Tuesday, August 31, 2010

little books

Lately I've been really inspired by this website. Elise Joy makes these really cute "little books". She has a list of all the books she's made and I think I might just use some of her ideas (I hope she's okay with that!). I'm going to put together some "little books" of my own. It's something a little different from scrapbooking (which I love to do), but I can use all kinds of found papers and items.

And, if you're not the crafty, creative type, you can special order "little books" from her as well!

Here are a couple of the books I've put together so far:

Our church gives out note sheets for each sermon. Until now they have just been piling up all over the apartment. Now they have a place to go!! This cover is made from a gift bag and the tag is a paint chip sample that I sewed on using embroidery floss.

This one I learned in the Art Journal class I took over the summer. I used pages from catalogs; mostly Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie and David's Bridal. All the pages were folded in half and the binding is made from embroidery floss. I have titled this book "September" and will use it to write about and document what goes on in this coming month:
Here is one of the empty pages.. It's good to use papers with lots of empty space to write in:
This is my favorite. It's called "31 questions". The cover is made from a cereal box (nice and sturdy). Each page is a difference type of paper I found around the house. A lot of scrapbooking papers, lined paper, envelopes, etc. This is based on this beginning of the year challenge I started (and never finished). It's a good journal to do in January OR on your birthday:
Here are a couple pages..
This is a wine bag from Trader Joes. I hand wrote this question with a sharpie.
This is graph paper and the question was printed out and glued on.

I'm always looking for new ways to document life. And of course if it's crafty, that's a plus! I hope this inspires you to be creative about documenting your life as well.

Happy Tuesday!

photo challenge: day 6

day 06: a picture that inspires you

So this probably doesn't look like an amazingly inspiring photo. But to me it's a reminder of the vows and commitment I made to my husband on that day, April 24, 2004. It inspires me to work toward being the wife that the Lord has called me to be. I make mistakes and sometimes I stumble, but thankfully Jesus lives His life through me and allows me to love my husband in a way I wouldn't be able to do on my own.

This photo inspires me to love like Christ.

Monday, August 30, 2010

photo challenge: day 5

day 05: A picture from your morning

This morning I'm sitting down to do some Bible study. It's based on this weekend's sermon at my church (North Coast Church). We are going through the book of Ruth (one of my favorites!!) You can check out the last 3 sermons in the series here. I highly recommend taking a look or a listen. Amazing stuff!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

photo challenge: day 4

day 04: a picture of where you went today

Are you ready for this one? It's really exciting... I went to my kitchen!! (Ok, I really did leave the apartment but I forgot to take a picture) I did, however, spend some time in the kitchen baking cookies for a friend, so this is today's photo:

friday wrap-up

this week I...

...made this yummy coffee cake recipe (and ate the whole thing).

...decided i want to dance to this song with my husband.

...made my husband a large heart shaped rice krispie treat:

...finished reading this book and I highly recommend it.

...started writing again over at beautiful feet thanks to this motivating post.. I hope it encourages you to write as well!

...art journaled:
...watched another episode of my new favorite show.

...got some dating advice from Pastor Mark Driscoll (for married couples.. we need to continue to date each other!!).

...posted this DIY and giveaway. Check it out!

Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

photo challenge: day 3

day 3: a picture of your street

Here is a picture of my street in the fog:

And in the sunshine:

These are taken from our back patio.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

photo challenge: day 2

Day 2: A beach picture that you have taken

I had to choose a couple for this one. The first isn't exactly of the beach, but more of the ocean and some rocks. I took this on a bike ride down at the beach one day. This is Oceanside, CA (my lovely home). I just love this picture because the sky looks like a painting and the water is so blue:

This picture is from our annual Thanksgiving camping trip to Doheney State Beach (Dana Point, CA). We have beach camped for Thanksgiving since I was 7. It's my favorite family tradition (I think the only one we really have). I am really looking forward to this year because last year my husband and I went to Vegas to spend Thanksgiving with his family. But never again will I pass up the opportunity to eat turkey and give thanks here:

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

photo challenge: day 1

Day 1: a photo of yourself

I picked this one because I look thoughtful. (and my skin looks great!)

Thanks Chelsea!

To see more about the photo challenge click here.

Monday, August 23, 2010

photo challenge

I recently came across this lovely 20 day Photo Challenge thanks to Molly at a foreign land. It sounds like a lot of fun, so I couldn't help but want to join in!!

I'll be posting a picture each day on this blog from the list. Here is the official (revised version) list:

Day 01 - A picture of yourself
Day 02 - A beach picture that you have taken
Day 03 - A picture of your street
Day 04 - A picture of where you went today
Day 05 - A picture from your morning
Day 06 - A picture that inspires you
Day 07 - Post a picture from a recent vacation
Day 08 - Post a picture from your commute
Day 09 - Take a picture today that showcases motion
Day 10 - A picture that you took at one time that you love
Day 11 - Post one of the oldest pictures you have in your Picture folders
Day 12 - A black and white photo
Day 13 - A picture from last summer
Day 14 - A picture taken with your cell phone
Day 15 - A picture that you edited
Day 16 - A picture of you more than 10 years ago
Day 17 - A picture of what you wore today
Day 18 - A picture of you and a best friend
Day 19 - A favorite picture of yours
Day 20 - Any picture that you want!

Please feel free to join in and add your link in the comments. This sounds really fun and would be great to do together!!

I will officially begin the challenge tomorrow. See you then!!

the story of us: part 3

If you haven't already, check out part 1 and part 2.

I'm back with the third installment of "the story of us":

Part 3: Newly Weds!

Our marriage started out as very few marriages do. The morning after the wedding we were headed to catch a 5am flight, but not to an exotic honeymoon location (that wouldn't happen for 2 more years!). Instead we were headed to Norfolk, VA. The place my new husband had been stationed for the past 2 years. He had to check back into work in about 24 hours.

{at the airport waiting for our flight}

We stayed at the Comfort Inn for a week together. He went to work early in the morning and came home late at night. Meanwhile I just watched TV and waited patiently for my new husband to come home each day. We had a date night each night, did some sight seeing and just enjoyed each other.

But, at the end of that short week together as newly weds, it was time for me to fly back to Las Vegas and for him to begin a week of preparation for his 2nd deployment; this one would be 6 months in Bahrain. Yes, my husband left for 6 months only 2 weeks into our marriage.

So our first year as newly weds started with a 6 month separation where I continued to live with my parents, go to school and work (a lot). I stayed busy (that's the key to getting through any deployment).

Fortunately, this deployment was a piece of cake: Ben was living in very nice quarters with 2 men to a room and their very own phone. He could call as often as he liked and connected through the local Air Force Base for free (thank you Nellis!). I'd have to say that the time passed fairly quickly.

When he got home to Virginia, I met him there. We lived in Virginia Beach for about a month until it was time for him to separate from FAST Co. and head out to Camp Pendleton on new orders. During that month, we lived in a week to week hotel/apartment (and boy was is ghetto!). I spent my days working on an online class, reading and going to the mall. We ate out a lot! And we attended our 2nd Marine Corps Ball together and spent our first Thanksgiving together.

{at the airport, headed to Virginia!}

{at the ball}

At the end of that short month, we headed out to Florida to visit Ben's dad and then to Vegas for Christmas leave.

{Christmas in Las Vegas}

Then, it would be time to pack all that we had (which was very little) and head out to sunny San Diego!! There, we would truly begin our life together...

Check out part 4 here

Friday, August 20, 2010

go Padres!

So I'm not a huge baseball fan. I usually watch the World Series and sometimes I'll stop on channel 4 to check the score of a Padres game. But other than that, ehhh, it's not too exciting.

But, last week, a friend and I decided to take the Coaster to downtown SD to Petco Park and watch the Pad's play the Pittsburg Pirates.

Here are 4 things we learned on our trip to see the Padres:

1. You can drink on the Coaster (but only until 9pm). So first of all, it was INSANE on the Coaster heading down to San Diego. Apparently the YMCA youth counselors were celebrating the end of summer or something and I guess they picked our train car to ride in. And there was ALOT of underage drinking. They denied it, but it was pretty obvious that a lot of them were NOT 21. We complained to the train security on the ride home from the game and he said he would bring it up with his supervisor or something... suuurree.

2. There is a special Military Window to purchase tickets! We walked up to the ticket window line and it was LONG. And then we noticed that to the side there was a military ticket window. So we went up to it and it was for us! We got to cut ALL those people waiting and on top of that we got a nice $6 discount on any seat of our choice. It was sweet; I felt like VIP :)

3. Adrian Gonzales is really good. He pretty much carried the team. And they won! Yay!

4. There is only one ice cream dispenser at Petco Park. And it's ALL the way on the other side of the field from 1st base (which is where we were sitting). But it was probably good that we had to walk all the way there and back to burn off some of the calories.. they give you a ton of ice cream, and it was really good. I think Mattie even licked the bowl :)

We had a really good time. I hope to go back again this season. Here are some pictures from the game and our trip:

friday wrap up

My week was fairly full. My mom left on Monday night. She had been out the whole weekend for a bridal shower (which was so much fun). We played some very original shower games and all of us kept telling the hostess that she should copyright them!

I had the wonderful privilege of speaking to a group of high school girls on Tuesday night about the topic of college and career. The gist tho was more about being obedient to the Lord than seeking success in school and work. In our culture, we focus so much on what school we go to, what grades we get and what career field we choose. But what really matters in the midst of all of that is Jesus. NONE of those things is better than Jesus.

Today I'll be heading over to Clay 'n Latte with a friend to paint... what, I have no clue yet. But it will be awesome I'm sure! I'll share pictures when it's finished.

Tomorrow I am super excited because my friend and I have tickets to see the Chargers play the Cowboys.. I know it's only preseason but this will be the only time I can actually afford a ticket to an NFL game. I am ready to sport my Charger pride and cheer them to another victory (they won last week against "Da Bears").

Go Bolts!!

And for your surfing pleasure:

The Chargers 2010 Season Schedule

The next installment of Driscoll and Alcorn's discussion: this one is on the topic of birth control

THE most ridiculous video I've ever seen

I am going to make this

The cutest pregnant momma ever!

Top 5 blog posts over at my "beautiful feet" blog

Have a great weekend!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

happy birthday Ben

Today is my wonderful husband's 27th birthday.. but I think we should just stop counting. Everyone at work tells him that he's just old, no age attached (they're all like 19 and 20). I told him today that he's like a fine wine; he gets better with age!

{he certainly doesn't act 27}

So here's to you, husband of mine!

Happy Birthday!!

Friday, August 13, 2010


Yay! It's Friday. I hope you have wonderful plans for the weekend. My mom will be flying out to visit for a few days. We're going to a bridal shower, we'll do some thrift shopping, lots of eating and just some good 'ole mom and daughter visiting time.

Here are some links that I've enjoyed this week:

A very cute DIY project.

A revealing conversation between Mark Driscoll and Randy Alcorn about young pro-life evangelicals.

How to thrift shop (part of a whole "how to" series).

Beautiful hand dyed fabrics.

The prettiest girl's nursery ever.

You should check out Lauren Chandler's blog (Pastor Matt Chandler's wife).. aren't they the cutest family ever?!?!

Have a wonderful weekend!!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

home ec

I think this home ec class sounds wonderful. It starts today.. but I have not decided yet if I want to take it. Decisions, decisions!!!

Have a wonderful Tuesday!!

the story of us: part 2

check out part 1 here

Part 2: Our Wedding Story

So we were in engaged in August and decided that the best thing to do would be get married in December when Ben came home on Christmas leave. That way, I could move out to Virginia (where he was stationed) right away and start school there in January. That was a fun conversation with my dad!- "I know I'm only 18 and I know we just got engaged, but we're going to get married in 3 months and moving across the country."

But, to my surprise, God had a different plan (which I've learned over the years is almost always the case!) Instead of coming home to get married, Ben would be sent to Iraq. The war had just began and his platoon was selected to join in the fun! (ok, that was a little sarcastic). He left in November 2003 and wouldn't be home until at least February.

We planned the wedding for April 17, 2004. It was really a shot in the dark; as good a weekend as any other. With the Marine Corps, you never know what is going to happen. We just had to cross our fingers and hope that he would be home from Iraq and be able to come home to Vegas that weekend.

Guess what?! It worked!! Well, kinda. We ended up moving it back one week to April 24, 2004.

He came home from Iraq in March and flew to Vegas for a week to see me. We worked on some wedding plans, mostly just getting our marriage license (and seriously debating eloping).

The week before the wedding, Ben came home on leave. That week is kind of a blur. I worked at least 40 hours and was in school full time. I am so thankful to my mom for all the work she did for our wedding.

And then, on Saturday, April 24, it all came together, perfectly.

We were married at Warm Springs Baptist Church in Henderson, NV. Neither my husband nor I were nervous. We were just so ready to be husband and wife!! In fact, my dad had to slow me down walking down the aisle. If it was up to me, I would have just run down the aisle!

Our reception followed at the club house in a retirement community (oh, who am I kidding? It was a trailer park :) But there was a dance floor! And it was so much fun.

That night we stayed at the Bellagio (thanks to a wonderful family friend who got us a fabulous deal on a suite).

And as they say, the rest is history!!

You can read the next installment: Newly Weds! here

Monday, August 9, 2010

the story of us: part 1

Part 1- Our Engagement Story!!

My husband and I had been dating long distance for about 2 years, ever since he joined the Marine Corps, left for bootcamp and was stationed in Virginia. He usually came home to see me (in Vegas) on long weekends. This particular weekend was Labor Day, 2003.

We had spent the evening at his mom's house with the family. She always had get-togethers when Ben came home. There was nothing extra-special about this particular evening (yet). We had been talking about getting engaged for a little while, but didn't plan to actually make it official until he returned home from his deployment to Bahrain. He was scheduled to leave in May 2004 and would be home in October.

But apparently, he did not want to wait that long (in the end, we would already be married before he even left on that deployment!). That night after everyone had left, he told me he had a surprise.

He placed a blind fold over my eyes and led me into the front yard. There he placed a rose in front of my nose for me to smell. I was thinking, "oh how sweet, he got me flowers!" When he removed the blind fold, there was a rose and in it was a beautiful solitaire diamond engagement ring. He asked if I would marry him and I said, "Yes!"

So, on August 29, 2003, we were engaged to be married.
Oh to be 18 and in love! Those were the days...

{The night of our rehearsal dinner}

{Our "official" engagement picture}

PS- this story is probably a surprise to my mother and father. The next day, Ben went to my house to ask permission of my parents if he could ask for my hand in marriage. A little backwards right? Well, he really did plan to ask on Saturday night AFTER he had spoken to my parents; but apparently he was just SO excited, he couldn't wait. So he asked me on Friday night and them on Saturday morning. Sorry mom and dad!!

Stay tuned for the next installment of "the story of us: wedding day!"

the girl named Tennessee

I love NEEDTOBEATHE. They are a Christian band that is categorized as "rock" but I would say there's a little bit of bluegrass, and just good 'ole southern charm to their music. The band is from a small town in South Carolina called Possum Kingdon.. I think that explains a little bit.

You may know their song "More Time" that was on the soundtrack for P.S. I Love You (great movie by the way).

I tend to have a favorite song each week. So for you listening pleasure, here is my favorite song this week, "The Girl Named Tennessee"

What's your favorite song this week?

Happy Monday!

Monday, August 2, 2010

history geek

I've been working on my family genealogy over the past few months with the goal of applying for membership at the Red Hill Foundation. Membership is excusively for those who are direct decendents of Patrick Henry. You know: "Give me liberty or give me death." He is my 6th great-grandfather on my mother's side.Anyways, in researching the lineage that relates me to Henry, I discovered some pretty exciting things. Most of my family (on my maternal grandmother's side) were affluent members of Virginia society. They owned large pieces of land and plantations and many held public office.

I wanted to share with you some of what I found online. I plan to take a trip to Virginia in the near future to tour their plantations, homes, grave sites and to just tangibly see my family history. So here's a peak into my family history:

Union Hill was built between the years of 1775 and 1779 by Colonel William Cabell. His granddaughter, Elvira Ann Cabell married Patrick Henry's son at the residence. Over the course of generations, many of them were born, married, died and burried at Union Hill. The home and cemetary still stand and are open to the public.

{photo credit: University of Virginia}

In 1830, William Howson Clark built Banister Lodge on the 3000 acre plot he inherited from his father. William was married to Patrick Henry's granddaughter, Elvira Ann Henry. They were married at Union Hill but lived at Banister Lodge.

{Elvira Ann Henry
Photo credit: Halifax County}

Perhaps the most impressive piece of architecture that I found was Berry Hill:

{Photo credit: Halifax County}

It was built by James Cole Bruce in 1842. My relation to him is that his granddaughter, Rosa Clark Bruce, was my grandmother's grandmother (Try not to get too confused :). The building is said to be "the most perfect classic architecture in the South." And it is beautiful. The plantation itself consisted of buildings that date back to 1770 and multiple buildings used as slave quarters. Also still intact is the Berry Hill slave cemetary where many people are buried.

The main building has since been turned into a resort and conference center.

Honestly this is just a glimpse into what I discovered. And while I can understand that it might not be too interesting to you, I would encourage you to do some research into your own history. Whatever you find, it will interest you. After all, our lineage is what connects us to history.

Ever wondered why history class was so boring? Because we didn't have any connection to it. It was just a bunch of events and dates we had to memorize for tests. But, if you look into how you are connected to it, history comes alive. And the most important thing we can do for future generations is to remember our history.