Thursday, December 1, 2011

A year ago...

A year ago on December 1st I clearly remember my hands being raw from all things...needlepointing! 

Yes, I am still in my 30's.  No, I don't need a walker to get around.  Yes, I know the needlepointing sterotype of grannies sitting in a rocker needlepointing with little glasses on the tip of their nose.  Ok, yes...I do wear glasses sometimes and they do tend to slide down every now and then.  Let's move on...

Now, how does needpointing, sore fingers, and a year ago fit together?  Let me explain...

Rewind to December 1st, 2010...My sis-in-law, Courtney, was only 27 days from her wedding day and I had volunteered to make some of the special gifts for guests.  She and her fiance, Korbin, planned a destination wedding in Jackson Hole, WY on December 28th.  It was truly an incredible destination and provided for some unbelievable photos and memories. 

Courtney did most of the planning herself since her husband was deployed at the time while serving in the Navy.  She did it all while here in Texas, which made things a challenge at times, but she allowed me to be part of this special day and help with some of the really special details.

One of the things I volunteered to make were the 'take-away' gift for guests.  THANKFULLY it was a small wedding of only immediate family and a handful of friends!  I needlepointed and made mini-champangne bags for each guest to take away to toast the New Year.  On each bag was Courtney and Korbin's last initial...K.  I couldn't find burlap bags at the time that would fit the champagne bottles that Courtney wanted to use so I made those too.  Thankfully my mom gave me a quick tutorial on how to operate a sewing machine so that I could quickly stitch up 20 bags.  For a good 3 months I would needlepoint whenever I sat down to watch tv, on long car rides, while sitting in doctor's offices, and anywhere I was sitting or even standing for more than 5 minutes. 

Josh about had it with all things burlap, eggplant purple, and anything involving a K by the middle of December.  And I was to panic as the days ticked by and the number of K bags very slowly grew...very slowly.

Here are a few pics of the completed bags...I'll admit, I did really love them.  Do I think anyone knew how much time and effort went into them?  Um, no.  Hell, no.  But, it was totally worth it.  The little details make everything in my opinion. 

Another guest gift that I made for Courtney and Korbin's special day...the welcome bags.  They were also stitched from burlap and had their signature C and K monogram that we designed.  We cut the CK monogram out from a deep eggplant purple satin fabric and used an iron transfer paper to adhere them to the bags.  These bags were filled with hot chocolate and marshmallows, peppermints, maps of Jackson Hole, handwarmers, lotions, chapstick, etc.  Everyone loved them and used the goodies inside throughout the entire weekend.  

There is a lot more to share from this incredible event and I will in the days ahead.  So stay tuned!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Well, are you ready?  Do you have the turkey defrosting?  The potatoes peeled?  The pies baking? 

Yeah, me neither...

I've spent the morning frantically cleaning, trying to find my favorite recipes, searching Pinterest for table setting ideas and checking the online pre Black Friday deals.  Priorities.

Here are a few fun ideas that I've found for Turkey Day...

What are you grateful for?
These free printables from I Heart Nap Time would be great on each place setting at your table.

These will be an excellent reminder of what the day is really all about.

Need an easy and adorable idea for an inexpensive table runner...

This would be really easy to a few yards of burlap, cut them the length of your table, pull the loose strings from the bottom to create the fringed edge, and stencil with the first initial of your last name.  Craft or fabric stores like Hobby Lobby and Joanne's carry burlap.  I've even seen it at Home Depot in the lawn and garden section to be used in flower beds.  Burlap is a definite favorite of mine because it's inexpensive, durable, and easy to use.

 Another way to style burlap...cut as a table runner and tie with a simple burlap string. 

So easy...this would be cute too tied with satin or velvet ribbon. 

We all know that Martha always rocks it. 

 I love the idea of stacking desserts together so that your table isn't a flat, boring, table with desserts scattered all around.  By using cake platters and even small wooden boxes, Martha layers the pies at varying heights to create interest and uniformity.  Smart!  I've also see this with books stacked underneath.

And when it's time to pack up and go and take a piece of Grandma's pecan pie with you...

These are the greatest to-go pie boxes that I've ever seen. 
These would be perfect for the holidays or as a wedding takeaway. 

Oh, and of can you make Thanksgiving 'stretchy' pants stylish...

I'm thinking this look will be comfy, cozy, and step up from pajama jeans at least.

Alright, I'd better get some kind of prep done. 

Perhaps I'll start by chilling the wine...priorities!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Thursday, November 10, 2011


Ok, most people would not call me 'trendy'.  I certainly think I have a more classic and simple style. 

Pinterest has definitely inspired me to push beyond my black pant boredom and step out, very slowly, into slightly more updated looks. 

A trend I am trying today is the black dress and tights with brown boots.  A perfect look for fall, I think.  

Gasp...I know.  Black and brown, together?  Who knew?!

Obviously I didn't. 

I found these inspiration photos that led to my fashion exploration today...

All photos are from Pinterest

And now, my attempt (posed so fashionably in my husband's closet)...

Now, the only thing that I have noticed with this have to explain it to others.  My secretary and father both asked if I "knew what I was doing" with my outfit today.  I'm not sure you've accomplished pulling off a trend well when you have to explain to others that it is ok to be warn together. 
Hmm...maybe I'm not meant to be a fashionista. 

Have you tried this trend yet? 

Monday, November 7, 2011

November? Seriously?

Wow...I have no idea how November got here.  I was cruising along in September when I blinked and November arrived. 


Most of October was a big blur.  The main reason being that Josh and I were gone for a major part of it.  We recently returned from the Mayo Clinic in Arizona.  We were there for nine very long days.  The trip was actually really wonderful despite the fact that we were there for medical reasons. 

Here are just a few pics from the trip...

I took a walk on the red dirt outside of Sedona...
to feel the earth's healing 'vortexes'.  It couldn't hurt, right?

We saw 5 rainbows around Sedona's red rock canyons.  Amazing!

Loved the red rock cliffs.

Saguaro Lake outside of Scottsdale

Could not have made it without my #1 him!

More on all of that to come. 

Just know...God is SO good!  SO good!


Monday, October 10, 2011


No, not that.

It was an unplanned DAY. 

Yesterday Texas finally got some really good rain.  We were blessed with over 3 inches in Bulverde.  This is a BIG deal these days.  Texas is in the worst drought in history.  So, every drop counts...seriously. 

When Josh and I woke up to the sound of thundering growls and lightning flashes early Sunday morning we both were delighted to hear the sounds that we had been praying for for so many, many months.  We discovered many hours later, once our bedroom began to be filled with a dim light from outside, that the rain, thunder and lightning was actually pretty powerful and we were without power and had been for quite sometime.

There was no reason to move!  Awesome. 

Since we knew we were unable to make coffee and that most of the city was out of power too (thank you, iPhone), the only obvious choice for the morning agenda...sleep.  Good, genuine, quiet, unplanned sleep! 

Oh did it feel good!  So, so good. 

When the light finally became too bright, we finally decided that books could join us in bed.  We spent a majority of the day reading, resting, praying, talking, working on our bible studies, listening to music (on my already charged iPad), and appreciating a day without a plan. 

When the power finally returned, after noon, we decided there was no real need to speed up and try to capture the "lost" morning. Instead, we left the lights off, brought the coffee back to bed with us, and watched completely random and pointless movies. Perfect.

Everyone loved the day...labs, lacys, and pugs included.

It was truly lovely.  So, so lovely. 

We prayed Sunday night and thanked God for such a wonderful unplanned and unscripted day.  He is sooo good!  And for the rain.  The good, soaking, restoring rain.

Thank you, Lord!


Friday, October 7, 2011

Words of encouragment...

This past week I have been in bed...truly for almost a full week...well, 5 days, but it still counts.

I had one of the IVIG treatments that I receive each month on Monday.  These treatments are working and are helping reduce the crazy symptoms from this neuro disease that my body has, but they have some lovely side effects...primarily migraines and massive body aches.  It's totally fun...I hope you can sense my sarcasm. 

Spending an entire week in bed, even with a Tempurpedic, is not fun.  I actually figured out that your body and back can max out on Tempurpedic cushioning.  Maybe my spine is too straight now. 

My sweet husband has done a fabulous job of taking care of me, mainly by taking care of our house and dogs while I slept and slept.  I'm so thankful for him.  So thankful.  And blessed.  He's worked hard to make me smile and keep me laughing, even if it was only momentarily, before going back to sleep with a rag on my head.

Most of the time his simple, "I love you" and, "We will get through this" are certainly enough, but when Josh isn't here or his encouragment just isn't enough, I have to cling to the verses of the bible that wrap around me like a hug from Christ.

Just in case you need a hug are the words that I have led me through the dark days.  Maybe that's a bit dramatic...through the past 5 days, in bed, with the curtains closed. 

And a few more to make you smile (they made me smile)...

Happy Friday, Loves!


Friday, September 30, 2011

Paper pretties...

Have you checked out Rifle Paper Co.?

Oh, you haven't? 

Oh, you must.  Simply must.

I saw these the other day and had to check out their website.
I know...a notepad that fab is tough to write on.

 Wouldn't those look amazing with Natalie Jones on them? 
Yeah, I thought so too.

Check these out...

I know, right!?

 Does it get any more lovely?

How about this for a kid's room?
Oh, did you see the personalized notecards with an illistration that looks like you! 
Totally presh...

Oh, and of course, what any great company should have...
Pretty adorable! 
Well, you don't have to leave right now. 
I can keep reading and check them out in a minute.
Oh, alright...whatever. 
Go, go ahead...
Happy Weekend!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Everyday I see more and more projects online that I really want to get to!  I've been using Pinterest (a lot) to keep up with projects that I want to try from blogs that I want to return to. 

Here are a few of my "pins" lately that I hope to get to this fall...

Menswear baby bibs that are
so adorable and would look great on any little man.

Shadowbox keepsake of all of the keys
 where Josh and I have lived together...
it wouldn't be many, but it would be cute!

Baby leg warmers from boot socks! 
These are so adorable and would save some big $$$ on baby gifts!

Framing of vintage hankies in album art frames from Urban Outfitters.
Love this idea. 
I often pick up hankies at antique and vintage stores for $1 or $2. 
It would be really cute to frame one for a bride,
especially if you can find one with her new monogram.

Creating buttons or pins from antique embroidered linens
that may be unusable because of old stains they may have. 
These are so gorgeous and will honor the work that went into creating such a special piece.
the adventures of bluegirlxo

Painted pumpkins...totally adorable and easy! 
These will look great mixed with a few plain pumpkins on the porch.
No carving required!

These are all adorable, inexpensive projects that I plan on trying in the months ahead. 
Wish me luck! 
I'd better put the computer down and start crafting...

Oh, and you can find a lot more of my "pins" here...Southern Grace on Pinterest

Happy Monday!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fall on the brain...

I can't believe it's the middle of September!  Wow.  The year has not just flown by, it's traveled at super-sonic lightning speed! 

Even though it's still 95 degrees outside, I've got fall dressing on my mind.  I'm ready for jeans, boots, and layers!  I've been saving some fall fashion inspiration photos to help me dress for football games and wine outside by the fire ring...and of course, the office. 

Great color combo!

Perfect layering and awesome wrap.

Perfect low key preppiness...definitely need the striped flats.

Loving the olive green and Burberry plaid!

Obviously I'm going to need to do a little shopping to prepare for the season ahead...and will probably need to buy one of those hand held fans to help cool myself in the 90 degree heat while I'm sporting my new fall scarves.  Gotta love fall in Texas!

XOXO and Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Hot, hot, hot!

We're feelin' hot, hot, hot here in Texas.  So hot!  

Today is the 50th day of 100+ degree temperatures.  50th! 

We are doing anything and everything to stay cool.

Last night I convinced Josh that frozen yogurt could actually be our dinner. 

And he actually went for it!
Don't judge.

The heat's getting to us.  It's definitely affecting our decisions.  

We are loosing it!

Please God, send some relief!  Please.