Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Theme of Twenty-Thirteen

Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year! It's been a while since I've visited my little blog world.

I started 2013 with such anticipation that something great is coming. I don't know what it is, or in what form it will come, but I just know great things are getting ready to happen.

Maybe it's because we are seeing new opportunities with our business.

Maybe it's because I'm determined to cross some items off my bucket list! (The ones I'm able to cross participating in a 5k! Not the huge traveling to Norway. Ha - that'll come much later!)

Every year I try to choose a word of the year. Last year I struggled, and I can't honestly say what word I decided on. This year, I barely had to think about it because I knew what I wanted the theme of 2013 to be:


It's a tough word to swallow sometimes, because discipline isn't always fun. In fact, I would dare say most of the time it isn't fun. But I believe being disciplined is a Biblical principal, and definitely one that I need to work on. Between balancing a full-time job, being a good wife/housekeeper/cook, and managing a small business, my time management skills get quite the workout. I'm tired of feeling like one of those things is always slipping, so it's time to instill some old fashioned discipline in my routine!

I did great the first week of the year, then got sick and had a huge work event and fell apart. But instead of throwing my hands up and saying "forget it" like I normally would, I'm getting back on track tomorrow!

What about you? If you were to pick a "word of the year" what would it be for 2013?


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

"I saw it on Pinterest!"

Everyone has heard of Pinterest, right? You know, the virtual place that shows you how to create a beautiful wall hanging from a toilet paper tube, bake cakes or meals with 3 ingredients or less, teaches you 12,357 uses for olive oil, or how to do your hair in any way you could possibly imagine....THAT Pinterest.

Although I don't "pin" much on my boards (because really...everyone would know my secrets if I actually pinned stuff) I spend quite a bit of time perusing the site. It's amazing!

But sometimes, I feel like people put random stuff out there just to see who's gullible enough to try it. (read: I'm gullible enough) I can't help but feel like someone somewhere is watching me try their ideas and laughing their heads off.

I mean, I'm not paranoid or anything...

First, there was this pin:

Always eager to save some money, I tried this one when my cyan ink ran out in my printer at work the other day. No joke, I think I spent 10 minutes trying to find a reset button on that blasted ink cartridge.


If you find one on your ink cartridges, send me a picture and make me a believer.

I also tried one with a two ingredient recipe for lemon bars. Delicious, chewy lemon bars with only TWO ingredients?? Yes please!

You know what mine looked like? A cake. A very poofy cake that spilled over the sides of the cake pan while it was baking. Not cool Pinterest. Not cool at all.

Finally, this one:

Since I'm currently experiencing a horrendous breakout on my face, I was ALL OVER this one! Plus, it's so much cheaper than buying the expensive pore strips.

I have to be honest, the jury's out on what I think of this one. Mainly because I'm still sitting here with the goo on my face.

It smells like rotten flesh and I have zero face mobility at the moment.

I also might have gotten a little close to my eyes and my bottom lashes are glued to my face. All in the name of beauty, right? Matt is totally getting a kick out of this process ("What's that supposed to do to your face?" "You look like one of those women who got Botox and can't move their face!") and keeps making me laugh. But  I can't move my face so I'm sitting here rocking back and forth laughing like an owl "Hoohoohoohoo..."

We're a mess I tell you.

I think I might need to stay away from the pins that sound too good(easy, cheap) to be true. Maybe I should just look at the clothes or decorating ideas. It would certainly be a little safer! :)

Does anyone have a chisel I could borrow? I think it's time to remove my granite mask...


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Self Therapy

Writing is therapeutic for me. Sometimes I hesitate to blog because I often write from a place of extreme emotion (happy, sad, or other) and it can come across as too personal and raw. Occasionally I choose to throw caution to the wind and share what goes on in the deepest parts of my heart and mind because I think that surely there is someone out there who has felt the same way...

When I think about the way I've always pictured my life, I have to admit that it isn't what I always expected that it would be.

There. I said it.

I want to believe that I'm making a difference in the world. Right this moment, if I could, I'd open a battered women's shelter. I'd be a foster parent. I'd run an orphanage in Kenya. I'd feed the homeless and comfort the sick.

The other day I was telling someone about my Bucket List and said that I feel quite certain I'll need about five lifetimes to accomplish everything I want to accomplish. Surely I'm not the only one who feels overwhelmed by things I want to do with my life? Yet in my state of overwhelmed-ness, I'm doing nothing that really matters in the grand scheme of the world. I have a job that I genuinely enjoy. I'm good at what I do, and I truly don't dread going to work in the mornings. But does it make a difference?

Matt and I have been married for over four years now. If you'd asked me while we were engaged what our life would look like in four years, this isn't it. I thought we'd have a house. I thought we'd have kids.

Don't get me wrong, life is great overall. But if I'm completely honest with you I have to admit that I feel a little...disappointed.

There is a growing restlessness in me that I just can't put my finger on. I question things a lot more than I used to. Things like, Am I being the best wife that I could be? Am I the best daughter/sister/auntie that I could be? Do people know that they can count on me? Am I a good friend?

Am I living my life to it's fullest potential today and every day? Or am I missing opportunities in which I could be making a difference left and right? I am caught in a place where I feel like I'm waiting for my life to start and watching it pass me by at the same time.

I don't know how to pull this one together. How to make my point yet wrap it all up with a cute story or comment about how everything in life is rainbows and cupcakes. But you know what? I have to think that it's okay if I don't always have all the answers. It's okay to sometimes feel confused and frustrated.

A coworker gave me a bracelet a couple of weeks ago with a small anchor charm on it. She had no idea what was going on in my life that very week, but I was anticipating some news that could either have been very good or very bad. As soon as I saw the anchor shape of the charm, the first thing that popped in my head was "my anchor holds." No matter what type of news I received, I knew God had a plan and everything would be okay. Over and over those three words rang in my head..."My anchor holds. My anchor holds. My ANCHOR holds."

I ended up getting good news. The news I was hoping for. But you know what? The same three words holds true today in this situation.

I feel a little confused, but my anchor holds.

I'm restless and uncertain, but my anchor holds.

Thank you Jesus for being an anchor that holds!


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A Midlife Crisis

Am I too young for that? Am I too old?

So I have a birthday coming up in a couple weeks, and I will be turning 26! I'm still a baby, right? My life isn't even close to being half over, right? So why does the very sound of "I am 26 years old" cause my chest to tighten and a lump in my throat?

Matt and I were awake way too long the other night contemplating this. I'm not freaking out about the age itself, I'm freaking out because I swear just yesterday I got married. I swear it was a week ago I left the only home I'd ever known to start my "grown up" life in college. Wasn't it just last month I was sitting with my youth group friends talking about what we did last weekend?

My point is that I was a kid, I blinked my eyes and now I'm an adult. There is no more "when I grow up" because I'm here. This is it!

This totally freaks me out because it makes me realize that 20 years from now I will probably say "I swear I was just 26 yesterday!"

So what's my point? Live each day to its fullest. Stop wishing for things you used to have or want to have. Stop waiting for tomorrow to do the things you know you should do today.

I'm talking to myself here, but can you relate? Life is short. If you blink you will miss it!


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Fabulous Fourth

Our anniversary is next week!

I sometimes tend to be a little bit overly sentimental with things. If you don't believe me about that, just ask my husband (or my mom) about my tendency to hold on to every little thing because it reminds me of someone or something that I love.

So in anticipation of our fourth anniversary, I spent some time looking through old pictures tonight. My goodness what a flood of memories! It was striking to me that in almost every picture from our wedding, I am laughing. Not just a slight giggle here or there, but genuinely laughing as if I just heard the funniest joke of all time. I loved every minute of our wedding. It truly sticks out in my mind as the happiest day I have ever experienced. Every single detail was (as far as I know) perfect. I had amazing friends beside me the entire day, making sure that each of those details was perfect. I felt spoiled and loved. And happy. So incredibly happy.

It hit me a couple months ago that we were coming up on four years of being married and I panicked a little. Our life is far from what I always thought it would be when we had been married for four years. I figured we'd already be living the "American Dream" somewhere on the East coast. You know, two story house with a white picket fence and exactly 2 .5 kids...

But here we are. In Texas, in a cramped apartment with exactly 2 .5 doggie "kids." (Lu counts as 1 .5 because the dog truly has THAT much personality...) But you know what?

I have my most amazing best friend beside me every single day, making sure that each detail of our lives is perfectly covered in prayer. I feel spoiled and extremely loved. And happy. So much happier than I could have ever dreamed four years ago.

I always believed people when I heard them say things like "I love my husband even more today than I did when we first got married." I just didn't understand how that could be possible. But today, as I reflect on the last four years and all that they have held for us, I can honestly say I'm starting to understand.

So this one's for you, darling! Thank you for every moment every day. For every time you have me rolling on the floor with laughter. For every tear we have shed. I love you!

Happy anniversary!


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mis-Matched Success!

Well hello there, blog world! Did you think I forgot about you? I didn't. Not for a second! The truth of the matter is, life has been extremely busy and I needed a break to get some other things done and clear my head a little bit. 

Curious what I've been up to? 

For starters, Matt and I started a business! It has been such a fun project for us to tackle together. I've mentioned before how opposite we are, and we have really seen our differences come out as we've worked on business stuff. Again I say we couldn't be more perfect for each other! We're not ready to quit our day jobs just yet, but we are very pleased with our sales so far.

Speaking of jobs, I got a new one! This could be an entire post in and of itself, but I'll just suffice it to say I am so. incredibly. BLESSED.

I'm getting a baby nephew in a few months! Naturally, I have a few projects in the works for precious Baby C. More on that later!

And now, a project I *can* show you!

We had the opportunity a while back to buy a new (to us) kitchen table. The top of it is glass, which is perfect when you're in a cramped apartment! I figured it would make a difference, but I was shocked how much it really opened up the space. The only problem I had with the table was that the cushions on the chairs were just slightly different in color than the walls in our apartment: white and blah. This girl needs some pattern and color!

Clearly this translates into "Ooh, a new project!!" I have been meaning to recover the chairs for several months now, and even went with my sister to pick up some fabric samples. I just couldn't settle on anything, and something else always came up that I'd rather spend the money on, so it just wasn't happening. As a part of our business, Matt and I have started perusing antique shops around the metroplex. Lo and behold (did I really just use that phrase? Ew.) I stumbled upon piles of sample upholstery squares sitting in a shop for $1 each. Total JACKPOT!! After spreading nearly half of them out across the various shelves and floor space, and wrecking the nice neat piles, I finally settled on four different prints. I've never attempted a mis-matched style before, so it took a little reassurance from Matt that they really would look good together. Can I just say, I love that man of mine!

So I finally had an excuse to buy an upholstery stapler (staple gun?) and I went to town!

$1 Each at an antique shop!

My new favorite "tool"

"Before" picture via Instagram

Waiting to be made colorful!

Not sure this is the officially correct way to do the corners but I like how it looks

Cutting off the excess on the bottom so it looks nicer

Nice and square on the bottom

Finished cusions!

Ever tried to take pictures of a glass table? It's impossible to get the lighting right...

Love love LOVE my new chairs!

Eventually, the iron part of the table will get re-done too. I am envisioning a cream or light gray crackle coat on top. We'll see how many times my mind changes before I actually get it finished.

So hopefully, now that I'm back in a regular routine and enjoying daily life again (it's true...the old job wasn't a very happy place) I will be back at my blog much more regularly. Until next time,


ETA: I realize that the layout of some of the pictures is wacky. Sometimes, I really think it's more difficult to add pictures than necessary. Something a little more user-friendly would be much appreciated. That's all.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Piddly Pillow Project

It's not news to any of you that I have dogs. What might be news, however, is that my dogs think they're people. Shocked? I didn't think so. When faced with the option of lying on the floor or snuggled into the couch, the couch wins 100% of the time. They're small, so I really don't mind them being on the couch, but what I do mind is that they have claimed my couch pillows as their own.

Because of this, my pillows are a wreck. And they are decorative, so they don't have a removable (read: washable) cover. What to do, what to do...

Never let it be said that I had a problem I didn't creatively try to fix.

So I pulled out my handy dandy sewing machine and went to work!

I wanted to save as much money as possible, so I decided to reuse the stuffing from the old pillows. This took FOREVER to re-fluff. I literally thought I would die at the ripe old age of 107 before I got it finished. But then my TV show ended and I realized I was actually almost done. Not nearly as bad as I thought after all! 

My plan (as always) was to take pictures along the process to show you exactly what I did. However, my desire to work uninterrupted outweighed my desire to have quality pictures, so all I have are these few snapshots that I took on my cell phone. 

I am now accepting applications for a live-in photographer to capture my every move as I work on a project. Or, we can just go with these cell phone shots and call it "art." 

Since I was recreating the pillows from some I already had, I did remember to take a "before" picture. I got the pillows all laid out, went to grab my camera, and this is what I saw when I turned around to take the picture. Now do you believe me about how much they LOVE pillows?

I had a flat sheet from a set we were given as a wedding gift. The fitted part ripped while we were trying to make the bed up after washing the sheets. Evidently that was not an appropriate time for us to test our tug-of-war skills. (um yes, we act like children sometimes) The sheet ripped apart halfway, so instead of throwing the whole set away, I saved the flat part to use for this project. This was cut into squares and sewn up to form the actual pillow part of my project. See?

I bought this fabric about six months ago intending to use it as curtains in our bedroom. Evidently it's important to measure your window height before you plan curtain panels. It's been stuffed on my shelf ever since.

Oscar wanted to help SO bad, so I let him hold one side of the fabric while I cut out the squares for the covers.

I sewed up the pretty fabric on three sides then inserted a zipper on the fourth, so the cover can easily be removed to wash. Hallelujah! No more unwanted doggie slobber on my pillows!

And here's the finished project!