Cutest lil’ Baylor Bear EVER

Okay, so she may not really be a Baylor Bear. Most of her family are UT grads or A&M grads but I couldn’t resist making a shirt for one of the sweetest little girls I know.

My ex-boyf and I are on great terms, in fact I am just gonna start referring to him as Mr. S because he is my best friend and ex-boyfriend sounds so “beat his car with a baseball bat” to me. So Mr. S’s cousin, Lori, has a daughter, Berlynn, that I absolutely adore (adore Lori as well). Berlynn is almost 4 and is an old soul trapped in her little body. If only there were room for me to tell you all the great things that she does and says and oh gosh I just LOVE her. Anyway, here a couple weeks ago she sent me a little package with some pictures and a picture she colored for me and a card that she asked her mom to write what she was saying (hilarious, I read it everyday and it cracks me up).

During the three years Mr. S and I dated I got to know his cousin Lori really well (and all of his family for that matter and I so very much love all of them, all of his cousins and aunts and uncles and everyone is seriously amazing in this fam) but back to Lori – love her. She is one of the most genuine people you will ever meet and a truly awesome mom. She is always encouraging and upbeat no matter what. I love it. She leant me a book (that I just reviewed on my previous post, in fact) I needed to send Lori that book back and I’ve been gathering some little things to send to Berlynn since her bday is soon and she also sent me a sweet package of drawings and pictures and cards that made my day just a couple weeks ago.

Since you all know I bleed green and gold and Baylor Football Season is like a religious time of year for me, it should be no surprise that I decided to make her a little Baylor t-shirt using an iron-on kit that you just print from your computer and then iron onto the shirt. I also found her a cute little yellow skirt on sale to complete the whole outfit.

I just used a white t-shirt from Target, iron on kit that I got from Hobby Lobby, made the design I wanted in word, followed the directions to print it out onto the paper and then cut around the areas I wanted separated since there were parts for front and back and then followed the kit instructions to get it all in place. Super easy. About a 45 minute project because you are supposed to wait 30 min for the ink to dry. And here are the pics of the shirt first then the outfit front and back. Can’t wait to see it on her!

Here are the front followed by the back

Then here is the shirt with the skirt I got her so she can run around and do some sic ’em bears when the bears are playing!

I love how it turned out and I hope she will love it when it arrives in her little birthday package soon. One horrible thing about me? Her birthday is not until next month but I am SO excited to send her some stuff that I am sending it like tomorrow. I just can’t even help it! I’m going to be terrible at holding onto presents when I’m a Mom. I just get so excited to see how excited kids get when they get gifts!

XOXO

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Literary Review: Time to Get Studious (who am I kidding? – reviews of chick books!)

Hey y’all, Happy Weekend!

I’m always looking for something random to read in the evening before I go to bed. I try my best to read rather than watch television otherwise I stay up waaaay too late. So just in case any of you out there also like to do the same thing and are also like me in having a hard time on what to choose next, I’m gonna share the books I read and how I felt about them. Nothing formal. Just consider me your friend at lunch casually mentioning a recent read you may enjoy.

Warning: I am not planning on taking on all the problems of the world before bedtime; most of what I read would likely fall in the “romantic comedy” genre if it were a movie. Most cheerful books mixed with a few  different ones here and there (I’m planning on reading some chuck palahniuk (fight club writer) here soon and his stuff is pretty twisted. So I will always preface my reviews with what type of book, etc. Hope you find some here that you like to read too. I will also add in a little link to amazon if you want to check it out and buy the book or read more.

I will rate it on a 1-10 (10 best) scale at the end of the review and then say who I think will enjoy the book. Let me know if there is anything else that you want me to add in that would be helpful

1. Rainshadow Road by Lisa Kleypas

I read this after just getting out of a long relationship – my relationship did not parallel what happened to the character in the book but I found some of the dialogue strangely comforting. Strangely this book was loaned to me prior to the breakup by a relative of my ex-boyfriends so I just find that all kind of funny.

Back to the book… I identified with the characters and loved the little spark the book had. The overall theme of having something being broken and made into something entirely new and beautiful again is something many of us can identify with.Quick read, easy read and I really enjoyed it. Some parts of it reminded me of the Notebook for some reason.

Rating: 10 – best for those who love the broken hearts get healed type stories. 

2. Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella

I love Sophie Kinsella after all of the Shopaholic series and picked this book up in an airport a while back. When I first started to read it, it was totally different from most of Sophie Kinsella’s books and I didn’t get into it at all. So I put it back on a shelf and recently when I was moving I gathered a few books that I had been wanting to read and decided I would start with that one and see if I could get into it.

It is definitely not typical Sophie Kinsella but this book is GREAT it is super entertaining and a totally different plot than I’ve seen before. Still has the same rom-com undertones but with a spin including her great-aunt, named Sadie, that she has never met starts haunting Lara, the main character on the day of Aunt Sadie’s funeral. She convinces Lara to help her find something that she needs to stall the funeral because she can’t be buried without this items. After constant screaming in Lara’s face during the funeral which no one else can hear.  Lara ends up saying the funeral needs to be held up because she believes her Great Aunt Sadie (who she had never met before and died at the age of 105) was murdered.

Definitely some hilarious points to the story. Odd dynamic between Sadie and Lara at first but turns into a truly heartwarming bond with OF COURSE some lessons on love lost and new love wrapped in there.

Rating: 10 – for those who don’t mind an opinionated ghost creeping in on their rom-com. 

Hope you find these helpful. I’m about to start a new book this evening so I will let you know how it goes. If you ever read something that you think was “cute” or “fun” or might be something I would also like to read, please leave me comments, I am totally open to suggestions as I find that is how I’ve read some of the best books after another person has suggested it to me.

I’d imagine you can expect a review from me ever other week or so at least. I usually read through things pretty quick but don’t want that to take over the whole blog focus. I mean I do have cute projects to share like this one coming up here in just a few!

XOXO

Those Changes I was talking about…

You may remember this post just a couple of weeks ago or so discussing the course I want my blog to take. As you have seen, I am still sharing some awesome DIY’s and other projects but the 2nd part of this blog is a call to changing myself and letting you, my readers, be the reason to stay accountable. I want to be healthy – in every aspect of the word. Mind, body and spirit. I definitely have some work to do on all three things. While the spiritual aspect may take me some places more personal than I want to share, I assure you I am going to do my best to share all of these struggles here. Don’t expect it to be a flowery “I just woke up this morning and started jogging and it turned into 5 miles and I never want to eat bad food again and praise God.” Nothing happens that easily. Ever.

So expect it to be a very real venture into my need to get back to exercising and need to lose approximately 80lbs to be at my desired goal of being fit and healthy. This will be more fit than I have ever been in my life but I think it is important to get off my butt and do it now so I can live a long healthy life. Right now i’m in my 20s and taking my health for granted.

So my major things to tackle:

– Lose weight and exercise (GREAT for stress relief – I deal with anxiety and I need to realize that working out and getting those extra endorphins will make me feel so much better and is SO much cheaper than therapy)

– Eat better and more balanced meals

– do an overall check of my body and try to get rid of the minor illnesses that often plague me – adult acne (has to be a result of a poor diet, stress, etc.) – allergies – I take a daily medicine but feel that if I am also more active these won’t keep me down quite so much.

And true to form – I am starting all of this on a Thursday (why wait until Monday a great friend told me) and I totally agree – i’m gonna get a 5 day jump on changing the rest of my life for the better so by Monday, i’ll already nearly be a week into making new habits.

So, I hope that you will follow along with this journey, from small steps in the beginning to the bigger things to come. I know God has set us all apart to do great things in his name and tomorrow, I’m going to start taking care of the blessing that God has given me of health and abilities that I am wasting.

Notes of encouragement, questions, kicks in the rear and motivation are all welcomed. You guys are the reason that I feel like I can do this. I have readers who are going to look at this and remember that I said on September 6, 2012 I made a promise and because of you all, I will stick to it because I know that if I can work hard to turn everything around and get healthy, anyone can.

XOXO

Boarding School – remembering things that have laid a foundation for my life.

I moved around a whole lot when I was little – with both parents in the Navy it was guaranteed we would be somewhere new every three years or shorter and I was always starting a new school. I believe between pre-k to middle school I went to something like 14 different schools. I lost track at some point. I didn’t have any siblings so I always had this “me against the world” feeling and I totally loved it. I got so used to always being new it made me very outgoing and eager to meet new people. A skill that I think really helps me out today. I’d lived in Hawaii, Rhode Island and England (several different locations in each) all by the time I was 7. All of those things shaped who I am today and I wouldn’t trade the awesome experiences that I had for anything.

So wrapped in all that information are several facts that you may or may not know about me (even if we have been friends for a long time, sometimes it just doesn’t come up): I’m an only child, I went to a british boarding school when I was 8 and had the most proper british accent. We moved back to the states, California specifically, before I was 10 and I promptly lost my accent (after a certain age most people retain their accent but when you are young you pick up accents and drop them easily) I’m sad though, it would have been so cool to still have a british accent. However, now I’m just a jumbled mess of accent, people ALWAYS ask me where i’m from because I don’t sound like anywhere in particular.

I am telling you all of these things because I just was thinking to myself about how many things I probably don’t know about some of my closest friends. I never “grew up” with one group of friends that I know everything about. A lot of my friends have completely the opposite experiences.

Boarding school – what a cool chapter of my life. Here in the U.S. everyone automatically thinks you were a wild child for going to boarding school but it is very common in Europe to attend prep schools and boarding schools as just normal kids. In my case, my parents were stationed somewhere with not a lot of kids my age so I asked to go to school there because I knew a friend that was there.

I came across my boarding school online tonight and I just couldn’t help but share it. It is called Hanford and while I know there have been many changes since I was there some 18 or so years ago, the pictures on the website are just as I remember the school. An old mansion with a lot of rooms and some very long standing traditions that make sense to no one else other than Hanford “old girls” as all the alumni are called.

I really cherish the time that I had there and just wonder what kinds of experiences other people have had that seemed totally normal at the time but now that you look back on it you realize that it was a truly unique once in a lifetime kind of deal?

Here are some pics of the school – totally reminds me of some of the scenes from Harry Potter. Below is the dining hall. We had a chart of table manners that started at piglet and went to Royal Guest. You did not want to stay at the piglet level long. Great way to teach manners! I still utilize those manners today.

This is a view of the main school building where most of the dorms are for the younger girls. There were all sorts of rules and if you know me at all then you know that I was often in trouble. For me, this was like a huge sleepover every night. I lived in one dorm that had 4 girls and then the next term there were like 10 or 12 of us in a large dorm. A bunch of 8-9 year olds = trouble. For sure. Below is the back of the school and the large lawn and then the bottom is the front of the school. Huge old mansion.

Do you have some random adventures from childhood that you love to share?

XOXO

Football & Fall – Just Fake It ’til It Makes It

Oh, the beginning of college football season. I LOVE college football. It just makes me so happy to live in Texas. Now of course, I am a HUGE Baylor Bear so while I enjoy watching college football in general, the only team colors you will find me in are gold and green.

Yes, I am from Austin, no, I do not root for UT. Nothing personal, I just didn’t go there and don’t feel any reason to root for them. I am a Baylor Bear through and through. My favorite thing when RGIII won the Heisman last year was a part of his speech where he said, “We are Baylor. Baylor we are. And Baylor we will always be.” I totally agree with that. I mean maybe it sounds like total cheese but being a Bear to me is just part of me, like being a Republican or a clean freak.

I’m sure you think I’m totally nut-so now but that’s okay, I’m ready to reveal an awesome project I finished up in time to watch Baylor play SMU tonight. I’ve seen the burlap door hangers floating around and I made a Baylor wreath last year so I opted for something a bit different.

The only thing that I wish I could add is fall weather. Fall and Football are a great couple and I wish we could experience more ‘FALL’ football here in Texas. Until the temperatures crank down a bit, i’m just gonna pretend and fake it ’til fall makes it here. That’s always the best plan, right?

You might have seen this sneak peek on facebook last night:

I stayed up waaaay too late after drinks with some friends to finish this (apparently I can still paint straight after margaritas, go, me!!) So that was the front side. Today I attached the back and finished this baby up. I am TOTALLY pumped to get this out on the front door. Sic ’em Bears! I will leave you with some pictures so I can get back to watching my Bears win! Hope you are having a great long weekend!

XOXO

When all else fails, organize!

As always, when everything is feeling a little chaotic, I find something to organize. I am FINALLY done sorting through every box in my storage unit. Everything has been relabeled and reorganized and I feel so. Much. Better. I moved a three piece sectional by myself (lifted, stacked it and all that) and that sucker is huge and heavy. However, made me feel pretty good looking around and seeing the progress and feeling like I’ve done it all on my own. May sound silly but in the midst of all that is weighing on me that feeling of triumph that I have done it all by myself really made me feel empowered. It also reminded me that I needed to have a good glass of wine. Doing that now.

However, now I need some new projects to focus on!

I have some tutorials coming soon for a cork board I made and some picture frames. I’m also working on getting my shopping page up and going to keep watching for that. Lots of changes around here and I am pumped for all of them. I will leave you with a picture of my now beautiful and organized storage.

Hope you are having a fab week!

XOXO

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