Thursday, July 9, 2020

Summer Sweets

There's something so magical about summer treats--ice cream, shakes, popsicles, snowcones (called snowballs here in South Louisiana but I still haven't gotten used to that). Funnily enough, I hardly ever eat these sort of things, but I'm glad I married a guy who loves that kind of stuff so I don't miss out. Turns out, my favorite summer treat is a yummy scoop of ice cream in a waffle cone. I've been on a mint chocolate chip kick lately, which is the ultimate refreshing flavor, especially when it's super hot out. And it's Louisiana. It's always hot out.

Casey learned about a milkshake food truck coming to town so obviously we had to check it out. And check that OUT. It was soooo messy but still yummy. (Nothing, however can ever compare to The Yard. That place spoiled me.) It was nice to just sit on the back of the car in a Mexican restaurant parking lot while ice cream and chocolate dripped everywhere as we tried to eat it before it could melt. Even messy can be magical.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Dreaming of Fall... In July

It's July 2. America will celebrate its independence in just two days. Tomorrow I will make my annual "apple pie for the Fourth of July." On Saturday I will wear my patriotic skirt (navy with white stars, just like the American flag) with a red, white, and blue plaid button up and a pair of patriotic sunglasses that say, "Party like it's 1776."

And yet.

Yesterday, on July 1, I found myself ready for fall.

Maybe it's because it's been SOME KIND OF HUMID this week. (Today's humidity is 52% and it feels soooo much better outside than the sauna that became Louisiana this week.)

Maybe it's because it's been SOME KIND OF YEAR these last six months and I'm ready for my favorite season.

Maybe (probably) it's because I ran to Hobby Lobby yesterday and they had all their fall decor and fabric out. (And Christmas. I ALMOST bought some nutcracker fabric... I think I'm gonna have to go back and get it.)

I want to buy all the cute fall fabric and make a million pillow covers. I want to pull out my pumpkins from the storage room. I want to burn fall candles and diffuser blends. (Okay, fine, I'm diffusing a fave fall blend right now.)

And also, I want to wear fall clothes. I'm already wearing boots (because boots are my favorite and I wear combat boots all year round), but I'm already looking forward to pulling out my tights and scarves and sweaters for the two weeks of fall weather we get in December.

*an aside*
When I was a teenager, I LOVED teen fashion magazines (I had subscriptions to Seventeen--my fave--and Teen Vogue) and I was always so confused by the "first day of school" outfits. They were always SO CUTE (again, I'm a sucker for fall clothes) but I couldn't imagine wearing a sweater on the first day of school. It was much too hot for that. And those knee-high boots? Cute as they were, you'd feel sweat pouring down your calves before the first bell rang.

I guess at some point I finally realized that other places have actual fall weather when school starts and I'm still a little bit jealous of it. But I guess it's okay. We have mild winters, which, as someone who does NOT like super cold weather, I'm glad for. AND I'm glad that we don't have summer weather year-round like my beloved Singapore.
*aside complete*

I'm literally so tempted to start decorating for fall, but I'm trying to be practical and wait a little while. I mean, it's completely acceptable to pull out the fall decor in September, which means if I want to decorate early, I can bring out the pumpkins mid-August. (To distract myself in the meantime, I think I'm going to give our room a mini makeover.)

If we're going for a mid-August fall decor launch date, that means I have just six more weeks to wait. Which means that I need to go ahead and make those pumpkin pillow covers. Guess I can work on that while I eat my apple pie on the fourth of July.

Monday, June 29, 2020

At-Home Painting With A Twist Date Night

I mentioned in my last post that my husband and I had a "Painting With A Twist" inspired date night recently. I went to a Painting With A Twist a few years ago and really enjoyed it, but I didn't like the painting we did. (I went with a group of friends and just went along with the painting they chose.)

We pass our local Painting With A Twist often when we walk downtown, and, while the paintings are cute, I've never thought one was cute enough to hang in my house. PLUS I'd want to do it with my husband which means we'd have not one, but TWO paintings that we'd wonder what to do with. So, cheapskate me could never justify a date night there. But then I thought, why don't we just do one at home?
So I went to my fave store, Hobby Lobby (when you collect hobbies, you frequently find yourself here), and picked up supplies. All the painting supplies were half off, and, honestly, that's the only time you should ever buy anything at Hobby Lobby. Everything goes on sale every few weeks. I picked up:
  • a set of 20 (I think) acrylic paints
  • pack of paintbrushes
  • plastic mixer things (didn't really need them, but I read a blog post that inspired me to get them, and they were only a few dollars)
  • watercolor paper (instead of canvas. Plus, I was out of watercolor paper, so it did double duty. Yes, I do some watercolor too. *points at self* Hobby Collector.)
My total bill was around $30, but I also picked up some other things, so probably the paint stuff we needed was around $20. Which, I might add, is about half the price for ONE person to do Painting With A Twist. AND I have enough supplies that we can do it again. Or I can do it again. I was wanting to take up acrylics anyway, so this was a really good reason for me to get supplies. 

After acquiring my supplies, I found a beginner acrylics tutorial on YouTube for us to follow. We didn't have the exact same brushes, but used similar ones and it worked out just fine.

And then... we painted! And had fun! And made a mess! (Okay, I made a mess. I'm a messy painter.) And we made some really cute paintings that I need to hang up in the kitchen.

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Life Currently | June 2020

It feels like it's been sooooo long since I've been on here and I've been itching to write. Life looks a whole lot different than it did three months ago. Some bad. Some good. Here's a few things going on in my life right now!

  • I've taken up macrame. I joke that I collect hobbies... but it's hardly a joke. I've been making macrame plant hangers and it's a game changer because now I have a way to keep the plants away from the cats! Also I need more plants.

  • I also bought a set of acrylics because I wanted to give it a try. Casey and I used this tutorial for a "Painting With a Twist" inspired at-home date and created these!

  • We turned a corner of my craft room/library into an at-home office. Casey MADE me two tables and I painted and stained them. They're so cute! I just finished up a virtual conference my work hosted this week (like literally... 20 minutes ago) and it's so nice to not be working at the dining room table anymore. (FYI, I've been working from home for a year now... so it's nothing new... but I recently realized I need an actual work space.)
  • House projects. Alongside the tables for my office, we used leftover wood to hang up a shelf, mounted the TV to the wall (it was previously sitting on a cheap shoe rack... now the living room looks so nice and homey and less like a dorm room), and are redoing a chair we found on the side of the road. I feel like we've done a lot of other things too, but some of it was just moving furniture around.
  • OH! I painted three doors PINK. I'm thinking the kitchen door is next. Casey bought me a gallon of the pink paint so now I have to find more things to paint. Which is why I have like 5 pink plant pots. And the legs of my tables are pink. What else can I paint pink??
  • Speaking of plants, I've acquired quite a few recently. I love them. And I need more, obviously.
  • I've read like 6 books in the last two or three weeks. Sometimes I go through periods where I just read ALL THE BOOKS and then none of the books. I'm about halfway through my most recent read (a cheesy YA romance -- MY FAVE) and need to go finish it. It's a rainy day, so I'm gonna put on some PJs soon and read away.
  • Accidentally figured out how to make my nails grow. I started a new skincare routine (I need to make an updated skin care post, but here's my old one) and part of it involves organic almond oil and pure frankincense (why is that such a hard word to spell) essential oil. Turns out my nails love it. I'll have to write a post about it. (I'm also quite upset that I broke a nail about 30 minutes ago when I was closing the window because rain.)
  • I'm craving a strawberry limeade. Which is weird, because I don't exactly like lime. But I had a sip of my husband's strawberry limeade from our fave coffee + crepe shop in downtown and now... I need one. I'm hoping it will be nice and sunny on Saturday so we can walk downtown and get one!
Okay, well now I've updated this little bloggy. Who knows when I'll update it again? What can I say? It's just one of those hobbies I've collected.

Friday, April 17, 2020

Things I Love: Spring

It's been a while since I've done a Things I Love, so I thought I'd do another one! This is the spring edition.
Beautiful sunny days! Casey recently put screens on our windows so we can open them up without the cats escaping. Every morning, Tigger follows me to the living room and waits for me to open the window so he can hop on the windowsill. It's so nice to hear the birds and squirrels outside. I'm thinking I should get a wind chime to put outside!

Spring hand towels. It's truly the simple things sometimes, isn't it? I always keep a towel hanging by the sink and I picked up some cute spring ones right after Valentine's Day. They make me smile when I dry my hands.
Handkerchiefs. Okay, this is a weird one but hear me out. I have allergies and find myself blowing my nose a lot in springtime. I recently started carrying cute vintage handkerchiefs in my purse. My Gramma gave me some that belonged to her, her mother, and her grandmother. So special! I've also picked some up at antique shops. They are softer than tissues and too cute to boot! Why doesn't everyone carry handkerchiefs anymore? I don't know why, but my bestie Julianne and I are bringing them back. (Above picture is some things I thrifted last month.)
Picnics in the park. This goes along with beautiful sunny days. A few times a week we walk to downtown and pick up food at a local restaurant, then take it to the park and have a picnic. We have so many great local restaurants within walking distance of our house, and we love to support them! We're happy than many of them are remaining open right now thanks to pick up and to-go options.

Meeting neighbors. Because everyone is mostly staying home right now, so many people are enjoying the weather on walks, bike rides, gardening. We've had the pleasure of meeting some of our neighbors (while remaining distant) and it's been so nice!

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Light in the Darkness

“Even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.” ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭139:12‬ ‭

Darkness can be scary. Unable to see where you’re going, worrying that you’ll bump into something or run into a wall. I’m not just talking about physical darkness, but also the situations we go through. Worrying about what is happening in the world around us, wondering what lies in our future.

Have you ever wished that God would hand you a pair of “night vision” goggles? Wouldn’t it be nice to assess what’s ahead and walk forward confidently, all-knowing? But, inevitably, if we could see what’s to come, we would make bad decisions. We would try to pick the shorter or easier route, the one with the least amount of obstacles, the route that God did not choose for us.

We can’t see in the dark, but God has night vision. Darkness does not exist for Him. (“Even the darkness is not dark to you.”) He sees everything; He knows all. He knows your future. He knows every single thing to come, both the good and the bad. He has already accounted for things you don’t even know about yet; those things will not surprise him.

Do you feel like you’re stumbling through the dark? Reach out to God. When you’re afraid to take a step because you can’t see the way, He will take your hand and be your guide. Though the darkness may blind you, “darkness is as light with him.” You can be confident in your Guide and walk in HIS light!

I started learning to embroider last year and this is a piece I recently made inspired by scriptures I'm memorizing.

Monday, April 13, 2020

A Zoo in the Sewing Room

As promised, here are photos of our pets hanging out in the sewing room over the last few weeks. The orange cat is Tigger, the gray cat is Sushi, and the dog is Oxford.

They all love to find a pile of fabric to sleep on. Oxford has his bed in there, but sometimes Sushi steals it. Tigger usually prefers to sleep on the sewing table, but can also be found in the corner on top of some papers I need to go through.

The cats often find fabric to play with (half the time it is attached to my current work in progress) and somewhere in there they have hidden a ball that makes bird noises. We hear it squeak on occasion.

The cats bring so much fun into the room! And Oxford mostly just enjoys napping. :) It's kind of a perfect life.