Thursday, February 28, 2013

Thoughtful Thursday - Change of Plans...

I had big plans today to share with y'all some of the awesome goodness that I felt like I walked away from the weekend away with.


Apparently my camera and computer are giving each other the silent treatment and are not supportive of said plan as they are giving me a FIT trying to upload my photos! Sooooo, that post is now on the back burner until at least tomorrow when I will have hopefully been able to reason with the electronics in my life.

(Don't hold your breath as I am fairly convinced that trying to reason with electronics takes the same level of skill as hostage negation....)

In lieu of telling you about my QT with Jesus this weekend, I'm going to rattle on for a sec about this book:

 Oh gracious... It has been a looooong time since a devotional style book has impacted me the way this one has. (Shout out to Elly for turning me on to this gem!)   As someone who believes whole heartily in the super relational aspect of God's heart, I am beyond touched and ministered too by the first person way this book is written.  

(Side note... the story behind it is PHENOMENAL! Get your google on...)

 I can't even begin to tell you how many time I've sat, slack jawed, in complete shock by how closely the day's message applies to me in that. very. second.
I mean... if I didn't know better I'd just about swear that Sarah was following me around =)
I really urge you to check it out if you can... 

Tuesday, was yet another of those days where I opened up the book and sat in shocked awe as the conviction of the words soaked into my heart...

The phrase "Secret things belong to the Lord, and future things are secret things" about knocked me to my knees.  While it is right to listen and seek the Lord on your next season in life, that line can become fuzzy when we suddenly can't settle into His peace without knowing it ALL.  

Those things aren't always ours to know but He is always ours to trust.

 Oh, how often I have missed the journey and doubted His promise to care for me... My words may say YES but my actions and the fear and anxiety in my heart can speak so differently...

Do you read Jesus Calling? Have you been impacted by a book lately that we should know about?

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Current Cosmetic Obsessions - February

About a month ago I shared some of my current cosmetic obsessions and thought, since the word 'current' implies 'up to date', now might be a good time to share some NEW make up obsessions =)  
I am still completely enamored by the goodies I jabbered about a few weeks ago but have added a couple new lovelies to my stash!

Before I begin...

 ( I know.... longest. lead in. to a blog post. EVER.)

It is important to note that my move to Nashville has left a void in my life called - Ulta.  Granted, there are Sephora's and Cosmetic Market's abound but no Ulta's.  The only one is about an hour away...

Well, because Jesus loves me a whoooole lot my route to Monteagle took me right by said Ulta =)

Cue the Hallelujah chorus =)

I was very focused though and was in an out in a timely manner... I sort of had an idea of the things I needed wanted and knew better than to let myself get sucked into the aisles and aisles and AISLES of fabulous cosmestic goodies.  So, without further adieu, here are the things that followed me home:

*  Ulta Fabulous Face Pressed Powder in Light - Medium

I LOVE this product... the coverage is fabulous and rivals the Pur Minerals products I used to be obsessed with!

* Ulta Baked Bronzer *

Not to sound dramatic (cause that would be sooo out of character) but this may be the most perfect bronzer I have ever found.  I felt like I looked like I just wandered in off the beach....minus the fabulous wind swept hair and bag of gossip magazines.

* Ulta Mineral Blush in Peony *
I'm not usually a big blush wearer and, honestly, before I discovered the wonder that is Hot Mama by The Balm, I was always really uninterested.  Well.  This is a close rival to Hot Mama... I. LOOOVE. IT. Gives the perfect flushed appearance that I was looking for without making me look like I just got popped on the cheeks by someone hostile =)

* Ulta Nail Polish in Boogie Nights *
I can't even express how much I adore this product.... It is a glittery nail polish with a super fun name... that is about all I require =) Seriously though, the coverage is super and it dries uber fast!

*  Sally Hansen Lip Inflation in Sheer Buff *
Ok... I was obsessed with trying this product because a) I love lip plumper and b) I think that Sally Hansen can do no wrong =)  Weeeeeelllllllll..... I am glad I tried it but not sure I can buy it again until they change the brush =) I LOVE the color and the plumping action but the little application brush makes me batty.  Can someone explain to me why they thought that teeny tiny brush was a good idea?

Ok... your turn... what can you not live without?? Don't hold out on me people... I need the info =)

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Tennessee Weekend Adventures

This past weekend we hit the road for a little time away with some fabulous friends from South Cackalacky.  We ventured about an hour and a half from Nashvegas to the quant little town of Monteagle, TN and.... my.  goodness..... it was beautiful.

Now to be clear - 
The Carolina coast will always hold my heart.

That said, views like this make it hard to not to think that God was showing off a little when he got to the mountains.

Soaking up moments in the fresh mountain air made for some great time with Jesus...

(Plan to jabber about that Thursday so hopefully you'll check back)

And some wonderful time to just breathe and reconnect with some of the dearest friends we have.  They're the kind of friends who, at this point, know too much soooooo I'm keeping them =)

Their precious babies think we are a rock star Aunt and Uncle and my knack for making brownie mix appear whenever I'm within a 10 mile radius can often, for at least a moment or two, put me a notch above Jonathan...

Not to mention I make a great pack mule and can carry a toddler for miles uphill...

Oh words can't even express how much I adore this child....

I was given the most beautiful piece of original artwork...

And this was my view every morning...

*sigh* Sometimes God is too good to me....

Monday, February 25, 2013

Oscar Breakdown...

The Oscars...

I'm sure it's no surprise that I love me some Oscar Red Carpet. 
It's the top of the line, the most formal of all things award season - it's like the top dog of red carpets!

(I'm sure that is the classiest description you'll find of such a formal even... "top dog"... excuse me while I go buy a thesaurus.) 


I ADORE The Oscar's.  
There is something old Hollywood about all of the pomp and Audrey herself may wander by all "Holly Golightly" style.
I also appreciate knowing that, unlike The Grammy's the ladies are going to come completely clothed and classy and beautiful...

I'm not even sure I can pick a favorite BUT....I'll try =) 
Here are some of the highlights for me...

* Jennifer Anniston *
Oh my girl Jenn... My love for Rachel Jennifer runs deep and she is definitely one of my pretend BFF's.  I'm still recovering from the big split of 2005 and may or may not feel more invested in her finding love again then people I know in real life =)  I thought she looked A-MAZING and I about shed a tear of joy at the cuteness of her and her fella Justin being all cute...
Team Jennifer forever...

Speaking of Jennifer's....
Sweet Jennifer Lawrence.... I'm not sure I have ever seen a more graceful fall. It looks like she's just having herself a moment and not at all like she just busted her tail in front of gazillions of people. To be clear...

Me falling would look something like this poor girl...

Before we move on from JL, did anyone else notice the way she wore the necklace with her completely stunning dress? She looked every bit the star and I LOOVED the necklace draped down her back...

Another show stopper for me was Naomi Watts... LOVED this so SO much!

This little princess was a gem if you asked me. Besides being an amazing and talented little actress, Quvenzhane Wallis rocked a puppy purse on the red carpet =) A puppy in a TUTU to be specific.
 I love that she still looked like a nine year old  - precious!

Before I give you a break from my chatter, can I ask how you get THIS gig?
These are the celebrity stand in's that they use to rehearse for the show... How fun would that be?  Rumor is you get tickets to the show and one of those spots on the fancy bleacher seats that line the red carpet.  I might not able to control myself enough to really handle something like that but I'd sure like to try =) If you have the hook-up.... you know where to to find me!

Your turn... What did YOU think?

** Linking up with the talented Carissa Graham **

miscellany monday at lowercase letters

Friday, February 22, 2013

Friday Favs

Happy Friday friends!!  
We made it through the week and oh my what a week it was!! Kate's little public appreance was my highlight  because, obviously, I have a problem.  
In honor of Friday, here are a few of my favorite things that I think you should know about =)

*  I recently discovered this amazing jewel of a website - Temptalia...

Ohmygoodness. This site has more information than my brain could even BEGIN to handle.  There are make-up reviews, tutorials and countless other amounts of amazing-ness.  Seriously. This is by far the most amazing website of its kind I've found.

Best part?

I hope you're sitting down.

There is a whole section that is make-up dupes! You can put in brands, colors, or even TYPES of pretties and they are cross referenced for you.  Super useful for finding affordable versions of high end products! 

*  Please. Watch this video... Shout out to a spirit of fearlessness and courage that I hope I can one day embody just a smidge of...Dance like no ones watching people cause this girl.... THIS girl gets her boogie on.

*  This.
Gives me chills.

* And this.
Makes me giggle....
and feel slightly better about the fact that I am often sliiiightly behind schedule - which is a nice way of saying I'm late a lot.

Excuse me while I go and plan out a dance number for the Walmart.

What are some favs that you should share? Don't leave me out of the loop =)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

He is not overwhelmed...Thoughtful Thursday

I ADORE my job. 

Like - LOOOOVE with all capital, blinking letters.  

There are countless things that I adore about the place I spend my days.... Besides the beautiful clothes and other various lovelies, it is a faith based business and I am surrounded by Jesus day in and day out.  Late last year, we began a prayer wall in the store and I can't even adequately express what a blessing it has been.

There is a lot of hurt and burden and need out in the world on a daily basis, people - A. LOT. I think I knew that logically but to see a segment of it all written out and corraled into one area of the world can truly take my breath away. 

 It can be too much.  

I stand and look and...simply.... I am overwhelmed.  

In recent days, the wall has become so full....the MULTIPLE prayer needs dangling from each nail.  Illness, lost loved ones, salvation, babies, jobs, living situations... some are scrawled in the misshapen letters that come from a child's pen and other are written by desperate parents and friends who are furiously searching for a moment of relief, intervention, and breakthrough.  The list is staggering and as I looked and read and "listened" to each voice tell me their story....

I am overwhelmed.

I am overwhelmed at the hurt.  I am overwhelmed at the level of need....overwhelmed at desperate heart who need a miracle to pull through.  In a still moment of prayer, a gentle voice speaks to my heart...

"I am not overwhelmed."

Oh Lord.... How good you are.  He is never overwhelmed at our needs.  We can NEVER reach the end His ability to hear and handle our hurts.  He is NEVER tapped our and never - EVER - do our prayers fall on deaf ears.

"So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God.  There, we will receive mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most."
~ Hebrews 4:16 ~

What is the need that is hidden deeply in your heart today?  Approach your loving, gracious Savior today with boldness.  He is waiting for you... ready to meet you with boundless mercy and endless grace just when you need it most.

He is never overwhelmed...

Updated 2/28/13 - Linking up here =)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Kate has emerged!


It's like Kate read my blog and responded by debuting her precious little baby bump yesterday!!  I was just whining saying that I was more than ready for Kate to come out of hiding now and let us see her preggo preciousness!


Lo and Behold....

Granted that may be the smallest 4 1/2 month baby bump I've ever seen BUT - that is a bump none the less!!  Personally, I think that Princess Kate looks A-MAZING and stunning and beautiful!!!  I really think it should be illegal to consistently have hair that fabulous but we'll give her leniency because it's Kate and she can do no wrong.  And she's growing a person.  She can have good hair without consequence.

Look at how sweet she is with those little cuties!!  I may have heart failure the first time I see her pushing a stroller with her own babies.

(Yes, I know I have a problem.)

(Side note -  Can we talk for a moment about the extreme cuteness of how that little fella has his arm around his sister? I mean.....PRECIOUS.)

I came across this photo when I was perusing and it gave me a whole new level of respect for how well she carries herself in the public forum.
Can you IMAGINE having that many people screaming your name and tripping over themselves for a photo?  It is totally possible that she has more poise and grace in her left pinky toe than I have in my whole body...I'll need to work on that before I attend the royal baby shower.  
I'd hate to spill my tea on Camilla =)

On a detailed note, the dress my BFF was sporting was a MaxMara wrap dress from the 2011 collection and jewelry that was estimated at over $4,000.

Happy Wednesday friends!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Fashion Week in the Big Apple...My Take

Fashion Week.  

It is totally a bucket list item of mine to get to go to New York Fashion Week one day.  If I got to sit by/ near/ in the same room as Anna Wintour, my life may be made.

(Who am I kidding.... I'd love to go to ANY Fashion Week.  Are you an organizer of Podunkville Fashion Week? Hit me up. I'm in.)

I seemed to be really drawn to all things fancy in the various collections and feel like all I did was bookmark, pin, and fall in love with every other fancy ball gown I saw.  Considering that my daily wardrobe rarely calls for evening wear.....well....A girl can dream =)

Rachel Zoe...
Oh Rach... You will always have a hold on the bohemian side of my heart.  The diminutive diva sent some serious beauties down the runway.  Her collection was very vintage, rock-n-roll, and English allllll rolled into one.  The looks were beautiful, clean, and lovely.

Oscar de la Renta...
Oh the beauty, the grandeur, the stomach grumblings from the slightly rabid looking models....The gowns were so pretty I may have taken my chances trying to knock one of those supermodels over and make off with a ball gown or seven.  

Carolina Herrera...
Not a designer I usually follow BUT she sent some serious amounts of lovlieness down the runway.  It didn't hurt that she sent some of them down the catwalk on Karlie Kloss - whom I adore =) Seriously.... can someone please have a ball or fancy wedding or even a lavish baby shower.... Sister wants to wear a ball gown!

Jenny Packham...
A favorite of our girl Kate, Miss Jenny has always done our favorite duchess justice and I hope to see a preggo Miss Kate wearing some variations of these lovelies!! I mean....again.... can someone PLEAE have a ball for me to attend???

I'll leave it there for now before this post becomes SO long that Fashion Week 2137 might begin before you're done reading =)  If you have time, check out Rag & Bone, Band of Outsiders, and Lela Rose.... They also knocked it out of the park =) 

Finally, I watched a few minutes of some "Breaking News" this morning that involved skinny models. 
Models are thin. WHY is that still news?  Seriously.  I have lots of thoughts on the issue but I will leave it at this.... Models are thin. That is not a news flash worthy of time on The Today Show =)

"Style is what one creates....glamour is a state of mind."
~ Rachel Zoe ~

What were your favorites at NYFW? Anyone I should check out?

Monday, February 18, 2013

Fashion Week, Kate Middleton, & A Mani

Hiya friends... Hope your weekend was stellar and full of all things fabulous =) Ready for some random Monday thoughts? Awesome. Here we go....

1 - Fashion Week has consumed my instagram and twitter feeds this week and - mercy - the lovliness.  Expect a longer Fashion Week breakdown later this week but here is a sneak peak of a few things that caught my eye...

2 - Speaking of Fashion Week.... One of the main reasons I adore it so is this lady:
Oh Anna Wintour.... I find her so intriguing.... a little scary but also intriguing  =) Oh - and faaaabulous. She is most definitely fabulous =)

3 - Can Kate come out of hiding now? I miss her.  In the spirit of full disclosure, I should share that I have complete and utter obsession fascination with Miss Middleton.  Seriously.  I am probably on some sort of palace watch list.  If you share my fascination with the most fabulous princess Kate, you HAVE to check out this blog:

What Kate Wore is a fountain of knowledge on all things surrounding the pretties that she wears or might wear or maybe has even THOUGHT about wearing =)  Be warned... It can create a desire to get a keratin blowout and buy nude pumps.

3 - This:

4 -A most precious friend treated me to a mani/pedi break on Sunday afternoon.  Praise the name... it was so wonderful!!!  I've been intrigued by the gel mani's but know that I lack the follow through and commitment to go back for them to take it off soooooo I went with the old trusty...

Best. Dark. Color. Ever.  If you've bought the bullet and done the gel thang, I'd love to hear if you like it or not!

PS... How about one more Keep Calm poster to power us through Monday?
Your welcome.

Link up below and join in the fun!!
miscellany monday at lowercase letters

Thursday, February 14, 2013

In a sugar coma yet?

Happy Valentine's Day!  Here's to hoping you spend the day loving wildly on those around you and eating entirely too much chocolate!

If you need some help with the eating too much chocolate thing, here is a fav recipe of mine for consuming 3,461 calories in one sitting =) !

Molten Chocolate Cakes.

You need...
* 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
*  1 stick butter... that is about 1/2 cup
*  1 tsp vanilla extract
*  1 cup powdered sugar
*  2 egss
*  1 egg yolk
*  6 Tbsp all purpose flour

What ya need to do...
*  Preheat the oven to 425 and grease 4 small ramekins or other smallish oven proof container.  I often just use a small glass brownie dish but the individual servings are super cute =)  I've even heard about people using their muffin tins!

*  Melt the butter and chocolate stirring until nice and smooth.

*  Add in the vanilla and powdered sugar and blend well.

*  Whisk in the eggs and yolk.

*  Blend in the flour and then pout evenly into your containers.

*  Bake those little bad boys for about 15 minutes until they are firm... The centers should stay soft.

Ready for the hard part??

*Let them stand for about 10 minutes before diving in.  I'll tell ya... that's the tough part =)  Once they are cooled enough, invert them onto a plate and serve.... or keep them all for yourself. Whatever. I won't tell.  Some people get really fancy with the serving part and dust powdered sugar or fancy whipped cream.  A good vanilla ice cream does the trick in our house =)

"We love because He first loved us..."
1 John 4:19

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

February Birchbox Review

I can't even begin to express how much I LOVE Birchbox - A monthly delivery of cosmetics?? Yes please! Getting that pink box in the mail is like Christmas!  If you are unfamiliar with Birchbox, let me fill you in on this wonder of the cosmetic world =)  If you know what I'm jabbering about, feel free to skip on to the review of this months products.

 For $10 , you receive a set of samples in the mail every month!  Usually I get between 4 - 6 moderately sized samples and they are almost always product lines I've never tried.  You can even go on and review the products you've received and earn points that can be spent like cash on full sized products. Recently, I know Birchbox has caught a little flack for always sending "perfumes" and "measly sizes"and, to that, I have to say, while I do tend to get lots of perfume and moisturizer samples, I find the products they send to be great!  Not to mention that their customer service is stellar and I think that counts for alot =)  They products even come in the most fabulous brown boxes that are super reusable!

Okey dokey... this month's box was RIIIIGHT up my alley as it was themed on - drum roll please - 
preparing for your own personal red carpet =) Perfect huh? Ok, here we go....

Color Club Fiesta Collection in Wild Cactus

We all know that I have an obsession with nail polish so I am pumped for this little beauty! It is a gorgeous bright green and I actually don't have anything like it!  I sampled it on my thumb just to see how many coats it needed and found that I got a great, opaque color after two solid coats.  I've used Color Club before and found it to be a great line overall!

Dr. Jart Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm

This little wonder is a multi functional Beauty Balm that uses its SPF 25 to protect skin and, at the same time, covers blemishes and corrects uneven skin tone.  It contains all sorts of magical wonder chemicals that are supposed to improve your skin with use!  Beauty Balms are becoming alllll the rage so I'm stoked for this one!

Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle
First, let's give a shout out to the pretty black & red bottle shall we? Pretty packaging goes far with me =) This little wonder may be my favorite thing in the package this month! It is a leave in mist that conditions, protects hair from heat and sun, AND detangles.  AND the bottle is pretty. What else do ya need?

Juicy Couture La La Fragrance

Okey dokey....In the spirit of full disclosure, I should share that I am not usually a huge fan of anything Juicy Couture - especially not their clothes.  They are a little flashy for my taste BUT this was ok.  I love that it comes in its own little atomizer!  I don't think I'd buy this particular fragrance (its a smidge too floral) but I'll use the sample =)

Bonus!  This month included a yummy treat....
Ghirardelli Milk & Caramel Squares!

Do you get Birchbox or do you use another monthly beauty sample club? I'd love to hear from you!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Weary Warriors...

Thank y'all for letting me babble on yesterday about the wonder that is any red carpet event =)  I am not one to mince words and I think I could've kept babbling on yesterday if not for that pesky need to do other piddly stuff... like buy groceries. Well... In case I completely wore you out yesterday, today's ramblings might help that some =)

I know that I am NOT the only one who ever has those days where you are just flat worn out.  You just feel like someone has pulled the plug on every storehouse of energy - spiritual, physical, and emotional - that you have.  While I joke about my longwinded need to breakdown every sequin and piece of spandex on the red carpet yesterday being exhausting, we would only be so lucky if my rambling was the most difficult thing we encountered.  There are days that feel like they are concocted of 24 hours of struggle and not much rest and, sometimes, those days seem to string themselves together into seasons of struggle that leave us just. plain. weary.

In moments and seasons of fatigue, it brings comfort to know that our King and Saviour is aware that this life would, on occasion, take it all out of us.  He knew there would be moments of complete and utter exhaustion and, in His lovingkindness, He spoke to those days, hours, and seasons over and over again in the Word.

If the sun rose today on one of those days or seasons of weariness, I pray the verses below bring comfort to a tired heart and begin to resuscitate an exhausted soul.  Let the truth of these promises be a balm to your spirit.  Meditate on them. Read them aloud (Seriously.... reading them aloud is a powerful tool!)  Write them down and post them on your mirror or by your bed.  However you need to, soak them in.  Your king knew there would be tired days, burned out moments, and weary hearts.  He knew and He didn't leave you to figure it out alone......

“Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest…” 
~ Matt. 11:28

" I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety..." ~ Psalm 4:8

"The Lord replied," My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."
~ Ex. 33:14

"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever..."
~ Ps. 73:26

"My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him.  He alone is my rock and salvation; He is my fortress.  I will never be shaken."
~ Psalm 62:1-2