Sunday, December 28, 2014


I've been writing a ton. Everyday, everywhere. Journals, notebooks, random pieces of paper (seriously.) I've discovered that writing helps me organize my thoughts and I feel like I can think more clearly when I've taken all the words bouncing around in my head and transferred them on to a piece of paper. The only place I haven't been writing? Online. This blog. After giving some thought as to why; I realized my excuse was always I don't have a picture. Well since this is my blog I am officially giving myself permission to blog without a picture. I know my last post about Thanksgiving didn't have a picture and it was quiet nice to just write. So I am planning on continuing that theme. Granted there will still be pictures whenever I want to post one, but I am hoping that giving up on the feeling that I have to have a picture will giving me the freedom to write more.

Thanks for reading my words,


Currently watching: American's Funniest Home Videos (and laughing my head off.)

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Growing up, Thanksgiving looked pretty much the same every year. A two hour car ride to my grandma and grandpas' house where we stuffed ourselves full with a delicious Thanksgiving lunch for 35+ people. (My mom has a big family.) Then we headed over to my great aunt and uncles' house for Thanksgiving dinner for another 30+ people. (My dad has a big family too.) I always made sure to pack my Christmas CD's so I could listen to them on my portable CD player (remember those?!) on our two hour drive home. And that was it, the same thing every year.

Then Kevin and I got married and when you're married you get blessed with an even bigger family to share the holidays'. This is our fifth Thanksgiving together and none of them have ever looked the same. Sometimes Kevin has made that two hour car ride with me to spend Thanksgiving with my side of the family, but even then my aunt and uncles host now since cooking such a big meal is getting to be too much for my grandparents. Other years Kevin and I get to spend Thanksgiving with his family.

This year Thanksgiving was a little different yet again. We had to move the big meal to lunch to accommodate work schedules. I brought an oreo pie with a brownie crust and helped my mother-in-law make her homemade dressing (or stuffing, whatever you want to call it.) It was a nice peaceful and relaxing holiday.

I wonder what Thanksgivings of the future will look like. Will we have little babies that will someday grow into kids who want to play football in the backyard? Will I eventually host Thanksgiving at my house? That would definitely put my cooking skills, or lack there of, to the test! Will I make that two hour journey next year to see the smiling faces of my aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents? All I know is I am thankful that every year I get share Thanksgiving with people I love.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Summer Recap

I've chimed in here and there this summer but I took somewhat of a blogging break. I'm hoping to get back into the swing of things and what better way than to do a summer recap.

First off, we celebrated Kevin's birthday by having a big family dinner. Nash and Ellie got were able to meet for the first time, as I got to snap a few pictures. Ellie was more scared of him than I thought she would be. Just wait till he's mobile Ellie, just you wait. You have my full permission to hide under the bed to avoid any rough pets or stubby tail pulls
Kevin and I also celebrated out three year anniversary! Crazy to think about how fast and slow the past three years have been. I love him more today then I did then and I hope that love keeps doubling over the coming years. I love being his wife.
How did we celebrate our anniversary? We went to the zoo and took pictures with camels, of course. I mean really, is there any other way celebrate?

We had a great time. Our zoo is very nice so it was a lovely way to spend the day. That was the first time in a long time that I had walked the whole zoo in one day. I was good and tired by the end of it. We have talked about getting a annual pass so that way we can do and just do certain sections at a time. I think it's something we would really enjoy. Always and forever, the elephants are my favorite.
And as I introduced earlier, we got a kitten. Sybill has added so much fun and craziness to our household. I love this little family of mine. So far she's an excellent photobomber.
She definitely gets a passing grade in cat naps. Just looking back at these pictures she looks so tiny. I can't believe how big she is already. If I'm getting all sentimental about my cat growing up, I'm really going to be in for it when I have kids! 
 A whole crew us of went to the Parade of Homes, which is always one of the highlights of my summer. Bathroom selfies, family style. (Ok, that sounds gross and weird.)
This is just one of the the beautiful homes. I'll post a few more Parade of Homes pictures later but over at The Fat Hydrangea is a lovely round of up all the homes. This house is by Bob Webb Homes and the exterior reminded me of the house I grew up in. White house, black shutters and a red front door. (Although our house was a little, a lot smaller than this one.)

In nephew news, this little guy is getting cuter by the minute. I love that his mom sends me adorable pictures like this. I mean, look at those cheeks! I have so much love for him!

 I signed up for Stitch Fix this summer. I got my first "fix" in August and loved it. I ended up keeping two of the five pieces. I've already signed up to get another fix in a few months. I think it's something I'd like to do seasonally. It's definitely the perfect solution for a non-shopping-loving person, such as myself.
 I tired to get a picture of Ellie and Sybill together for size comparison. This is the best I could do. Unless she's sleeping, Sybill is always moving. As I type this she is trying to squeeze herself into the handle opening of a basket. She's always good for a laugh. I feel like I should do one of those updates like people do for babies. At three months old, Sybill prefers eating Ellie's adult cat food instead of the kitten formulated cat food. Ellie would look at me with the saddest look in her eyes, so I had to start mixing the food together. This way they both get some of each and Ellie doesn't have to worry about her little sister eating all of her breakfast...

 Summer ended with a beautiful country wedding I was able to attend with my family. I am very thankful for little sisters who wear the same dress size. Of course I knew about the wedding since April, but I was over at her house trying on dresses to borrow an hour before it was time to leave. I am thankful we are basically the same size. In this photo I wish someone would have told me to fix my sweater and straighten my necklace, but oh well, life is not perfect, and neither am I. The day was beautiful, the bride had tears of joy streaming down her face and she said her vows to her groom. What a wonderful way to finish a wonderful summer.

Monday, July 28, 2014

I Thought I Was A Dog Person

Please allow me to introduce you to the newest furry addition to our family, Sybill. We picked her up from the local humane society, where she was originally named Ester, and brought her home with us and gave her a new name. (Both of our cats are named for characters in Harry Potter.)
Ellie was not the biggest fan but they are doing much better now. Although Sybill's idea of playing is charging at Ellie with her claws out and Ellie is not the biggest fan of that game (and I don't blame her because Sybill also likes to play that game with me and it hurts!) 

Neither Kevin or I had cats growing up so seeing how very different their personalities are has been amusing. Sybill is a big fan of sleeping on you and Ellie would prefer to take her cat naps sight of you but has to be at least arms distance away. Sybill enjoys chasing anything and everything while Ellie looks on as if cat toys are beneath her. Sybill likes trying to catch her own tail and Ellie doesn't have a tail. 

It's been very amusing to watch them interact. We are being sure to give Ellie plenty of snuggles too, at her discretion of course. 
Ellie has been amusing us with her fair share of antics as well. Of course I leave wreath forms around for the specific purpose of creating cat seats, I mean, what else could I possibly need them for. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Technology Fails and Vacation Reminders

I started this process by uploading pictures from my phone to my computer. I didn't realize that this computer hasn't met my new phone so in my (to be honest, laziness) I didn't really read what I was clicking on and ended up restoring my phone it settings from October 2013.The bummer is my phone is now running the old looking software and I have no recent pictures (good thing I had just uploaded all of my pictures) but the good news is that my most recent photos are of things like this.

Which is perfect because I'm been filling my free time by planning make-believe trips to Disney. I feel like I talk about Disney a lot on this blog but sorry I'm not sorry. I saw this quote on Pinterest.

"There is nothing wrong with loving the crap out of everything. Negative people find their walls. So never apologize for your enthusiasm. Never. Ever. Never." -Ryan Adams

I'm enthusiastic and for the most part a pretty positive person. Heck, I even just found the bright side in technical difficulties. I'm off to go walk down memory lane looking at old photos. Goodnight!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

I Can Do Hard Things.

I can do hard things.

This weekend I got out my sewing machine and sewed. If you know me at all, then you would understand that this is completely out of character for me. Clearly all of the sewing genes went to my sister.

It had been quite some time since I had last pulled out my sewing machine so I had completely forgotten how the get it threaded properly and set up the bobbin, etc. The thought of trying to figure it all out was a enough for me to keep the machine tucked safely in closet. But I surprised myself when I started pulling out my sewing box and gathering the pants that needed hemming.

After following the instructions for the set-up process I had machine humming along. I actually shouted out loud "I DID IT! I CAN DO HARD THINGS!" My sister (different sister) and I had been keeping each other company by chatting over speaker phone so she laughed quite loudly at my exclamation.

I made a mess (which you can see in the background of this photo) which is enough reason for me not to try new things. I hate cleaning up messes. Honestly, I don't think anyone enjoys cleaning up messes but messes are part of life. They are a sign of creativity, of good work being done. When my sewing projects were complete I cleaned up the mess in less than ten minutes feeling accomplished that I had tried (and succeeded) at something new.

I didn't left myself hold myself back and now I have jeans of the proper length and two new pairs of shorts. If I can sew, when I thought I couldn't, what else can I do. I just have to keep reminding myself...

I can do hard things. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Bad Bedding Purchases and Laundry Confessions

Not too long ago I wrote this post about our new bedding. Yeah...well... I would have done myself a favor if I had left it on the shelf in the store. After a couple of washes all of the stuffing has bunched up creating the lumpiest comforter ever. I mean, you get what you pay for right? And the whole set was only sixty bucks.

I would feel guilty throwing it away because it's not technically damaged, but I don't want to donate it to the thrift store because the wind-breaker type fabric is a cat hair magnet and Ellie fuzz is STUCK to this bedding. So, I am doing the next most logical thing. I'm washing the comfortable as often as possible in hopes that the seams will rip and all the stuffing will fall out. Is that a terrible thing to admit online? Probably, but it's the truth. It's like when I buy a new type of shampoo and then realize I hate it but I paid good money for it so I don't want to "waste" it. So obviously I will wash my hair with buckets of terrible shampoo in order to use it all up and take a guiltless trip to the store to buy the "right" shampoo again. Esentially, I'm trying to "use up" my comforter.

My dream bedding is here it's Pottery Barn's Samantha Damask in Smoke Gray. I mean this gorgeous bedding is LITERALLY calling my name. But honestly, if I had bedding that nice I'd be too afraid to use it. Knowing my awesome laundry skills I'd dye it pink before I even got a chance to put it on my bed. (Just ask my husband; one time I got bleach spots on ALL of his work shirts. I wasn't even using bleach in that load.)

I think when my "new" comforter is used up I'll just go back to what I had before.

Until I get significantly better at doing laundry.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

This is Exciting!

It's a boy! I was so excited to get a text from my sister that said "I **might** be in labor" at three in the morning and indeed she was because by six that evening she was holding her baby boy.

Photo: It's a boy! Welcome to the world Nash Austin! I am so excited to be your aunt :)

It was such a cool experience to be at the hospital with a whole bunch of family and have my brother-in-law walk through the doors to proclaim "it's a boy" with a big smile on his face. What an exciting day. They are home from the hospital and both mom and baby are doing well. I've been able to see them a handful of time since his arrival but it never seems like enough. I could hold that little baby forever.

My sister hasn't posted anything on her blog yet but you can find it here when she does.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Weekend Ramblings

Happy Saturday!

I've been kind of all over the place here on Inspired by Numbers, lately. I've been writing about books, my house and whatever else seems to pop into my head. I was trying to force myself into some sort of schedule for the blog by planning posts etc. and you know what? That's just not me right now.

I feel like the internet is becoming more and more saturated and I found myself trying to find my little niche. I wanted to be home decor on a budget blogger (hence the inspired by numbers name) but then when decorating my house wasn't moving quite fast enough for a blog I decided I would just be a money blogger and poor out my infinite wisdom of managing fiances to the internet (that was sarcasm if you can't tell) but I found myself running out of things to say (I guess my wisdom wasn't so infinite after all.)

The truth is, my interests vary more than that and therefore the blog is going to vary a lot too. This blog is a hobby for me. I am not a professional blogger, actually I have a full time job that takes up much of my time and energy and therefore I am not going to worry about what and when my next blog post will be. I really enjoy writing and this is a place where I can be brave and let other people read what I write, even if I am writing about something silly.

On that note, this is what is currently on my mind. My sister is due with her first baby on Monday. This new little edition will make two people parents, four people grandparents, five women aunts and three men uncles for the first time ever. My sister and brother-in-law decided they wanted the gender to be a surprise and therefore I don't know if I'll be getting a little niece or nephew. I am unbelievably excited about becoming an aunt for the first time. I think I've told everyone I know about it. Last weekend I was at Kohl's and bought a newborn boy outfit and newborn girl outfit (so I'm prepared) and I told the lady at the cash register about how I can't wait to be an aunt, I'm sure she didn't care but I am happy about it. I just can't wait to hold this little person in my arms. It could be any day now...

Monday, April 28, 2014

Thoughts on Food from the Weekend

Good morning Monday everyone!

Things to note: the following is just my ramblings with no lesson to be learned or beautiful pictures to view. I just felt like writing and these are my thoughts.

It's been one of those weekends where I just don't. want. to. cook. When it comes to dinner I would like to eat jelly beans. Why can't jelly beans be a legitimate dinner option? I ended up making pizza from refrigerated dough and threw together a quick salad since the lettuce was already washed and chopped.

I have a handful of go-to dinners that don't require recipes. Tacos, spaghetti, chicken and rice, etc. I didn't start cooking until I moved out of my parents house and I didn't do that until I got married. So in the almost three years since my cooking journey began I'm happy that I have these go-to dinners that require little thought. I keep checking cookbooks out of the library thinking it will change my dinner game, but they usually get returned without a single recipe made. So, I told myself no more library cookbooks until I have tired cooking out of the books I already own. I think I'd like to try a recipe for steak and one for ribs in the slow-cooker next.

Another funny observation, my mom never made ribs or steak while I was growing up so those two things seem especially difficult to me. If mom didn't make it, then it was gourmet food that requires a professional. The meals I make now are very similar to the ones my mom made during my childhood and I am 100% with that but I'd like to try something new.

Anyway, that's just what I have been thinking about and decided to share. Hope you all have an absolutely lovely week ahead!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Moving Things Around in the Dining Room

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter.

This weekend I tired some dining room hutch rearranging. We got this hutch last year for $100 on Craigslist. Originally I thought about painting the back of it a lighter color since since so dark, but it is solid wood and I actually enjoy the look of wood so I decided not to paint it. Instead, I put all of my white ceramic pieces in there and they pop against the dark wood.

Here's what it looked like before:

Sorry for the blurry photo but this is the best one of the bunch (you don't want to see the others.) Anyway, the hutch had turned into a catch all of sorts. Nothing was styled so I collected all my pieces on the kitchen table and did some rearranging. 

I ended up with:

I love the way the white pieces look in here. I also enjoy having my cookbooks available in the kitchen for obvious reasons. I wonder if the Pioneer Woman minds being on display? I'm sure I'm not the only one who has all of her cookbooks.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist

This was the perfect book for me to read in this season of my life. The chapters were short but each one contained a heartfelt story that really resonated with me. The way she talks about food makes me want to run to my kitchen to start chopping and dicing right this very instant. (Which is saying a lot because I'm a rather hesitant cook) But this book is about more that just food, it's about life. The good the bad and the ugly, how we all go through hills and valleys and just as life connects us all, so does the food.

One of my favorite quotes comes from the chapter City Love where Niequist is talking about how one of her favorite memories of her wedding day was eating the leftovers with her new husband back in their hotel room overlooking Chicago after all the wedding festivities were done. She says this...

"When we want something to be momentous, it rarely is. Life is disobedient in that way, insisting on surprising us with its magic, stubbornly unwilling to be glittery on command." (page 222)

How true is this? You can plan and practice but life will give you magical moments even in the most unexpected of times. My favorite childhood memories are from everyday life. Dancing in the kitchen with my sisters, making cities out of boxes and paper for our stuffed animals, my dad justifying the cookies the came home after his grocery trip by proclaiming they jumped into his cart.

Yes, special occasions like Christmas and Birthdays contain wonderful memories too, but there is just as much magic throughout everyday life.

Even big things like my wedding day contain unexpected moments that bring a smile to my face. I planned, pondered and made big, expensive decisions because I had dreamed about this day my whole life. I spent a lot of money on dress that I wore once but, do you want to know one of my favorite pieces of my carefully designed outfit was? At the last minute someone asked if I wanted flowers in my hair. Yes, I thought, of course I wanted flowers in my hair. So they rounded up some white orchids and the hair stylist pinned them in my hair. And whenever I see the pictures I smile because I got married with flowers in my hair. To me that is such a beautiful and romantic thing. It was last minute and I loved it.

But back to the book. The copy I read was from the library but I definitely need to own this book. The recipes sound delicious I am definitely going to make the Basic Vinaigrette and I want to try the Maple Balsamic Pork Tenderloin, the Dark Chocolate Sea Salted Toffee and the Blueberry Crisp. Even though I more of a "good reheater" than a cook, I still think I can tackle these. Reading this book has given me more confidence in the kitchen. She admits that not every recipe she tries turns out the way she hopes and that's okay. Sometimes you succeed and sometimes you don't, with food and in life.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Pillow Fight!

I am a big fan of use-what-you-have decorating. Although, I am not always the best at practicing what I preach. I give into the the it will look better when we have more money mentality sometimes, but really, that is just an excuse.

So today I challenged myself to use what I have and shake things up by moving some pillows around (which was so strenuous because they are so... you know... heavy...) anyway this is the results.

The Front Room:
First up is the pillows that came with the couch. I like the colors, the round pillow is slightly odd but I think it works.

Next up is the pillows from the family room. This is probably my least favorite in here. Something about the red, blue and gray seemed too patriotic for me. Also, since the pillows were all the same size it felt very flat if that makes any sense.
These teal-blue pillows are from our new bedding set. This option and the original pillows are my favorites on this couch. Something about that shade of blue and the gray menswear type fabric of the couch look so good together in my opinion.

The Family Room:

These are the pillows that normally live on this couch in our family room. My mom made the pillow covers to go over the stock pillows. She made these when we still lived in our first apartment so this has been this couches "look" for quite some time.

I thought these pillows would totally clash with the yellow on beige thing they have going on but I actually really like them in this room. The photo hanging above the couch (which I cut out in every photo but the last one) is from our wedding day when we stopped by this little dirt road to take pictures. The surrounding grass has a lot of yellow in it which I never noticed until I moved the pillows in here. I also love how the big pillows balance out this big couch.
I grabbed this gray pillow from a nearby chair and although I love the way this looks, I think five pillows on a couch might be too fussy for they way we live. Most of the time the pillows get moved around or end up on the floor for back support when playing video games.
Here it is with the teal-blue pillows from the bedroom. I kept the gray pillow because I thought it looked nice but again five pillows is probably too much for our family. I like the teal with beige though, it definitely freshens things up a bit.
So what did I end up with?

The front room winner is:
The teal blue is my favorite in this room. I'm not too worried about missing these upstairs because we always moved them when we went to sleep and they very rarely made it back to where they belonged.

The family room winner is:
I was completely surprised how much I like these pillows in here so I think I will leave it like this for a little while and when I change my mind again it will take, oh about two seconds to switch everything around.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

What I Read Wednesday: Notes from a Blue Bike

I just finished Tsh Oxenreider's new book called Notes from a Blue Bike which was released earlier this year. I am a fan of Oxenreider's blog The Art of Simple and her podcast by the same name (formally called Simple Mom.)

Notes from a Blue Bike is a memoir style book where Oxenreider shares stories about her families travels and experience as ex-pats and how all of this has lead them to a life where they intentionally choose to live simple. I really enjoyed the parts about her life in Turkey. She described the culture such as the open air markets so well I felt like I was experiencing it for myself.

My favorite quote from the book is:

"Most of life's decisions don't come with black-and-white answers, and that's a beautiful, marvelous thing. We're each given freedom to choose our decisions, and that responsibility is the very definition of living with intention, after all: making daily choices so that your life lines up with your passions and values. It should all make sense in your head." (page 214)

I this is such a great quote to keep in mind. It seems like everyone has an opinion about everyone else's life these days (oh they're getting married really young, or why aren't they married yet, etc.) When it is really up to the individual to live their life in the way that best suits them. In the book the Oxenreider family chooses  to home-schools their children for a season or two so that they can pursue their passion of traveling. While other people may not understand their decision, it's okay because it make sense to them and their family.

Overall I really like the stories she shared and I liked that the chapters were crazy short. This make it feel like I was flying through this book and allowed me to read a chapter here and there, on my lunch break or waiting for water for boil for dinner, etc.

I look forward to her next book.

Monday, March 31, 2014

My Sister is Awesome

I have two sisters and they are both very awesome individals but I want to take a moment to brag about my sister Alex for a minute here. See, Alex can sew, like really good (the girl made her wedding dress and it was beautiful) and she recently lauched an etsy shop called Alex and Ally where she is selling adorable baby items she makes herself.

Gender Neutral Bib Set in Indian Summer

I am so proud of her for making these beautiful, quality products in the most adorable fabrics. And she's doing all of this while she's pregnant with her own little bundle of joy. So along with preparing their hearts and home for their future baby she has been hard at work making these beautiful baby items. She has a lot of gender neutral things, which can be hard to find these days.

Along with the bibs she makes pacifier clips and burp cloths.

Gender Neutral Burp Cloth in Black and White

 Pacifier Clip in Purple Triangle
If you know any little babies out there who need some adorable accessories please check out my sisters shop. I can't wait to see this become a huge success for her. You can find her shop at

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

What I Read Wednesday: Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin

A few weeks ago I finished Happier at Home  by Gretchen Rubin. This is her second book following her bestseller The Happiness Project. In Happier at Home Rubin makes a handful or resolutions each month focusing on a particular home related topic. She cover many topics including belongings, neighborhood and community etc. I listened to this book on audio and I really enjoyed the way ti was read.

There are a couple of things that really struck a cord with me.

One of Rubin's resolutions was to Celebrate Holiday Breakfasts, even on smaller holidays such as Valentines Day or St. Patrick's Day. She did this as a way of making even minor holidays special. This idea is something I want to start incorporating into my own life. We might not celebrate breakfast specifically since that doesn't really work well with our schedule but I want to make each holiday special. I already dropped the ball on St. Patrick's day but if at first your don't succeed, try try again. April Fool's Day is coming up (I'll have to think fast) followed by Easter. I have a collection of ceramic bunnies that my grandmother gave me in my Easter basket every year. I'd like to get them out and have them on display around the house. I'd like to do something special for my husband on Easter Sunday instead of just handing up a bag of jelly beans and calling it a holiday. I'm not sure exactly what yet, but I'd like to make all holidays, major and minor, special in some way.

What I will not be doing is celebrating Easter with candy.

In the month of December Rubin decides it would be less stressful to just give up sweets all together instead of worrying about all of the tempting holiday treats. Some people questioned her decision as too extreme but she responded

"By giving myself limits, I give myself freedom." (page 124)

I have done this before. The first time was near Easter a few years ago. The abundance of Easter candy had me over indulging and it was simpler for me to just say no to everything instead of using up my willpower trying to only head one handful of jellybeans instead of the whole bag. By giving myself the limitation of no sweets, I was able to freely enjoy everything else about the season knowing I wouldn't have any sugar related regrets later.

Another resolution Rubin made that stuck with me was Suffer for Fifteen Minutes. What she means by this is spending fifteen minutes a day on a task you've always wanted to do, but just haven't gotten around to yet. In the book she focuses on organizing her family's photos and home movies. In my life I'd like to use this idea as a challenge to get some things done around my house. I have a spare room that sort of a catch-all for the stuff I don't know what to do with. The thought of cleaning out the room seems like an overwhelming project but when I spent just fifteen minutes in there last week I was surprised by the amount of cleaning I got done. I hope to keep this up and then move onto other tasks. Maybe spend fifteen minutes a day leaning or polishing a skill, like photography or calligraphy. Over time small steps make a big difference.

Those are just a few of the things from Happier at Home that have really inspired me. I have not read The Happiness Project yet but it is definitely on my list. You can learn more about Gretchen Rubin and her works at her website

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Travel Bug

This week Frozen and Saving Mr. Banks came out on DVD. I didn't get a chance to see them in theaters but I was able to get in line for them at the library. Normally, I am person number five hundred in line (or least it feels that way) but this time I was the second in line for both of them! I'm going to buy these movies anyway because I love them (I still need to buy Tangled also) but none of that is the point. The point is that I watched Disney movies this week and that combined with scrolling through my photos of our Disney trip last fall means... I want to go back.

Cinderella's Fountain
Pirates of the Caribbean is one of my favorites. It's such a classic. We rode it twice while we were there but I want to go back and ride is a hundred more times.
Epcot. We only spent a half day here because we wanted to check out Downtown Disney but I'd like to ride Soarin' and Test Track again along with spending a bit more time walking around the World Showcase.
World of Disney is a huge Disney store, I think it might be the largest in the entire world. Sitch spits out water on passers by. Downtown Disney is such a cool place.
This is after I rode the Rockin' Roller-coaster. I am an Aerosmith fan so I was singing the whole time on the ride. Then I immediately sent this picture to my dad :)
 The Tree of Life at Animal Kingdom. I loved all the shows we saw here, The Festival of the Lion King and Finding Nemo Live. I wish I would have rode Expedition Everest, oh well, I definitely will next time :)
The parade at Animal Kingdom had a bunch of these primitive floats. I love the detail and the colors. Whoever designed them is a genius, they could be operated by one person while walking in a parade. I mean come on, that's brilliant.
 Mr. Walt Disney himself. Tom Hank's did a fantastic job of portraying him in Saving Mr. Banks.
Ahh, a Dole Whip. Kevin has mentioned wanting one of these since we've been home. I only had a few bites of it while we were there but those few bites were delightful. I've been on Pinterest checking out copycat recipes that I'll have to experiment with this summer.

Anyone else have the travel bug? I've even started looking up prices for airfare and hotel so I can start saving for our next trip!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

What I Read Wednesday: Balancing it All

I recently finished Balancing it All  by Candace Cameron Bure (she played D.J. on Full House.) Both Bure and her brother Kirk Cameron are outspoken Christians in the acting business and since I'm a Christian myself, I was curious of what her book was all about. This is actually her second book, but I have not read her first one, Reshaping it All.

I was excepting this to be more of a "how-to" book but it was actually more of a memoir. She shares personal stories as she travels from childhood into motherhood and one of the most important stories woven throughout the book is her Christian journey. She was very honest with her struggles and I definitely feel like I "know" her better.

(FYI it's about to get a little personal)

In the last chapter of the book, called The Power of Prayer she shares that she has learned to make her prayers more specific than vague so that when the answer comes, even if it's a 'no,' she knows it's from God and not just a coincidence. This made me reflect on how I pray and honestly, most of the time my prayers were quite vague. I always thought praying with lots of detail meant I didn't leave room for God's will to work in my life, that I would being too restrictive. Which is silly because God's will is going to happen no matter what my prayers are. Actually being more specific might allow me to see God's will even clearer because I can more easily recognize when His answer is yes, no or not right now.

I'm definitely inspired to do some more reading on prayer. I hadn't really thought about it much before so I'm glad Balancing it All opened my eyes to a new topic to explore.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Teal-Blue New Bedding

Happy St. Patrick's Day! This American girl with Irish roots will definitely be wearing green today!

On a different note, let's talk about bedding :)

I don't think I've ever shared a picture of our master bedroom before but oh well, this is what it looks like now. I was at TJ Maxx a few weeks ago where I found this queen bedding set for $60. It came with a a comforter, two Euro shames, two standard shames, two decorative pillows and a bed skirt. I actually picked up the gray sheets a few weeks earlier just because we needed some and I'm glad the gray works because this is an awkward shade of teal blue. It reminds me of my prom dress from high school.

Throwback Monday? I can't believe this was seven years ago but I still love that dress its between navy and cobalt with a little bit of green mixed in. But back to the bedding. To be honest, I'm not impressed with the quality. It just feels cheap (which is was so I can't complain about that too much.) It gets crazy wrinkled and and I can't iron it because it kind of feels like the texture of a windbreaker, like those "swishy pants" you used to wear as a kid? Anyone remember those?

There are some things about it that I really love. The quilted Euro shames being one of them. We have never had this many pillows on our bed before and I love how luxurious it feels. I'm happy I had two Euro pillows just hanging out in the guest room with mixed matched covers so it's good to see this set together and matching.  

So overall feelings, I'm not going to design the whole room around this set. I'm still going to save for some nicer bedding with less of a windbreak and more of a five-star hotel feel. I'll probably lean towards a navy blue and gray color pallet. But for now it will work for us.

And it looks like it  gets the Ellie stamp of approval. I wish you could pet her through the internet, she may look a serious fur-ball sometimes but she is the softest cat I've ever petted. Super plush stuff animals made of cashmere have nothing on the softness of Ellie. (Do they even make cashmere stuff animals?)