Monday, July 25, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Invited

....a few thoughts, a little scattered....

As a planner personality I do lots of inviting, for big and small; meals, events, music, parties, happy hour, joining groups, etc.. I love gathering with my people, sometimes one-on-one and sometimes in a large group that is intentional chaos. Both are gifts to me and my love language of quality time.

But, when you're the one who's passing out invites, 
it seems you're not the one receiving invites. 

Before I go on, this isn't a pity story. I am fully ok with, and really treasure, days at home. And, I am long past the "FOMO" (fear of missing out) that I sometimes gave into in my 20's. I also don't need to be "busy" to fill my time because I am involved in and committed to enough things that I learned a long time ago when to say "No", how to prioritize and what I need as refill. 

Months of my calendar often have very few blank days. 

Then I get invited. 

Family dinner. 
Happy Hour.
Just in the last few months.

Often on days that something else was already going on. 
But, still I could say "yes".

None took a lot of effort, all were intentional. 
And, I appreciate more than being invited someone being intentional to include me. 

When I'm invited, I remember to be intentional with my invites. 
When I haven't seen someone in a while. 
When they are on my mind.
Reach out.

It might be on a day they have nothing, except wondering if they are missing out. 
Or maybe when there's a ton going on, but "yes" is still an option. 

When I feel like maybe I haven't been invited in a while 
I try not to over-think it. 
Though there are of course times when I, like anyone, longs to be invited.

And if you struggle with feeling uninvited,  Lysa TerKeurst has a new book coming out: 

I have no connection with this book, nor reason to mention, 
except I think it will resonate with women and it's on my To Read list. 
And, if you're struggling, I invite you to add it to your list, 
and, say yest to the One who's always got time for you, 
and an intentional invite waiting, 
better than any event, party, dinner, date or trip this world can offer. 

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Home Tour: #everydayhomeoffice

Welcome or Welcome back! Today I'm linking up with Kelly's Korner for the Every Day Real Life Home Tours.  I love this #linkup because of these words from Kelly; "...I also like to just see real life normal homes.  Ones decorated on a budget and by moms of young kids who "can't have nice things" or apartments where single girls live or a retired couple's home.   I always want to just knock on doors of homes in my town and ask if I can have a tour.  I love to see how people live." It's not about perfect or designer, it's just about home, every day. 

I fall into the "single girl in an apartment" category, so my space is small-ish, but perfect for me.  I recently moved and with moving always comes a little rearranging and if you come back here to my home again, you'll see the living is also the dining and the dining is also the living and the living is also the office, and the office is  also the living.  #openconcept :) 
I received this towel as a gift and it is a favorite, know someone who would love it? {click here}
In my old place I had a built in desk that I used every square inch of and knew when I moved despite not having a built in I would need to have a desk space. So, I did what any good daughter would do; schemed up a plan for my Dad to help out and "together" we built a desk. I sketched it out, he built the top and the legs, we put it together and I painted and sanded it while he (& my parents puppies) took a nap. :)  You can read more about move-in projects {click here}. It turned out simply perfect, just right for the space, not overwhelming and open.
Of course once it was complete, I needed to get stuff on the walls, and I envisioned a shelf above, just a simple one.  I found an unfinished shelf at Michael's for $9.99 and of course used my 40% off coupon and the stain I had and the "office" was finally ready for the finishing touches. Trick of hanging things, use painter's tape. mark where nail holes need to go, line it up on the wall, make sure it's level, put in the nails, and hang up your goods!
Maybe you only have good-singular to hang, but I don't have much space for empty walls, so I go ahead and hang my goodS and use up all the wall space. This was the first round of "finished", which included a clock print from Magnolia Market {click here for the story} and I wanted some type of frame.
I happened upon a "floating frame" in Ross one day for $6.99 or $7.99 that was big enough for the print, which is larger than 8x10, but not standard frame size. Here's the frame when I brought it home and snapped a quick pic to send my Mom and show her the deal I scored! 
And, here's the little shelf completed...the acryllic block says "dream without limits" which I think goes well with the clock-print that has no hands. 
The corner wall has a few things, words (of course) few pics and my calendar. In 2015 I happened upon a Karen Kingsbury calendar in a store and loved it. So, when I couldn't find one for 2016 I went to trusty Amazon and found the 2016 version. It is perfectly whimsical and has just enough vintage charm. I only write important dates to remember on this calendar; birthdays, anniversaries and heaven dates of family and friends. No plans or other reminders go on my wall calendar. The Dream Big print was a pick up at the Business Boutique from The {Well} Studio and words that are significant to me from that weekend framed in a simple Hobby Lobby frame which goes with the floating frame. 
Here's the finished product of my little creative space...where I write, blog, write lists, keep up with bills and all the other necessities of keeping life organized. I love this little corner and also the window on the world.

Thank you for stopping by, if you've missed the previous link ups, click for {Master Bedrooms}, {Living Rooms} and {Dining Rooms}.  

Stay in touch via Facebook and Instagram


Friday, July 22, 2016

What I'm Wearing ~ Repeats and Pattern Mixes

Summer is in full swing, which means every day is just hot, hot, hot. So, dresses are the best for these types of days, which I've been wearing a lot!  Here's a few recent looks of what I've been wearing...

This dress is one that has been around for a while. It is from one of the designer collections at Target, a designer I have no idea who they are, and I remember finding this single dress on the sale rack and got it for about $8 or $9. I wore it for Easter 2014. You can see it previously styled with blue shoes {click here} and this time with black lace up heels. Funny how a pair of shoes can totally change the look of a dress and keep it fresh, even 2 year later. However, don't doubt I've still worn it with the blue heels. 
This top I've shown before {click here}with jeans and this day for work I had a moment of pattern mixing; one that may or may not really "go" together, but do patterns really go? They just work. And, I liked this combo, so I went with it. This skirt is a Loft find from a couple of years ago and is a great mustard yellow print, so it easily works year round. See it in previous posts {click here} and {click here}.

Last time I wore this Romper was for a Rodeo party with boots {click here}, and this time was Sunday church with wedges. It's an Old Navy romper from sometime in 2015 and the reason I got it was because it came in a tall-size. I think rompers are real cute, but there is no part of cute in too short of a waist or bottom of  the romper. These sunnies are new from local boutique in my home town, Able's Mercantile. They have such a fun collection of things and this is actually the 2nd pair of sunnies I've picked up from them. 

I have been in Austin twice this summer for workshops and this was the last day of one of them. The top is from Target, and jeans are from Loft a couple of years ago. If you put on a big necklace and some wedges maybe that will distract from 3-day-old-hair-in-top-knot!? :) I love monochromatic looks and also mixing grays and gold. Another recent gray jeans look with same necklace is {here}.
Since we're talking about repeats, here's two recents of the same dress. I debated this dress back and forth about every time I went into Target. When I caught the Cartwheel 40% off sale, I went for it and I've already worn is several times. Warning, it's pretty long and might require hemming for some. I am 5'9" and wearing 3" wedges in pics. I paired it with the leopard scarf for a bridal shower I was helping to host and the bandana + vest was one Sunday for church.
Last but not least...this is getting long. Here's another pattern mix with stripe pants for work. This top is new from the Who What Wear collection at Target and really looks like it is both navy and black, depending on what you put beside it. These pants are at least 10 years old from Zara. I can recall a pic I had them on in 2006 at a Sales Conference in Las Vegas and they were not new then.  #classics 
In case you missed it, that pup sneaking in the pic is new around here, you can read all about him {here}.

Also, linked up with The Pleated Poppy, click to see lots of fun outfit inspiration 
pleated poppy
Stay connected on Facebook {click here} and Instagram {click here}
(Not to promote "likes" but you have to click like to continue seeing posts in your news-feed.)


Monday, July 18, 2016

Monday Musings ~ St. Augustine

....a few thoughts, a little scattered....

In June I applied to adopt a dog from a shelter in Deer Park, he was a street rescue and looked to be Havanese, sweet pup, but someone was ahead of me in line and I didn't get him. I was a little disappointed, but figured he wasn't for me and I would find my next dog in due time. So, a couple of weeks later I was looking online one night and found a Bichon puppy and also a rescue dog from two different places in the DFW area. I emailed in about both and got an immediate response on the puppy and assumed the rescue was already gone, I've learned adoptions don't take long.

However, Thursday I got an email, the rescue was available. I sent in my application and a little more information including stories of my Barney to the organization and emailed a bit with the husband and wife who owned the organization and were fostering this particular dog. I could tell immediately they loved dogs and were selective about who they allowed for adoptions. Later that afternoon I got a call that I was approved and if I came to see him, I could take him home the same day. I hung up and thought about it for a couple of hours, asked my Mom if she was up for a road trip with me and called back to schedule a "meet and greet" with the organization....

Two weeks ago, on July 2nd, 5 months after losing Barney, my Mom and I took a Saturday road trip to east of Dallas to meet this dog.  Honestly between Thursday and Saturday I had 100 back and forth moments of fear and concern if this would be a good fit and if this was in fact a healthy dog. It was nearly 3 hour road trip and long way to go for a "dry run", but I knew might not be a fit and wasn't set on coming home that day with a dog.

And then we walked in.  And he came out. And ran right to my lap. And licked my nose.  And I cried. 
Right there on the floor of the entry to their business with him in my lap. And, I knew.  
Barney never would lick my face entirely, but he would lick my nose and when that happened, it brought back so many memories and I was caught in the most bittersweet of moments.  I told them with tears in my eyes I would take him and then we started talking. Thank goodness for my Mom, she told a bit of my story. The sweet couple who had him read my blog and aside from loving dogs like I did Barney, she told me she's lost a best friend too, who's name was Angie, and read my posts on grief and loss. She told her husband, despite having so many applications that I needed this dog and was the perfect home for him. They were the nicest people who had taken care of him and take great care in placing animals, she told me they pray for people and good homes. And, I've been praying for just the right dog to come along...
Here we are loaded up and headed home! When I walked out with him she gave him a few pats and told him "you've got a forever home, it's a good one" and I cried again as we left.
While we were on the way home Mom and I talked about what to name him and I decided on St. Augustine, great influence of western Christianity, remembered for blessing and grace, a writer, and I will call him Auggie.

He was the best traveler and napped most of the way home while Mom drove and I took pics as he worked his way around the 4 corners of his bed. My new little companion and shot gun rider.
They told me he preferred women over men, but Auggie went right to my Dad when we got home and never skipped a beat. So much to see at the 4G including meeting all their dogs and the one queen cat.
It was 4th of July weekend, so I had an extra day off and we came to my house Saturday evening to start settling in, and he's fit in like he's always been here.  I only told a couple of friends and asked them to pray that Auggie stayed healthy, as fear still crept in for me.

He loves walks on the trails by my house, we take them most evenings. I think in the fall he will be able to walk a couple of miles with me, once the weather cools off.
We celebrated his first holiday with me, July 4th! His foster parents sent him home with a festive bandanna.
Barney never tore up toys and after a couple of days Auggie found the toy box and had almost every toy out of it and my house looking like a toddler lives here.  I picked them up one evening and this was his pile, which he was so proud of....
And, it clearly makes you tired after all that play...
We went to the vet, he got a glowing and healthy check up, (the vet was so kind and remembered me from the sick dog I first adopted), and she reminded me all things have a way of working out. When she came back into the room after his exam, her first words were "so you got a golden doodle, where did you get him?".  Um, I knew he was a poodle mix, had told me cocker-poo, but if you've read here before, golden doodle was what I really wanted, {click here} and it was like she tied a bow on my whole adoption experience with that one question! Auggie weighs about 16 lbs and is estimated between 9-12 months old, so his birthday will be August 28th; the day of remembrance of St. Augustine.

One of the things I love about my blog is being able to go back and read posts and see how things do all work out, even when hard and sad.

Auggie met the littles and made his 1st road trip with them to the 4G for Camp 4G 2016! They were immediately smitten and he loved to run and play with them too.
He's now made his 3rd trip to the 4G, 2 weekends with the littles and is settling right into his seat in my car and taking in all the sights along the road.
He also figured out the big dogs have toys in their crate and when given the opportunity he steals their bone! 
A few friends have been over to my house to meet him and a few to my parents house, including their neighbor who came over to swim and then met him. She snapped this pic and it is one of my favorites....
If you're on Instagram you can see his pics here: @theauggiedog

There's 100 other little things in these 2 weeks, more to come, but so very happy with this little Auggie dog and hope for many many years with him!  And, thank you again for all of your kind words, this season has been a hard one but joy comes in the morning!  


Monday, July 11, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Chaos

...a few thoughts, a little scattered...

sleepy eyes
rice krispies
breakfast spread
broken glass
bike wreck
heavy conversations

As I stood at the sink finishing up dishes in a kitchen where the table was filled with friends, iced tea, littles, creativity, chatter and life...we looked at the clock.  

I laughed and told Mom, it's hardly after 10am!!

From the outside looking in, it looks like chaos. 

But, it's just life...beautiful life...

When wounds hurt, they were cleaned and covered with band-aids. 
When coffee cups and tea glasses were empty, they were refilled. 
When dogs tree a snake that would be in our path, we are safe. 
When heavy conversations are hard, laughter is welcome. 
When glass breaks, sweeping picks up the pieces. 
When tears fall, littles are held & tears wiped. 

Even though it's only the morning, the chaos is beautiful.
All the way through to the sunset of evening. 

Where help has been given.
Where empty has been refilled.
Where pieces have been picked up.
Where the day has been washed off.

And you look back and realize...

in all of the chaos 
there is light shining through.

And chaos paints a beautiful picture of light. 

Friday, July 8, 2016

Reflection. Individual.

This morning I woke up burdened. For people. Not country, religion, race or group. Just people. 

For individuals. 

In all groups, races, religions and countries. 


Somewhere we have lost our way. The individual has succumbed to entitlement and authority foregoing humility and respect. 

Of one another. 

It is not ___________ that are wrong or do wrong. 

Individuals do. 

From speaking hate to condemnation, judgment is not ours. 

Sin is not new to the world. 

Sin is sin. 

Your sin and my sin. There is not "category" of sin. 

I am accountable for me. 
You are accountable for you. 


When I sin, I choose sin. No one forces me. 

When I abide by Biblical law, it is because I chose to. 

When I consider the burdens in my circle alone; hurt, loss, confusion, anger, sadness, illness, fear, it is almost overwhelming.

But God promised that HE alone is good. 


No one else, but him. 

Not me. Not you. 

But I can choose...
To be kind. 
To show empathy. 
To bring light. 
To love. 
To listen to others. 
To try and understand. 
To not judge. 
To pray. 
To hope. 
To believe. 

He believes in me. 
He hopes in me. 
He draws me to him.  
His judgement is what matters.  
He understands me. 
He listens a to me. 
He loves me. 
He brings light to the dark. 
His heart breaks. 
He is kind. 

And I choose to rest in him and my greatest prayer is to reflect him. 

It starts with me. 

Jesus be near. 

Monday, July 4, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Sweet 4th

...a few thoughts, a little scattered...

This has been a long 4 day weekend, that I had not much planned other than planning to be home because I've been gone a lot lately and have several things planned in July.  

Friday started slow with coffee, breakfast and a project. If you like peach and haven't seen peach cream cheese, here's your PSA for it, so good on an english muffin.  Pause. Exactly my plans for these days and this was a sweet start to the day that also included some time with a couple of besties. 
Saturday was sweet day and thank you to a left over gift certificate, a cupcake to celebrate. 
And, it was sweet. 
I love Sundays. My church, it's people and our Pastor. He asked me this week about sketching an illustration for sermon, and though drawing is certainly not a strength I ended up free handing this illustration of Daniel 4. And, remembered stretching is good for me. The message will be posted soon, click here. A hot-dog lunch "on the grounds" followed our services and I got to serve spontaneously with a few ladies from my church. The generations there who are a part of my life is one of the sweetest gifts of my church. 
Happy 4th of July! I'm always reminded freedom isn't free and this is a sweet land of liberty we live. I pray you had a sweet day with family and friends or even if you were by yourself like me there were sweet moments throughout. For me there were no lakes, boats or trips, but it was a sweet 4th right here at home.
Here's to a short, sweet 3 day work week ahead. 

Friday, July 1, 2016

Home Tour: #everydaybedrooms

Welcome or Welcome back! Today I'm linking up with Kelly's Korner for the Every Day Real Life Home Tours.  I love this #linkup because of these words from Kelly; "...I also like to just see real life normal homes.  Ones decorated on a budget and by moms of young kids who "can't have nice things" or apartments where single girls live or a retired couple's home.   I always want to just knock on doors of homes in my town and ask if I can have a tour.  I love to see how people live." It's not about perfect or designer, it's just about home, every day. 

I fall into the "single girl in an apartment" category, so my space is small-ish, but perfect for me.  I recently moved and with moving always comes a little rearranging and if you come back here to my home again, you'll see the living is also the dining and the dining is also the living and the living is also the office, and the office is  also the living.  #openconcept :) 
I received this towel as a gift and it is a favorite, know someone who would love it? {click here}
Today is all about bedrooms or {Master Bedrooms}.  My latest move happened over a few days, as I was commuting into work which was close to my new place I would leave with my car loaded down and unload it at the new place, organize for a bit then go back to the old place. This worked out well because I had major unpacking of bookshelves {see living room post} and bathroom was completely finished as well as my closet.  So, the first order of business on furniture moving day was to get the bed made. There's no tired like moving tired, especially after doing it for several days by yourself. When the bed is made for first night in the new place I start to feel like it is home.  So, despite many other things being a wreck, my Mama put the sheets on for me and I was so thankful to see my bed that first night.  
As things started to make their way on the wall I hung my old ceiling tile that's been with me through many years and makeovers of bedding decor
Then this summer I picked up a lightweight white quilt on clearance at Home Goods since the comforter is pretty warm and hello Texas summer temperatures. So, this is the "final" look of my bedding post move.  
One hidden update under all those pillows that I actually sleep on.  What a difference new pillows make! New on the right, old on the left...these are no fancy pillows, I'm pretty much a can sleep anywhere on any mattress kind of girl, so HomeGoods Ralph Lauren pillows have been great for me! 
My jewelry sits on top of my chest and a variety of displays are my "storage", here's a little sampling....of course I also have words in my bedroom. 
The chest is actually a "gentleman's chest" that I bought unfinished; I painted it and added knobs myself.
Here's the window view, my curtains are layered, gray, print and sheers. There's lots of sunlight into my bedroom like the living room. The hanging crown was a gift from a friend and my dresser holds heirloom family photos in a variety of black and white antiqued frames. 
And, in the morning light....
The same day I picked up the new white quilt I found a new shower curtain that really brightens up the bath. Here's a look into the updated bath....
...and even though they aren't technically the same, the print on the shower curtain and my bedding go together. 
Of course there are words on these walls too, and here's a few in my bathroom, where there was a big empty wall. The door actually would be better hung opposite than what it is, but that's the kind of change you make when you own the place, not rent it. So, in the rental you just put words on the wall.  And, God loves you when you dance. Sometimes a dance party breaks out in here when a favorite song comes on and I'm getting ready to head out the door!  :) 
Thank you for stopping by, if you've missed the previous link ups, click for {Living Rooms} and {Dining Rooms}.  Stay in touch via Facebook and Instagram