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"Life is not measured by how many breaths we take, but by how many moments that take our breath away."

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I'm an Okie native, but currently an Arkansan. Newlywed. Hairstylist. Lover of all things creative. Pinterest and blog addict. Wanna-be photographer and wedding planner. Jesus follower. I love meeting new people and I'd love for you to stay a while, read a lot, and follow along. I love discovering new blogs so leave me a comment and I'm thrilled you're here!

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday!


Happy hump day, everyone! Is anyone else as excited as I am that tomorrow is Thanksgiving?

Here's what I'm loving this Wednesday:

1. That I get to see my fabulous family tonight. I will only get to see them for 1 short day, but 1 day is better than none. Can't wait to eat some yummy food and hang out with my favorite people.

2.I'm loving that our Christmas cards came in the mail this week and they turned out exactly like I wanted. They are so cute and I'm so excited to get them sent out. It makes me feel on top of things to have them already ordered.

3. I've been really busy lately with photography and that makes me super happy. I can't keep up with the editing, but I had a blast at all of these shoots and I'm thankful for the business. I have another senior shoot this Friday that I'm really excited about.





4. I'm starting to get in the Christmas spirit by slowly adding some new homemade Christmas decorations to our house. I plan on putting up all of our decorations next week. Here are the few things I've made so far.
 
And I'm loving our Thanksgiving chalkboard. I look forward every month to switching up the chalkboard.
 
 
5. Obviously, I'm always loving this sweet snuggly boy. He was my model the other day while I was practicing and working on my lighting before my photography shoot. He's such a handsome fella.
 


 
7. I got to go to market in Memphis yesterday for the gift shop inside the place I work. I was in heaven and had so much fun looking at all the fun stuff. We picked out a lot of cute scarves, some Christmas décor, and lots of bracelets....stop in and check it out if you live in the area.
 
8. Last, but definitely not least, I am so excited to be a bridesmaid in one of my best friend's weddings this weekend. I can't wait to see what a beautiful bride she will make. I'm so excited for Caitlin and her hubby-to-be. They really are a wonderful couple and couldn't be better for each other.
 
I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and remember what you're most thankful for.  Praying for safe travels for everyone that will be on the road.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

On "Bread & Wine" and Gathering Around the Table

 
photo source:  dayspring.com
 
If you haven't read this book by Shauna Niequist, then you definitely should. I LOVE every single one of her books. They are so uplifting, happy, and they just give you that all is right in the world feeling. It will make you smile and reminisce, and if you're like me, it will lead you to set your dining room table in hopes that people will gather there and share life together.
 
You see, I got so many cute wedding gifts for our kitchen table, but I had yet to set the table and use any of it. We hadn't really had anyone over for a nice, sit down dinner....usually just a cook out, or get together where we ordered pizza....nothing fancy. I got the itch after reading this book to just set the table and see what it all looked like together and leave it there until it got used. When my parents came in town, we used it all and had a great sit down dinner together at the kitchen table.
 
Shauna talks about the importance of hospitality and gathering around the table in her book. She also talks about how it's really not important what dishes you use, what food you serve, what decorations you create, or how perfect the entire set-up is....but what matters most is that you gather and invite people into your home to create memories and dwell. I like that. I like being reminded about what's important. I find that I get super stressed out when I plan a party, or invite people over because I want everything to be so perfect, when in the end, that's not really what matters. Another awesome thing about the book is that she includes recipes at the end of every chapter. She doesn't just talk about food and having parties...she also talks about many challenging/life altering situations and personal stories. It's just an all around good book and you should read it.
 
Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book:
 
"When the table is full, heavy with platters, wine glasses scattered, napkins twisted and crumpled, forks askew, dessert plates scattered with crumbs and icing, candles burning down low- it's in those moments that I feel a deep sense of God's presence and happiness. I feel honored to create a place around my table, a place for laughing and crying, for being seen and heard, for telling stories and creating memories." (I can totally relate to this. Some of my favorite times are with my family and friends around the table, during the holidays, just talking about our lives after our bellies are full and satisfied.)
 
"....But what I remember most about that night are those moments when it was absolutely silent except for one voice when Ben or Izzy or Becky looked right at Nate and said, "This is something I love about you," or, "This is why I love being in a band with you," or, "This is what you've taught me." The heart of hospitality is creating space for these moments, protecting that fragile bubble of vulnerability and truth and love. It's all too rare that we tell the people we love exactly why we love them - what they bring to our lives, why our lives are richer because they're in it. We do it best, I think, with our nuclear family - most of us tell our children and spouses how much we love them easily and often. But that night was an unusual and very beautiful thing. We risked the awkwardness of saying tender, meaningful things out loud in front of everyone, in front of our friends, trusting that those words would travel down to a very deep part of someone we cared about. I watched Nathan's face, and I watched it move from slightly nervous and uncomfortable to overwhelmed in the best possible way. (Love it!)
 
 
Here's a glimpse of my kitchen table set-up. It's not perfect, or anything fancy, but I really like it. I like all the different patterns of black and white, with the yellow and blue mixed in. I just need to find some pretty flowers for my white pitcher.
 
 
 
My next big project. Painting the kitchen table.

Monday, November 18, 2013

My Husband is the Best!




This guy is seriously the sweetest and best husband I could have asked for. I was busy yesterday doing a photography session and when I came home he had cleaned the kitchen, done the laundry, went grocery shopping and then he proceeded to rake the leaves, and grill out dinner while I laid in the hammock and read a book and blogged.  Don't worry, I offered to help, but he told me no. The weather was gorgeous yesterday and it was just the perfect afternoon/evening with him. One of those times when you just stop and soak in the moment and thank the good Lord above for quiet, sweet times like that. I'm so thankful for him and all he does for me. I'm not always the easiest person to live with and love, but he sure makes it seem easy and worth while.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Weekend with the Rents!


My parents came to visit us two weekends ago. It was my dad's first time to visit and we had a blast. We were able to squeeze a lot of things into a few short days.
-They got to take a tour of the fish hatchery where Aaron works.
-They had lunch at the café inside the pharmacy where I work.
-My dad and Aaron spent an afternoon fishing.
-We played the card game Phase 10 one night and rented the movie Grown Ups 2.
-They got to do a little shopping and see where I have my craft booth.
-They got to watch me play in a softball game against the high school fast pitch team.
-We took a driving tour of a nearby town with beautiful houses surrounding a lake.
-We took a day trip to Memphis to watch my cousin, Brad coach the Memphis Tigers football team, and they took home a victory.
-We had a wonderful lunch with old friends from Norman that now live in TN. It was some delicious BBQ.
-We got to see the Civil Rights Museum and the motel where Martin Luther King, Jr. was shot. It was very interesting.
-We had dinner after the game with my cousins and aunt and uncle.
- We saw the Peabody hotel and the little ducks swimming in the fountain. It was a beautiful place.

Obviously, you can tell we did a lot of fun things. It was a wonderful, fun-filled weekend and we were sad to see them go. So was Samsy!

Here are a few pictures from the weekend.





 Inside the Peabody Hotel
 The infamous Peabody ducks




The balcony outside of Martin Luther King, Jr's motel room where he was shot.


 
We managed to cross two more items off our fall bucket list while my parents were in town.
#1. Attend a college football game. Go Memphis Tigers!
#2. Kill a big deer. Aaron said this one doesn't count as a big enough one, but I say it does. Check out his big burly man beard. He stopped shaving it in September and is planning to keep growing it out until the end of deer season which I believe is Feb.28th. Oh, Lordy!!
Poor Bambi. Look at the tongue hanging out...so sad!
My parents taking Samson on one last stroll around the block before they left.
There are leaves everywhere on our street. It's time to start raking.
Samson telling them good-bye. He was very sad to see them go.
 He didn't move an inch and watched their car drive all the way down the street :(

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Hallelujah!


I don't know if you watch The Voice, but if you don't, you missed a good one last night. I started watching bits and pieces of the voice last year when the Swon Brothers from Oklahoma were on it. So far, I have watched every episode this season. It is something Aaron and I enjoy watching together. Last night, we were both in awe after watching this performance of "Hallelujah".



Our jaws both dropped after hearing his version of this song, I had goosebumps, and was on the verge of tears. Both of his parents were crying and Christina even got choked up. He is amazing. Afterward, Aaron asked me to YouTube it so he could hear it again. Pure, God given talent. Ah, I could listen to this over and over again....so good!! I think I'm going to go buy it on iTunes.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Mutual Weirdness!

 
I'm sure you've all heard this saying before. I find it to be so true. I always tell Aaron that we fall into the "mutual weirdness" category for sure.  But then there is me and my best friend from college, Allison....and we fall into an even deeper "mutual weirdness" category. And that my friends is why we are best friends. You see, I was sitting on the couch watching football with Aaron and I got a text message alert. I opened it to find this video.
 
 
I died. Aaron looked at me like "what in the world?"
 
And then I went in the other room and sent this as my response.
 
Little did I know, Aaron had the TV on mute so he could hear me. I came back into the living room and he just rolled his eyes, shook his head, and asked me what was wrong with us.
 
Then, I got this in response. We call Aaron honkie.
I finally got a laugh out of him.
I think I laughed for a good 5 minutes. Oh, I just love Allie & Coop. We started these video texts back and forth after I moved here and it's becoming my favorite comic relief.
 
It might be one of those things where you had to be there....oh well.

We might need help.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Before & After: A Bar Cart

 
I have always wanted a bar cart for my dining room. I envisioned it being used every time we had a cookout or party.  A place where I could store an ice bucket, glasses, drinks, punch bowls, pitchers, or maybe even sometimes used for extra table space to hold chips and dip, etc. I was on the lookout for one for a long time, but I didn't want to spend very much on it. I finally found one last year for $20 so I bought it.
 
BEFORE:
 
Here was some of my inspiration and what led me to want a bar cart in the first place:
 
And AFTER:
 As you can see, I spray painted over the gold with a  bright turquoise and I spray painted the trays with chalkboard paint so you can change it up. Yes, I'm obsessed with chalkboard paint. It just gives you so many options.
 I didn't spend much time styling the bar cart this particular night. We had a cookout this summer and I put some stuff on it, but no one ever came inside the house so it didn't get used :( I've learned that out here, no one really hangs out inside much when the weather is nice.  How do you like my mugs? My best friend from college gave me those as a souvenir from a place in New Orleans. I think of her every time I use them :)
 Chilled wine.
 I'd like to say that this cart gets used a lot for gatherings, but in all reality the picture below is more true to form. It gets used as my hairstyling cart when I do colors. It is a perfect little cart for that too. Who knew it would serve multiple uses? It is also currently sitting in the corner of my dining room displaying all my cake stands.
I'm going to make a point to use this bad boy during the holidays!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Campfire Costume!

 
This weekend I checked off another fall bucket list item by attending a costume party dressed up. Not only did I go to a costume party, but I went to Nashville, TN for a costume party. My childhood friend sent me an invitation to her hubby's birthday/Halloween costume party. He was born on Halloween. I immediately decided I was going to be in attendance. Nothing screams more fun than a weekend getaway to Nashville in the fall to hang out with my dear friend, Rachel and her husband. Unfortunately, Aaron couldn't go because he had to work and it was also prime hunting time.
 
We had a blast. The party was fun. The food was delicious. The decorations were great. The scavenger hunt game we played was a ton of fun and helped me get to know people better. And everyone dressed up.
 
I had trouble deciding on a costume this year. I've never been one to wear a store bought costume. Most of the time, I make them and I tend to go for the creative/weird/funny ones that you usually don't see very often.  This year I was going back and forth between being cotton candy, a washing machine, or a campfire. See, all very weird/odd choices.
 
This is what I finally went with:
 
 
I got the idea for this costume on Pinterest and it was so easy to make.
Start with a tri-fold piece of plain cardboard and cut it into a circle.
Then you cut an inner circle the size of your waist.
Spray paint it black.
Buy two pool noodles and spray paint them black.
Cut out squares of gray fabric, stuff them with paper sacks, and hot glue around the edges until you form a stone structure. Hot glue all around the base of the cardboard.
Cut the pool noodle with a knife into various size "logs".
Stuff the holes in the pool noodles with yellow, red, and orange tissue paper and hot glue them in.
Arrange your logs how you want them and hot glue them down.
Get a red beanie and hot glue tissue paper on the top.
Find some sticks in your yard and add marshmallows.
 
There you have it, you're now a campfire!
 
 The whole gang
 Poor Chanel didn't like being a tiger.
 Cindy Lauper and Richard Simmons...the contest winners
 
 The birthday boy and his bride.
Thank you Rachel & Rod for having me, I had a blast!

We are super excited because this weekend we will be checking another item off the fall bucket list while my parents are in town visiting. Can't wait to see them and have some fun!!