Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November Wrap Up and December Goals

No way is tomorrow December! (I think I said the same thing at the beginning of November.) I can't believe the year and my Happiness Project are almost over. It's been a challenging and busy month.

November: Food
-Read The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone
-Drink 2 Miir Bottles of water a day
-Don’t eat out more than twice
-Try going vegetarian
-Help cook family meals

This month's goals were more difficult than I initially thought they'd be. I haven't made it quite all the way through The Kind Diet, but I should be done in the next couple days. It's been very eye-opening. I KNOW that the food we eat has an effect on health, wellness, body, etc., but I don't know all the facts, details, etc.  It has definitely inspired me to think more about the food I'm putting in my mouth. The Kind Diet has been a good resource and I want to try some of the recipes in the back.

I don't think I've had EXACTLY 2 Miir Bottles of water every day, but I definitely upped my water intake. My friends know me as the girl who NEVER drinks water, so this is very good for me!

I'm not sure how many times we actually ate out. There were a couple nights that we were feeling too tired to cook, but we are all trying to be better about eating at home.

Going vegetarian was quite the challenge. Since Ashlee has gone vegetarian for over a year, we've eaten a lot less meat, so I figured it'd be no biggie. I quickly realized how prominent meat is in my life. I definitely stumbled through this month, but I think I'm on the right track and that going vegetarian is something I want to continue. Ultimately, I don't really want to label myself food-wise, I want to eat natural food that makes me feel good.

I've been doing so much better helping cook our family meals. So often by the time I get home from work I'm too tired to lift a finger. Last week I helped my mom make a delicious butternut squash lasagna and tonight I helped make a broccoli divan.

So December. The last month of the project. December is for Happiness. It is my boot camp month, combining all the topics from throughout the year. Now, I don't expect I'll be able to do everything perfectly, but it's worth a try. My goals are as follows:

December: Happiness
-Exercise regularly
-Finish my 2007 album
-Regular devotions
-Send Christmas cards
-Pay extra on my student loan
-Study for my Electrical Systems final/get an A on the test
-Eat vegetarian

See past months Happiness Project wrap ups. January. February. March. April. May. June. July. August. September. October.

Wardrobe Wednesday: A Bit Rusty

It's been FOREVER since I've done an outfit post. I've been a bit of a lazy blogger lately, but I am hoping to get back into a nice routine.

Cardigan: Target
Blouse: H&M
Jeans: H&M
Shoes: Forever 21
Ring: Gift

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tuesday Inspiration

I think these two drawings are just the prettiest! I even have the first one set as the background on my computer. What is inspiring you today?


Monday, November 28, 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


This made me giggle. I just had to share.


Monday, November 21, 2011


I've been wanting to paint again for a long time. I go through weird phases...I get ideas for paintings in my head, but sometimes it will take me months to work up the courage to try putting my ideas on canvas. My most recent painting was no exception. I worry too much that what's in my mind won't translate exactly how I want it to when I sit down to paint. I was inspired by the pictures below that I found on pinterest. 

I LOVE the first two paintings and knew I wanted to use lines and color.


 With the next two pictures, I knew I wanted to incorporate lyrics using vinyl letters.


When I first attempted to paint on Saturday things did not go how I planned. By the time I finished I felt like an ugly rainbow threw up all over my canvas. Sunday I tried again, repainting my entire canvas, but it was challenging due to the fact that I was quickly running out of white paint and was too lazy to get more. I managed to have just enough and finished this afternoon. The really hard part about having to start over is having to hand paint the letters since I was out of the vinyl letters, but I think they turned out okay. I used the lyrics to Home by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. It is definitely one of my favorite songs right now. I've already hung this up in my bedroom....not that I really have room on my walls.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Hello darlings! On Saturday I had the privilege of attending a screening of MiiR's documentary, "Beyond the Bottle." My sister has written about MiiR before. (See here.) Miir was started by a fellow SPU alum, Bryan, and I am so proud of what he and his team are doing.

So often I take for granted what I have been blessed with, even the simplest things, such as a glass of water. Did you know that nearly a billion people don't have access to clean drinking water? That number shocks me every time I hear it. MiiR is helping provide clean drinking water to those who need it most.

"At MiiR, we believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in thinking differently about what we create and who it may impact. we do this by making our products highly functional, well designed while giving back to those in need. We decided to start by making great bottles with significant purpose behind them."

As you can see by the pictures, my family LOVES MiiR bottles. Not only are the bottles unique, customized to us, and a "pleasure" to drink from, using a MiiR bottle eliminates the use of plastic bottles and one dollar of each MiiR bottle goes to provide one person with clean water for one year.

MiiR partnered with One Day's Wages, which is an organization to alleviate extreme global poverty. ODW uses 100% of the money raised to directly grant to organizations, projects, and causes around extreme global poverty. Rad, huh?

So if you need an idea for a unique Christmas gift that also makes a difference, MiiR is the way to go!

Follow Miir on twitter.
Follow Miir on facebook.

Monday, November 14, 2011

the unexpected

I should know by now that life NEVER goes exactly how you plan. That seems to be the story of my life. This weekend was no exception. I got an unexpected phone call Friday while I was at work. My dad was attacked by a crazy neighbor cat after the cat tried to attack Blizzard. To make a long story short, my dad had to go to urgent care and we had to take the neighbor cat to the humane society to be quarantined in case it has rabies. The neighbors who own the cat are not exactly the friendliest and have a reputation for overreacting with other neighbors. After all that, the decision was made to stay home this weekend, so we missed my cousin's wedding. It's too bad, but I think we all really needed a weekend at home.

Speaking of the unexpected, yesterday morning I learned that one of our dear friends from church is moving to Las Vegas with her son. She has had some terrible things happen in her life lately and this move is a good opportunity for her to have a fresh start. I'm just so sad to see her go. Please say a prayer for guidance and wisdom for her as she and her son are making this new transition.

What unexpected things have happened in your life recently? Were they good or bad?

Friday, November 11, 2011


Today after work my family is leaving for my cousin's wedding. I'm so excited for K&D. He and his wife-to-be have quite the unusual story. They were previously married about 13 years ago, divorced about 6 years ago, and reconciled about 2 years ago. Their lives are a testimony to God's redemption, forgiveness and abundant love. I'm so excited so be celebrating with them tonight!



How will you be spending 11.11.11?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

on the shelf

Hey loves. I feel like I've had a difficult time writing "real" posts. By the time I get home from work my brain just seems to float away. I figured it has been awhile since I've shared my reading list, so that's what I'm going to do today.

Millennium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson
When I started the first book, all I knew is that it was popular, but I had no idea what it was about. My sister and a couple friends said that it took a chapter or so to really get into the book, which I also experienced. If you haven't read these, be warned, there is rather graphic sexual violence. Despite that, the stories Stieg Larsson told were amazing and intriguing, about a young woman named Lisbeth Salander and an investigative journalist, Mikael Blomkvist. I could hardly put these books down.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
This is another one of those books that I heard that I must read, but I didn't really know what it was about or what to expect. It definitely lived up to all the hype. This is an amazing story that I laughed and cried through. It's about African American maids working and living in Jackson, Mississippi in the 1960s. I'm anxious to see the movie now!

Currently Reading:
Bittersweet by Shauna Niequist
I just started reading this last week. I previously read Shauna's book, Cold Tangerines (mentioned here, here and here) and loved her writing style. She offers so many beautiful insights about life, changes and growth. I can't wait to finish.

The Real Girl Next Door by Denise Richards
My sister read this a couple months ago and when I saw it sitting on the shelf at the library I picked it up. It's been an easy read and I'm nearly done. I always find it interesting to read about the lives of celebrities. It's easy to think everything about them and their lives is perfect, but when you get down to it, they are people too.

The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone
My sister, Ashlee, and my triplet, Jenny, have both read this book and since reading it, have both become vegetarians. (See my sister's post about the book here.) I'm so curious to learn more about how what you eat effects your health and your body. I previous read The Butcher and The Vegetarian and really enjoyed what Tara had to share about her take on food. (See my post here.)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

tuesday inspiration

Here are a few images that are inspiring me today. Happy Tuesday darlings!

Thursday, November 3, 2011


I figured it was time to post my Halloween pictures or else I would forget until Christmas. As I mentioned before I decided to be Olive Penderghast for Halloween. It was an incredibly easy costume. I wore a black tank top, black jeans, black heels and a pearl necklace. I spent all of 35 cents on red felt and sewed the A. The only downside was that besides my family, no one got my costume. Duh, people! Anyway, I had fun in my costume. My amazing sister, Ashlee, was foursquare. I didn't post a full body picture of her costume, so you'll have to wait until she shares on her blog.

Compared to the past three Halloweens this year was very uneventful. Ashlee and I went to our cousin's party for a bit, but left early and stopped by the Matador before heading home.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


I will be the first to admit that I have done my fair share of complaining and whining over the course of my life. It’s all too easy and heck, I’m good at it. Life isn’t going how I planned. I was unemployed for far too long. I was thousands in credit card debt. I have tens of thousands of student loans to pay back. I don’t have a car. I don’t have a community. Granted, even those relatively minor issues can feel like the weight of the world, but after writing all that out I am ready to slap myself. Negativity is sure obnoxious!

Lately through work and life I have encountered a number of negative people. (And I’m not denying that I was one of them.) These are the people who ALWAYS find something wrong or ALWAYS play the role of the victim, but never do anything to change their situation. Things do go wrong in life and people do get hurt; that is part of life. But really, when is enough, enough? Hearing constant negativity spew out of peoples’ mouths is utterly exhausting and emotional draining. At some point, we need to stop wallowing and complaining, and just start doing something. Start with a small step. Ask for help. Say a prayer.

I’ve heard stories of people who are in much worse situations than I have ever been in, yet with a quiet strength and an incomprehensible peace, they’ve walked through the darkest valleys. I’ve been at rock bottom before (and I’ll probably wind up there again), probably not in the same way as anyone else, but I made the choice to rise above it. I’m done complaining about my circumstances. (Remind me of this when things get hard.) Complaining, whining and worrying are not going to change where you are or what you are going through. However, I believe that a little positivity, courage and prayer will go a long way to helping turn things around.

Wherever you are, whatever you are going through it’s time to throw away the victim card and become a fighter and a survivor. It is time to THRIVE and find real JOY in this life we’ve been given. Does this mean everything is going to work out perfectly and life will be a breeze? Of course not, but we ALWAYS have a CHOICE. The best part is, that whatever happens, God is ALWAYS right there beside you and God has an excellent track record. Remember, you are not alone in this.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Is it really November?! These past couple months haven't really felt like fall, probably because our weather has continued to stay fairly warm. It sounds like this is finally the week where we'll cool down. I'm looking forward to what this month has to offer. I'm certain November will be full of work, church activities and family time.

What are your plans for November?