Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Weekend Update sans Amy Poehler

Sidenote: did you watch SNL!?!? Holy cow!  It was hilarious..Amy Poehler is the best :)
watch here
My favorite was Brox Beat minus the Katy Perry part..
check it

ANYWHO...I am fortunate enough to have a large handful of very good friends. Some I  have had since grade school, some since college, others are military friends and other newer additions i.e.:  my  Bible study group girls are amazing. UH-mazing. That's right. They got the misspelled word separation emphasis, that's how great they are.
Each are special and add amazing things to my life.
Perspective, encouragement, laughter, realness..
I love it all.

And while I am one that generally thinks that quality is to be valued over quantity I am blessed to have both at present
So let's get specific. Here are a couple of dear-hearts I've recently weekended with.

Last weekend I went with my friend Rebecca to downtown St. Louis to finish celebrating my birthday.
I'm glad she gets that I  like to keep the celebration going throughout the month.
We ate at the Fountain on Locust. Which is the swankiest old soda fountain that also has pretty gourmet stuff. yummmm

Then we went to a vintage trunk show at Eve's Apple. Which I only tried on a pair of vintage Dior sunglasses that took up most of my face. But it was fun to go and look!

Walking downtown and eating fun things, going for coffee (or in R's case, water) is always fun!

my friend Tricia came to visit this past weekend from north of Chicago
This is no small feat since she has two sets of twins under the age of 4.

But she was able to get away and we had. a. blast!!
walking in the sunshine
playing mad libs 'til our guts ached from laughing
eating some more
and talking, talking, talking
It was wonderful.
Few people get me like Trish does.

Aren't we a pair?

She shares my love for organization for shiz.

It great to be understood and share life with lovies like these.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Lists and thoughts to live by

I am forgoing the blanks for Fill in the Blank Friday today.

I'm going for something a bit meatier at the moment.
Look for the blanks again next week!

I want to be a counselor. I don't know when exactly I will get the official title or when the necessary coursework will ever be done (or started for that matter) but it's something that I read a lot about and try to glean as much as I can from professional counselors to use in my everyday relationships,random encounters and on myself too!  Hopefully one day soon I may get to rub elbows with these people.

I found a couple of things that were very helpful to me and wanted to pass them along, but if I post them all today, it will be completely random and disjointed, long post soooooo  I am going to start something. Who knows how long I will do it.  It's my blog, I call the shots so we will see :)

I am going to start Thriving post each week.
Wouldn't it be appropriate if it was on Thursday?
THriving THursday- get it!?
We will see. Maybe I'll be feisty and do it on Monday.
This week, it's Friday.
I like to keep you on your toes.

So instead of 7 blanks, today it's 10 thoughts stolen (as probably all of these Thriving posts will be) from another author.

I hope you are inspired, reminded and encouraged while reading these things.

10 Thoughts On Whole Living
by Terri Trespicio 
published in Whole Living Magazine October 2010

1. If you can successfully change one bad habit, YOU'RE LIKELY TO CHANGE ANOTHER

2. Don't assume you know what someone need you to do. ASK.


4. Sometimes all it takes to get through a tough time is a single, powerful word.

5. When you shine a light on a negative thought, IT LOSES ITS POWER.

6.While you can't shut out illness entirely, you can make your body a place where health thrives.

7. Do something that makes you sweat.

8. Embrace frayed edges worn pages and laugh lines. TRUE BEAUTY LIES IN IMPERFECTION.

9. Remind a loved one that she's NOT ALONE.

10. learning to LOVE requires as much openness as it does strength.

Have a wonderful weekend!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Turkey in my belly and other fall things

Today is the 

Ever since I learned the proper names for all the seasons in 7th grade, I must call them accordingly.
Mrs. Tidball taught me well.

As you can see, I am celebrating by my little themed background..
(side-note: I change the background with my mood. I am not a locked-in kind of girl when it comes to lay outs. So enjoy the rainbow that is my background)

Today I wore a sweater even though it's 5,000 degrees out.
And I am keeping my office on the chilly side. I plan to make hot tea and burn my autumn candle at my desk.

This season I look forward to (just to name a few..)

brisk mornings and pleasant afternoons
fall colors in nature
pumpkin picking
sweater wearing
sock wearing
BOOT wearing
scarf wearing
chai, chai liquid pumpkin pie
pie baking
pie eating
Thanksgiving and lots of turkey in my belly
Fall fests
family gatherings
my house smelling like cinnamon and punkins
rainy Saturdays where I wear sweatpants, read books, watch movies, bake pies, and drink copious amounts of tea or hot cider
walks where I don't sweat
scenic bike rides with this guy

No looking back at summer, even though it was filled with wonderful fresh veggies, sunny days and vacation time. I am hoping for the day when I check the weather in the morning and find that the high won't be exceeding 70. 

Happy Autumn Everyone!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Off of my fridge and onto my heart..

I have been thinking about Haiti more than usual this week..

John and I sponsor a boy  who attends the school at the Mission of Hope near Titanyen. He is always on our refrigerator and we have it set up to where his donation is taken out of our bank account at the same time every month.  So really, we aren't too incredibly active in our 'support'. 

Last night I was fidgeting with something on the fridge and our little guy's picture fell off.
And I was reminded that just as I lifted and put his sweet smiley picture back on my refrigerator I need to be lifting him up to Jesus on  a daily basis. That not only is my financial support needed but so are my prayers.
He wants to be a mechanic.
He wants to help his family.
He has dreams of becoming successful and beating the statistics.
He wants to be in the 2% of Haitians that graduate high school..

He has a birthday coming up soon. I am excited to send him something meaningful but I don't have any ideas. Do you?

Haiti is precious to my heart but since so much time has passed since my mission trip I find that my commitment to prayer and awareness is kind of tapering off.

I don't think it was by accident that little KC fell right off of the fridge and back into my heart last night.

{my little sister, Christianna, is holding one of the sweet, sweet children from Titanyan}

About Haiti:

*There are still 400,000 children without parents in Haiti. These children are left alone to fend for themselves on the streets.

*There are still over 17,000 children in our area that will never go to school. They have healthy minds but no money for school.

*There are still thousands that don't know the love, peace, forgiveness, and hope found in Jesus.

*1 out of 5 children will die before the age of five.
if that doesn't grab your heart, what will!?

Check out the Mission of Hope and see what they are doing! 

Since January 12, 2010 they have:

*Delivered over 6 million meals

*Treated over 4,000 patients 

*Provided rescue and medical teams

* handed out over 2,000 tents

Maybe you would want to sponsor a student there? Maybe join one of their teams? Or just donate what you can to their efforts..

If so go HERE!

I am thankful that God sends me gentle reminders like papers falling of my refrigerator.. my heart is reminded and my mission renewed.

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27

Friday, September 17, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday: Random Brunette Edition

Lauren's blanks are "random" today. Check her out, and play along!

1. When I get a day to myself I like to  savor morning coffee or tea, read something inspiring, mostly the Bible and then create something or be outside looking at creation and on good days, buy someone else's marvelous creations :)

2.  High school was....  not realistic at all.  I went to a private high school in which I learned how to do all the non-private things. I made some incredible friends and learned to love science thanks to my HS biology teacher and excelled in band (in our school, band was completely rad) but other than that, I don't think I'd like to go back .

3.  A little dream I have is  to take a spur of the moment Euro trip...Ireland, Italy, Prague..really I wouldn't be picky  .

4.  A big dream I have is  be a mom,  have a house by water (lake ocean, pond whatevs..) and not have to work but choose to work doing something I truly love.  Decorating, counseling, designing.  Wishful thinking perhaps.. .

5.  If I could drive any car my pick would be     a Land Rover LR4. That's the wishful thinking coming out again.

6.  A time that I felt really and truly beautiful was       2004-2005. I got married that year,'04. The wedding day, I felt great-looked beautiful and was pretty darn tan from living in Florida. But getting to wake up to "Mr.J.L. Culpepper, Corporal, USMC" almost every morning of that first year and having him staring at me or singing me awake with some love song (while I was completely morning breathy and bed-heady)really boosted my "feeling pretty" meter! He makes me glow.

7.  Tomorrow I will...  be waking up super early to go to a neighborhood-wide rummage sale 45 minutes away cleaning my house, hanging with my huz,  then going on a date with my friend Rebecca to a  vintage trunk show in St. Louis. Sounds fun! 

Bonus: I am now a full brunette again. And I feel quite comfortable. with my dark, dark hair. My hair is now ready, bring on the fall!
Happy Weekend!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Joyeux Anniversaire!!!

 Let's talk about something amazing that just happened called :
Praise Jesus, I love birthdays!
And what a marvelous one it was.
With an impromptu visit to see my family in Indy the week before and a week-long celebration of birthday mail, calls and presents and parties It was wonderful. John and I celebrated the day before in a very low-key way with 3 kinds of Gelato and many fun presents that were perfect. It included Fiestaware, an hour massage gift certificate just to name a couple. He did well. It was the most original birthday I have had yet.

I didn't work per the dr.'s orders on my birthday which was a blessing in disguise really.
I woke up early excited that it was THE DAY and relaxed...

then my dad called from Indy and asked if I had lunch plans.
An hour and half later this is what happened:

He lands in my town with roses in hand and takes me out for a yummy birthday lunch
My dad rocks.
I'm spoiled :)

Then, while enjoying my day to rest, I had a couple of visitors that brought babies and presents
Avery and her new friend Daphne were definitely a highlight.

complete with a birthday cake by Rebecca..

birthday cards out the wazzoo and more birthday flowers..

even more beautiful birthday flowers...
(Lola-Jean loves the purple ones..)

I got list upon list from my friends about the ways I am loved.
Some of the sweetest and encouraging words were spoken and written to me this day!

and in the days following I am eating my weight in cake.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Yesterday I sported a cutie-pie headband courtesy of my friend Sarah, accessories by Joan.

And the presents! Holy moly, the presents!! This girl's love tank was overflowing!
Mugs, teas, coffees, jewelry, jewelry, jewelry, Fiestaware!!, books, flowers, flowers, flowers, home decor, massages, spa gear, journals, confections, calls and cards, etc. I can't even remember everything!
Who knew!? 4 years ago when I moved here I was sure that it would be the dreariest, darkest, lonely place ever. 
 Au contraire! God sure has a way of showing me differently. He blesses me exceedingly and abundantly instead of giving me what I so often deserve. 
While I didn't wake up with that physical feeling I used to have when I was little, I went to bed feeling completely loved, treasured, pampered and celebrated.
 I'd much rather have that feeling.
 It was simply wonderful and quite humbling too.
No big to-do's, nothing formal or planned per se but an overflow of genuine friendships pouring into my day making it something to remember and cherish

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A new do!

 I want to address the pretty new header that I have. 
Thank you very much to Courtney at You Will, Won't You 
for using your fantastic skills to help me out. 
I am so very thankful for precious design savvy people like her 
who make my blogging time a bit prettier than the standard ol' layouts.
Check her out. She's great!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

creep. me. out.

whilst getting my morning large decaff with 3 cremes, I saw these bug-eyed crazy dolls staring into my soul.
They look like horror movie dolls...

Madame Alexander!?  More like Madame Scaryxander!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Home again, home again..

..jiggety jig.

So we took an impromtu trip to Indianapolis this past weekend.
My little brother, Johnny came home from Florida to get a new car.
So we had a wonderful weekend with family full of birthday fun and celebration
(Mine is the 13th, grandma's is the 15th Johnny's is the 27th and the family dog's is the 20th)
And the weather!! It was perfect out. I got to wear long-ish sleeves and had to put a sweatshirt on at one point.
Loved that!

We were greated by beautifuly puffy sunset clouds as we crossed over into Indiana

And then the party got started..
downtown shopping day with the sister

taking in the sights

loving my favorite city delacies

getting confused by fashion per usual..
and finding..

'sure do love the new color

a fun birthday dinner at Buca di Beppo

 fun with family

my first sugar in almost 5 weeks.
This was the best picture I could find. 
Obviously I was in rare form this day..so was my triple chin.

Johnny ditches the spoon and fork and goes for it

then home for more cake and presents!

and birthday cards filled with money!

Birthday fun with uncle David's glasses

and talking with my G's

the birthday pup sleeps through her 11th birthday party. She's getting old.
That's 77 in dog years.

Minus my older brother,Jeffrey and his family in California,  we celebrated.
It's rare that we are all together anymore so any opportunity I have to spend time 
with these loves, I do.

Yay for spur of the moment visits and birthday parties!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday!

OH MAN! Lauren is going on vacation and so her blanks are so very inspired! I love me some vacation. It's the heartbeat of my year usually..
This first question was almost too much for me to handle :)

1.  If I didn't have to work anymore I would       isn't this the question of the century!? Oh man. Where to start!? I would enjoy tea every morning. I would enjoy the things like washing floors, reorganizing cabinets, folding laundry properly and not the quick way I do at night when I am sleepy. I would create, make and craft my way into artstic oblivion. I would make lunch for John everyday. I would try to have the savoriest of dinner made at night. Holiday baking would be a holiday in itself at my house.  I would volunteer somewhere. Probably either at my PCC or Habitat for Humanity. I would go see my family more often. I would take random trips to see my friends in other states. I think I would sleep in somedays and watch the Lifetime Movie Network while cross-stitching in my jammies whilst surrounded by my cats. I would make lunch dates once a week.  And of course, if there was a baby in this mix- scratch all of that other stuff for atleast a month! I would stare at and snuggle my baby 24 hours a day. For real, I would. In short, if I didn't have to work- I would be IN HEAVEN .

2.  My favorite thing about a vacation is     seeing new things, having lots of time with my John and doing whatever I want to do whenever I want to do it.  

3.  When packing for a trip I       try to plan outfits but it never works- I usually pack lots of random things and then have to get really creative with the stuff that I packed. Remember when you were 8 and your mom bought "outfits" that for real went together so you didn't have to pair things together in a fahionable or unique way?? That would be better for me..   .

4.  If I could go on a road trip with anyone (dead OR alive) I would choose      my friend Tricia.   because,     We have a way of being super silly on our road trips. For real a 14 hour trip to Florida can get boring but not with us!     and we would go       anywhere she wants to go. She has 2 sets of twins under the age of 4 so..she would probably want to go far, far away to anywhere I am guessing..  

5.  My top 3 absolute travel essentials are     1) camera 2) mad-libs 3) snacks.

6.  Vacations are something I look forward to every year with a burning passion  .

7.  On vacation you must always     breathe deeply and not get in a rush to do a million things. I think it goes way faster when you do a bazillion things. Take pictures, enjoy yourself and savor the moment!    

Happy Friday and Happy Weekend!