Friday, August 31, 2012

1 week

I didn't expect this week to be as much of an emotional roller coaster as it has turned out to be.

I'm exhausted, unable to sleep without bad wedding dreams (todays happened to be waking up on the wedding day with no teeth). 

I'm ready for the planning to be over and for life to begin with Seth, I just want to be that so much to ask?!

I'm ready for the party to start, my friends to be in town, and the errands to be over with.

I'm ready to finally be the bride, to step out of my role as DIY wedding queen and into the pampered life for a few hours.

For months I poured over my wedding pinterest board, longed to finally buy a wedding planning binder, and ripped and snipped my way through wedding magazines...but there's a time for every bride when she just wants it to be over! 

So here I am, 7 days to go and more excited than ever to be Seth's bride. There is so much anticipation and excitement running through me!

That being said, I probably won't be back on the blog for a little while!

Three cheers for one more week!

Hip, hip, hooray!

Saturday, August 25, 2012


I've done a lot of ranting, raging, and complaining lately. 

I could sit here and blame the wedding stuff, but I also need to fess up and tell you that my attitude has been rather negative.

I guess that's what happens when you put other priorities before the Lord, every single time it knocks me down and He gently picks me back up and puts me back on track.

"This saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life."
1 Timothy 1:15-16

Today, I am thankful for many things, maybe so many because I haven't stopped to think in a while how blessed I really am. 

Church family
Encouraging friends
Friends that are always willing to help
Friends that bring you wine when you are overwhelmed
Parents who provide
Family that is wacky (not always a bad thing)
Childhood memories recalled
Fiancee's that will do anything to make you smile and surprise you with a HUGE bowl of frozen yogurt
Generous In-laws
Creative friends that help with last minute decorations

And now for the list of inanimate objects:
Super cute coffee mugs
Non-chewed up nails
Comfortable childhood beds
Early morning puppy snuggles

This practice is so easy, and instantly fixes my mood. As the next two weeks get crazier than ever before, I want to practice thankfulness every day!!

Also, 13 days. That is CRAY-ZAY.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

What I {LOVE} Wednesday

I can't believe it. I went to look at my recent pins to see what I've been liking lately and I found a bunch of dorky tee shirts. I NEVER thought I'd be into those but turns out Seth has rubbed off on me in some unexpected ways.

Source: via Jamie on Pinterest

Source: via Jamie on Pinterest

Source: via Jamie on Pinterest

Source: via Jamie on Pinterest

Source: via Jamie on Pinterest

Source: via Jamie on Pinterest

Does this make me an official nerd?
 Uh Oh.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Why I Love NOT Camping.

life motto.
Three years ago I hastily agreed to go camping with Seth and his buddies.  This was mostly because we were so attached at the hip that I couldn't manage my birthday weekend without him, but also because I wanted to prove that I could survive a weekend of camping.

I was promised bathrooms, a campsite, and a really easy experience. 

What we got?

If you take the worst camping circumstances you can possibly dream of, and times it by 10, it might come close to describing the awfulness of this traumatic life story you are about to hear.


Let's put all the pieces together:

1. We got lost on the drive up and 3.5 hours turned into 8 hours of driving.

2. The truck we drove was stiff with no suspension and the ride was bumpier than a 6.0 earthquake.

3. We arrived in the dark, and there were no open camp sites to be found.

4. We had to sleep the first night OUTSIDE, uncovered. (hello, nightmare)

5. When we woke up we discovered that there were still no camp sites, so these crazy kids decide..."lets RAFT out to an ISLAND. I bet there's no one camping there."

6. There was no dirt on the island, just rocks, oh and there weren't any trees either -- which also means no bathrooms or privacy or shade. Hello sunburn.

7. Did I mention I'm terribly phobic of water? Minor detail. These crazies spent the whole weekend cliff jumping while I photographed, I love how Erik looks like he's kicking Seth in this one.

8. It was in the upper 90's all weekend and without shade and a short water supply...

unhappy camper.
9. Did I mention it was my birthday?
I had every right to show my sass
10. Half of our food was ruined by explosion of dry ice, this in particular was meant for my birthday breakfast.

11. Our dear friend CJ tore her MCL cliff diving on the first day of our trip.

I do believe this is the jump that tore the knee! 

12. Oh, and when we were trying to leave we discovered the HOLE in the RAFT. What came next was some speedy gum chewing to patch the hole, just to barely make it to shore half sunken with all of our stuff. I was under all of the stuff in the half sunken raft in water that I am terrified to be close to.
One upside: it was super beautiful at night
We like to look back on this weekend and laugh.
I still get patted on the back for being such a trooper, but I was really dying on the inside. 

And that is why I will not go camping ever again for a really really really long time.

I hope this made you laugh, I had fun reliving the experience knowing that my camping experience could only get better from here.

Do you have any camping horror stories?

Friday, August 17, 2012

Diary of a Recovering Nail Picker and Biter

These days I'm all about transparency. Maybe it's part of becoming an adult, but I've become a lot more open and honest about my serious struggle with skin picking and nail biting.

And lets be real, its kinda awkward to talk about it so let's just get it out in the open.

Who really knows when a habit truly begins? I've been biting and picking since I can remember, but it's been getting progressively worse the last couple years and it made me worry.  Made me worry about my health, the way I am perceived, my many things.

It's mostly caused by anxiety. My body fights back when I am stressed or anxious and my easiest way to mentally escape is picking.

I've blogged a couple times about my intentions to quit. Those intentions were good ones, but they didn't include any plan of action.  And truly, I'm not certain any plan of my own would have worked.

What I'm excited to tell you about isn't a cure, but progress. Progress that's super exciting.

Now obviously, Seth has always wanted me to quit and was supportive of anything I tried. So I thought that a good cut off day would be September 7, 2012. It has been my goal to stop by that date, no matter what it took, no matter what crazy measure I had to go to.

In the past few months I've visited forums, websites, tried no-bite nail solution, tried getting manicures, tried sitting on my hands, tried taking deep breaths.....I could go on. But one night, I was sitting watching TV and picking away at something and finally realized that this was beyond me and I needed real help.

So in the beginning of July I started seeing a CBT, or someone that specializes in these kinds of obsessive compulsive sensory disorders.  It sounds crazy right? A therapist for nail biting? When the problem starts affecting your daily life, then you get outside help -- it just makes sense.

So here is what has worked tremendously so far:
1. Bright, BRIGHT nail polish to trick my eyes into paying closer attention to what I'm doing. I pick SO often that I don't even know I'm doing it, and the bright nail polish actually does make me stop more often and see what I'm doing.  I first argued and said that I suck at doing nail polish, but I've gotten better at it and I am enjoying wearing nail polish again.

2. Wearing gloves while I drive, watch movies, sit alone in my room, sit alone practically anywhere -- those are my biggest struggle areas.  This one was the hardest for me to swallow, wearing freakin' winter gloves while I do everyday life. BUT, after the first three days I was totally convinced that it worked.

3. Having a bag of goodies to help me at all times: Neosporin, bandaids, medical tape, lipgloss, nail polish, top coat, and now my cool little stress balls. This bag is constantly in my purse so I have access to it all the time. I can now simultaneously drive and put on a bandaid, watch out.

4. Stress toys. My CBT referred me to this awesomely cheap website called where they have cheap nonsense toys to play with mindlessly! Most of the time I pick or bite I am alone, bored and these little toys are perfect for me! I am keeping one in my purse, one at my bedside, and two in my car....just in case.
my personal favorite egg ball

After a month, I am seeing a lot of progress.

Sometimes I get discouraged because I get overwhelmed with anxiety about something and I find myself mindlessly picking.  But progress cannot be overlooked and I am still encouraged.

Dearest friends and family,
Thanks for not being embarrassed when I drive you around or go the movies with you and I have gloves on.  
Thanks for supporting me in recovering from a sometimes life-controlling habit.
You guys rock.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Wedding Etiquette and Advice from the Bride Herself

Seth and I are young to be getting married, especially for being from the Bay Area. In many other states its normal for people in their early 20's to get married...but not here. No siree!

You can't even imagine some of the reactions we get when we say we're getting married, it's ridiculous! And now that I have super long hair and no glasses people seem to think I look like I'm 16. Said picture was taken 3 months ago but people think it was 4 years ago:

So with being young comes our young friends who often don't know the "do's and dont's" of wedding etiquette so I have a few tips to assist in not making the bride and groom crazy.

And heck, I didn't know ANYTHING before we got engaged. No pointing fingers here...just some helpful hints for helping out the bride and groom not be stressed at a time when everything in life seems to be causing stress.

1. Reply speedily, and write your name. Most of us think that "oh, if I tell the Bride or Groom that I'll be there, that's enough"....but having it solid, and in writing makes life 10x easier.  I can't count how many times I have forgotten people telling me they were coming or not.

2. Don't freak out if you don't get a +1.  Weddings are an honor to be invited to because they are hecka $$$$$. Don't think you are somehow owed a date, that's not fair. There will be plenty of people to dance and hang out with!

3. For the love of pete, the wedding is about the Bride and Groom. It's not a competition for the best gift, dance moves, outfit etc. Don't offer help if you expect to be publicly recognized for it, it's a joint effort for the Bride and Groom not a time to get recognition! And don't force help, most of the time I like doing things on my own!

4.Please, please don't drink too much. We know you're young and want to loosen up and dance but think of it as a really fancy party, not your local bar.

5. Don't be discouraging. If you think we're too young, don't have enough money, don't think we have enough life you think that's going to change our decision? While most of our friends and family have been encouraging there are always those few people that disagree and thats fine, just don't tell us about it!

All of that being said...Seth and I are blown away by the support of our friends. To be honest, we expected the reactions to be worse and our friends to constantly question our reasoning for getting married. So, thanks for supporting us and loving us and continue it! We need it badly, especially me when I'm up to my neck in paperwork at the moment. 

I know you're thinking: well if you have so much to do, then why are you blogging?! Well, writing is a good outlet for stress so here I am. 

Thanks for listening to my half rant/half advice article.

P.S Have you got your mug for the mug swap yet?
I got mine in Tahoe last weekend and I am SO excited! Now all I have to do is find some sweet things to put inside my box with the mug!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Craft Night AKA Night of Awesome

I love crafts. Particularly in the past year I have become quite fond. Through a period of unemployment, I learned the tricks of the trade...and am still learning. There is SO much in the crafty world to learn.

So when pinterest came out, and I started my wedding board -- I knew I was in for trouble.

At the time I didn't "know"...but now, oh boy.

The DIY bride always takes too much on. Always. I'm convinced. Early on I just decided that I could do all of this expensive stuff myself. Well, let me tell you, its expensive for a reason. 

Wedding decorations are HARD. Wedding invitations are HARD. Everything else wedding related...probably hard. 

Our wedding will probably be a real live pinterest board. I kind of wish I was kidding at this point! 

The funny part is, I instantly shied away from people wanting to help me. Because my sin-laden self wanted to do everything on my own.

For months I have gone back and forth on having people help me with stuff. I just wanted to everything to be just how I wanted. But...God changed my mind and my plans, and pretty much every thing else during the past 6 months. 

I compromised with myself and my sin and had a craft night. A gloriously amazing craft night in which my truly creative friends got to prove to me that they are worth helping out with all of these crazy DIY projects I decided to do.  It didn't take long to prove anything, their creativity BLEW me away. Like blew me to the other room, I instantly felt like a small fish in an ocean of big fish crafters. 

Ok, I'll stop talking and just share with you their pretty faces, willing hearts, and sore thumbs from cutting so many programs.
I'm still surprised Seth even showed up! He was ready and willing to cut programs all evening...and then take breaks to play with Autumn of course!

Em and Cindy: Master Program Cutters and Croppers

Ang continues to be awesome and cut programs while she watches the Olympics!
Ellen and I: Sangria buddies

Hannah: Master heart stamper and master of cuteness

You guys were amazing..and so much work got done. 

This is just a small selection of the beautifully creative jars!
If you come back I'll provide more treats, and Sangria of course. 

And there might be more work to do. Anyone up for a last minute craft night?!

I pay in hugs and  pretty jars :)


Friday, August 10, 2012

Because Jesus is Better than the Dreamiest Dream.

Is it really Friday already?
I can't believe how fast time flies these days. 
Today is 28 days..I will marry my best friend in 28 days.

Holy freakin' moly.
Oh my freakin' goodness.
Me oh my.

This journey of engagement has certainly been wild.  All of the stresses I expected, did not come to pass. And all of the things I thought wouldn't cause problems, have caused major problems. 

But God has been SO good through this entire process. God is always good, so maybe I'm just particularly aware of it these days. 

His faithfulness to me, when I honestly would rather have been planning than submitting to Him, blows my mind. 

Things that have been prayed over for 4 years, are coming to fruition, even when I had given up. Our church has surrounded us with love, support, and kindness -- which has been such a gift that we will be forever grateful for. And honestly, I am learning more about marriage, friendship, and His grace than I have learned ever before. 

And Seth and I are unbelievably happy. Isn't that just so mushy and awesome?

I know, this is just the post you wanted to read today..but more than anything, I want to expound on how awesome HE is. 

I am reminded these days especially, that Jesus is so much better than my dream wedding. So much better than the dreamiest wedding I could dream. Better than any perfectly romantic craft, better than the prettiest ceremony.

Better than my marriage, altogether.

While a hurricane of wedding crap blows around my head every day, I am at peace and oddly calm because I know my God is with me. I know the end 28 days I get to be married and that is ALL that matters.  He has taught me to let go of the things that won't matter after the wedding, which is primarily the things that cause the most drama. 

He has taught me to care about the things that will last after the wedding day; primarily my relationship with Christ, which in turn has taught me about what being a wife is all about. 

I am so thankful, so grateful, so overwhelmed with Him yet so at peace in His presence. 

Seth and I's prayer for these last 28 days is simple: May this time glorify HIM. May this marriage be pleasing to HIM. Amen, and amen. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Thrifty Love

a punk, a pumpkin and a peanut

I wish I had had more time to put into this fun project! When I signed up for the gift exchange, I was really excited about it, and then as time went on life got crazy and I wasn't able to put in the effort I was hoping to. 

I was however, able to find Nikki  some pretty sweet vintage children's books that she mentioned she collected. I wish we had a big thrift type place around the bay area, unfortunately most of them are expensive antique stores! Our new place in Gilroy has some thrifty places near by that I'm already scoping out!

Nikki found some super amazing things for me, it was such a fun package to open!
I love these vintage linens, I cannot wait to use them in our new place!

Aren't those napkins the sweetest?! 

Nikki also found these adorable cookie cutters, they will go perfect with my other vintage kitchen items!

And finally, some vintage sewing notions finished off this wonderful package of goodies! They will go well with my grandmothers sewing stuff that I was given! 

I guess I am new at this type of gift exchange, I feel bad I didn't put more in my package for Nikki! I was blown away by all of the great things I received! I think I also need to get better at thrifting, everything was just so darn expensive!

Thank you, Nikki, for all of your wonderful finds!!

Can't wait to participate in another exchange like this!