October 7, 2013

weight of glory.

Today our county issued a tornado warning for about four hours. And this is what the sky looks like tonight out in our yard. See that line down the middle? That's a rope swing, straight as an arrow. Earlier today, one of our heavy french doors blew wide open because it wasn't locked. It was shut, but not locked and the winds threw it open.

"Even the wind and the waves obey him."

The eternal weight of glory that awaits us is beyond all comparison. It will make our trials here on Earth feel "light" and "momentary".

Now that I find encouraging.

September 18, 2013

craft area: revisited.

Last fall (almost a year ago?! How on earth...) I mentioned that we have space for me to have a craft area in our current living situation. What a blessing! Or a curse - I may have acquired more things because I have the space for it... 
Regardless, here's the somewhat makeshift area that I've created for myself using extra items from my in-laws. Tables, stool, lamp, crate, sewing machine? All theirs. Thanks guys! 

Favorite parts about it? 
» crate for organizing fabrics & yarn
» pretty quotes & ideas on the wall
» baby clothespins. cute.
» lamp, although it doesn't provide a ton of light. still awesome.

Thanks for visiting :) Shout out to our old Massachusetts license plate on the wall. Miss that guy.

August 27, 2013

new around here.

just returned home from this great state // after celebrating this most joyous occasion - my bro's wedding! // enjoyed a concert in Philly with my co-workers // finally got out and explored this city more thoroughly (and it's fabulous) // art project in progress // art project completed // my "at-work" mug that I treated myself to when I got my new job // camping mugs from an antique store in Lancaster // new skills attained // thrifted J.Crew shoes for $12 (saved about $190 off of the retail price - win) // new fun thank you's & stationery // who gets a birthday card for their anniversary? i do, of course. celebrated 2 years in July! // a good summer read // pretty flowers for the table.

And that's all for now :)

July 29, 2013

summer style

It's been a while. Summer has been doin' it's thing - being beautiful and going by way too fast. Lots of changes over the past few months for us, so while I stall on writing more blog posts, I'll distract you with these pretty things from around the web. They've been serving as good distractions for me when I should probably be doing other things ;) 
Hope you're relaxed, sunned, and soaking up every minute of it.

1. geometric necklace // 2. dipped earrings // 3. australian opal
4. flats that I'm too cheap for, but obsessed with // 5. flowing maxi // 6. pretty print
7. scalloped shorts // 8. beautiful ombre // 9. the flawless 'transport tote' // 10. a top I could totally make.

April 17, 2013

the power of a place.

The deep-seeded sense of home becomes so much more intense when disaster strikes upon it.

I'm not here to say anything that you haven't already heard on the new 1,000 times, but I thought I'd share a few thoughts on what Mondays happenings meant to me. I found out about the bombings while I was at work. I got a text from my mother-in-law asking if I had heard, and my brain immediately went to all of the people I know who have run the marathon in the past, might be running it this year, or work/live in that area. I texted my mom and a few friends to get an update about some people I was concerned about, and was reassured that they were fine, and some were even helping in the efforts to reunite people with their families. After the initial ingestion of this information, I decided to hop online. Bad idea.

It probably would have been better for me to look into the details after I was out of work, but of course the curiosity, the worry and the fear take over and we go into full-on stalking mode. Every website was showing more and more graphic photos as my search continued. Dismembered marathon fans. Blood on Boylston Street. Tear-streaked faces and looks of peril. Smoke and flames in the same frame as the John Hancock building. I felt the emotions welling up inside me (and the frustration that my co-workers barely seemed phased), so I decided that I better hold off on continued stalking until after work. 

I navigated the rest of my shift trying to put what I had seen and read out of my mind. No one at the gym even mentioned the bombings. It was as if it didn't happen. Just 300 miles south and everyone is so disconnected. Maybe they hadn't heard. Maybe they didn't care. After all, it didn't happen in their city. 

When my shift was over, I turned on NPR on the ride home. Some reporters commented on the story and I soaked up more details, biting my lip and squinting back the tears. Callers chimed in and gave their ridiculously asinine opinions (like that this is Obama's fault somehow?), but then they played the tape. Audio footage on location of when the bombs went off. The first one sounded and there was little response - some screams, mostly murmurs of confusion - but ten seconds later the second one sounded and the devastation was evident. The horrific screams. I can't even find the words to describe what it sounded like. There was something uniquely powerful in listening to it as opposed to seeing it. I was no longer biting my lip in a futile attempt to hold tears in. One hand on the wheel and one hand covering my mouth, I was in utter shock and sobbing at the sounds I heard. My city. This is happening in my city. 

When I got home, Will noticed my red eyes and blotchy tear-stained face. "What's up?!" he asked very concerned. I felt silly explaining that I was weeping and mourning for an event that I wasn't even present for. None of my loved ones were hurt, I don't live in Massachusetts anymore, but for some reason it felt personal. Will was sad with me and for me, but it wasn't the same for him. When he was falling asleep and I was still crying in bed he said, "Sweetie, I'm sorry your city was attacked." Because honestly, as weird as it sounds, that's why I was so upset. Hearing "bombing" in the same sentence as "Boston" is too startling. Obviously what happened on September 11th doesn't even compare, but that wasn't personal to me. It affected me on a small scale as a young American, but I was in the 7th grade for crying out loud and I had never even been to New York City at the time. I can only imagine how New Yorkers felt on that day. I can only begin to truly empathize with them after Monday's events in Boston, and it's on such a smaller scale. I continued to read the news and cried myself to sleep Monday night.

Bostonians are a strong bunch. Obama said, "Boston is a tough and resilient town, so are its people." Those words warmed my heart. I also saw someone write on Facebook about how New Englanders are usually seen as cold, rude, somewhat snobby people, but we rise to the occasion when we need to. First responders everywhere, people reuniting other with their families, Bostonians eagerly searching for ways to help and running to the hospitals to give blood. We are still people, even if we lack a certain southern charm and warmth sometimes. 

This is my favorite image floating around the web these days:

Those are my homeboys right there. Time to listen to some Dropkick Murphy's and just feel badass.

Last night at work, a few people asked me about it and if my friends and family were okay. I think it's because I was wearing my Red Sox hat. I think solely because of my hat, people asked me if I was from Boston, and extended their condolences. It was nice to have it recognized. I still have a general quiet and somber demeanor when thinking and talking about it, but at least I can talk about it now. I'll talk about how my city is strong and that this doesn't change a thing. We are who we are, regardless of what some idiot or group of idiots tries to do to us.

But through this I've learned just how much this place means to me, and I'm reminded that there is good in the world when we see how a community (or a country) responds to such terror. I love Boston, and love the love our country is showering on Boston. Prayers for everyone who was actually injured or affected on a more personal level. I'm proud of everyone.

These are my people. Thanks, Stephen Colbert :)

April 8, 2013

front door.

I once said that I painted our front door a pretty eggplant color. And I once said that I would post a photo of it. That was forever ago. Here's our front door circa sometime in the month of November:

That cute little pumpkin is obviously long gone, and sadly/embarrassingly enough, that plant still sits there. Although looking much more dead. Sorry plant. But I think Spring has finally sprung because we reached the 70 degree mark today! Woo! And word on the street says that it could reach 80 tomorrow. I burst with excitement :) Time to replace that dead plant with a living one, I say.

But there's the door in its aubergine glory! You like?

March 25, 2013

for moms

Now that the photo from the previous post actually does look like my backyard again (we woke up to a few inches and it's been continuing all day), here are some sights of spring.

For my mother-in-law who bought us these pink tulips, 
and for my mother in Massachusetts who needs these signs of spring so badly :) 

Sorry that you're so snowy, New England. Your feet upon feet of snow will melt soon enough.

And thanks to my husband for the sweet-smelling hyacinth. Keep 'em coming!

March 12, 2013

at the moment...

At the moment, it's not that snowy out. We actually have nothing lingering anymore, so don't be deceived. But I do just love that photo of our backyard covered in a light dusting.

I'm now reading (read: "listening to the audiobook of") Jane Eyre. It's a book that I've always wanted to read because I know it's a classic, but was intimidated by because of length and the time period in which it's set. Turns out it's actually very easy to get into, especially with Downton Abbey fresh on the brain. I also just finished To Kill a Mockingbird, after never being assigned to read it in school and having some embarrassing failed attempts. So that was also a huge reading success.

I'm enjoying snacking on pretzel sticks dipped into melted chocolate chips. Gotta love the salty & sweet.

I'm eager to watch Playing for Keeps - Redbox recently alerted me that it has arrived! It may look corny, but Will and I wanted to see it in theaters. Yay for saving ourselves about $15 because of Redbox.

I'm longing for the days when I'm not working four nights a week.

I'm excited about hosting our dear friends Josh & Emily this Thursday and Friday night! Can't wait to hang out with them!

I'm learning patience when it comes to paying off bills. With Will's new job, we finally have a larger steady income to pay things off/make some purchases we've been looking forward to. But even though the money is finally coming in, it still takes time to chip away. Sigh.

I'm loving the IKEA RENS Sheepskin rug and would want it in every room of my house, if that wasn't overkill. Might buy one with some new birthday money :)

I would like to go to Fort Myers, FL for some good ol' fun in the sun and to see some fam. Wish we could have time off for a road trip! At least the temps are rising here - in the 60's this past weekend!

I would like to cook this crazy-awesome looking veg lasagna. And you would probably like to come over for dinner if I did.

I would like to buy these shoes, these shoes (in navy), and this gold number.

Until next time, friends,

February 13, 2013


A perfect Valentine's Day card from Sugar Paper that I should stock up on:

Don't understand it? Get in the know here.

Even though my hubby is obviously my Valentine, I'd send this card to my best friend, just because :) 
We've been using Phoebe's wisdom to describe our friendship for years.

February 11, 2013

pinterest meals

I'm not the type to just pin like crazy for the sake of a beautiful collage. I've actually made the majority of the things on my "eats" board. Go me! But honestly - I only pin food that is easy and within my reach, or meals that inspire me to attempt something trickier (or at least a variation of it). It has really helped diversify our dinners, especially when pasta with red sauce and kale is such a lazy weeknight go-to. We've tried a lot of new things and many of them have now become staples. 

Here are just a few of the faves and some on the docket for the coming weeks...

1 2 3 4 5 6 

1 2 3 4 5 6 

Can't wait to try all of these new recipes! Do you have any pinterest faves I should know about?

February 6, 2013

recreate it.

[original sources can be found here]

I am so inspired by these images for our combined living/dining space. The kind of earthy-bohemian-eclectic-warm feel; that's what I'm after. I'm loving all things natural: hanging light bulbs, tribal patterns, wood and metallic accents, and all things white of course. Clean and crisp, but still colorful without being overwhelming. That's the goal, right?

Below is how I may attempt to get it done.

1) industrial elements like this ikea shelf // 2) living things like spider plants - check, got two of 'em. // 3) a personalized photo & artwork cluster - ours always feels like a work in progess. // 4) ikea ORGEL pendant lamp shade - check. // 5) mismatched chairs - check, but they desparately need to be painted some neutral color (right now two are red and two are blue. yikes!) // 6) a cozy wicker chair by the windows - check. // 7) side table doubling as magazine rack via urban outfitters // 8) farm table - check. // 9) a colorful southwestern-y rug (if Will will have it - he's not a huge fan) // 10) ikea RENS sheepskin is a must. I currently want in every room of the house. // 11) two gray couches - check. Does it count if one of them is actually red but is covered with extra gray bed sheets? The quest for a nice gray slipcover continues. // 12) more tribal patterned rugs // 13) earthy elements like this sweet tree stump side table - can totally make one. // 14) a vintage-y brass floor lamp, along with other metallic accents (loving copper right now!)

We decided to work on one room of the house each month to get it up to snuff and fully moved into, and January's focus was the kitchen. We're still working on finishing touches, but I'll share photos and inspiration when it's done!

January 15, 2013

what january brings

It's been a while, (for posting in general, and especially for a gifts post) but I'm back around these parts hoping to be inspired. I haven't really even been reading blogs much these days - which is weird because it used to be an almost daily activity. This might sound weird (because I really do love all of the blogs I read), but the time away is almost... freeing.

I think there's something about blogging that can breed discontentment. Hmm, maybe it's all of the beautiful and fashionable women, the pristine homes, and productivity that's enviable? Yeah, that's it.

I am content. I like my sense of style (or lack there of), I LOVE my new home and the shape it's starting to take, and I actually have been quite productive these days. I suppose the missing link is my inability to sit down and write about it. I want to blog when I want to blog, and not because I feel like I "should".

That's why I'm just going to take a few minutes today to put some stuff out here. Here are some things that the new year brings:

1. I have resolved to read more fiction. I set up an account on GoodReads (friend me if you're on it!) to help me maintain a list of books to read, and I have a chart where I make sure that I read for at least 15 minutes a day. Not earth-shattering, but discipline starts small, people. Two weeks in - so far so good. About halfway done with 1984 - which is another book that I was shockingly never assigned to read in school.

2. I have also resolved to do some sort of exercising at least 2-3 days a week. Again, starting small to get out of my winter slump. So far, I've been doing heaps of yoga and am tip-toeing ever so cautiously into the world of CrossFit. My body was so sore after just two days (not even two consecutive days) so we'll see if that continues. I sure would like to be jacked though...

3. A new job. This is the time when retail hours take a big plunge, so I'm now barely working at Madewell - maybe 5 hours a week, if I'm lucky (which I'm mostly not). I've been there part-time since October, all the while looking for something to fill in the gap. But now I've found something that I hope will be fulfilling for me, as it's much more in my horizon of concern (shout out to those who know that lingo). I am now a manager at the Philadelphia Rock Gym and start training this week. I hope I enjoy it as much as I anticipate!

4. Either a new or off-shoot blog is in process. I know, I can barely keep up with this one so what's the point? Well because it's a joint venture, a brain child we've been mulling over for almost a year, and it will be different. It will be different because it's not about growth, it's not about followers, it's not about building an internet dynasty (like most bloggers hope to do). It won't have sponsorship, it won't have a multitude of links and pages, and there won't be any pressure to post. Our hopes are that it will be more personal, deeper, more creative, clean and simple. I'm unsure if I'll keep this blog running as my own individual musings, but be on the lookout for something coming soon.

So here are some gifts that I remind myself of during this long state of transition:
a magnificent holiday season, even if it went entirely undocumented. 

the ability for a clean slate whenever we want - not just every 12 months. 

inspiration - even when you have to go looking for it. 

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