Hold on tight, trust, and go for it

My dad is most definitely a kid at heart. I completely get my sense of adventure from him.
This summer he created a 60 foot super slip-n-slide from a tarp. It careens down the steep incline in his backyard. He hitched a rope along the hill to help sliders climb up, positioned a hose at the top, and inflated inner tubes.


An open letter to teachers in August

Dear Teacher,

From kindergartners to college students, there is something refreshing, renewing, and hopeful about a new school year. It causes students to wonder what could happen this year, how they could grow, and how they could impact others. This shimmery, energized feeling fades for some, but I believe it is a small part of why we teachers choose our profession. The end of the summer is like our New Years: it holds promise.

Sometimes, that promise can be what keeps us teachers going.

Teachers, as you stand in your empty classroom and imagine those desks filled with students, allow yourself to be captivated by the newness of the school year.


Enjoying Summer to the Fullest: Casual Style

When I was growing up, we did back to school shopping HARD. CORE. It was a blast. My mom, sis, and I would hit the mall for hours at a time and find tons of cute styles. We would do fashion shows when we got home. When the first day of school rolled around, I was so excited to wear my brand new cordouroys and sweater, but when recess rolled around I found myself sweating buckets on the playground because it was still 80 degrees out. 


Brunch Menu: Mini Pancake Skewers, Frittata, and Fruit Pizza

Not gonna lie, I am totally eating the leftovers from this delicious brunch as a I compose this post.
On Sunday, we had several of Daniel's friends from high school over for brunch. One of the things we have loved the most about moving closer to home is being able to host loved ones much more often. It brings both of us joy to make our home a place of gathering, good food, comfort, and laughter for others.

I'm sharing all of the recipes I used for this brunchy gathering.

Brunch Menu :

Fruit Pizza
Bacon & Sausage Frittata
Mini Pancake Skewers
Drinks :
Orange Juice
 Simply Peach Juice 

Quick tip: I baked all of my bacon in the oven before beginning any recipes. Just place the bacon on a baking sheet and bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes. It's a major time saver. Do you ever prepare bacon in the oven? It's a great and less messy alternative to stovetop frying. 

My favorite part to make was an original idea of mine, the mini pancake skewers!


Stripes in Southern Oregon

In my last style post, I talked about our first night on our trip to Ashland.
On our second day, we enjoyed exploring the city!
There is a huge park right on the edge of town called Lithia Park.
Footbridges cross a shallow creek surrounded by lush trees, duck ponds are beautifully landscaped with colorful blooms.
Locals jog the trails or bask in the sun and tourists (like me) explore the park.


At the Heart of Me

I recently went through a rite of passage of all twenty-somethings:
Going through all of my things in boxes at my dad's house.
I found soccer trophies, knick knacks that used to belong on my bookshelves, college textbooks from freshmen year I should have sold, piles and piles of pictures, years of birthday cards, toys I remembered and loved, a stash of empty cd cases, long-lost treasures of clothes (including some overalls I bought when I was fifteen that sadly didn't fit anymore), and tons of junk that must have been sentimental at some point but I couldn't remember what the meaning was now.


Rompin' around Ashland

Oregon is such a diverse state both in landscape, culture, and style. We just went on vacation to Ashland, OR- home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival! 


Red Quinoa Thai Curry Bowl

You know when you have a night to yourself, and you dream up all these fun things you will do? For me, the plan consists of watching a girly show I never make time for (Switched at Birth), doing some yoga, and making an adventurous dinner I wouldn't want to force on my husband. 
Most often, that last item ends up taking my whole time!


The Land of Silence

As a creative person and someone who feels things deeply, the Book of Psalms really speaks to me. I've been reading through the psalms at a snail's pace since September. This morning while reading through Psalm 93, verse 17 stood out to me:

If the Lord had not been my help, my soul would soon have lived in the land of silence. 

How often do I stop to think about what life would be like without God? If he wasn't holding me together when life tried to break me? If I didn't know I could turn to him for truth and encouragement in dark times? If I didn't trust his purposes and plans through the daily rhythms of my life? If I didn't have his joy and healing restoring me day after day?


Cold-Shoulder in the Hot Summer

Happy July! I have been a bit off the map as far as blogging goes, due to moving! We just moved three and a half hours across the state, back to our native region of the Willamette Valley. It took a bunch of wonderful friends and family, days of hard work, and a last-minute horse trailer when uhaul fell through (anyone else out there who's had uhaul problems?!), but we made it! I am loving settling into our new apartment much closer to loved ones. 


What I learned in the Herm

I moved to Hermiston barely two weeks married, six months out of college, and only having lived within the same 40 mile radius. I never expected to move to what I then knew as some desert town that grew watermelon, and I didn't necessarily have the best attitude. This Saturday, our chapter in Hermiston comes to a close. I'm a sentimental person, and I can't help but share my reflections on this season, both profound and silly.


Summer Wedding Style Guide

It is wedding season! Love is in the air!
I thought I would take a chance this season to share style tips for attending a wedding. 


Relaxing Movie Night Musts

I have SO much going on in life right now. Between finishing the school year, moving, and thinking about my new teaching job, it can be difficult to get my brain to quiet down. Something my husband and I have both needed is something to distract us from the craziness. A move night or two has definitely helped!

My favorite movies are inspirational ones. I love stories where you really connect with and feel for the characters. I like walking away from a movie feeling refreshed, and that my mind was broadened. 
Setting the scene for a movie night makes it much more enjoyable. A cozy set up with blankets on the couch, lights dimmed low, and the pillows just right makes it nice. 
It can be challenging, but I also like to make sure we put our phones away and just enjoy the moment. 
A great snack is also a must. Popcorn is a classic, but I'm a total sweet-tooth. Muddy buddies or chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven hit the spot.
During the summer Daniel and I traditionally watch a lot of movies. We take turns picking, and last year we tried to watch a lot of award-winning movies. We certainly ended up seeing a lot of great films we probably wouldn't have chosen otherwise. We use our local library to check out films, it's a great way to save money and see something new!
Another great resource for movies is Pure Flix. Pure Flix is a Christian film company with an online database. They are offering a free one month trial, check it out here!
What are your movie night musts? Do you know any inspirational movies I should check out? Thanks for stopping by! 


Confessions of a Plant Killer & 5 Minute DIY Planter

 My mom and my grandma have both been professional florists, but I... am a plant killer.
There's been a few springs that I've eagerly gone out and bought pansies and petunias and planted them in cute little pots on my porch, only to underwater them and see them whither.
Later on, I turned to succulents, hoping my history of neglect would help them survive. Alas, I loved them too much and drowned them.
In one particularly sad instance, I thought I finally had succeeded at keeping a plant alive.