coming back to the blog.

A lot has changed since I last posted in March. Good things, mostly. Including my will to blog. I guess I just kinda lost it for a while. I guess I never really got into it, but I have some ideas for the direction I want to take this little baby and I’m pretty excited about it. First of all, I think I’ve figured out what I want my “hook” or “theme” to be. Before I was just kind of writing about what came to mind (aside from the product junkie posts, which will probably be making a comeback as well) and it turns out I just didn’t have a whole lot on my mind…that I cared to share with the internet anyway. So what is this new theme? I know you’re eagerly awaiting the answer. So stay tuned…

lip salvation.

Smith’s Rosebud Salve

Smith’s Rosebud Salve HAS been my lips’ salvation. For one reason or another I’ve suffered from chapped lips for about…13 years now. I specifically remember a girl in my 8th grade English class pointing out how chapped my lips were and asking, “How do you kiss a guy with those lips?” I was horrified, of course, but also thinking “kiss a guy? how ’bout getting one to ask me out??” I hated my chapped lips, but how they’d feel on a boy’s lips was probably the furthest thing from my mind. (Yeah…I was that naiive.) Anyway, fast forward 13 years, and I’m 25, still suffering from the chronic chapped lip. I’m sure all of you know how maddening this can be. Especially when my lips (once made fun of by my siblings for being, “big and juicy”) are one of my favorite features (if I can say that…). I’d thought I’d found my holy grail what seemed like hundreds of times. Softlips, Carmex, plain old Vaseline. Until Sephora came along and delivered the special ingredient I’d been reading about in all my favorite magazines. I was headed to check-out after my first experience in the store (where they talked me into purchasing way too much, but graciously refunded when I returned) and there I saw it…a round little tin, very old-fashioned looking, navy and white with a hint of pink font and bearing those three all important words: Smith’s Rosebud Salve. I dropped it in my basket without a second thought and was barely out of the parking lot before I was slathering it on my winter-parched lips. Instant. Heaven. Of course I waited a few days to see if the effects were noteworthy and within a week I was hooked. The salve does everything. Moisturizes cuticles, under eyes, and of course, LIPS. Not only does it moisturize, but exfoliates. Go to bed with dry cracked lips? Slather on some rosebud salve and the smell will not only intoxicate and relax you, but the salve with work it’s magic overnight. Slough off the dead skin with a washcloth in the shower the next morning and you’ll swear your lips are smoother than the day you were born.

product junkie.

To keep things interesting (and somewhat consistent) around here, I’ve decided to use Fridays as an excuse to post about one of my favorite things..beauty products!  I’m a bit of a product junkie. I’ve been trying to be a little more conscious of the space I take up in the bathroom and the budget, since I could spend thousands of dollars “trying out” new things with “oooh pretty shiny new packaging!” I’m a sucker for some nice, clean, enticing packaging. A marketer’s dream I tell you.

I’ll never forget the look on my sweet husband’s face the first time he came out of my bathroom in the apartment I lived in before I moved to this house. He and his friend had just “popped by” to visit my roommate and I so I didn’t have time to scoop up all the products covering my bathroom counter  and throw them in the cabinets underneath like I usually do. (It was a really big counter too…that was a great bathroom).  They took it upon themselves to survey our living quarters and when B emerged from my room he looked like he’d seen a ghost, “I’ve never seen so many things in one bathroom in my entire life.” Maybe he was flashing forward to what life with me might be like in the future…but thankfully it didn’t scare him away! Anyway…back to the topic at hand. Product of the week:

Philosophy Purity Cleanser and Hope in a Jar 

(I tried to figure out how to post a picture…but my dashboard is acting up. I’ll try to do that later.)

This stuff is a little pricey, especially since I pride myself on using MOSTLY drugstore make-up, skin care and hair products. The ratio has become a little skewed since Sephora came to town, so I try to stay out of there as much as possible. But the combination of these two products have done more for my skin than absolutely ANYTHING else I have tried. I’m 26 years old and a year ago (before I started using this stuff) I was still breaking out. It was annoying and frustrating and I could not understand why my skin wouldn’t just go ahead and CLEAR UP already. Well, less than a month into using the Purity cleanser, my face was smoother, softer and more clear than it had been since about 7th grade. I was hooked. I then decided to try the Hope in a Jar moisturizer and there was no turning back. This stuff actually makes your skin GLOW. I may get a small break-out around that time of the month, but other than that, my skin has completely changed. Tune in next week to find out about the absolute BEST cure for dry and chapped lips 🙂

worth. every. penny.

so some of you may know about the tumultuous relationship that I’ve had for the past 4 months with one super gorgeous and adorable chocolate lab. There was a time when I wouldn’t be able to type that sentence without adding “stubborn, incorrigible, heinous, evil” in between gorgeous and adorable. That time was exactly one week ago today. Now, I’ve got three words for you people: puppy boot camp. Yeah. I said it. We sent our puppy to boot camp. And previously we sent him to puppy daycare. I know. I know. But it looks like our troubles may be behind us. B and I went to pick up the pup from boot camp tonight and after about and hour of private training, I literally had tears in my eyes. I felt like my child had just jumped off the high dive or something. He was so relaxed. And respectful. And he responded to verbal commands. It was amazing. It is amazing. He’s now sleeping soundly in his “place” (new command). I feel like we’re on the way to getting our lives back. No…beginning a new life with our lovable little  ginormous pup.

In other news, I have this strange craving for brunch. It’s currently 8:30pm on a Thursday.

cautiously optimistic.

I guess I owe an apology to my three (four?) loyal readers…I’ve kind of fallen off the blogging wagon lately. A lot has actually been going on.  (So that’s good, right?) About this time last week, B and I got bitten buy the house-buying bug. My dad sells real estate and he had been in our ear for the past few months about what a great time it is to buy, now there’s this tax credit for extra incentive, but I was sticking to my guns. “We are happy where we are…no, we’re not moving into the house in your neighborhood, mom and dad…we hate moving, we’re not doing it until we’re moving OUT of B’ham or completely outgrow this house.” 

Then I got a little bored last Thursday night. Brian was studying for the CPA and Thursday night TV has become beyond boring, so I got caught up in looking at houses on the internet. That’s where it began. After a few emails and phone calls to my dad, and a full on 4 hour driving tour of the suburbs of Birmingham on Saturday… by Sunday night we’d found the perfect neighborhood and were ready to move. Well…B was ready. I had a mini-panic attack thinking about all that needed to be done to sell this house, the increase in mortgage (we’ve been spoiled by the great deal my dad got me on this house…), and for me…it felt like a we were making a statement that I wasn’t sure I was ready to make. The neighborhood we’re looking at is beyond amazing. From the first time I drove through it a few years ago, I said that if I ever “settled down” in Birmingham, it would definitely be this neighborhood. The houses are gorgeous, there’s an amazing pool, golf course and RESORT on site and it just has this quaint community feel that you just don’t get in many subdivisions in Birmingham. In fact, I wouldn’t call this a subdivision…it’s becoming a town in and of itself.  There are nature trails (great for Samson) and lots of activities including a farmer’s market on the weekends in the summer and several other “family-oriented” activities. Which brings me to my next point.

Brian and I are not planning (planning be the key word here) to start a family any time soon, and we weren’t even planning on staying in Birmingham for more than another year. So to me, this move said, “Ok, we’re buying a house together, we could start a family here, we’re settling down.” And that scared (scares?) the crap out of me. But we’ve talked through all of this and have decided that the pro’s to moving to this neighborhood far outweigh the con’s. It’s a fresh start for us. And who knows? We may fall in love with Birmingham and decide to stay longer…this new neighborhood would be a dream place to have kids. So…as of now (like I said…we just started seriously talking about this, oh…four days ago?) we’re moving! And I feel good about it! But that’s the thing. I’ve learned that I’m absolutely ruled by my emotions, and emotions, they cannot by trusted. They change. They fool you. It’s wisdom, wisdom that comes from the Lord that is unwavering and true. So there’s a lot of prayer going on too. We cannot make this decision lightly or on our own. But for now, I am cautiously optimistic.

what the world needs now.

I’ll be honest. I don’t have many thoughts on the state of the world these days. The economy is bad. Our new president is supposed to fix everything… (newsflash: he’s just ONE. MAN.) I don’t know what’s going to happen. But I do know that God and His promises are real and He is still on His throne. 

With that said, today is Valentine’s Day. I never had much of an opinion about it, good or bad, before I met my husband. I never had a “Valentine” and I’m sure there were some years when I felt sorry for myself, but for the most part, I bought into the whole “It’s just a commercial holiday made up by greeting card companies so who cares?” mantra. That is, until I experienced my first real Valentine’s Day. I was in love, and although I stressed myself out trying to figure out the perfect gift and way to make my Valentine feel special, once the day arrived, I realized how much I loved it. I love the idea of an entire day devoted to LOVE. And you don’t have to have a significant other to celebrate. I think all types of love should be celebrated, but I especially love being able to devote one day to the man whose love has been so steady, so unshakeable, that it surprises me everyday.  

So today, we are in Atlanta, and tonight we’ll get dressed up and go to a nice restaurant, but that’s not the best part about today. Today I get to spend the whole day with my husband, doing whatever we want to do, and I could not be happier. 

For those of you who don’t know, my husband is the most kind, patient, humble, hard-working, adorable man on the planet. He’s not perfect, but his love for me is. And I am truly humbled that God chose me to be his wife. Sometimes I don’t feel worthy of the task. But his love for me never changes. What’s most important, is that his love for me paints a worldly picture of Christ’s love for me. Knowing that no matter how much I love my husband and how much he loves me, Christ loves us infinitely more…well that…that just blows me away.

tagged.

I have been tagged by  Sarah, an amazing woman and friend from my Kanakuk days that I’m so glad to have reconnected with through blogging! I’m a sucker for these things and although I have lots to do before we go out of town tomorrow, I’d rather be doing this 🙂

THE RULES:
Step 1: respond and rework—answer the questions on your own blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own invention, add one more question of your own.
Step 2: tag—eight other untagged people.

Make a list of things you can see without getting up: I am on my sofa where I can pretty much see everything else in the house (aside from the two bedrooms down the hall). So I will list the things I wish I could NOT see. Clutter on my kitchen table. A bag of dog food on the kitchen counter. The dog’s crate in the living room. Decorative pillows stacked on top of the fridge so that Samson won’t destroy them…noticing a theme?

Favorite football team: my Auburn Tigers, and by default, the Florida State Seminoles

What is your favorite thing to wear? breezy sundresses as soon as the thermometer rises above 75 degrees.

What color is your bedroom? pale greyish blue. we took on the task of painting the bedroom last spring because I wanted it to feel completely different when we moved in together (I’d already lived here for over 2 years). we’ll never paint anything ourselves ever again. if we can help it…

What’s the last thing you read/are currently reading? I’m embarrassed to say…it’s been a while since I’ve finished a book. I read Allure magazine cover to cover every month though ;o)

Do you nap a lot? I LOVE to nap. I would nap every single day if I could. I don’t know why, but I always sleep better during the day.

Who was the last person you hugged? Brian, my husband, while he was studying hard for the CPA last night. He’s amazing. I love him.

What’s your current obsession/addiction? getting back in shape and photography. I’m trying to save/earn the money for a super nice camera so I can learn to take gorgeous pictures.

What was the last thing you said aloud? “I love you”, to Brian as he was leaving for work.

What Web sites do you always visit when you go online? msn.com, gmail, facebook, wordpress dashboard

What was the last thing you bought? a new bra to replace the almost brand new one that samson destroyed.

What are you listening to right now? Sex and the City the Movie

What is something you wish you could do more? clean and organize (also should read “wish I would do more”)

What gives you hope? Jesus! Hope is actually one of my favorite characteristics of Christ–I have to agree with Sarah on this one.

What is your favorite weather, and why? when the weather first starts to feel like spring. the sunshine and warmth just makes me happy and gives me energy…I joke sometimes that I’m “solar powered.”

What time do you usually get up? umm…depends on whether Samson is staying home or going to puppy daycare (judge all you want, but it’s the only way I can stay sane and he can get his energy out). It can be anywhere from 8-11:30 or 12. I’ve had trouble sleeping at night lately…

What is your most challenging goal right now? motivating myself to get back “out there” and find a job or place to volunteer (or both)

Say something to the person who tagged you: Sarah, I have loved learning more about you through your blog! I admired you when we worked together at Kanakuk, and admire you even more today for the way you love Jesus and your family. I’m definitely filing away some of the things you do with your kids for when I have them one day…I LOVE your Christmas traditions by the way!

If you could have a house–totally paid for, fully furnished–anywhere in the world, where would you want it to be? definitely ON the beach…but I’m not sure where…probably somewhere I’ve never been, like Southern California. I need to be close to a big city, but love the laid-back feel of beach towns. It just fits me.

Favorite vacation spot? Destin, Florida. Simple, but beautiful and within driving distance from Birmingham.

What is your favorite children’s book? I’m gonna have to think about this one…it’s been a while since I’ve read a children’s book. I do love the Polar Express, mostly for it’s gorgeous illustrations. I couldn’t tell you what it’s about though.

Name one thing you just can’t resist no matter how bad it is for you: chips and queso and frozen margaritas (particularly from Cocina Superior)

If you could meet anyone famous – dead or alive – who would it be? Definitely Jesus. How cool would that be? (stolen from Sarah)

Have you ever met anyone famous? If so who? The most famous person I’ve ever met is Ruby from the reality tv show. I was so enamored by her it was ridiculous.

If you could have any job in the world , what would it be? I would love to be an actress. Not for the money or the fame (although the money would be NICE), but I think it would be great to pick your schedule (sorta) and transform yourself all the time. I thrive on change.

Who is your hero? My husband. Just when I think I couldn’t admire him any more…he goes and does something that completely takes by breath away.

If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be? I would move. Somewhere completely new, preferably close to the ocean, but also a big(ger) city. 

 

I am now going to tag:

taylor

katie

kaki

amber


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