities were given yummy S’mores Kits to make during work! It’s the little things that made me want to work even harder every day.

Camden Cares

I had a wonderful time helping clean up Hillsborough Ave in the Adopt-A-Highway program with some of our Tampa team members. Camden Cares!

Camden Internship

Our delicious (microwaved) s’mores at Camden Westchase Park!

Excellent workplace environment. Everybody works hard, but also takes the time to have fun. It’s no question why Camden ranks high on several workplace lists: #10 in Fortune’s Top 100 Businesses to Work for in 2015, #40 in Fortune’s 100 Best Workplaces for Women in 2015, #24 in Fortune’s 100 Best Workplaces for Millenials in 2015, and more. Working for Camden Property Trust has truly been the best work experience so far. I believe the workplace environment is key to your happiness in a job and will lead to more effort and better team dynamics. My team and I were extremely sad when my internship ended and I left to go back to school!

I’m beyond grateful to be working for such a great company and I couldn’t ask for a better job than this. The hours are great and the job is never boring when you get to work alongside the kindest souls. It was truly special to meet people that cared about my wellbeing and successes in a company that made me feel right at home. Stay on the lookout for my next blog post, which will talk in detail about the values that Camden upholds. Also, read my previous blog posts to learn more about the responsibilities I had during my internship and the different leadership opportunities.

irvine map

45 Things To Do In Irvine

Irvine is a multicultural community of education, innovation, business, wildlands, recreation, and family-friendly communities; It’s in the center of Orange County, which is one of Irvine’s best features along with being ranked by the FBI as “America’s Safest Big City” since 2005. It is a growing urban community roughly 45 miles and a population of over 200,000.
As I was researching Irvine, I found this great website It has information on local events, activities, restaurants, etc. along with this great list below of “45 Things to Do in Irvine”.

destinationirvine1. Get a bird’s-eye view of the area 400 feet above ground aboard the Great Park Balloon, at the Orange County Great Park.
2. Ride the Irvine Spectrum Center’s iconic 108-foot tall Giant Wheel, custom-designed and hand crafted in Italy.
3. Laugh at some of the best national, headlining comedians in the world at the Improv Comedy Club.
4. Swim a lap or two at the William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center where Olympic Gold Medalist, Michael Phelps competed in the 2010 ConocoPhillips National Swimming Championships.
5. Get an introduction to the unique flora of coastal California along with plants of southern Africa at the Arboretum, a 12.5-acre botanic garden and research facility located on the UCI campus.
6. Enjoy thousands of gallons of water logged fun at Boomers’ Buccaneer Cove.
7. Please your palate with a variety of cuisines and international flavors at Diamond Jamboree.
8. Learn how chocolate is made and enjoy post-tour samples at the ChocXo Bean to Bar Chocolatier.
9. Experience Korea’s beautiful traditions at the Annual Irvine Korean Cultural Festival.
10. Visit the Irvine Museum, the only museum in the state dedicated to the preservation and display of California Impressionism.
11. Cheer on the University of California, Irvine Anteaters as they compete in 18 different Division I intercollegiate sports.
12. Pick watermelon, strawberries and pumpkins at Tanaka Farms, an organic family-run farm.
13. Let the kids play grown-up at Pretend City Children’s Museum.
14. Celebrate 50 different cultures at the Irvine Global Village Festival, Orange County’s largest multicultural festival.
15. Pay your respect at the Northwood Gratitude and Honor memorial , the nation’s only memorial dedicated to honoring all of the fallen American service members in the wars of Afghanistan and Iraq.
16. Get your fashion fix during Style Week OC at the Irvine Spectrum Center.
17. Celebrate the power of individual expression and diverse points of views during the Irvine International Film Festival.
18. Tour First American Financial Corporation’s historical archive featuring a collection of more than 12,500 historical images, dating back to the late 1800s.
19. Check out an impressive $30 million collection of historical, exotic and classical cars at the Marconi Automotive Museum.
20.Attempt a triple Salchow on the Irvine Spectrum Center’s ice skating rink.
21. Sample some of Irvine’s best restaurants during Orange County Restaurant Week.
22. Experience a sensory overload at one of Irvine’s farmers market, featuring fresh fruits and vegetables from local farmers, as well as arts and crafts fair.
23.Dine at Andrei’s Conscious Cuisine & Cocktails where 100% of the restaurant’s profits benefit the Andrei Foundation, a foundation established in honor of the owner’s brother/son who was afflicted with an eye disease called Retinitis Pigmentosa. The goal of the foundation is to find a cure for the disease and to help those affected.sprectrum

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4 Tips for Moving Long Distance

Between college, internships, and joining the big-girl world I’ve moved all over the country, this past June I moved from Maryland to Texas with all my furniture and belongings in tow. In anticipation of your move to a Camden apartment, I want to give you a few tips from my experience.

1) Check with your new community on their guidelines for moving

It is important to ensure that your new apartment will allow a large moving truck or containers on property. When moving long distance you typically will be shipping most of your belongings, and in many cases, the container will be dropped off at your destination. Make sure your apartment will allow this; if not they may be able to give you alternative options.

In my case I could not leave the container on property, but the shipping company has a local storage location where they delivered it. I then rented a UHaul and transported my belongings to the community myself. It worked out great and I was able to save some $$!

2) Pick the moving company that fits your needs

There are many companies out there for long distance moving so make sure to find one that will fit what you need. These are a few companies that I looked into:

UHAUL: Uhaul not only gives you the option to drive the truck yourself but they have what they call UBox as well! This gives you the option to have your belongings shipped if you don’t want to drive the truck yourself. I was more interested in this option as I was too nervous to drive the truck and wanted to be able to explore the cities we drove through.

PODS: PODS is wonderful because it allows you to put everything into the container and have it shipped to your apartment. They bring the container to your current apartment and allow you time to fill it up, they then put it on a truck to ship to your new apartment and you unload it once you arrive!

UPACK: UPack is the company I ultimately chose to use. They have two options for shipping; a container or a truck. Since I was on a time crunch I chose the truck, you pay by the amount of space you use and it can be dropped off at your new home or their central location.

My UPack trailer before it was loaded.

My UPack trailer before it was loaded.

3) Pack Smart

  • Take into account the weight of the boxes. Heavy boxes should be on the bottom, lighter ones on the top.
  • Be careful when transporting breakables (I put all my breakables in my car so I wouldn’t worry about them breaking on a truck).
  • Invest in good packing materials!
  • Packing in a container can be a bit of a puzzle so make sure everything is secure.
  • Check out Moving can be painless 5 Steps for an easy move and Moving day tips you may not have thought of for more information about packing smart!

 4) Get everything set for unloading

Make sure to look into different movers that can help you at your destination. As I said earlier my father and I rented a UHAUL to get everything off the trailer. We didn’t take into account the blistering heat of Houston in the summer time. Once we got my belongs from the truck into the UHAUL, we knew there was no way the two of us could carry it all up three flights to my new apartment. We called Best Deal Movers  and luckily they were able to be at my home in 30 minutes! It was great and we could not have done it without them.

Moving can be stressful, and moving cross-country is no exception! Have fun and explore the cities you visit, and hopefully these tips will cut out some of your moving worries. So, if a new city is calling your name check out Camden Living and find your new home!