Monday, December 22, 2014

christmas | decorations

christmas time.
i love it...and i love seeing glowing lights twinkling around my house, i honestly want to keep them up all-year-long. it just makes things cozy and....romantic. (romance hahahahahahahhahhaha)
when it came to decorating this year, i kept things so incredibly simple that i almost didn't feel it "deserved" to be posted about.
then i started really thinking about everything...and i reminded myself that simple is good, and it is what i've been striving for this season. there is something beautiful about minimalism and cutting greenery from your yard and filling it in vases around the house (you won't see all of that, i just didn't feel like taking pictures of it haha).
i truly believe in NOT beating yourself up over not having every ornament on the tree, every piece of garland you own put up, every strand of lights perfectly hung.
it's ok to put up a few things, step back and say yes, this is beautiful, simple, and it works.
Christmas isn't about how many decorations i do or do not put up.
it isn't about how many presents i wrap under the tree.
it isn't about how many times i listen to christmas carols.
and it really isn't about ME at all.
it's all about Jesus.
His entrance into the world, His 33 years, His love, sacrifice, devotion, and the gift His life, death, and Resurrection brings for each one of us.
He is so good.



pppssttt did you see the lingering halloween mask hanging around?
i really have no explanation of why it hasn't been put up other than i'm lazy

did you go all-out with decorating this year?
or did you keep it simple?
what are your thoughts on decorating for Christmas?

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Friday, December 19, 2014

friday | links

edisto island, sc

this weekend will be spent cleaning, diy'ing christmas gifts, wrapping, going to christmas parties, working out, preparing food, and loving on some awesome people. i'm really, really looking forward to it. -side note- i had the strangest dream last night. it was the zombie apocalypse and i had tobi on a leash and a gun in my hand and was running through under ground tunnels...i woke up really confused this morning. i don't even like zombie stuff - my brain is weird.


+ how to spice up your hot chocolate.

+ spray-painted gold christmas lights = swoon! (and these could be used year round!)

+ a beautiful makeup tutorial for a christmas party!

+ looking for some last minute gifts? check out my downloadable pictures

+ trying to make a healthy casserole for christmas? here are some good ones.

+ there are very few dresses that make me want to break my budget - this is one of them.

+ i absolutely love this cake stencil!

+ a great vanilla sugar scrub - perfect diy for a christmas gift!

+ i will be making these this weeekend - help me to not eat all of the christmas cookies.

+ kind of obsessed with printable gift tags! <3


what are your weekend plans?
do you have all of your christmas presents ready to go?

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

photography| christmas couple

ohhhhhhhh Christmas.
how i love taking pictures of couples during Christmas/winter season.
there is just something...crisp, beautiful, and serene during the winter months.
a few weekends ago i had the privilege of capturing moments with this gorgeous couple.
we showed up to a local downtown area right as a market was shutting down, the sun was starting to hang low, the christmas lights were twinkling, and the air was chilly.
it was wonderful.

feel free to look through the rest of their session on my photography blog.



have you done any christmas themed photo sessions?
i totally want to be in one!

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

christmas cards | we are weird

even though i still have a few more cards to put in the mail  i am so excited to share our Christmas cards with y'all!
keeping with the theme from last year's cards, we wanted these to be light-hearted and full of fun.
which basically sums up our siblingship.
let's also talk about fear.
i experienced fear like i haven't in years.
let me explain:
as we're snapping the pictures with the moose lando decides to say something that made me quiver.
"you have to get on my shoulders..." ...uh...NO.
that is NOT happening.
i haven't been on anyone's shoulders in like 13 years...and even then it was inside of a pool.
"it will make really fun pictures".
he knows how to get me.
so...i'll share with you the progression of fear from when he was holding my legs (totally felt fine) to when he was all "LOOK MOM NO HANDS!!". i felt sooooooo unstable hahaha. and if you notice my hand cupping his face, that was my way of staying balanced hahaha.
you will also notice our reference to the lion king ;)

here are the photos from the card:

and now for some outtakes:


how do you like your Christmas cards?

we like a mixture of both...but mostly silly!

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Monday, December 15, 2014

gift guide | for the last minute

i get it, december snuck up on a lot of us this year.
i feel like it was just december, slow your roll.
i've found that i put a lot of pressure on gift giving.
i don't want things to just be all "oh here you go, let me check you off of the list" - i want the person to see that i really thought of them and that i got things they would actually opposed to things they would just really like but only touch once.

i've been browsing my past etsy crushes posts and have found some great gift ideas!!
so feel free to scroll through them and see if some of the items spark your interest.


1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9


what are some of the best places you go to buy presents?
have you gotten all of your shopping done?

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Friday, December 12, 2014

friday | links

upper king street, charleston sc

oh're right around the corner. <3
pot luck dinners, mornings full of coffee and laughter, photo sessions, beautiful sunsets, crisp evenings and frosty are all so beautiful to me.
i'm learning something super important this month: be present.
always, in every moment, in every tear, in every laughter.
be present.
what are you learning?


+ this photography session...i don't even have words. (and its at one of my local favorite spots!)

+ oh my goodness - such a simple and yet beautiful (and delicious smelling) ornament idea!

+ this quote humbled and empowered me!

+ the gallery wall(s) in this home = perfection.

+ i desperately want to go here and hold all of the cats!!

+ this album - you're welcome.

+ i made these (slightly different) and just finished the last one today. <3 so good.

+ this website brought me to tears and gave me so much inspiration. thank you to all of our veterans, past, present, and future. your sacrifice never goes unnoticed.

+ so true.

+ such a perfect backdrop or an idea for an accent wall!


you may have missed....

+ me being so incredibly weird, you just need to witness it.

+ journey | weight loss plateau

+ photography | lauren + the golden hour

+ my weekend | iphone photos


happy friday!!
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Thursday, December 11, 2014

journey | weight plateau

i hate that word.
no change, lacking motivation, hitting a slump.
who wants to hear THAT?!
not me.
yet i am.
as i mentioned a few months ago, i've been maintaining my current weight.
which is all fine and well because i need to learn how to maintain.

i also realize that we're in the middle of the holidays.
which on top of Jesus, family, friends, and fun is the big ol word(s) of GOOD FOOD.
bread, sweets, grandmas stuffing, sweet potato casserole, turkey on turkey, meatballs, mac and cheese, more bread, and sweet tea.
i want all of it.
every. single. last. bite.

and then my pants get tight.
i see the salt weight in my face and tummy.
and i start shaming myself.
and that is not ok.
no self-shame amy, no self-shame.

so i need a moment of honesty.
a moment of reflecting.
a moment to be 100% open with where i am on this journey...because it is a journey.

my pants have been tight.
and it's because i've tricked myself into thinking i can have that sweet every day.
or that piece of pita bread won't lead to three pieces.
or it's ok if i skip a day, or 7, of working out.
that might work for some people (bless you)
but it doesn't work for my body and my metabolism.
does it suck?
i want to eat all the carbs and gain zero weight.
why couldn't i get my mothers metabolism?

so i have few "goal pieces" staring at me in the closet.
mocking me really.
and i just need to tell them to shut up.
i don't need to hear their sass.

what i need to do is re-motivate myself.
find joy in the workouts.
find new recipes to try.
find people to partner with to push me past this plateau.
onto bigger and better things.

so a few goals to get me through the end of the year:

// clean up my diet.
yes i will allow myself to indulge on christmas eve/day. i can't have other huge cheat days. clean it up!

// stay consistent in workouts. 
get out of bed, and make it happen. if that means i work out with someone else, or find accountability in another form.

// do at least ONE sit-up hanging from the bag.
it looks like this in case you're curious. i can currently get up on the bag, wrap my legs and cling for a few minutes. when i try to let go and lean back i fall, hard, on my butt. i think this has a lot to do with the fear of re-injuring my legs. so this will require A LOT of core & leg work over the remaining month.

// no processed sugars 
minus the holiday, because lets keep it real, there will be processed sugar.

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