Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Bad Blogger of 2012 Goes to ...Me

The only thing kept semi current in the past 5 months on this blog is my books read list. This year I went 4 months without T.V. and loved it.  I really intended to blog more about what I was doing with my new found free time but honestly it got filled in with friends, family and other things that make life important. So yes I'm sorry I haven't been blogging but on the other hand I'm glad I didn't even have the time.

On the home improvement front:
I managed to talk my husband into painting the kitchen cabinets and I'm pretty sure he likes the results more than me. We changed our 'study' (read 'office' with a cushy chair) in to a 'library' (read 'office' with cushy chair and book shelves). I curated a scripture gallery in the hallway, meaning I filled a bunch of Goodwill Outlet (yes Outlet) and garage sale frames with custom 'art' featuring scripture. It turned out just as quirky and eclectic as I desired and slightly more pretty. I intend on giving you more details and pictures eventually.

Back to reading "Real Marriage"... I'll tell you how it goes

Monday, June 11, 2012

Where did May go?

Don't get the wrong idea. This is not a 'book blog' and it is not the sort of blog that only gets updated once a month... however... it could be the case that I have been majorly slacking.

I could give you excuses, but honestly I blog for fun (the same reason I take graduate math classes) so I feel no need to defend myself for not blogging (or taking classes this summer {CIY...oops I did it anyway.. but its my blog so I can also change my mind}.

I am now half way through Radical by David Platt. For me it isn't the kind of book "you can't put down." It is a challenging read because it has a challenging message not because it is well written. So that's probably why I'm only half way through it.

Blue Like Jazz on the other hand I really enjoyed and would recommended to anyone.

I'm still looking for book recommendations, feel free to comment with your vote for my next read.

I have my work computer at home today so I can show you some of the weddings I've designed during the past month.

These are just a few of the many bouquets I designed. There was one weekend this past month we had 8 weddings! Others just had 4 or 5. I am truly blessed to have the best job and to have an amazing team to help me do it all. 

Jeremy and I also took our annual anniversary trip! We went to St. Louis for a few days after toying with the idea of a stay-cation. It is always nice to get away and spend some one-on-one, undistracted time remembering that we not only decide to love (put-up with) each other each day but that we enjoy the other's companion ship and are still in love with each other (after 3 years of marriage and 10 years friendship). 

Around the house not a ton has changed. I did turn a little dusting into a big project when I decided while I had a few items off their perches to collect all of the decorational (that not a word but ... just go with it) items (a.k.a. tchotchkes) from around the house to purge, organize, and rethink placement. Well, turns out I didn't throw much away because I like my weird collection of assorted knick knacks more than anyone should. But I did re distribute the items around the house, giving each room a slight freshening. 

Could be I was also coerced (ha) into a quick (last minute) Ikea trip. As per tradition we also went to Home Goods, and then we found the jackpot at Marshall's. I have yet to photograph my treasures  but I will show you soon (hopefully before July). 

p.s. In events that are truly important: 
1) Our friends Megan and Seth just had baby Asher (well Megan had him, but I think Seth helped). This sweet family is near and dear to our hearts even though they are church planting in Japan. Asher you are truly loved and are blessed with wonderful parents. 
2) Our friends Hannah and Dustin recently found out they will have to opportunity to adopt their daughter (whom they have been fostering)! This sweet girl is already part of their wonderful family and we are so excited for them as well! 
3) In a few weeks we will be traveling with the high school youth group at FCC to CIY (Christ in Youth) Move conference. This is a life changing week for many of our high schoolers and we would appreciate your prayers!  

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

One Down

I finished The Millionaire Next Door last Thursday.  You should read it! Read it if you want to retire with dignity, read it if your parents are rich, read it if your parents aren't rich, read it if you plan on having kids, read it if you plant on knowing any kids that you sort of kind of care about, read it if you make a modest living, read it if you are rolling in dough. Then after you read it (or before) sign up for Financial Peace University.

Now I am reading Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. I don't like Jazz and I've never been a huge fan of Christian Lit but so far I am really digging the book. It was written from a place of honesty and the frank but compassionate tone is refreshing.

I'm not really missing TV ... yet. Although being busy with Mother's Day at the flower shop doesn't really leave much time for TV anyway.

Monday, April 30, 2012


I know, I know it's not January 1st. But after Jason's message on addictions on Sunday ... I needed to make one (a resolution not an addiction). And if you put it on the internet then it must be true so here it goes ...

For the next 4 months (maybe longer), we will not be watching T.V.

Here's the thing, we aren't big in to T.V. I wouldn't have ever said "We are addicted to T.V." We have a couple shows we love (God is Love and he really doesn't care about our T.V. shows) really like (see below), but what happens is the T.V. gets turned on to watch whatever and then it doesn't get turned off until we go to bed (sometimes late because we got sucked into a 9:00 show). We were sort of watching but also doing other things like reading/writing blogs, cooking dinner, playing/work on computers/phones, etc. But we were 1) filling our minds with garbage and 2) less engaged with each other than I Jesus would like us to be.

Our 2 favorite shows are Parks and Rec (literally the most hilarious show ever) and Good Wife (seriously good drama, with minimal sleaze). So we were going to allow ourselves to watch only these 2 shows but Good Wife has already had its finale and so we will bid adieu to T.V. with the finale of Parks and Rec this Thursday.

It is amazing how much more efficient I am with other tasks (like blogging, cooking, cleaning) when there is no T.V. I am a pretty good multi-tasker and actually used T.V. as a purposeful distraction in college. Math can be pretty cold to an extravert, and when I didn't have roommates around to make people noise during my many hours of homework T.V. was a good stand in. Math can also be pretty dense and momentary metal breaks where you are less focused on the task can help your  brain find the next step (at least in my opinion); but the rest of life isn't like math. Friends on the phone deserve your full attention and my husband deserves the respect of undivided quality time.

Romans 12:2
 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is —his good, pleasing and perfect will. 

Romans 12:2 also seemed to surface in my mind during Jason's message. I don't remember him specifically using this text but if he did then don't tell him I didn't remember. I think the verse came up in a study earlier in the week and as I was pondering the hours I was allowing my mind to be subject to the worldly messages of television I was convicted. How am I to expect to understand God's will and have a meaningful relationship with him if I let watching essentially garbage take so much of the time he has blessed me with. I have direct instructions to 'be transformed by the renewing of (my) mind.' So a sub commitment of eliminating T.V. is also to 'renew my mind' via non-fiction reading. Since we just finished The Story with our high school small group, I needed a little push to stay on the reading band wagon. So since everything on the internet is true:

I will be reading (at least but probably more) one non-fiction book a month. 

I honestly almost put one book a week since I am 1/3 of the way through my first book after one day, but in case I feel called to read a fatty book or my time gets away from me I wouldn't want to abandon my commitment. And since accountability bolsters any resolution I will be posting my reading list here for you to see. My "Books Read" list will contain completed books. I will also have an upcoming or in process list and  I would love recommendations!

I started with The Millionaire Next Door. Dave Ramsey mentions it a lot and it was what I was in the mood for when I sat down to read. I've read over a third of it so far and am really enjoying it. Most of the data isn't surprising if you have done FPU, but it is always good to reinforce your core priorities with sound information. (Perhaps you don't know but Jeremy and I are pretty intense in our dislike of debt and want to make sure we are using the resources God has blessed us with in ways that are pleasing to Him. We have taken and led Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University and would recommend it to anyone, regardless of age or income.) I'll let you know more about The Millionaire Next Door next time.

Comment with your book recommendations or any thing else you might want me to know!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Warning - Severe Lack of Photos

I do have pictures to share but most of them have to do with presents I have made but not given so those will have to wait. 

I wish I were better at taking pictures. I wish I had more pictures of the things we do and the people who we do them with. I feel like in the past few months I can been consistently reminded that it's relationships that are truly important. 

I also realized: The best friends are the ones who feel like family and the best family are the ones who feel like friends.    That sounds a little cliche-ish BUT think about it - it's true! 

I am so very grateful for the support and love I receive from the people the Lord has blessed me with. Thank you. 

And since no blog post should be photo-less. 

This weekend Jeremy refashioned an antique 9 foot mantel he rescued from a garbage pile. With a few careful cuts he removed the damaged portions and made a more manageable and appropriate size ... for Amanda's house! Matthew was J's assistant - way too cute.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Hydrangea Hunting

This afternoon my friend Amanda, her son Matthew,  and I went to rescue some hydrangeas from her mother-in-law's. Amanda & Patrick's wedding took place at Kirby Acres, Patrick's parents home and featured beautiful garden plants including these hydrangea plants. 

Patricks parents are prepping for an addition and off shoots of these beautiful plants were in the path of destruction. We dug up and separated about 7 or 8  plants, and then replanted 4 of then at my house (the others will be planted at Amandas').  In between we stopped for sustenance {Chicken Quesadillas at El Toro in St. Joe}.
{Thumbs up from Amanda} 

{The line up: The pink one is a ringer ( it came from the flower shop) - along the west side of our house}
{Watering the transplants}
This little boy helped us every step of the way. 
 He's a pretty cool dude.

Monday, April 9, 2012


We had an amazing Easter!

Church was wonderful! The service was truly a celebration of Christ's resurrection and a call to recognize the new creation we are/can be in Christ.

Then we had both families over to our house for lunch. That was 18 people in our little home! We had the 'grown-ups' {age 40+} inside and the 'kids' {age 2 - 25 - including us} in the garage (which we heated slightly because it was a little chilly yesterday). It was actually perfect, no one cared if the babies threw things on the floor, we had plenty of space, and the company and conversation were age appropriate.

We had 4 little bunnies around hopping around the house...

And of course the obligatory family photos...


Sunday, April 1, 2012

He said Yes! {to PURPLE}

After church and lunch with our small group...

we went to Lowe's to buy emerald or teal paint for the front door. However, while we were looking at paint swatches and pictures of our house my husband said "I think purple is the best choice." So we came home with a gallon of Valspar Duramax in Symphony
The plan was to paint both the back door and the front door. However, prepping the doors {removing, cleaning, sanding, touch ups} took a lot longer than anticipated so both doors are primed but will be painted in the next couple days.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Perfect Saturday

Today was a wonderful day! Not overly productive, not overly relaxing (boring), just a quintessential Saturday.

Amanda and I had an early morning garage sale plan that necessitated a sleepover! It is funny how similar sleepovers at 25 are to sleep overs at 5 or 15... staying up way too late talking way too much. Which meant our 6:15 a.m. alarm came way to early. But we were in line at the Countryside Church garage sale at 7:02 . I wish I had action pictures, in general I need to do a better job at taking pictures while I am doing things, like with people and everything. We found some other garage sales and estate sales and each ended up with a few treasures.

Amanda's Treasures:
A bag of plate hangers - $.50 (new they cost about $3.50!) {for her awesome dinning room wall covered in silver platters}
A solid wood high chair - $15 {perfect for a 'big boy chair' for Matthew after it is painted a'la Young House Love}

My Treasures:

1000 Large Paperclips - $1.00 {to fill an apothecary jar- as shown}

Large Plate with blue floral detail - $.25 {I have a small collection of floral plates for a someday wall display like this or this or this}

Cookie Cutters - $.50 {I love decorating Christmas cookies! A gift, a star, an ornament.}

'In A Pickle' Game - $.50 {brand new in box and shrink wrap}

4 Japanese Lotus Bowls - $.50 each {My most exciting purchase of the day}
So for $4.50 I had an amazing morning with my friend and bought these sweet items.

In the afternoon, I had a little set up for a wedding at work.

I love my job!

I was able to spend a little time with my mom and young siblings. My sister had just been to a makeover birthday party where they had updos and even put on make-up.  She looked cute, but too grown up. In my mind she is still my baby, I can't imagine how I will feel when she is a teenager. 

Now I am hanging out with my husband and his twin brother watching season 2 of Parks & Rec. They both have sweet new hair cuts, by me!

Did you have a wonderful Saturday too? 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sunny Afternoon Off

What an amazingly beautiful day today! Since I will be working on Saturday, I had this afternoon off from work. What to do with sunshine, time, and no commitments? - Whatever I wanted!

I started with a little sunning in my back yard. In my lounge chair I read a few chapters from The Story, listened to an eclectic variety of music from my iPod, and got a little bit of color (see below).

Then I went for a little shopping. I started at Plato's closet. I hadn't been there in a couple years. I was quickly reminded that it takes a lot of patience and time but you can hunt down some great pieces at amazing prices. I found this taupe Banana Republic dress. Actually the person in the dressing room before me found it tried it on and passed up on it. I added to my try-on pile last minute and it was the only keeper.

Can you see the sunburn?

I usually choose a more structured dress, but the looser cut and delicate fabric worked for me this time. I usually worry about adding unnecessary volume, but the movement prevents the dress from looking bulky. The light floral embellishment, thin monochrome tie, and posterior button detail are the perfect finishing touches.Although pre-owned, the dress is like new and was a steal at $10 (especially considering all of the dresses Banana Republic sells online are more that $100).

It took a little convincing but my husband helped me by taking these pictures to share with you. And of course I need to partner the dress with some accessory possibilities. The red ruffle T strap shoes are my favorite favorite high heels. I found them in grey at Target, yes Target, and they were so comfortable and adorable I ordered them in red too. The necklace I am wearing was gift from my friend Sara that she purchased while traveling in Israel. I wear it nearly everyday. It is perfectly simple for work but has a hammered texture that gives a little sparkle making it more formal as well.
Still not the best picture but better. One side is inscribed with my name (in Hebrew). And on the other side Sara picked Psalm 119:2 "Blessed are those who keep his statutes, and seek him with all their heart" (again in Hebrew) for me. I love the necklace, but I love Sara more!

After Plato's Closet I walked over to T.J. Maxx. T.J. Maxx is a go-to shopping destination for me. If I've understood the recent commercials, I think that means I'm a Maxxinista. Usually I am there for home decor items, but since I didn't have much of an agenda today I also looked at some accesories. I found a belt that I thought might pair well with my new dress and some of my other dresses too. However, the girl at the dressing room would not budge on the no accessories in the dressing room policy (seriously if I was trying to steal it I would have been sneaky and not directly asked and explained sweetly that I needed to see it over the dress I had just purchased next door). However, I don't have a picture for you because after trying it on over proper clothes it wasn't as awesome as it needed to be. So I had my husband return it on his way to class.

In terms of a source for clothing Forever 21 is kind of like Plato's Closet. You can find stylish pieces at good prices but it takes an inordinate amount of time and effort. Upon walking in to the store my Type A personality does a little freak out, but then I get in a wander and pick up grove and forget that the lack of organization is driving me crazy. Then comes trying-on way too many pieces and finding one or two worth buying. I ended up with a charcoal v-neck t, nothing too exciting. I found a really cool yellow vintage-styled boyfriend cardigan, but there was only one and I noticed a stain on it after I tried it on. : (

My next stop was Target! Who doesn't love target? After F21 I was tired of looking at clothes so I went straight to the Home Decor section, and what did I see ...
 Man what is temping to just buy for the sake of a good deal, but I resisted even though they had one of these bad boys...
 Handsom horse right? But alas I did not purchase him. I also made a mental note of this quirky color scheme: coral, red (or was it hot pink?) and navy. Quite captivating.
Then off to Lowe's to pick up paint swatches for my front door decision.
Any new insights or votes: Emerald, Deep Teal, Navy, or Plum?

I also picked up this sweet perennial! Red Heart Hens & Chicks - I plan on having a whole coop (garden) of these chickadees in a rainbow (well probably mostly shades of green). 
And then I did a responsible adult errand and had my oil changed. 
What a fun and productive afternoon!

What did you do today?

p.s. Thank you to my husband for documenting my awkwardness.
p.p.s. We are still doing some research and development on Project Paint the Kitchen Cabinets.
We are choosing hardware and perfecting the process.

Reminder: I want to know- What did you do today?