Here's to the New Year!

While I said last year that I don't typically play into the "new years resolution" bit, I will admit that I was a bit more excited to whip up a few of my own this time around. I tried writing them out and scanning them in, but then I realized I'm not really keen on my handwriting, so typing will have to suffice!

This year has been a whirlwind for Mike and I. I recapped most of them in our Year One: In Retrospect post earlier this month, but even as an individual, 2010 taught me so very much. I feel as though I grew up a lot in this year and I hope that it spills over into the next. While time may just be a means of measurement for some, I've decided to put on the optimistic face and make sure that I'm making the most of absolutely every single day and situation... New Years included!

I wish I were able to spend it out and about, celebrating with friends, but duty calls and a bartender is needed on this night. Mike will be spending it with me so that's enough for me. Just thinking that this might *hopefully* be my last year working at the bar makes me giddy because that means big changes for our little family!

I don't typically make "concrete" goals because I don't want to punish myself for not fulfilling them in the exact way they were first intended. Instead, I'll share with you some of my personal goals and resolutions, as well as some for the blog!

2011: The Year of Magic!

Personal Goals and Resolutions

  • Tolerate no negativity. I feel as though I do a fairly good job of this as it is, but in 2011 I will allow absolutely no one to bring me down for any reason whatsoever. Woo!
  • Work on a set schedule at home. I will be working from home (aside from the bar) so I need to be up at a certain hour, doing certain things until a certain time, and have a schedule to keep me on top of it!
  • Get organized! My computer, my studio, my life... everything! Everything should be in tip-top order so we can hopefully have fewer speedbumps along the way! 
  • Work out my penpal system! I need to be more on top of replying and not losing items/letters! I'd like to devote a set amount of time per week to reply to everyone who writes to me!
  • Welcome change! This year is sure to be a big one for us. With two moves in the plans (more on those later), that alone will send our world into a tizzy. This year will be full of big decisions and I'm so so excited!
  • Work on chasing my dream career! That means sewing sewing and sewing those dresses! That's right, you heard me! I'll be working my fingers to my bone, but it will be so worth it!
  • Work on saving money! Sounds a little mundane and vague, but we're fairly good at it as is... now it's time to put it into hyperdrive and really make it count! We're ready to get a head start on life so bring it on!
  • Make every day magical! Every day and every situation! Stuck in rush hour traffic? Turn up some music and let myself go. Or write down lots of ideas rushing through my head. Anything. Just make it a positive situation.

Blog Goals

  • At least 3 outfit post a week! I'm really really going to try!
  • Introduce new and exciting features on the blog! I have so many fun things lined up for 2011! I know you guys will just love them! I can't wait to share!
  • Read and comment on more followers' blogs! I've found so many amazing blogs just by clicking through some of my followers who comment! You take the time out of your busy day to share in my life, and now I want to share in yours too!

Thank you guys so much for sharing in what has definitely been the best year yet! To think I started off this year with maybe 200 followers at most, and we're ending like this?! That's the best feeling ever! I can't imagine my life without this sweet little blog! I've met so many amazing people through it and I hope to meet even more! Let's go, 2011! I'm ready! xo

Things I Love Thursday

I'm bummed that I missed Wedding Wednesday yesterday, but if you follow me on twitter, you'll know that I caught that yucky stomach bug that Mike had [and his dad, and my stepdad, and aunt, and Toby, and cousins, etc]. It's the most un-fun thing ever and I was really crossing my fingers I wouldn't get it after I saw how bad it was on Mike. But low-and-behold, I did! The good news is that I slept 24 out of 27 hours and didn't eat or drink anything so it wore off rather quickly. I couldn't even keep down water. :( But, I'm feeling about 90% better, and I've caught up on all my Etsy orders, and I have oh so many blogs to write and post since I've fallen behind! Let's pick up with all things magical, shall we?

♥ this beautiful monarch butterfly dress by luly yang couture

♥ this handsome kitty ♥

♥ this wise pole flyer ♥

♥ this awesome painting series by kelly reemsten ♥

this beautiful bathroom. how dreamy! ♥

♥ this adorable macro. ♥

this fantastic (and easy) DIY! ♥

What are you loving this week?

MIXTAPE MONDAY: soothing tunes.

Powerful voices and powerful songs. I hope you love this one as much as I do! xo

Sponsor Spotlight: FlapperDoodle!

Kate contacted me last month about sponsoring the blog for the end of 2010 and I was immediately taken by her little Eloise and Ramona! Named after two characters in her favorite short story by J.D. Salinger, Eloise and Ramona are two of the most fabulously styled flapper ladies I've seen! You can find them donning stationary, notecards, and even tote bags! Did I mention jewelry yet?! Kate sent me over and huge array of goodies [You spoiled me, Kate!] and Mike had a blast shooting photos of them! It was snowy and so wet outside so there are no good photos of me with the bag, but you'll love the stuff when you see it, I'm sure!

Kate sent over a tote bag, book nameplates, the cutest set of 8 cards and envelopes and "Ramona The Tattooed Lady"... a piece after my own heart!

What I really want to know is how she gets them to be such good quality?! The cards look like something you'd buy straight from the finest of stationery stores. I love that the cards are blank inside, too, so you can write whatever you feel is appropriate. The 8-pack comes with 4 different designs (2 of each) so there's definitely something for the occasion! [Mike didn't know this when he shot the photos. Silly!]

Her website is so incredibly easy to navigate [I appreciate this so much!] and there's even a little blog, too! Kate is currently in the process of moving so the stationery isn't currently available, but I highly sugest you bookmark her online shop and go hog wild once she returns! You can still purchase PDF printables and share some coloring fun with your favorite niece or nephew! 

You can find Eloise and Ramona (and Kate, too!) at these fine places:

Thanks for sponsoring the blog in December, Kate! And thanks so much for the lovely goodies!


I still have a couple of spots left for January if you'd like to sponsor the blog! Just email me at!

The Most Magical Time of Year

Bonjour! I have not died! I am alive and well, though rather exhausted. The past few days have been non-stop go go go and while I've loved seeing everyone and exchanging gifts and eat way too much yummy food, I'm ready to take a break! How about you?

The short little break from the blog felt nice, I won't lie. And it might extend just a wee bit more [or at least be a little lighter] due to the fact I have to drop my trusty ol' MBP off at the Apple store tomorrow to have a new keyboard installed. The traffic will be a nightmare... I know. Hopefully it'll just take a few days though. Please let me have it by the new year! I'll be working anyhow, so it might not matter, but still. I'll have Mike's macbook but I can't do too much on it!

I have so many blogs to catch up on! I don't know when I'll ever find the time! Don't worry, I'll be dropping around you're little slice of the blogosphere soon! Hohenwald doesn't even have 3G phone service so I didn't read much Twitter or post anything via Instagram. Sheesh! I felt so disconnected!

Excuse the crazy lighting. Even Photoshop couldn't help the bright yellow cast lighting from my Nana's house! Haha I really love the Christmas season. I love the hustle and bustle, the endless pondering of thoughtful presents, the hot chocolate and full breakfasts, the family you can't really stand any other time of the year [kidding! Sort of!], etc. It's a great way to cap off the year. Then a week later you get to vow to never drink soda again or never run through the drive-thru, etc... Perfect timing!

I spent Friday baking and crafting, so when Mike got home from work around 5 we could load up the car and girls then head to my parents'. Of course we didn't leave until 6:30 but that was fine. We snuggled in, watched Love Actually, slept and woke up to presents. We had breakfast, opened our goodies, and then went back to sleep for two hours. Then we woke up, went to my Nana's, stayed for quite some time, ate a late lunch, opened presents, went home, Mom cooked, stepdad's family came over, ate again, exchanged presents! Phew! Oh did I mention we had a white Christmas for the first time in 17 years?! Yes! That never happens in Tennessee! Well it was great until Christmas night when we were supposed to drive the 2 hours north to pick up Toby. The interstate was shut down, parties being a little less than cooperative, etc. Luckily at 8:30pm we had the "OK" to go. The roads were okay until the Franklin area. Then they were awful. We managed to pick up Toby and head back south for the 2 hour drive [again] when we got stuck on an overpass while asking if a stuck car needed our help [but we worked our way out], then in front of our house in Spring Hill we hit ice on a bridge and went all over the road. Luckily Mike regained control and we managed home without incident. But it was scary!

We put Toby to bed and we slept. Then we woke up this morning, opened his presents with my parents, had breakfast and headed south to Mike's parents'. We opened presents there then ate a late lunch, rested around, and finally headed home. Here we are! I hate throwing so much into just one little post but honestly, I wouldn't have time otherwise to even update about it!

We're keeping Toby for a few days and I'm so excited! Lots of toys to play with! I love having him around!

Now a ton of photos! [I'll put most after the jump!]

Me & my little cousin Kaylie
Lacey Lou Anne
Toby and Grammy Terri
Pip and Baby G
My two favorite boys ever!
Tuckered out. Presents take a lot out of a kid!

My Milk Toof Christmas

Merry Merry Christmas Eve! Do any of you follow the adventures of Ickle and Lardee at My Milk Toof? If not, you should! I love this sweet little picture of them and I've never been more taken with clay figures! Their stories are the cutest things ever and remind me so much of my little Baby G and Pipkin!

I'm baking up a storm right now and have so many presents to wrap before we venture down to my parents' house for the holiday, but I hope I can squeeze in a post or two! [Silly me didn't schedule anything! Oops! Bet you'll all be too busy loving on relatives and eating yummies to even notice! I will! ;)]

Things I Love Thursday

I had a nice little assortment of goodies picked out for this week's TiLT post but then I happened upon the most darling little online magazine that I just had to share. Typically I'd reserve a spot on the list for something like this but I was so inspired by it that I felt it warranted it's own post. Huzzah! Introducing... Sweet Paul Magazine! A blog-to-magazine web publication that, to me, feels like Anthropologie's version of Martha Stewart. You heard me.

Here's a little tidbit of Sweet Paul as written on the homepage:
Sweet Paul magazine is based on Paul Lowe's wildly successful blog Sweet Paul, which ranked 22nd in the London Time's Top 50 Best Design Blogs. With over 100,00 hits a month Sweet Paul has become a regular read for editors, stylists and foodies all over the world. Paul's motto is "chasing the sweet things in life" and the magazine sure lives up to that. It will be filled with easy and elegant recipes, fun and stylish crafts, entertaining ideas, shopping tips, up and coming crafters and so much more.

And that is exactly what it brings to the table! I caught myself in awe of beautiful wrapping tips [so if you're last minute like me, take note!], yummy sweet recipes and a whole spread or two of cocktail numbers to sip on with friends. Oh, get this! There is even a spread on pancakes and treats [and gifts!] for your furry little puppy friends! Maybe G and Pip will wake up to something special tomorrow! Yum!

Don't believe me? Check out the spreads below and then pop over to see 124 pages of knockout inspiration! It's almost too good to be true! [Can that be my Christmas present to you all? ;P haha]

sweet paul
sweet paul
sweet paul

PS; Does that beautiful design not just make your heart skip a beat?! I love love love publication design! Swoon!

PPS; Check out the blog, too!

PPPS; I just LOVE his motto! Oh gosh! Fangirling over here!

Cat House on the Kings

It's stuff like this that really warms my heart. An anon left the link in my FormSpring a few days ago and I was just taken by this woman's huge heart. What a dream it would be to give this many animals a full and happy life! I love it! So so so very inspiring!

Wedding Wednesday!

** DISCLAIMER: heh, before anyone makes me feel like a dummy, I just realized that it's Tuesday. Oh well! Wedding Wednesday Tuesday Edition! haha This whole "not being in school and not having a 'real' job" thing has made my calendar all sorts of crazy. I think I'm just excited for Christmas! **

Hooray Weddings! I've been overwhelmed at the awesome response to last week's post announcing that I'll be taking Wedding Wednesday submissions! I've received many awesome awesome emails, and I can't wait to share them with you! I will hopefully start sharing the reader-weddings after the first of the year! [So I can have time to interview the way I need to! Brides that have already emailed me, be on the lookout for an email interview so I can keep it handy!] I won't be sharing reader weddings every week simply because there are so many other weddings and photographers I want to share with you, too! Even DIYs and mood boards... it'll be no-holds-barred from here on out! [Feel free to send awesome links or photographers my way! Please!]

This first set is by the photographer Clayton Austin. This traditionally isn't the type of wedding I would share, and the colors are far from what I invision at my own nuptials, but you can't deny that they're beautiful!

wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday

And here are some beautiful photos from Our Labor Of Love! The light in these are truly truly magical!

wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday
wedding wednesday

I can't wait until next week to spoil you with tons of photos from another one of my favorite wedding photographers!

Now the Weekly Wedding Question: What kind of centerpieces would you like [or did you have] for your wedding? Are you a large and elaborate type of person, or do you think a small vase of flowers or candles would do the trick?

My opinion: I thought I wanted something big and eye-catching, but then I realized it would just take away from the intimacy of the table. I want guests to be able to chit chat and socialize with one another so something small like a jar of flowers, old books or a camera and a table number would suit me just fine!

Until next week! Love love and wedding vows xo

PS; If you're interested in sharing your wedding [or photos you've taken as a photographer] click out THIS post or email me at!

MIXTAPE MONDAY: an indie christmas.

I won't lie, I had to solicit the genius of my Tumblr followers for suggestions on what to use for this week's mix. Sadly my holiday selection of music is oh so limited. But they really pulled through! Here are some great tunes [a lot from the Target mixtape!] and I hope you love them as much as I do! I've found so many new favorites! Hooray!

PS; Sorry the player is so ugly! I chose a different one which was super cute and matched my layout but I'm having difficulties with it so I didn't want to change the colors in case I can fix it! Oof! Wish me luck!

What are some of your favorite indie Christmas covers?!

Calling All January Sponsors!

Hello hello! It's that time again! It's my formal call for sponsors for the month of January in the fabulous new year that is 2011! I don't know how many of you are excited for the new year, but I can assure you that I am. I've never been one for "resolutions" or anything, but it's a great way to establish goals and try to push for them. For me, 2011 is going to be all about making life magical! My blog, my personal life, my friends and family... I want everything in 2011 to go above and beyond! I'd love to have you along for the ride!

I'm offering up new sizes of sponsorships for 2011 to go along with the new layout [that I just couldn't wait to share!]. I've also knocked down the prices of sponsorships to be more "small business" friendly. I want to support handmade and independent artists in 2011 with a fire like never before. This goes for blogs, too! I love finding and sharing some awesome and inspiring blogs so please don't hesitate! Sponsoring is a great way to get your name out there and help motivate you to make your independent dreams into a reality!

If you have any questions, you can click the "Sponsor" tab in the top nav [or click here!] or you can email me at! I'd be happy to answer any and all questions! Package discounts are available to sponsors who choose to advertise over the quarter!

Happy Sunday!

Sunday Spotlight - Photographer: Rowena Waack

I will be the first to admit, I usually hate cold weather. I loathe it. But something happened the other night... something "magical" if you will. I was driving home from work Friday night and it just started coming a blizzard! Well, about as blizzardly as it can get in Tennessee. It was so beautiful. It was 2:30am and it was blanketing everything around. I walked inside with it all up in my face and I couldn't help but love it. I promptly decided that I'd like to live somewhere snowy. Yep, snowy. Cold weather is so much more bearable when it's beautiful out. [I know some of you get like 7 feet a day and I'll also quickly say that I don't want quite that much! Anyway! I chose this week's Sunday Spotlight based on the beautiful images she shot of people [and snow!] I couldn't find out much about her via her Flickr Photostream and I didn't have enough time to contact her [my own fault] but hopefully I can elaborate on her later! Here are some magical images from the Rowena Waack's Flickr Photostream!

There is something to be said for film cameras and photographers... Nothing digital can hold quite the charm or whimsy like film can. The noise and grain... the shadows... the fuzzy lines... I prefer it over digital any day. It's making me want to go shoot something today!

Be sure to swing by her photostream to check out the rest and 'favorite' the best shots!

Have you ever shot film? What's your media of choice? Can you develop your own film?