Segovia Spain

While in Madrid we decided to take a day trip to Segovia which is just a short train ride away. Once we got there we basically just wandered the small streets and followed the signs around the city to the Aqueduct, Alcázar (rumored to have inspired the castle in Disney’s Sleeping Beauty), Cathedral and Casa de los Picos House. It’s an amazing little town with the most charming paths and views of the country side. If you are ever in Madrid and have an extra day, I would definitely take the trip!

Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 1 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 2 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 3 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 4 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 5 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 6 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 7 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 8 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 9 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 10Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 11 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 12 Segovia Spain Madrid Day Trip 13

Use this link for $25 off your first Airbnb booking!

Madrid Spain

Madrid Spain Travel Guide

Today I met up with Zander who I have not seen since the day after we got engaged two months ago! I have been traveling for almost 5 weeks now, whoa, this is such a strange and exciting time in my life! I just had two days alone in London after my travel mates Megan and Betsy headed back to Madrid for their flight home. So I’m finally feeling a little caught up and had some time to start editing my photos! I took over 400 in Madrid alone so it was super hard to narrow it down! At the beginning of the trip, we made up the word sprancing to use for our hashtag on Intagram, it loosely translates to jumping around Spain and France. So let’s start the sprancing recaps with Madrid! We stayed at this apartment near Plaza de Mayor in Puerta del Sol. The photo above is the view from our window. Use this link for $25 off your first Airbnb booking!


Food + Drink in Madrid

Mercado de San MiguelInstagrammed
Toro Tapas (near the Royal Palace) • Instagrammed
Sidrería El TigreInstagrammed
Chocolatería San GinésInstagrammed + Blogged
Taberna La Fontanilla • Instagrammed
Restaurant Botin • Instagrammed
La Chata Restaurante
La Bahía de Extremadura • Instagrammed
Restaurante Apolo • Instagrammed
La Gloria de Montera


Things to do in Madrid

Royal Palace of MadridInstagrammed
Almudena CathedralInstagrammed
La Latina Neighborhood
El campo de Cebada
Calle De AlcaláInstagrammed
Parque Del Retiro • Instagrammed
Temple of Debod • Instagrammed
Day Trip to Segovia • Instagrammed + Blogged

Calle de Alcalá Street Madrid Spain Madrid Spain Bou Cafe Coffee Mercado de San Miguel Madrid Spain Door Texture Madrid Spain Downtime in Park Madrid Spain El Campo de Cebada Basketball Madrid Spain Looking At Map Madrid Spain Mercado de San Miguel Ceiling

Madrid Spain Parque Del Retiro Madrid Spain Mercado de San Miguel Vendor Madrid Spain Organ Almudena Cathedral Madrid Spain Taberna La Fontanilla Bar Madrid Spain Tomatoes Mercado de San Miguel Royal Palace of Madrid Spain PassagewayMadrid Spain Toro Tapas Accordian Player Royal Palace of Madrid Spain

P.S. Have you seen my travel memorabilia and other travel guides? Barcelona | Segovia | Marseille

Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish Desktop Freebie

This month’s desktop freebie was a collaboration with Chelsea of Lovely Indeed for her desktop designers series. I just love the quote “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish” from Steve Jobs and think it fits perfectly with my life right now. The hand drawn type is by me and the photo Chelsea took when she was living in NYC. Head over to Lovely Indeed to download it and read a bit about my pet peeves, music crushes and fears.

Stay Hungry Stay Foolish

That’s A Wrap: July

I was planning on keeping the blog more up to date while traveling but it is way harder than I anticipated, especially since my client work must come first! So far, I have been to Madrid, Barcelona, Marseille, I’m currently in Nice and leave for Paris on Saturday. On Wednesday, I laid on the beach in the French Rivera and watched my plane home fly over head. I decided I wasn’t done exploring and now I don’t even have a plane ticket home. After Paris I am heading to London and fingers crossed for Iceland!

Incase you missed any posts this month, here is a recap. I’ll be posting more travel photos as soon as I can. But I decided to let taking in the culture and experiences be my number one priority, so who knows, I may not post them til I return home… I’m letting my guilt of not posting consistently go for now!

Ciera Design Blog Posts July

What I Wore // Snowball Season
Growing Your Blog By Positioning Yourself As An Expert
Summer Succulents – Desktop and iPhone Wallpaper Freebies
3 Ways to Celebrate National Ice Cream Month
On Speaking at Alt Summit
Chocolate and Churros
How Do You Celebrate The Bright Side of Life?
Graffiti Graphics: My Parents’ Sign Shop


Sponsor Love

I also want to introduce y’all to an awesome brand I just discovered. Mercer + James is a luxury line of men’s grooming items & accessories with seriously gorgeous items from products like shaving oil, to sets, to safety razors and even old-school hats (really anything to make guys dapper)!!


Mercer + James evolved out of my husband’s search for a better shaving set. The market seemed to be full of either low-quality big-box products that would break quickly, or overpriced “high-end” brands. We concluded that if we couldn’t buy what we wanted, we’d design it for ourselves. Before we knew it, our home was filled with samples and drawings, and our kitchen was brimming with concoctions as we searched for just the right elements to represent what we think men’s grooming should be. Designing is a fun thing that my hubby and I get to share, and it’s really just a bonus that we get to share what we love with the world. -Elizabeth of Mercer + James


Graffiti Graphics: My Parents’ Sign Shop

For some crazy reason in June we decided to host two Made In Mind events even though we usually only do it every other month. But the cool thing was that we held one of them at my parents’ sign shop, Graffiti Graphics! My parents started a sign shop together before I was born, in what turned out to be my first bedroom. They are both so talented and I know that’s the reason I started to take art classes in 2nd grade and eventually pursue a career in a creative field. I recapped the event over on the Made In Mind site, but I thought it would be fun to show some of the details that Laura Rockett captured of my parents’ space too!









Photos by Laura Rockett Photography for The Made In Mind Social.

How Do You Celebrate The Bright Side of Life?

Eating Mango Frozen Fruit Bar

As you can probably tell by my travel adventures this summer, I’m attempting to be a little more spontaneous and embrace the bright side of life. Traveling to Europe for a few weeks, maybe a few months (still unsure, ah spontaneity) was not an easy decision for me since I’m a frugal spender and a planner. But I had an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up so I’m doing what makes me happy, spending time outside, traveling and treating myself, even if it’s something small like a frozen fruit bar on a hot day!

I’m not letting work dictate my life, although I am working part-time while I travel but I’m really trying to embrace the adventures by breaking routines and taking in my surroundings. Before leaving for Spain I tried these amazing mango fruit bars from Fruttare (so yummy and perfect on a hot New Orleans day) and during my travels I have been indulging in local sweets like chocolate and churros and gelato! How do you celebrate the bright side of life?

Mango Frozen Fruit Bars

Mango Frozen Fruit Bar

Ciera With Mango Frozen Fruit Bar

Fruttare Mango Frozen Fruit Bar

Holding Mango Frozen Fruit Bar

Mango Frozen Fruit Bars on Board

Fruttare Frozen Fruit Bars are made with real fruit and refreshing juice and are available at retailers nationwide.

Photos by Kaylynn Marie Photography.

Thank you for supporting this blog by allowing me to post occasional sponsored content. All sponsored posts feature products or services that I truly feel would be of interest to you. I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Chocolate and Churros

I can’t believe that the first city of my trip is already wrapped up. On Wednesday we headed from Madrid to Barcelona! I’ll be sharing Madrid photos soon but couldn’t wait to post these from a charming chocolate and churros place called Chocolatería San Ginés that was near our apartment. I’m trying to really embrace my time in Europe and not be on social media too much but you can follow along with my photos on Instagram under #cierasadventures or the group tag we are using is #sprancing!

Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros
Chocolatería San Ginés: Chocolate and Churros

On Speaking at Alt Summit

On Speaking at Alt Summit 3

When I was at Alt last January I remember saying that I would NEVER be able to speak in public, and definitely not at a conference like Alt, with so many other bloggers and creatives that I look up to. I’m much more comfortable talking to people one-on-one and I get incredibly anxious in large groups of people, especially when I’m front and center. I’m an introvert so attending events like Alt are already out of my comfort zone, let alone speaking at one.

On Speaking at Alt Summit 1

When Mariah suggested that we pitch a panel idea together with Melissa, PJ and Tan, for some reason I said yes, secretly hoping we didn’t get picked, but to my surprise, they loved our topic idea and here we are, a year and a half after saying “I would NEVER”, I did it, I spoke on a panel at Alt Summit!

On Speaking at Alt Summit 7

It was the scariest thing I have ever done, but because of that, one of the most rewarding. I believe that if you are not pushing yourself or doing scary things then you are not going to grow as a person or grow professionally. One of my favorite quotes from Alt this year was from Emily McDowell “fear is an asshole and a liar” and I’m so glad I didn’t give in to my fear! I mean, I got to speak at the same conference as Martha Stewart!

On Speaking at Alt Summit 2

Our room was packed and it was awesome to see everyone so engaged and to hear how much people appreciated the content and hard work we put into making our panel special.

On Speaking at Alt Summit 6

On Speaking at Alt Summit 5

On Speaking at Alt Summit 4

On Speaking at Alt Summit 8

On Speaking at Alt Summit 9

I am so thankful for the opportunity. If you missed it, you can see the recap of what I spoke about, Growing Your Blog by Positioning Yourself as an Expert.

Photos by Justin Hackworth or Brooke Dennis for Alt Summit.

Summer Succulents – Desktop and iPhone Wallpaper Freebies

During the summer it’s easy to get distracted with fun in the sun but sometimes that’s okay! Just a little time in your own backyard can be so refreshing. This is a photo that I took in my parents’ yard last summer, it’s seriously an oasis back there, my dad has such a green thumb, unlike me. I hope y’all enjoy this new design and some time away from the screen.

Summer Succulents Desktop Freebie

This design is now available for free as a desktop, ipad and iphone wallpaper over on the Whimseybox blog! Hope you enjoy and if you use any of my desktop designs, I’d love to see photos, just tag me on Instagram or send me an email!

Summer Succulents