Monday, July 30, 2012

Journaling Again...

Today I had a friend over. A friend I have only hung out with in person two times...but one that I have the feeling is going to be a good one!! (how did we meet you ask...through our blogs hers is here, you want to check it out trust me!!)I just really appreciate her viewpoint on life and all things inspirational!! I love her creative sensibilites, I love the beautiful simplicity with which she creates things and find myself being inspired merely from talking with her over strong coffee. We hung out (with our kiddos) for a total of 2 1/2 hours...that I swear flew by!

When she arrived she handed me a packet of fun papers, images, colors, fabrics, all to start my own little project with (can you tell why I love her?!) and I seriously could not wait to shuffle through the stack and get started.
my gift of inspirational items

When she came over I had asked her to bring some of her journals/ art books...and I could have spent hours just looking at each thought out tiny detail and color choice. I knew that I needed to start one of these as well. If you know me well you know that I have been a creative journaler since I was in high to stumble upon someone with such similar interests or ways of expressing themselves felt rare and exciting. I started a new journal today. This one is more an exercise in creativity and composition than purely expressing my feelings-but I know that will be in there as well. So here are a few shots of the first was delicious to be starting something so new and old at the same time. I cannot wait to see where this goes. (and sometime I will have to show you Isabelle and Judah's journals they started today....Isabelle's was especially amazing!!!)

Do any of you journal or have art books? I would really enjoy seeing snippets of them or having tips from you on what you do in yours.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

what I'm drinking


Tea use to be quite foreign to me. Seriously. When I worked at Starbucks I was told to make a big quart of ice tea because we were running low...I took one big pouch of passion tea-ripped it open and dumped out the insides into a container and filled it up with boiling water to steep. As you can see, I had no idea how to make tea!

I have come a long way since that day at Starbucks. I have even attended a Tea 101 class at our local tea shop Serene I kinda know what I am talking about.

I think because an amazing tea shop is right in my downtown (maybe 2 miles away) it made me want to love tea. I would walk through their shop, gazing at all the little packets of loose tea-sniffing the sample jars and wishing I knew what I liked when it came to this sophisticated little drink. When I was pregnant I tried to ease up on the caffeine and that is when I first fell in love with tea. South African Roobios to be specific. That brewed with a little bit of honey.....oh man!! It still is a household staple around our house and I am 6 months postpartum.

It can be hard to find what teas you like, especially when you are a tea drinking novice like I was. However, I will say that Serene Teaz is where it is at for first time (or a million time for that matter) sippers. Their shop lets you sample literally every single type of tea they have for sale. It helps you be willing to spend money on tea when you know for sure that you like it!

Now if you are new to tea drinking I doubt that you ever drink loose leaf tea, or maybe did not even know there was such thing. Guess does not all come in packets. I know-the Earth just shifted right?! (actually, you probably ALL already knew that and are realizing just how SLOW I truly was in the tea department...oh judgment here) But might I recommend you try it loose if you never have. If you live locally it is especially easy for you to just pop over to this shop and give it a try. After watching the tea people give me sample after sample from this little wonder of a tea dispenser-
 I had to get one for myself-truly one of the best purchases I have made in the kitchen category!! A necessity if you are a tea drinker...I really mean that.
 The line-up.....

The beauty in action...... and the coolest part...the tea comes out of the bottom!! It is amazing!! Anyhow-all that being said....currently I am drinking this and enjoying it. How about you??

Thursday, July 26, 2012

I dream in nail polish colors

I adore nail polish. I paint my nails, on average, three times a week. For me painting my nails is theraputic. I love to sit and give my hands "a new outfit" if you will. If I could purchase a new nail polish every single day I would. I love to just browse the nail polish section at Ulta, or CVS, or Walgreens. I love nail polish.

I am always on the lookout for nail colors I like on other people. I often notice that nail polish alone can make an entire outfit have that extra edge to it. I like that nail polish can be a little edgy without being offensive (hopefully) to most people.

I totally am a moody nail polish wearer. Whatever mood I am in will dictate the color I want to have on my nails. Lately I have totally been into nudes-that crisp clean look. Nothing dark, just a light colored nail that is a refreshing little snippit in the hot weather we have been having...and having...and having. I thought every now and then I would pop a picture up here of the nail polish I am currently enjoying. I should warn you, I always paint my own nails. I truly cannot remember the last time I had a manicure done, but I really think it was when my dear friend was getting married over three years ago! The reason I say this is because I don't want to hear judgment on the job done...just judgment on the nail color please. Anyhow without further "warnings"'s color is...

Essie's We Can Do It Pink

Although I never have had thin fingers-they do look abnormally full here...just remember what I said about the heat and blame it on that!! As for the bulging veins-those are always there....adds character I say...character!

What are your favorites to wear?? Please please please share!!!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

I got framed...

It all started when I was eyeing my friend Pinky's glasses at small group...they were adorable. Thick, black, hip, such a statement piece. I felt like whatever she chose to put on outfit wise with those glasses-she would rock it due to the specs! I wanted a pair of my own.

That night, dejected, I took out my own glasses. They were five years ago (or 8 years to be specific) The perscription was not even up to date, but I figured who really cared since I wore them so rarely. Then the idea struck me......why not get my own pair to rock!??

Money, that was why, money.

Why do eyeglasses have to cost a fortune? Why why why why why??!! Money was dashing my dreams of being a fun persona in my thick dark frames. Darn you money.

Then I pulled a fast one on my wallet and found Not only could I purchase a pair of prescription glasses I was super excited about, I could do it without having to spend my life's savings; as well as not having a sales associate breathing down my neck while she points out why the frames I love don't really suit my face...has this ever happened to anyone else?  (a great little feature on their website is one of those mirror things where you can "try on" the frames it is not exactly like real life, yes it will give you a better idea if you want to buy glasses in that style) are the ones I chose.
love them
side view
I would give it two thumbs up...but the other thumb was holding the camera

My new glasses came within a week of me placing my order.....loved that!! They have a 100% satisfaction guarantee with their glasses, I loved that too because who wants to get stuck with something that just does not work for them. And, even if you do not technically "need" glasses-but kinda want them as a fashion accessory then you can purchase them with clear lenses. I won't tell.

And don't worry...I can still make all my normal faces with them on...I tried.

Oh...and just so you love me even can go here ( and get some good discounts!! Let me know if you decide to rock a pair.

Monday, July 23, 2012

I wish I had.....

one of these in my backyard...for obvious reasons. I mean really who can take a spin on one of these bad boys and not have a smile plastered on their face afterwards? Not us!

I highly suggest finding a playground near you and making a night of it. won't regret it. (Well maybe you will if you just ate Mexican and you do the spinning thing one too many times...but hey-ya only live once right?!)

Monday, July 16, 2012

run run run


When I write that word my guess is that you have a reaction to it. The reaction is probably along the lines of one of these.
1. I love running and do it almost daily. I am good at it.
2. I run, though I don't love it but I do it to stay healthy and fit.
3. I don't run. I can't.

I find it funny that running draws such emotional responses from people. Few people react as strongly about running as say biking. People have an opinion on running.

My history with running is as such. From the time I was young up through high school I dreaded...dreaded...dreaded the mile run in gym class. Not because I was so slow-rather because the thought of doing it hung over my head like a million pound weight. I would get nervous (as I do before EVER SINGLE TIME I RUN) about running. Would I do well? Would I be able to breathe? Would I be faster than other people that I thought were "fast"? The only time I would run was during gym class or doing conditioning for a sport (soccer and volleyball). Other than that I did not run in my spare time.

I remember going to a cross country meet and watching the people as they finished. They all looked drained, desperate, some crying, some throwing up, none with smiles. I like sports that let you smile at the end of short I did not understand "runners".

Fast forward to college. I started running when I was there. I think the main reason was because when you live in a room, on a floor, in a building that is full of over 200 girls you sometimes need to get out for a breather. And by breather I mean a good pounding of the pavement! I never knew how far I would run, or how fast I would run and never ran on a treadmill until maybe my junior year of college. It was, however, in college that my sister talked me into running my first half-marathon with her.

I loved it.

There truly is something magical about races. Something that shouts so loudly to me of my spiritiual walk. It is a sliver of time that is so laced with life applications it is wild. I almost always cry at some point (sometimes many points) within the race. Life just gets me in those moments. I am a good pupil when I am running. The Lord has spoken to me about many things when I run and has blessed me too. I love that part of running.

I have run three half-marathons...never a full one. I think the main reason I have never run a full is because of the time commitment and the disciple that training for it requires. I have many things in life that I like to give my time to...and though running can be one of those, it is hard to have a season where running is the main or the only thing that gets your attention. I also like to do well in things. And I do not know if I would do well in a full marathon. Maybe someday I will know.
My second half...which I did three months after having Judah...I did it for him.

My third half...and my sweet little Belle. She and Nate were my faithful cheerleaders along the way.

For now I am running my fourth half marathon. I am training with a partner, which I had sworn I would never ever ever ever do. But I LOVE it!! (Why did I not believe people when they said running with someone is awesome?) People make doing anything worth it in my book. Especially if I really enjoy the person.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

desk shot

Currently my desk looks like this....

I have about five ideas swirling in my head that I want to make happen. I love when new ideas and projects come at you so fast you really cannot write them down fast enough. Lately life has been giving me new inspirations all over the place and I am drinking it up. Even my hubby has been feeling the energy and starting to have his own creativity itch come back....which I love because then I have double the inspiration!

 I have yet to start some of them-but believe me friends...I will. The desk shot I hope to do as a reoccurring theme because I personally love to have windows into people's spots of creating. There is something magical that happens there for each individual and seeing it just excites me. I would LOVE to see your creative workspace (kitchen, desk, bed....wherever) and a link to the snapshot. If there are any takers include your link below and know that I will certainly be looking!!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

did you say free food??

When one gets an email from a friend asking if they would be willing to dress up like a cow and go to a restaurant and get free food....the clear, clear, clear answer is YES!! Sign me up!! Did I mention I am not socially dependent when it comes to clothing? (I am not too socially dependent at sporting events either...more on that another time) In fact, I often am on the lookout for any excuse to dress up in a costume and go out in public! (hint:children offer a huge advantage in this area:))  Even as a young child I can remember having lemonade stands on the corner like other kids my age...however unlike other kids my age I liked to dress up as a ladybug while I did it. Why? More like why not?! I love dressing up.

 I have always loved dressing up, I have always loved food, I have always loved being with friends, so basically if you put all of those factors together then a response to that email is a NO BRAINER.... 

Oh I did eat mor chikin....and enjoyed my time doing it!

Friday, July 13, 2012

my current hair

I love to mix things up with my hair all the time. Bangs, short hair, long long, dark hair, lighter hair, highlights, get it right?! Anyway. The problem with loving to do your hair all the time is that hairstylists are not exactly free in this fact they are really pricey. Since my wallet is not stuffed with Benjamins I found myself having to do much of these endeavors on my own..some with great sucess some with horrible ends.

The other day while daydreaming about getting highlights done I started to browse the web. I often browse the web while daydreaming, the reason for this is that I feel like I might actually do the things I am researching, or purchase the items I am adding to my shopping cart....while in reality I know I never will.

Until now.

I found this hair salon called Colorific. I went, got highlights, lowlights and a glaze and not only felt good about what I paided but I LOVED the gal I went to as well! No insult-everything-about-your-hair-and-make-you-feel-like-a-total-loser-if-you-don't-get-it-cut-every-other-day from this lady.  If you are in the area and are wanting to get your hair done her name is Katie!

One of the best parts...sitting and reading a magazine without interruption...I would pay just for that!

After: highlights, lowlights, glaze ) pardon the strange face...I don't know why I ALWAYS do those things with my mouth?)

Thursday, July 12, 2012

good from bad..

So when our power was out for five days we had to turn to new ways to entertain ourselves. I decided a trip to Dick Blick for some art supplies was in order-nothing gives life to creativity like getting new art supplies! My plan was to purchase a sketch pad and maybe a new set of pens. About 20 minutes later we left the store with a bit more than that in hand. I had purchased two sketchbooks, two sketching pencils, a pen and a set of colored pens. Each of my children had their own sketchbook and a colored pen of their choice.
(Belle-pink, Judah-blue:shocker I know)

I thought they would draw in it for at least 15 minutes and I am always looking for ways to get that creative gene kicking I was happy.

Fast-forward a week. Those sweet kids have just about filled those sketchbooks. Each day they spend time drawing in them and it has been a real delight to watch. I love how children truly are little artists and all you have to do is supply them with tools. One day when I was talking with my mom about this idea she told me a story about a recent conversation she had.

A high-school student at our church is very gifted in drawing. As my mom was talking with his mother about his ability and when it became clear to her that he was gifted, she referenced back to a time at his grandma's house. She was an artist. On each of her grandchilren's beds she placed a fresh sketchbook and a basket of nice colored pencils. She would then wait to see who was interested and wanted to fill the pages and who would quickly lose interest. Her main thought (and mine as well!!) was that children are more interested in coloring/drawing when they have materials to use that are nice and not "little kid"....aka crayons.

I loved the story because it totally matched my sensibilities on the topic. Nothing is more frusterating then when you want to create a certain look and the tools you have to do it are not capable of letting you.  Imagine trying to draw intricate detail with a bulky crayon! Not only do finer tools help make better pictures...but it is a chance to trust your child with something special...and then to stand back and see how seriously they will take it.

The storm and power outage certainly made some good out of the bad-I love when that happens. Take a peek below into each of ours if you want....

What are you making good from bad with lately??

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

soooooooooo many looks....

Do you ever feel overwhelmed with all the different looks you want to try?

 It might sound lame to some of you who could care less about what you wear...but to me being able to put together my look for the day is an opportunity for creativity. Do I wear adorable outfits every day-no. (today I wore a dress that looked like an old beach cover-up, not cute, not flatter, but easy to put on and cool to wear) Do I judge people that do not like to be creative in how they dress-no. I love that we have variety and personality as humans and that it comes out in all areas how we put ourselves together. Do I daydream about color pairings, hair styles, lipsticks and textures....yes. And that is why I can feel overwhelmed.

Pinterest does not help with this either. I have at my fingertips (literally) so many different, beautiful looks and ideas flashing before my eyes that my mind can feel like I need to take it all in and cannot. I might sound a little crazy to you. But, if you are wired like I am wired (and I know some of you are out there) then you get it. And to you people I am now talking....

I love that a simple outfit can completely give you a different persona. Perhaps this comes from my background in theater and childhood love for costumes and character playing. I do not ever dress in a way that is not me-but I like to dress in ways that represent the different sides of me. An anthropologie stylist once told me that my style seemed like "vintage-feminine with an edge". I liked that. And in truth I think that is a bit like my personality. Vintage-feminine with an edge.  Something to think about.

But anyhow-I lost myself.

The whole point of this post was to show you some of the looks I am drooling over and cannot currently do for various reasons. (height-I am 5 feet 3 inches on a good day, money-how can the stores charge those prices!!?, size-truth be told I weigh more than 100 pounds...I know everyone is stunned right now, bravery-I can get looks wearing heels around here-so wanting to try some things may not go over too well)

Here are a few shots from my pinterest wall (abbygirl19) that keep my pulse going at an abnormally rapid pace.

image one, image two, image three, image four, image five, image six, image seven, image eight

Monday, July 9, 2012


Our family reunion in pictures....
sweetest girls

Great Grandma, my love and our littlest bean...I love this one.

I love these faces!

If you are bald kids seem to take to you quickly!!

One of my absolute favorites!!

I love this shot for many reasons...I think I just might need to frame it!!

water balloon making is serious business

The oldest and the youngest...I love Grandma's sweet hand on Vera's chubby leg.

all of us