I’m Baaaaack! {NOLA Recap}

Posted on

Oh, hey, hi there. I fell off the face of the earth there for a second while I recouped from my bachelorette trip to New Orleans. Sorry ’bout that. But now I’m back! I’m about 20 lbs heavier than when I left and I’m still completely exhausted but oh.my.god. was it a BLAST!

Did you guys have fun with Brittany and Raewyn while I was gone? They are fabulous ladies, no?

Guys, let me tell you, New Orleans is an amazing city. The food (ohmygod THE FOOD), the people, the art, the music, the drinks were all incredible. I am so grateful to my MOH, Jess, for organizing such an unbelievable weekend, and I’m so glad my friend Kristin was able to join us on such short notice.

I can’t even begin to explain what an amazing city NOLA truly is. The people were all so friendly and welcoming, the food was delicious, the drinks were strong, and there was art and live music everywhere we went. I’ve been sitting here for an hour now trying to find the words to describe everything we did, but I’m at a loss, so I’ll let the pictures do the talking for now.

I was blown away by all of it: the gorgeous architecture, the funky voodoo shops, the amazing view from our hotel room, the palm trees/Christmas decorations combo, and HOLY CRAP do you see the SWEET RIDE my bff scored for us?!

I was blown away by all of it: the gorgeous architecture, the funky voodoo shops, the amazing view from our hotel room, the palm trees/Christmas decorations combo, and HOLY CRAP do you see the SWEET RIDE my bff scored for us?!

 

There were musicians and street performers EVERYWHERE. It was incredible to see such talent on display all around us.

There were musicians and street performers EVERYWHERE. It was incredible to see such talent on display all around us.

And what trip to New Orleans would be complete without a few photos of Bourbon St at night?

And what trip to New Orleans would be complete without a few photos of Bourbon St at night?

As you can see, I have mostly daytime/tourist photos. I was afraid to take my fancypants camera out at night for fear of losing it, breaking it, or spilling adult beverages on it. My phone’s failures are a post for a different day, but let’s just say it wasn’t very useful for anything, let alone capturing memories.

We squeezed so much into the two nights and days that we spent there, but I feel like there is still SO much more Big Easy amazingness to behold. I definitely cannot wait to go back and explore even more of the funky, quirky city.

So what did I miss while I was gone? What’s new with you?

Signature


Meet Raewyn from Be a Warrior Queen!

Posted on

Happy Friday, everyone! I’m still in NOLA for my bachelorette party. (If you aren’t following me on Instagram, you should be. That’s where I’m documenting all of the shenanigans.)

Today, the lovely lady behind Be a Warrior Queen is taking over the blog. She’s got a beautiful, positive attitude, so I know you guys will love her.  Meet Raewyn!

————————————————————

Hello!! My name is Raewyn and I blog over at Be a Warrior Queen where I’m all about being me – a strong, independent lady stumbling through life while attempting to be graceful. I like to blog about finding your inner strength, life things and always trying to be on the positive side. Check out the Warrior Queen movement and feel free to join us!

Via

Let’s talk about recognizing the positive aspect of a not-so-positive event or situation. This one’s a hard one, but bear with me because I know we can turn it all around. Here’s a couple of hypothetical situations [or maybe some situations that happened to me…]

 

So you’re at a concert that’s supposed to be the time of your life. There is a really fun friend by your side. She’s always down for an adventure and you never seem to run out of things to talk about. You’ve only known each other for a little bit, and this is your first solo outing as friends. You get there and the two of you are giddy beyond belief. You’re actually shaking from excitement. Since you’ve been planning this night for awhile, you saved up enough money to buy that super expensive but delicious meal and a lot of drinks. When you get there, you make a beeline for the food and drinks to get a handle on that shake you’ve got going on. Then you head to the merch table because what is THE BEST CONCERT EVER without a shirt. Plus, the merch boys are usually pretty cute. While you’re at it you hit up every single merch tent you see. Even the opening bands you don’t know. You blow your cash on shirts and CDs because theses guys are just so cute. Your friend has hit it up with one of the guys and when it comes time for you to go get ready to watch the bands, she decides to stay behind at the merch tent. This is your favorite band. What in the world do you do?

I bet you are feeling pretty bad right there. She just let you down and you’re probably questioning your whole friendship.So you head to your seats alone, feeling defeated because who in the world are you going to sing all of the words with? You don’t have any more cash to drink until you no longer feel socially awkward.

Go to your seat anyway! 

Girrl, I guarantee the people sitting around you are there for the exact same reason you are – they love the songs! Even if you’ve got a lovey-dovey couple on one side and are surrounded with people you’d rather not talk to, somewhere in that mess of hundreds of people there will be a kindred spirit waiting to talk to you and become your friend – if only for the night.

______________________________________

But when you’re standing there in the moment it sucks. It sucks to feel alone among a bunch of people. It’s easy to get sucked into only thinking negatively and not enjoying a concert that you were super duper uber excited to attend. So make that decision to enjoy yourself. Push it out of your mind.

                                           ______________________________________

Here’s a hint. One time I went to a Panic! At the Disco concert with my exboyfriend. He broke up with me a couple of days before the concert but insisted we still go together. I cried the whole time. There was no stopping that, he was my high school boyfriend. But I still found myself getting lost in the music…talking to the people around me and generally ignoring him. There may have been tears on my face, but I wasn’t having the worst time of my life.

Other situations that this is useful for: any sucky situation. 



Seriously, when things are feeling not so great, take a look around and find that one thing you can focus on that can make it a little more positive. It could be a smile from another person, the smell of delicious food or flowers, seeing a heart on a billboard and remembering to have hope…anything!

via

 photo name.jpg


Meet Brittany from Happy Is A Choice

Posted on

If you missed all of my frazzle-brained excitement earlier this week, I’m in New Orleans for my bachelorette party! (Stalk my Instagram if you want to follow along with the debauchery.) But, dear readers, I would never leave you hanging! Today, Brittany is taking over the blog. She is the adorable lady behind Happy Is A Choice. I think you guys will adore her as much as I do – even her blog title radiates positive energy! (And how stinkin’ cute is she with that new husband of hers?!)

————————————————————

Hey friends! I am excited to be here while our girl Nikki is out celebrating her bachelorette weekend with her girlfriends! I had SO much fun the night of my bachelorette, and I know Nikki will too!

 

Let me tell you a little bit about myself! My name is Brittany, and I am a newlywed, I married the love of my life, Ronnie on October 5th, so I am just over the moon with excitement for Nikki as her wedding day approaches. It is such a sweet time, preparing for that day, so Nikki, if I could give you one piece of advice it would be to enjoy every minute! I sometimes got caught up in the stress and planning and details, but our wedding day was so fun, and even if something goes wrong (it will) you will just be so happy you wont care!

A little more about me: I blog over at Happy Is A Choice so I  would love for you to come stop by so we can get to know one another more. I work full time in Human Resources, and my husband works in Hospitality at our church. I am a big fan of running, mostly because I love food so much, in order to avoid only fitting in yoga pants, I have to burn off those lattes and pastries some how.

Because it’s November, and Nikki has a running Gratitude theme going on this month, I wanted to share some things that I am thankful for in marriage, things I think Nikki might have to look forward to, and maybe if you are married you will be thankful for some of the same things!
1. I am thankful to go to sleep next to my husband every night, and wake up together every day. Ronnie and I didn’t live together before we got married, so this big “every night is a sleepover with your best friend” thing is still fun to me!

2. I’m thankful that my husband makes me breakfast in bed on Saturday mornings. Seriously, a huge perk for me. I hope your husband makes you breakfast in bed regularly , Nikki!

3. I am thankful for someone to pray with when life gets messy, and also when God is so good to us that we can’t help but thank Him! Its really encouraging for me to watch my husband trust Jesus so well and lean on Him for wisdom, strength and support.

4. I am thankful to have a husband who doesn’t expect me to do it all. As a woman, I sometimes feel like I need to be working all day, cooking a balanced meal, doing the laundry, serving people in our home, serving in church ministries, spending time with my family, exercising, etc. and for me, more often then not, I feel like I am FAILING at all of those things. But luckily for me, Ronnie doesn’t expect that, and he helps me with things like preparing meals and keeping the house clean. It is SUCH a blessing to me!

5. I am thankful to have someone to take outfit pictures for the blog. He always puts on a happy face and tries to pretend like hes hving the best time, even though we all know he’d rather do, well, anything else.

6. I am excited to send out Christmas Cards! I’ve always equated that with something you get to do once you are married, and this year, one sweet friend I have met through blogging is designing ours and I can’t wait to send them out!

7. I am thankful to get to share life together! I am so excited to start our own Holiday traditions, to invite people over for good food and conversation, to go on weekend trips and dinner outs with friends, to do home projects and snuggle up on the couch after a long day. I love this part of marriage!

If you are married, what are you thankful for? If you’re not married, what are you most looking forward to or hoping for someday?

Please stop by and see me at Happy Is A Choice! I would love to meet you, new friends!


The Big Easy (and Other Rambles)

Posted on

I hope you weren’t coming here today to read something wise or heartfelt or deep and intellectual, because I’m about to ramble for a bit. Mostly about New Orleans.

1// I’m going to New Orleans on Thursday! My super-amazing, generous, wonderful, fabulous best friend surprised me with a last-minute bachelorette celebration. We’re going to the Big Easy for 3 days and I’M PUMPED. There will only be a few of us since not many people could skip town with barely two weeks notice, but I think I like it better that way. Small groups are easier to manage, especially when you are traveling.

When Jess and I get together, it is always a blast. I have no doubt that this trip will be another raging good time.

When Jess and I get together it is ALWAYS a blast. I have no doubt that this trip will be another raging good time.

2// I’m not 22 anymore, so last minute trips aren’t quiiite as easy to swing these days. (Because, you know, I actually have a life and a few responsibilites now. Effin’ adulthood.) So naturally, I have a ton to do and very little time to do it in. Whatevs, I got this. And don’t worry, I’ve got some awesome guests stopping by to post for me while I’m gone!

3// Going to New Orleans for the weekend means missing Joey’s first birthday, which is on Friday. I know, I know…WORST FUR-MOM IN THE HISTORY OF FUR-MOMS. I promised to make it up to him when I get back. I’ve already found him an adorable party hat and I plan to make him some homemade peanut butter doggie treats to nom on before Mr. B and I take him to Petsmart so he can pick out a new toy.

4// I’m finding myself wayyy too concerned about things that aren’t actually problems these days. Like the fact that I won’t be here to feed Mr. B for three days. Why am I worried about this? The man is almost 30 years old. He’s not going to starve to death if I leave him unattended. And all the preemptive grocery shopping in the world won’t stop him from eating nothing but quesadillas and Nutri-grain bars while I’m away. Like I said, things that aren’t actually problems. I need to worry about actual problems, like the laundry that I’ve been putting off for far too long. We are running out of underbritches.

5// My WordPress Android app won’t let me respond to comments on the blog. It’s frustrating the crap out of me. Does anyone else have this problem, or does my phone just hate me? I think it’s time for a new phone. Too bad I’m not eligible for an upgrade for another year. Womp womp.

6//It’s embarrassing how much I am looking forward to eating on this trip. I love trying new foods and exploring local cuisine when I travel, but I’m ridiculously excited about what New Orleans has to offer. I can’t wait to eat all the food. Make me feel better and tell me I’m not the only one who gets like this. (Lie to me if you have to.)

7// Poor Daisie has dry skin, so I bought her wipes that promise to “soothe itch and pain” with a “bitter taste that stops licking and chewing”. I just tried them out, and good news- they work. She stopped chewing her little legs immediately. A few minutes later I forgot all about it and touched my mouth. I know why they work so well, and I can’t get the AWFUL taste out of my mouth. Maybe you should have washed your hands, dumbass.

8// The beautiful Amber over at Mr. Thomas and Me has a little giveaway going on right now. If you haven’t entered already, you should go check that out.

So yeah, that’s what is going on in my head right now. What’s new in your world? Has anyone ever been to New Orleans? Any tips or suggestions?

Signature


The Thankful Project {A Room}

Posted on

Zemanta Related Posts Thumbnail

I am thankful for my home office.

That’s odd, right? But I am really grateful for it. It’s my little space. I’m grateful to have a work area all of my own, and I’m thankful to have a man like Mr. B who was thoughtful enough to give it to me.

When Mr. B and I began the huge project of renovating the interior of our home, we discussed the changes we would make in every room. When the subject of the home office came up, he told me it was mine and that I should make it a nice little work space for myself. I protested at first. After all, it was our home, he should have a say and feel comfortable in there too, right? But he insisted that I take it and make it my own. He wanted me to have a place to write and create and just do my thing.

Office

 

OfficeView

Sadly, I can’t find any “before” photos of the office. Trust me though, it was a mess. Dingy, scuffed up white walls and stained, trampled green carpet. It was kinda gross. We ripped out the carpet and replaced it with hardwood floors. I painted the walls a soft gray, which ended up being a light grayish-purple that I love more than I would have expected. I painted the doors and baseboards a crisp white, refinished the doorknobs and hardware, and started hunting down furniture and decor.

OfficeWindow

I’m still searching for wall art, but other than that, I’m pretty pleased with my little office. We found this desk at a flea market for $75. It is quite possibly the heaviest piece of furniture ever made. And those drawers are the full length of the desk, which means I have lots of great storage. All I had to do was polish it up and refinish the ugly gold knobs.

OfficeDesk

This chest belonged to my great grandmother. I’m not sure I love it’s placement yet, but it has such sentimental value that it will most definitely have a place in my office (or perhaps at the foot of our bed??), even if it is missing a knob.

OfficeChest

The lamp on my desk used to sit on my mother’s nightstand when she was a child. I painted it pink and put a new shade on it, so it no longer looks like it’s fresh out of 1974.

OfficeLight

I also revamped an old chair, an old nightstand, and a wicker trash bin with a little bit of paint. (I like color, can you tell?)

OfficePrinter

My office isn’t all mine though, I currently share it with Joey.

OfficeCrate

I don’t mind though. He’s got a cute photo-bombing butt.

OfficeJoey

I love this room. It’s mine. I’ve made it my own and decorated it to reflect my style. It’s my space to write, create, and do what I love. (And, sometimes, pay bills.) But it is so much more than that. It’s a space that Mr. B wanted me to have. He wanted to make sure I had a place in our home that was my own. He replaced the flooring and hauled in the world’s heaviest desk. He wanted me to have a space where I could do what I love, and I love him for that.

OfficeChair

Signature



The Thankful Project {Something I Was Taught}

Posted on

Thankful Project Title

I remember a short conversation I had with my father when I was a child. I don’t remember how old I was or any other details about that day, but the words he spoke are crystal-clear in my mind.

In typical whiny, small child fashion, I had asked my dad “why do you have to go to work?”

His reply: “I don’t have to go to work, I get to go to work.”

I barely understood his meaning at the time, but those words have stuck with me. That one simple sentence has lingered in my mind, as a verbal representation of a lesson he taught me through his actions every single day: Find something you love to do, and do it with everything you have.

My dad has worked in the car business my entire life. He’s had different roles, titles, responsibilities, and customer bases along the way, but one thing has always been constant for me: my dad sells cars. I’ve always known – even if I wasn’t really aware – that he loves what he does. And that the satisfaction he gets from spending his days doing something he truly enjoys makes him great at his job.

He hasn’t always been in the business; he dabbled in other trades before finding his niche. It was such an odd thing to learn as a kid, that dad used to do something else. I’ve realized that this wasn’t odd to me simply because it was different from what I knew, it was odd because I can’t imagine my father finding such joy and satisfaction in any other career.

It was such an important lesson to wrap my head around. I don’t recall him ever lecturing my brother and I on the importance of doing what we love, in fact, I don’t remember him saying much about it at all. Instead, he showed us every day. As I’ve come to understand all that it means, I’ve noticed how true it is in my own life. I do my best work when I’m truly happy with what I’m doing. I’m happiest in all aspects of my life when I enjoy how I spend the bulk of my day.

So, Daddy, thank you. I know I haven’t said it enough, but I appreciate all that you did for us every day. You did so much more than put food on the table and a roof over our heads. You taught me a very important lesson, one that, sadly, too few people ever learn. Sure, the paycheck matters, but we need to spend our lives doing what makes us happy. If we are going to spend most of our hours, days, weeks, years doing something, shouldn’t it bring us joy?

Because of you, I know how important it is to be able to say: “I don’t have to go to work, I get to go to work.”

Signature


A Role I Play {The Thankful Project – November 2}

Posted on

This month, I am joining Kenzie for The Thankful Project. It won’t be everyday, but I will be following these writing prompts to talk about the many things in my life that bring me a feeling of gratitude. Today we are talking about how thankful we are for a role that we play…

__________________________________________

Thankful Project Title

 

Unearthing recipes, new and old. Making the grocery list. Clipping coupons. Scanning the aisles and filling the grocery cart. Stocking the pantry, the refrigerator, the spice cabinet. Planning meals. Preparing each dish. Baking, grilling, stirring, boiling, mixing, kneading, seasoning – in our home, I do it all.

It’s one role that I play in our little family; it’s what I do for us.

It never ends. We will always need to eat. Some days it feels like a dreaded chore. Really? I have to go grocery shopping again? I need to make another dinner? Ugh. I have “better” things to do, other items on my list that are vying for my time and attention, and sometimes, I just don’t feel like doing it.

Other days, I love it. The planner in me loves making lists, organizing meals, and searching for deals and discounts. The wanna-be chef in me loves trying new recipes and playing in the kitchen. The foodie in me loves to eat, sip, taste, savor.

No matter my mood, I do it with pride. It is an important role that I play, and it is about so much more than food and cooking. I plan our week, manage a budget, run the errands. I provide the comfort of a warm meal to the man I love at the end of his hard day. I make decisions about the healthy options in the cupboard, the delectable treats in the candy jar. I show my love through these choices, through the work that I do in the kitchen, both at the stove, armed with olive oil and fresh vegetables, and at the counter, armed with a calendar and a calculator.

It is only one role I play, one hat I wear of many. I do it for love, for our family, to help and to provide. It is an important role and one for which I am profoundly grateful.

Signature


Halloween…or Theme Party?

Posted on

Happy Halloween!

Sadly, I’m old and boring. I’m not doing much of anything to celebrate Halloween this year, which means I have no fun stories or photos. So I went digging through boxes of old photos looking for pictures of Halloweens gone by. I love dressing up, so I was pretty confident I’d find lots of goodies to share with you all.

Trouble is…lots of the costumes I’ve worn haven’t been for Halloween. There have been lots and lots of theme parties, too. And I’m not entirely sure which costumes were Halloween costumes and which were theme party costumes. #sororitygirlproblems

Let’s play a fun little game of Halloween or Theme Party. (Sometimes also called Why Did The Drunk Girl Wear That Costume?)

Photo #1:

LingerieParty

 

Was it Halloween or a theme party? Theme party. Lingerie theme, actually.

Numero dos:

SchoolGirlParty

 

Did you guess Halloween? Understandable, since the slutty school girl is a popular All Hallow’s Eve choice. But no, you’d be wrong. It was a school girl themed party. By the end of the night we all had ties on our heads.

SchoolGirlTie

Feel free to judge me. I understand.

The school girl outfit did get worn again as a Halloween costume, but these pictures are from a theme party.

Round 3:

ThemeParty

This one was a theme party. What was the theme? you ask? I have no idea, but there were lots of girls in boas and sunglasses. Bling-bling party, perhaps?

Picture #4:

TopGunFloat

 

Halloween or theme party? Halloween. Sorta. It was Homecoming weekend and we were dressed like this to ride on the Top Gun themed float in the parade. After the parade, those of us dressed as sailors joined the rest of our sisters for a Halloween celebration, so it doubled as a Halloween costume that night.

NewspaperFloat

 

It should also be noted that our float one first place. It was awesome. I really wish I had more photos of it.

I did find one that I’m confident was for Halloween, since it was taken in 1986 – long before I knew about the joys of a good theme party:

NikkiPumpkinCollage

 

Happy Halloween, everyone!

Signature

 

 

 

 

P.S.- I’m making an appearance over on Dog Hair Is An Accessory today – go check it out and say hi to Adriana and Lil!


Someday I Will…

Posted on
The Daily Tay

Someday I will…

…spend less time wishing I was playing with my camera, and more time actually taking photos.

…be one of those girls who looks “put together”. (As in, I’ll actually do my hair and make-up and put on real pants everyday. Or at least most days. Let’s not get carried away.)

…figure out what sparks my creativity. Until then it’s trial and error and inspiration dry spells.

…catch a little air on my wakeboard, and – this is the important part- I will land on my feet instead of my face.

…actually get some fruit off of the grape vines I planted and turn it into wine. Maybe next year I’ll get more than 4 grapes? Maybe?

…read Harry Potter. I’d love to know what all the fuss is about.

…have less to stress about…

…or at least manage my stress better.

…make a comfortable living doing a job that is creative and fulfilling and makes me endlessly happy.

 

What will you do someday?

Signature