Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fall finds...

I've picked up a few fun pieces for fall lately that I am loving. 
As the temps get a cooler I can't wait to pair this with tights and boots.   
This Target top paired with skinny jeans and flats is perfect for Texas fall (whatever that really is). 
This Gap dress is on sale and is relaxed but dressy enough for the office. 
 What great fall finds have you discovered lately?

Monday, October 8, 2012

Battle Rounds...

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, my amazingly talented cousin, Suzanna Choffel, auditioned for The Voice.  She killed it with her rendition of Landslide. 

You can see her performing it here.

She made it, which was a given, and is now gearing up for the battle rounds.  This is going to be intense.  We were screaming at the tv for the audition so I'm pretty sure we are going to have to self medicate in order to handle tonight's show.

Tune in to NBC tonight to watch the competition get heated.  It's going to be awesome!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Make these now...

If you know me, you know I love dessert. 

If you don't know me, I LOVE dessert. 

Not like love you love cute pictures of babies and puppies.  But, like LOVE it and will sacrifice all of my calories for a day for just one piece of cake.  But don't get me wrong, I'm not going to sacrifice for just any piece of cake.  It has to be good.  To die for good. 

That is why when I tried these dessert bars at a party recently, I almost died.  Almost grabbed the plate and hid in the pantry of my friend's home to devour them in privacy.  Don't judge.  I didn't.  People were watching.  I used self control.  Instead I came home and googled the ingredients so that I could make them for myself and take them to share with my bible study girls.

The original recipe is from Tasty Kitchen (where all deliciousness originates). 

Make these now...

Tasty Kitchen Graham Cracker Cookies

You'll end up hiding in a pantry devouring them all.  I won't judge. 

Happy Friday!


Monday, October 1, 2012


Do you ever just look at your house and hate everything?  Hate the lights...the furniture...the paint color...everything? 

You just want to host a massive garage sale and get rid of it all and start over, but then you realize what a waste that would be.  And how much effort that would take.  And how much you hate planning garage sales. 

And so you log on to Pinterest and just pin away.  Pinning is free and fast and you can design all of the perfect details without the real hassle of actually designing the details.

Welcome to my life.  I go through these highs and lows quite often...and end up pinning a lot. 

But, I will say that pinning has been enlightening.  I can actually see the pattern of what I am loving and wanting.  Pinterest is like my very own design therapist.  Without the leather couch and hourly rate (thank God!). 

These are a few of my fav pins lately...

Pinned here.
Pinned here.
Pinned here.
Pinned here.
Alright, feeling a little better now...and like the living room might be exactly where I need to start.  The whole house isn't looking so bad now.  But, this room needs to change. 
I'm already feeling a little more like I've done something, designed something, come up with an amazing plan for down the road.  All with a few clicks. 
Thank you, Pinterest.  My sweet design therapist.  You are so wise. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Use it or lose it...

I had big plans for a piece that I bought about a year ago.  When I saw it I fell in love and knew the piece had to come home with me. 

Standing tall and solid and looking very rugged and masculine was the ultimate nuts and bolts sorter.  It was tucked away in a small antiques store in Bulverde and was an amazing price.  It came out of an old warehouse/factory and was used to sort screws, washers, nuts, bolts and other mechanical parts.  I was immediately drawn to it because it was used for a purpose, had great patina (age) on it, and had lots and lots of math scribbled on the side of it in pencil from the factory.  You can't get anymore authentic or cool.  Perfect.

As I brought it home I knew exactly where it was going to go.  I immediately thought of the craft room that I had seen on houzz months before and loved.  Inspiration was going to come to life!


My new piece would fit right into my craft/laundry room.  Although I don't exactly sew, I knew it could be filled with fabric pieces used for projects, ribbons, and embellishments.

Josh shook his head.  I was going to disgrace the piece he said, only half joking.  Men would weep to see their functional nuts and bolts sorter with ribbons hanging from it. Oh man's nut sorter is another woman's ribbon holder.  Use it or lose it, guys!

I just had to get Josh to hang it for me along the big blank wall in the middle of the room.  No problem.

It was going to be perfect. 

It was going to be darling. 

It was going to be the piece that organized my chaos and brought a rustic touch to a pretty feminine and crafty room. 

It was going to be fabulous. 

You were going to ooohh and ahhhh over it. 

And so the story sat.  For a looonngg time.   

Life got a little in the way and hanging it got delayed.  I got distracted and moved on to the next project.  Don't judge. 

Hanging and organizing would happen.  Just not today.  Maybe next weekend. 

And then it happened...during my naptime time of meditation and reflection, Josh had an idea. And being a man, he acted on it. 

Yep, it's now filled with bullets.

No, not bullet holes. Josh didn't go crazy and shoot it for sitting there for so long.

It's actually filled with bullets.

And my precious fabric chic and rustic ribbon sorter...that was going to be now sitting filled with metal bullets and shotgun shells and being used again for function and purpose only. 

Somewhere I have to think that the old warehouse/factory workers would get a kick out of this and thank the Lord that there isn't a single darling piece of ribbon hanging from it. 

Use it or lose it, girls. 


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Escaping...Part II

Ok, back to our escape to Virginia. 

A few more tourist photos...

Here I am at the World War II Memorial. 
My grandfather fought in WWII so this was special to see.
As you can see, I immediately went to the Texas memorial.
Cory and Magen, our gracious hosts and tour guides...
and introducers to the train game that we fell in love with. 

Josh winning the train game...because "he's a winner!"
Ok, onto the shopping photos that I just had to take while touring. 
The antiques and decor items in the area were pretty fab.  It made me a little sad that everything in the area was approximately 30% cheaper than the Texas equivalent.  But, the area is just older with way more history and cool stuff.  Thank God I didn't have a UHaul...really. 
Josh was VERY thankful for this.  VERY.
These pieces were all found in the Lucketts Design House at the Old Lucketts Store.  The design house was gorgeous.  Perfectly decorated with new and old pieces.  It's open once a month and everything is for sale. 
The Design House is on the same property where Miss Mustard Seed features her milk paint line inside the Old Lucketts Store
Um, yes...of course I purchased some milk paint.  Can't wait to try it out!
Ok, onto the shopping pics...
I loved this gray armoire that was featured in the hall of the Design House

The Design House Mudroom
Armoire that Josh loved and would have been perfect in our home.

We also hit a few old barns along the way to Lucketts that were fab. 
They were filled with old and new pieces that should have come home with us. 
I loved these numbered locker shelves.
This old card catalog from a library had been converted into a great entertainment piece. 

The trip was SO much fun and a perfect escape!
We loved getting to hang with Cory and Magen and tour our nation's capital. 
It could have been a much more expensive escape had a UHaul been available.  I did bring back an old seltzer bottle which TSA at the airport really appreciated...ok not really appreciated...but it made it home in one piece after a small body search.  I'm not sure why the TSA patted Josh down when I was holding the seltzer bottle, but whatever.  We made it through. 
Alright, back to reality and Texas. 
You're welcome for the cooler brought it back with us.  
No furniture...just weather.  It'll have to do.

Monday, September 10, 2012

DVR set? Check!

It's Monday, September 10th, and I am excited. 

Why on earth am I excited about a Monday? 

Well, the latest premieres are starting.  Hello.

Josh and I aren't too caught up in a number of tv shows, thankfully, but we do have one that will have our full attention this season...The Voice!  My DVR is set and ready to record each second so that we don't miss a single beat of it. 

Why are we so excited!?  Well, we were fans last season and became hooked.  Oh and yeah...I happen to know one of the contestants.  No, it's not my hairdresser's cousin's neighbor's's my real cousin.  And she is a badass!  Suzanna Choffel is a mega talented singer and songwriter.  She's a Texas girl...Austin born and raised.  Her music gets you moving.  Her voice is smoky cool...sultry, sexy, and fun. 

The rhythm's gonna get you.  Be prepared.

You can find her here or here.
So, here's what we know...she auditioned for The Voice and is able to share that with everyone now.  She's AMAZING so I'm betting she makes it and a massive fight breaks out as the 4 judges fight over her.  I'm just hoping that during the fight Adam Levine happens to lose his shirt.  Just saying. 

Ok, I digress...we know she received an email from NBC saying that her blind audition will actually air next Monday, Sept. 17th.  So, she'll be on next week, but we've seen clips of her in the promos. 

Here's a pic of her blind audition...obviously Ceelo is loving it and thanking God for the voice he's hearing!

Ok, you've been warned and prepped.  Go set your DVR now.  You aren't going to want to miss this. 
Happy Monday!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Escaping, family and a lot of wine!

Josh and I got to escape a little of the Texas heat and head to Virginia for the Labor Day weekend to visit my bro, Cory, and sis-in-law, Magen.  It was a fab trip filled with a lot of walking, eating, and wine.  Total perfection!

Cory and Magen live outside of Washington, D.C. in a newly renovated house that they have been remodeling by themselves.  It is so darling and definitely inspired me to get my butt in action and get our place a little more completed.  C and M were the most gracious hosts and showed us all of the highlights of D.C., northern Virginia, and Maryland. 

Since most of my vacation photos consisted of inspirational design ideas for the house and all of the antiques and fabulousness I would have bought if we had a UHaul, I thought I should start with a few highlights from our day in D.C.

This way at least I don't seem quite as obsessed with decorating and materialism...I'll start with my cultural side. 

Washington Monument

Taking in the sights as true tourists...minus the fanny packs.

Reflection pool...which just makes me think of Forrest Gump?!

Josh embracing his inner tourist
Honest Abe

Air and Space Museum
Emerald featured in the Natural Science Museum (I think!?!)
Perfect anniversary gift for a girl that's born in May...hint, hint.
More to come soon.
Happy Friday!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

In the kitchen...

Yesterday I spent the morning in the kitchen whipping up some goodness for our darling friends that just brought their newborn baby home.  I had found a few delicious recipes online that I had been wanting to try and this was the perfect excuse. 

Let's start with what is the most important...dessert. 

Let me introduce you to peanut butter graham cracker balls...chocolately-peanut buttery goodness.  Pure sin.  So easy to do and a definite hit around here...Josh and I did a little bit of quality control in order to make sure these were 'safe' to give away.  Safety first, people.

Peanut butter graham cracker balls from Baby Gizmo
These are rolled in toffee bits... pure AWESOME.
Since I do understand that people eat more than just dessert (umm, why?!?), I did whip up some Southwest Chopped Chicken Salad from Greens and Chocolate.  This is so yummy and easy to do. 
I made a few modifications with mine based on the supplies that I had. 
The original recipe is here.
My changes:
Added 1 red bell pepper
Omitted the cilantro (yuck!)
Substituted mixed field greens and baby spinach instead of ice berg lettuce
Used Miracle Whip instead of mayonnaise
Used Hidden Valley Ranch's Fiesta Ranch instead of taco seasoning and ranch seasoning
These are two EASY and delicious recipes that I will definitely be making again and can't wait to deliver to our friends today.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Too hot!

It's so hot!  I mean ridiculous. 

When the weather forecast calls for 100+ degrees each day it's hard to be excited about spending any time outside. 

Unfortunately we all get too restless when we spend too much time inside...especially the four dogs!  So, when we do go out it's interesting to see what happens. 

I recently decided I would do a little early morning reading outside on the lounge chairs before it was too hot.  When I got up to go grab some water, it was already 95 by 9am, I returned to find that the crew had made themselves comfy under the beach umbrella...taking in the shade.  All 4 of them. 

Ever the athlete, Cedric, loves the pool.  When the temp spikes you know where to find him.

He uses it to cool down after a hard workout chasing the neighbors dog up and down the fenceline.

It's a hard life around here.

And for the actual humans that live here...
life's not too bad when this is the view you get to take in after a hot afternoon. 

I hope you are staying cool, loves!


Friday, August 3, 2012

Friday pug fun...

One post in July, really?  Come on, Nat!

Sorry, loves...there was an unexpected treatment after some sick days.  Excuses, excuses, blah!

So here is some Friday pug fun for you.

This is Rosie the Riveter pug.  Not my Rosie, but one that seriously looks just like her. 

Check out these two pugs that I met in Comfort, Texas at Blackbird Antiques...

Molly is on the left and Hudson is on the right.  They work there everyday. 

Their work is seriously exhausting.

Hope these little puggers make your Friday a little more humorous!


Monday, July 9, 2012

Whatcha been doing?

Trying to write today's blog I started thinking about what we have been up to lately.  It's sort of a big blur.  I have no idea where June went.  Seriously.  And now we are already on the second week of July.  Wow. 

So, we've been busy and going a lot lately.  Maybe a little too much.  My body has decided to revolt so we are slowing down a bit.  Slowing way down actually...this weekend I did nothing.  Seriously, nothing.  It was fab!

So, catching up...sometimes I think it's easier to do this via pictures rather than a lot of text. 

Let's go...

I made these amazing Hawaiian Barbeque Bacon Burgers recently.  We made them with grass fed, organic beef...which is expensive, but let me tell you...we could tell a difference!!  Such a delicious difference.  Even Josh thought so.  Awesome. 

Oh, and grill some's so delish.

I'm in the middle of Grace for the Good Girl for my girl's bible study group.  Great book especially for this recovering good girl.  Read it.  You can also find Emily's blog and discussion on the book here.

Rediscovered a few blogs that I really enjoy but was behind in reading...

Josh and I bought a movie that we totally fell in love with at the theater. 
We were so surprised by this little film.  It's so good.  Go rent it.  You'll be surprised.

Happy Monday, loves! 

As you can see my ADD is in full swing this Monday...I'm all over the place.

I better get focused. 

Focus...focus...focus...mmmm, cupcakes!?!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wednesday's words...

This really spoke to me yesterday...

What if this was our prayer everyday?


Sunday, June 17, 2012


Happy Father's Day to my sweet husband. 

Though you aren't the father of a little one with 10 fingers and toes, you are the father to our trainer-children. 

The four crazy beasts that drive me crazy and yet love us so unconditionally. 

You are the center of their lives and the best daddy to them.

All eyes on daddy.

No better way to spend a day in her eyes.