Saturday, August 31, 2013

Our Summer into Fall Mantel

Yesterday, I decorated a little bit differently to bring in some of the fall ambiance. I was given a really pretty floral arrangement from my mother as well as a gorgeous vase to go with it. The flowers though, didn't all fit in the vase so I recreated a few different arrangements for our mantel.
I realized how much I miss playing with flowers since I decided not to take the advanced floral class this semester. This brought me to a relaxing creative place and gives our home more of an "inviting" feel.
The mantel right night now has a summer into fall presence. As much as I'm hanging onto my warm summer days, I'm definitely awaiting fall's humble welcome.

What are some of your favorite ways to decorate for fall season?

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Recently {summer nights, my b-day & our new home!!}

Recently, I have wanted to stay away from blogging and social media. I have actually not been in the greatest of moods since having my first panic attack a few days ago (you can assume why from the bottom of this post). I guess you can say it's been a roller coaster of emotions this past week because although I may not be in the greatest of spirits, some pretty spectacular things have happened!

My birthday was on the 27th and to start off with celebrating, my mother in law love bought us concert tickets to see Brad Paisley this past Saturday! This would be our 3rd country concert within just a couple months. That's a record for us-definitely soaking up that last bit of summer nights. :)
He moved up from the stage and sang a few songs in the crowd. We came SO CLOSE to him!

This same night, this photo shoot was happening with a few of my headpieces. Thanks Kayla for capturing some amazing shots!

Tuesday, was my 24th birthday! My husband made me french toast for breakfast and we went to Panera Bread for lunch where some of my good friends and dear family met up with us. It was so good to see everyone who could show. It was totally last minute and I sincerely appreciate those who took the time to spend my b-day lunch with me.

Afterwards, I went to an antique shop and totally scored on this cute little tea cart for only $13!! I'm going to repaint it and use it as a little end table to go with my pretty chair.

For dinner, I went out with my mom, step father, 2 of my brothers and my "sister" Cheyenne. We went to Chili's where I pigged out on chips and guac, cajon pasta and strawberry lemonade. Of course, the employees also sang happy birthday to me and I received some free ice cream. I don't think I will ever be too old for free ice cream. :)

Best news yet of the week? WE GOT AN OFFER ACCEPTED ON A NEW HOME!! We are now in escrow! I seriously thought it would take like a year to even get a home because this market is a bit crazy for buyers but I'm so thankful we finally got an offer accepted.
A couple days ago, I wrote a letter to God including everything I wanted in a home and he gave us the necessities on the list. All of them. Including a full fruit and veggie garden (which wasn't on the list but it's definitely a PLUS)!
I have so many ideas for our new home. Some work has to be done including new fascia boards and putting in central AC (it's only on swamp). The husband prefers swap since it's cheaper but I'm not about to be dying in the humidity when it rains! Ha!
The first home project? A kitchen makeover with mint colored walls, white cabinets with black knobs (since we have black appliances) and a bit of gold detail. SUPER EXCITED!
With that being said, there will be some future posts on all of the room makeovers including the craft room ::squeal::, play room and dining room as well. :)

Have you ever done a home makeover?
What's your favorite room in your house? 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Nature + Light {A Styled Photo Shoot}

This past Saturday, I had the great opportunity to create some headpieces for a styled photo shoot with Kayla V Photography. She always takes amazing photos and creates such a beautiful and unique vision through her work.
For this nature/light-inspired photo shoot, the gorgeous (and SUPER talented) Megan Fay modeled my hairpieces as well as makeup by CheeksMakeup, hair styling by Katey-Bug Brown and clothing/styling by Tyler Freund.

Photography: Kayla V Photography
Model: Megan Fay
Headpieces: Love Sparkle Pretty
Hair Styling: Katey-Bug Browne
Makeup: Cheeks Makeup
Clothing: Tyler Freund
Location: Mt. Baldy, Ca

See more of this shoot here.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Fall Inspired Tablescape

Last night, I dubbed myself a little crazy (you may have noticed on my Instagram). After not being able to turn my creative brain off, I decided to create a little fall inspired tablescape (at 11pm nonetheless) "just because."
I rounded up a few things I had around the house and put it all together to speed up fall's welcome. It is my favorite season and I am definitely looking forward to it's cooler weather, changing leaves and the pretty cardigans that arrive this time of year.
With airy florals, glass bottles, wood details and a bit of gold sparkle, this pretty set up is easy to recreate as an inviting touch to any home.
At dusk, the glow of the candles are just heavenly. Makes me want to curl up in a cozy blanket and sip hot chocolate.

Awaiting Falls arrival...

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Gratitude {A difficult reflection of motherhood + healing wounds}

There is always something to be grateful for but lately, I have been feeling even more thankful than usual. It started with something that Brant Hansen said one day on Air1. He was talking about that article that was just published about children costing a crazy amount of money and how much of a cost "burden" they can be. Brant gave a quote from Justin Guarini about this same topic that actually put tears in my eyes. He said, 

"There was a time when I could have thrown down cash for a house, and had any number of lovers in and out the door. A flashy car and clothes to match. An ego to trump them all.
Now, I rent a home filled with love. I have a wife whom I love and who loves me (me!) and who lifts me up. Children who give me cherubic-lipped kisses before I leave for work and who are the most delicious morsels of joy and peace and prosperity.
I am a pretty wealthy individual. 
And then this, his best line:
I have more riches than I can count. Most of them come in the form of smiles and drool... but they make me feel like a gazillionaire."

When he said this, I felt a little guilty because at times, I feel like I don't appreciate how much of a blessing my son is. Sometimes, I get so overwhelmed with his energizer bunny, bouncing off walls, jumping off tables, throwing things behavior. I felt guilty for the times I've said "I need a break" or "this is so much harder than I ever thought."

He is well, he is alive, he is curious, he is unique and he is unbelievably precious and loved in not only mine and my husband's eyes but the Lord's eyes as well.

I would never change what God has blessed me with and I am SO thankful for the life I've been given-including our little lover-everything about him. Yes, sometimes I may feel as if I "need a break" from the messes of smeared fruit snacks in the carpet, the brief heart attacks from watching my son get on tables to try and jump off and the constant discipline to get him to stop putting random things in the outlets.

This is life and it's filled with lots of kisses until bellies start hurting from laughter, hugs that squeeze tightly, hands that tangle up and "I Love You"s to last a lifetime yet can't ever be said enough. I would never trade any of this for the world and I'm thankful to have reflected due to a couple minutes listening to the radio.

Think this post stops there? Not entirely.

A few days ago, I was also attacked by a few large dogs. I don't really want to get too much into it because I don't want to think about the details but I can honestly find ENORMOUS gratitude in that situation as well. I could have had my son with me, I could have had my face severely wounded or even organs punctured BUT even in that moment, I was being protected.

My side has bite marks, I have a very small gash on my head and a couple deep punctures in my right arm. My arm got the worst of it but my physical wounds are definitely healing quickly with lots of prayers from family and friends. My emotional wounds will certainly take longer though. Today, I saw my neighbors small dog wondering into our yard and my heart stopped. I turned around to walk into the house praying the dog wouldn't follow me and I shut the door as quickly as possible.

Yet through this, I have so much more to be grateful for because I am well and I am able to be at home with my family.

This is what I will dwell on.
Thank you Lord!

What are you thankful for lately?

Saturday, August 17, 2013

My Dream. Dream Big.

Sometimes, I just dream and when I dream, I tend to dream big. 
When I think about what I'd absolutely love to do in life, if I could, it always has to do with submerging myself into a romantic environment.

I'd love to have a cottage somewhere completely green, ivy growing up walls, beautiful flowers sprouting everywhere including a peony garden (they're my fav) and LOTS of gorgeous trees. There would be a stone walkway leading to a large wooden door and the scent of lavender emerging from within. Not only could I live within this beautiful setting with my husband and child(ren), but I'd also make this little haven a place where couples could get married. There would be a large backyard with dancing meadows in the breeze, a pretty pond that provided a home for gentle Koi fish, twinkle lights strung from tree branch to tree branch and the cutest little arch made completely out of natural wood to say "I DO" under.

This cottage would also have a small detachment which would be my studio/office/boutique where I'd spend my days creating, planning weddings and displaying my pieces within floor to ceiling windows and chiffon drapes.

The sounds of a happy child playing in an enchanting tree house would drift through the windows of the studio giving completion to the creative environment.
Once my husband and I got a little older with a tad bit of wrinkles, we'd move to France (and beg our child(ren) and grandchildren to move there too). We'd live above a beautiful flower shop with windows opening out to see the Eiffel tower in the distance and a balcony with bistro chairs to enjoy our morning coffee and devotion together.

When we would leave our home to visit the nearby market, we'd always walk through the most glorious of scents from the fresh bloom of flowers and say "bonjour" to the ladies displaying pretty arrangements on the store front. Of course, we would know each one by name because I'd spend my weekends with them, playing with flowers.

At night, the sound of the nearby pianist creating peaceful music would lull us to sleep...

What are some of your aspirations, dreams, goals ?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Coffee Date {friendships, fashion bloggers & branding} + a WINNER!!

Last week, I visited my friend Tara of Laila's Charming Pieces for a coffee date and play date. This week, she came to visit my home to catch up once more.
As soon as she told me she was coming over, I immediately started to brew some Folgers Morning Blend coffee because it's her favorite and when I tried it, it became my favorite as well. With some Peppermint Mocha creamer + Hazelnut creamer, we were set to chat.
What's your favorite coffee + creamer combo?
We talked about our ideas for upcoming items to add to our shops for the fall season including a new headband that we just photographed for Tara's shop. We also talked about the different difficulties we've had with figuring out our target market and branding ideas. 
It takes time and some experience to really understand and "know" your brand. Truth is, it may even change but feeling confident of your work is the first step.
Then, when I saw Tara's customized stamp she had bought for LCP, I told myself that I needed one too! Ha! That's my next shop purchase. ;) 
If you own a handmade shop/business, what difficulties and achievements have you had with branding? Was/is knowing your target market an obstacle? 
We went on to discuss our recent struggles with friendships and the changes that can come so suddenly after a friendship was thought to be so strong. It's funny how much time it can take to build a close relationship with someone but it can all be ruined so quickly. This past month was especially hard on me when it came to letting go of people that were once so near and dear to my heart. I realized that I need to just stop waiting for something that probably won't happen and let just let it be.
Forgiveness was also brought up and how hard it can be to completely forgive and cast unto the Lord. Prayer requests were exchanged and I'm so thankful that I have others to be prayer warriors for as well as for myself.
Have you ever struggled with letting go of friendships/relationships?

The funniest part about today was definitely when Tara was telling me about a recent post by The Life of Bon entitled "how to become a fashion blogger." The topics she named were HILARIOUS! So funny in fact that I had actually spewed some of my coffee out on the table from laughing so hard.
 Some of the things she listed were posing and taking photos in a crowd of people (they will think you are a celeb or model), pop your elbow or your knee (or both)-you'll look "legit" (See Tara below) and stick your head out as far as possible toward the lens-your head my look big but your waist will look oh so tiny. My fav? If all else fails, hide behind a big purse, a plant, or a dog.
Seriously, read this people!
Now, I'm no fashion blogger but I do enjoy reading a few of them. I can totally see how these laughable ideas were given. I don't know how they can style themselves super cute with a pair of heels just about EVERYDAY (I know you aren't really wearing those heels in the snow to run your daily errands) and take photos of themselves. I commend their efforts! It takes creativity and certainly motivation to pick out cute wardrobe all the time.
What are some of your favorite fashion blogs?

Last but not least, last week we posted a giveaway of a pretty beaded bracelet from my shop as well as some adorable crochet hearts handmade by Tara.
The winner has been chosen.
Congrats and Cheers to Courtney of Air Force Wife & Our Life!! 
Have a lovely day friends!