Beautiful Life

Thankful {2014}

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Thankful for him… ^^ Obvs.

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^^Thankful for these people…amazing family. Seriously. Amazing.

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^^And thankful for these people…beloved friends {so many that aren’t even in this picture!}.

These three pictures make my heart OVERFLOW. 

– Thankful for our little home, warm and cozy.

– Thankful for a space heater…to make our lil’ old house actually warm.

– Thankful for Christmas music that I started listening to as soon as it came on the radio. Hashtag shameless.

– Thankful for Jesus Christ, His Word and His Church. Without Him, I am nothing.

– Thankful for my second cup of coffee today.

– Thankful for homemade cinnamon rolls.

– Thankful for America. Thankful for freedom. Thankful for the prosperity this nation has been blessed with.

– Thankful for the beautiful possibilities of the future.

– Thankful for sweet moments and sweet days that while you’re in them may not look like much, but if you take a breath and look around, you realize how insanely blessed you are and how happy you can’t help but be.

What are you thankful for?

Also…

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Mom is coming home from London today!! She spent 2 weeks hugging grandkids, seeing amazing british landmarks and eating food that makes me drool just thinking about it.
SHE WAS MISSED AND I CAN’T WAIT TO SEE HER!

Also, I hung globe Christmas lights in my kitchen and I love it.

Also, choosing pie flavors is hard. Is “all” an option? Husband and I have a lot of pie crusts to decorate tonight.

Also, I’m really glad that Alfonso won Dancing with the Stars. He’s amazing. And I cried a little bit when I found out.

Also, I can’t wait to go Black Friday shopping for brother’s birthday. And I almost forgot – brother is home from college! yuuuus.

Also, Thanksgiving is tomorrow – my heart is about to burst!

Happy Thanksgiving, friends!

One Year.

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On Sunday, husband and I celebrated our one year anniversary. OH what an amazing year it has been with this man. We decided to just have a chill weekend, spending every moment together, give each other gifts and eat lots of delicious food. Mission accomplished.

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Friday night was a work party for the company where David works. We got to dress up, have yummy drinks and spend the night at the hotel. It was wonderful to wake up in that king size bed and walk to breakfast at the hotel’s restaurant. That afternoon, we parted ways to buy each other presents. We both had struggles, I thought I did a good job buying David a gift card for a massage and 2 nerf guns (plus a nerf battle immediately upon opening the gift) but David absolutely won the gift-giving prize by ordering these beauties…

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I CAN’T WAIT TILL THEY GET HERE!!
Husband sure has good taste.

We had dinner at Olive Garden, then headed home, stuffed and happy for some cuddling and Netflix binge watching.

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Sunday, our actual anniversary – In honor of our very first date, we ate at Chili’s (classy). We ate so much junk food that I eventually asked husband to buy some oranges so I could have healthiness in my body. Good grief. We window shopped at Target (Dave found a vacuum he’s obsessed with) and headed home with some twinkle lights and hershey’s kisses. A friend of ours let us borrow his ENTIRE collection of Harry Potter movies, so David and I spent the rest of Sunday, plus almost all of Monday, binge watching Harry Potter, snacking constantly and telling each other how much we love one another in true {barely still} newlywed fashion. It was great :)

Happy Anniversary, Dave.
Thanks for being my best friend.

xo.

{Discovering Minimalism} Single Tasking.

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Do you ever feel like a day has passed you by and you don’t even remember it?

Like you got everything done…but nothing truly was finished.

You may be suffering by a new disorder that many call: “Muli-tasking”.

Heard of it? Multi-tasking is the belief that the more you do at a time – the more you will accomplish. We see it everyday, we do it everyday. How my morning looked today:

Alarm. Snooze. Alarm. Snooze.
“Ugghh…we only have 20 minutes…” Snooze.
Pull myself out of bed…in a fog. Brush teeth while using the bathroom (we all do it). “Hm…we need toilet paper.” To rushed to actually put it on the grocery list.Throw something together for my husband’s lunch while brewing coffee for each of us with the keurig (aargh, that darned “out of water” light!)…pouring the steaming black liquid in to-go cups, not even stirring in the cream (A quick twirl of the cup will do the trick, right?).  Forget husband’s two teaspoons of sugar. Hm…we need mayonnaise…(again, don’t write on the grocery list.) Meanwhile, I’m thinking about possible breakfast options, analyzing life…”What are my plans for today?”, “Oh! I need to call so-and-so!”, “Did I get enough sleep last night?” (No.), “Cheese-its or carrot slices?”…

Normal? Yes. Fulfilling? Not so much.

What if my morning looked like this:

Alarm goes off.
Coffee. Open the cabinet to decide on a mug…notice the colors, shapes and feel of each one (I love mugs). Which speaks to me this morning? Decide. Brew. Don’t walk away. Lean against the counter and breathe as the smell of coffee fills the kitchen. Allow my mind to slowly wake up. Add cream, stir. Go to the bed, open the window. Sit and drink my coffee.
Create lunch for my husband. No, I’m not mindlessly slapping mayonnaise on a wrap and grabbing whatever might work. Create. Take time. Nurture his sweet soul by creating good foods to bless his body. Do this one thing. Focus. Do it with love.
Savor a quiet morning as husband grabs the last minute things before he leaves. Savor the quiet, because it won’t last forever. Sweet glances, hugs, kisses. Walk him to the door, wave as he drives away. Breathe in the sweet morning air.

Seems impossible? Maybe. But incredibly fulfilling. In morning option #2, many would feel like they must be forgetting something. If there’s no drama then they must make busy drama. Because if you’re not busy then obviously your life isn’t worth a hoot. (sarcasm…btw)

HERE’S WHAT I HAVE TO SAY TO THOSE PEOPLE (myself included):

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Easier said than done.

I’ve actually had to completely unfollow some really awesome people on instagram because they were coooonstantly doing and accomplishing that I felt like I needed to do the same. Because, I mean – If I’m not starting my own business than who am I really? Why don’t I have my own creative, crafty workshop for lots of awesome bloggers? Why isn’t my instagram filled with “Just do stuff” quotes and bright white walls? WHY?

I digress… .

To stop the glorification of busy and the “multi-tasking syndrome”, someone out there came up with a new way of life: single tasking.

I’ve been doing my research and my favorite articles are HERE, HERE and HERE (make sure you watch the videos!).

Essentially, single tasking is doing one thing at a time, and doing it with all of your heart.

– Watching a movie? Put down the iPhone and watch the heck out of that movie. Make popcorn, cuddle someone you love, grab a blanket. Remember when you were a kid and watching a movie was an event? In my family, Fridays were “Junk Food/Movie Night” (creative title, I realize). Of course, we would have pizza and other forms of “junk food”. Usually, mom would buy SODA (woah!! crazy!) and go to Blockbuster (RIP) for a movie. The whole family sat together in the living room and watched together. As a family. TOGETHER. Let’s bring that back.

– Eating a meal by yourself? Make it delicious and PUT DOWN THE TECHNOLOGY. Focus on each bite, flavor, texture. Sit outside. Eat slowly. Savor.

– Online? Practice “Tab-less Thursday” (see video in third link) and only have one tab up at a time. Download social media blocks for an hour at a time or better – delete facebook. It’s not actually socializing, it’s isolating.

– When you work, do it 100%.

– When you rest, do it 100%.

– Do one. thing. at. a. time. (Moms are off the hook on this one…but still – focus on being all there with your kids, not going, doing and internet-ing.)

Doesn’t a life full of single-tasking sound like a life you would remember?

A life lived 100%.

Challenge:

1. Only one type of technology at a time. (Laptop OR iPad. TV OR instagram.)
2. No technology while eating. Focus on each bite.
3. No clicking mindless links on facebook, youtube or buzzfeed. Limit to 5 tabs at a time.
4. Check email only ONCE a day.
5. Check facebook only ONCE a day.
6. When doing a task, focus on it. Don’t keep thinking about what you’ll do next.
7. Make each moment count.

discovering minimalism.

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Lately I’ve been on such a minimalist kick. I’ve been watching some documentaries on materialism and it makes me sick to my stomach. I just sent my sister THIS, THIS and THIS – watching those videos makes me want to go completely opposite of the modern culture’s materialism and hoarding. And don’t get me started on healthy eating and the “slow life” movement! Even though I’m very interested in these topics, I really don’t know much about them, so I thought we might go on this journey together and discover minimalism.

Some of the topics we’ll explore:

Self Sufficiency.
Simple Living.
Sustainability.
Creating and Keeping a Capsule Wardrobe.
Creating Margin.
Eliminating Waste.
Recycle. Reuse.
Slow life.
Slow Church.
Living Outside.
Essential Oils.
Healthy eating.
Preserving and canning.
Making from scratch.
Emergency Preparedness.
Single tasking.
Choosing handmade.
Choosing local.
Loving home.

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