November 25, 2013

BOOK PAGE STAR GARLAND

Last year Tyler and I celebrated our first Christmas together. It was our first time buying a tree together, picking out decorations, and creating traditions together. The tree, a wreath and a couple boxes of ornaments was what we budgeted for. I love Christmas.  I love what Christmas means, I love the feeling of Christmas,  l love all the traditions of Christmas, I even bake Jesus a birthday cake. I knew I would want to make our home as Christmasy as possible and I knew I would have to get creative to achieve it. So when I saw these on Pinterest I knew what I wanted to do.

These were so easy. I have an old encyclopedia that a good friend gave me specifically for ripping pages out. All you need are book pages, scissors, a pen, and a star to trace... oh yea, and a sewing machine.

Trace the star, cut out the stars (I did two at a time because you'll need two for each star) and then sew the stars together. Remember to sew two stars together at a time.



Once you have sewn together your strand of stars you can fold the stars over the seam. What do you think? Once I made these I wanted to hang star garland all over the house. Without Tyler it actually would have happened.

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November 22, 2013

Expectation & Mini Prayer Book


One afternoon I was sitting reading my Bible and writing in my journal. My  journal carries lots of thoughts... prayers, verses, hopes, fears, hurts... That afternoon I was praying for Tyler, he had had a super busy week at work and I wanted to cover him in prayer. That moment got me thinking about how I would like to pray more intentionally for Tyler. I remembered reading Elizabeth's post about praying for her husband and so began my hunt to find references for praying. I found this, this, this, and this. I wanted my mini prayer book to be a resource for me to turn to and pray about specific needs for Tyler.

This mini ring book is super easy. Supplies needed; note cards, decorative paper, latch ring, hole, punch, letter stencils, a sharpie, and ribbon. 1.) write prayers on note cards. 2.) hole punch note cards and decorative paper. 3.) stencil letters on decorative paper. You don't have to use stencils, but sometimes my hand writing doesn't turn out that pretty. 4.) hole punch holes for the ribbon to close the book. 5.) attach ring and ribbon.



What I love most about this mini book is that it was easy and that I can add whatever I want to it. I picked out a handful of prayers I found from the resources listed above and I'm looking to add more. So with all this lovely prayer talk I wanted to chat a little bit about Expectation. Kenzie's Thankful Project prompt for today was expectation. These always seem to throw me for a doozy and they always seem to bring my focus to Christ. I think the word thankful does that for me. I thought about the word expectation and the first thing that came to mind was Jesus' return. I'm thankful for the hope and expectation of his return.

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November 21, 2013

Every Mission Field is Different

Moving to LA was a shock in more ways then one. When we first got here I told Tyler that moving to California was like moving to a different country and I still say it to this day. If you've lived in LA, you can basically live anywhere after that. I have learned so many things since moving here and Jesus has shaped me in more ways then I can count. Something that Tyler and I struggled with and definitely learned a lot about was sharing our faith.
It's not that we weren't familiar with the concept before, but living here brought to light a lot of things we had never really encountered before and really forced us to learn to share our faith in new ways. (Hopefully I can really share what's on my heart today.) Early on in my experience God was very specific in telling me that he didn't care about what "kind" of people I encountered, my job was to build a relationship with them so they could get to know HIM. This can bring on a whole new set of challenges when you've grown up in the Bible Belt and everyone you encountered was familiar with Jesus in one way or another and Joplin is basically full of 700,000 Christians... you get the idea.
Tyler and I were basically thrown into situations where we felt like NO ONE knew Jesus or had any interest in knowing him either. So out of our experiences these are ways that have helped us when sharing our faith. 

1.) Meet people right where they are. Back home this wasn't always that hard, a lot of people we encountered had similar backgrounds or beliefs. Tyler and I have met so many different people with different stories and backgrounds and Jesus helped us to meet them right where there were. We stopped thinking that they had to meet US where we were. - I Corinthians 9:22

2.) Be loving and encouraging. I think it can be really easy to be unloving to someone who is different then you without even trying. A look on your face or a tone in you voice can do it. Tyler and I were chatting the other day and discussing that when we encounter others we want them to feel loved and encouraged by us. - John 13:34-35, Ephesians 4:2

3.) Pray in the moment.  This is something that I do often. There have been many times were friends I have and people I encounter share with me different things with me. And in those moments as I listen, I do my best to love them and I pray silently and I ask God to use me, because I'm not always sure what to do. My job is simply to be God's vessel. - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

4.) Be tentative to the Holy Spirits guidence. Tyler and I have talked about how it's easy for us to get in the way. It easy for us to think we know what to say or do. And so we pray specifically that we won't get in the way, that we will listen to the Holy Spirit and allow ourselves to be used. We know that we can't do any of this on our own so we do our best to be guided by the Holy Spirit. - Romans 8:26, John 14:26, John 16:13

5.) Be in community with other believers. Tyler and I always feel encouraged when we spend time in community with fellow believers. It would be 100 times harder if we didn't have others around us praying for us and challenging us to always seek the Kingdom. -  Hebrews 10:24-25

Because Tyler works in the entertainment industry I like to say we are secret agents. Many believers working in the industry feel alone. We've had many conversation with others about similar struggles we all share... it's hard sometimes because often times people just aren't interested. And sometimes their behavior and beliefs are completely opposite to ours. But this is our mission field. We are here for a reason, we simply put one foot in front of the other, we step out in faith, we trust God. We are HIS vessels.

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November 19, 2013

Red, White, & Blue Style

I'm still riding the birthday month wave. The week before my birthday my brother sent me a gift card to ModCloth. Best brother ever, right? I love that he sent it a week early. He wanted me to be able to pick something out and order it so that it would arrive on my birthday. Yippee! I probably don't need to mention how hard it was to pick out a dress, do I? One of my favorite things about ModCloth is that the have endless choices at so many different prices. You just can't go wrong. I finally decided on this super cute blue and white striped dress. I love that I can basically wear it with anything and it can be dressed up or down. Perfect dress if you ask me.


I'm hoping to be able to dress this up for some fun Christmas activities and parties! I can't wait! Are you planning your Christmas wear?

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November 18, 2013

Pumpkin Cake Doughnuts

I'm a huge fan of doughnuts. They are one of my favorite desserts. My favorite are cake doughnuts... buy me cake doughnuts and we will be friends forever. The holidays bring such sweet traditions and I have been trying to build some new traditions for Tyler and I. So I've been determined to come up with some dessert traditions. Enter the Pumpkin Doughnut. First off, who knew you could make doughnuts at home? When I figured this out I knew I had to get my hands on a doughnut pan... which I didn't even knew existed until I kept coming across doughnut recipes on Pinterest. Hello, I was pinning doughnut recipes like a boss!



These doughnuts are ridiculously good and relatively easy to make. I was practically jumping up and down in my kitchen when I pulled these out of the oven. I will probably start baking up doughnuts every weekend now... okay, not really but I like the idea.

Pumpkin Cake Doughnuts: Adapted from King Author Flour (e.i. I followed this recipe to a T. I couldn't risk these doughnuts not coming out perfectly, not being my first time making doughnuts. We'll leave the experimenting for another day.)

Ingredients: 
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 3/4 cups + 2 tablespoons flour

Method:
Preheat oven to 350ยบ.  Mix everything together, EXCEPT flour. Once mixture is smooth add flour and mix well. Spray doughnut pan with cooking spray. Fill doughnut pan wells about 3/4 full. Bake for 15 minutes. Let doughnuts cool for a few minutes, once they are cool enough to handle gently toss doughnuts in a bag with cinnamon and sugar (1/4 cup sugar to 1 tablespoon cinnamon.) ENJOY!


P.S. Linking up tomorrow with Ashley & Jessica for Taste of Tuesday.

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November 14, 2013

Painted Fingers & Painted Sticks

Sometimes it's good to create just to create. There doesn't have to be a specific objective, just get creative, experiment with different things and different styles. Have fun! A couple months or so ago two of my friends came over and we decided to paint some sticks. I thought it would be fun to do some kind of art thing with painted sticks. I didn't really have any idea how I wanted to paint the sticks, which was hard, but I just started painting and it was a lot of fun.
A really great thing about being friends with artist and having a husband that is an artist is that there are always art supplies available. I loved pulling out all of Tyler's paints and seeing all the paint just piled up all over the table. Something I have had to learn with paint is to use it sparingly. I used to want to just squeeze out a bunch, but over time, I learned that that was super wasteful and paint's not cheap... so only use a little bit at a time.
One of my favorite things about artists is that they are all so humble. There have been times were I'm intimated by them, but they are always so encouraging.
So get out there and create, just for the sake of creating! Paint something, craft something, draw something, write something... just create.

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November 13, 2013

Zoe Style

Is is totally weird that I'm coining this style after a dog? I'm sure you may have seen Zoe on the blog before, I think her first depute was here. Well, Zoe is my mom's dog, but I like to say that she is mine. I'm crazy about animals and dogs. I'm that person who will literally roll all over the floor with dogs.  I considered taking Zoe with me when I moved to California, but Zoe is an old lady and I didn't want to put her through that kind of stress and our apartment here doesn't allow dogs either. And just to add to my excuses, I love having big dogs and you can't really have big dogs without a yard. I just don't think it's fair. Even though Zoe is a medium size dog I still feel like she deserves a yard. So I wait patiently for the day that Tyler and I can have a huge dog that I can roll all over the floor with.

Anyways, so because I couldn't take Zoe with me, before I left I asked my dear friend Caitlin to take some photos of me and Zoe. Obviously I'm a dog person... can't leave her without getting pictures first.




Are you a crazy animal person who has photos taken with your pets? I hope so! Share them with us!

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November 12, 2013

Winter Collection Sneak Peek

The Winter Collection is coming together and I couldn't be more excited! The products I've been working on for this collection are some of my favorite products I've ever made. This experience has also been one of the hardest to create. I've had to really think through the whole collection and determine how I want it to all come together. So today, I'm sharing some sneak peeks of what will be revealed in early December!
I am so in love with this Collections wallets! They are so adorable and classic!
Keep your eyes peeled for the product release! Products will be limited!

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November 11, 2013

AN ANNIVERSARY SHOOT : COUPLES PHOTOGRAPHY

Hello Monday! Last year before Tyler and I got married I did a handful of photo shoots that I never got to share. So today I decided to share one of my favorite photo shoots from 2012. Photos like these make me miss doing photo shoots. This was actually one of the last ones I did and it was probably one of my favorites.

Matt & Ashley are two very good friends of ours. It was so fun going through these photos because they are now a family of five instead of three. Since this shoot they have added Penny the Pug and their precious baby boy Miles.
Happy Monday! How was your weekend?
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