Thursday, June 30, 2011

Thankful Thursday: The Blur



I'm thankful today:

For the overwhelming amount of support I have going into this new position and location at work. I finally feel like I can be confident that I made the right decision!

For the day off from worries I had with my brother Jeff yesterday. More on that, plus lots of pics to follow!

For my new phone. I was trying to wait for the next one to come out, but I shattered my screen, and I'm so glad I was forced to get a new one now, because it makes life so much easier!

For my honey. He's been plugging along, getting things done for our home and our future while I've been focusing on work.

For my new Star Wars DVDs. The three originals. I've been wanting them for years and they will finally be mine! Can't wait to have a SW marathon.

For the ease with which our wedding is coming together. It will truly be a blissful time for all!

For my friends. Nuff said.

For the blur of right now. Life is happening so fast. I'm learning to hold on through the rough bits, and let go when I can, and try to enjoy doing both.

For my soon-to-be-ex boss. I have learned so much from this guy, had so much fun, and made an awesome friend in the process.

(Took this pic at dusk on top of Mt. Helix yesterday. Thought the blurriness kinda goes with the way I feel lately.)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I Want...



I want to wake each morning in a space that feels clean, cozy, uncluttered, inspiring. Not just a physical space like that, a mental one too.

I want my daily activities to fill me with a sense of gratitude. For life, for people, for my place in the big picture.

I want to make impacts on the people around me. I want them to be better and to feel better because of our interactions.

I want to follow my bliss, to let that be the one rule of my life I do not question.

I want to share experiences, growth, love, and moments with my man.

I want to sink in to the daily things that really make life sing- the cups of tea, the fresh air, the notes played on a familiar piano, the delicious flavors crossing my tongue, the bits captured with my camera, the moments that slip by so easily when I am obsessed with what's next.

I want to be near family. I want to drop in for dinner, or a cup of tea in the morning, or an afternoon bike ride. I want to collaborate, to comfort, to laugh, to cherish the togetherness.

I want to explore this fascinating world of ours freely. I want to discover more about who I am through the places I go. I want to feel the soul of the planet pulsing through the vast differences in culture and geography.

I want to grow. I want to embrace the change that is part of a healthy life. I want to celebrate each birthday knowing I am the best version of myself yet. I want to learn to cling to the beautiful parts of myself and life.. they are always there to be found, in the midst of the clutter and decisions and challenges.

I want to remember the words of a dear brother, words that remind me that the best way to feel blessed is to give. Words that remind me that happiness is simply a choice to be made.

What do you want for your life?

Monday, June 27, 2011

How I Feel This Morning



This sums it up beautifully. How are you today?

P.s. Anyone know who to credit for this image? A friend posted it on Facebook.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Best Way to Spend a Sunday Afternoon



















A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to have a sunny Sunday off. Of course by the time we rolled out of bed it was too late for any of the brunch places we had been thinking of. But no fear! There is always the Vine Cottage! We are so thankful they opened.. it is slim pickins' for fabulous restaurants in our neck of the woods! They have amazing wines, out-of-this-world cheeses, servers who take pride in what they do, they use local, organic, sustainable ingredients.. and everything on the menu we've tried is just delicious. Shawn's favorite is 'the mac' which he orders coated with truffle oil. MMM. I think the meat and cheese plate is mine. We hung out there for a few hours getting tipsy, laughing with our server and stuffing ourselves to the perfect level of fullness. Ahhh, life is good.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thankful Thursday: Back to Reality



Let's see. What am I thankful for today?

-Cloudy, gray, gloomy days. Because they make the sunny ones that much better.
-The five days I just spent with 13 of my favorite people in the world.
-River rafting. Even though it was freezing (my new nickname is 'Shivering Twig') it was quite the adventure. Can't wait to do it again (when it's HOT)!
-Our engagement photos. Taken in about twenty minutes by brother Brad. Love them!
-Rachelle's chocolate martinis that made the shoot that much more fun.
-This cold. It reminds me of the rafting, and to not take my usual energy levels for granted.
-The new adventure at work I'm embarking on sooner than expected. Bring it on!
-One month til Palm Springs and my plp's bachelorette weekend with some amazing chicks.
-My family. Do I talk about them enough?? lol! But they are seriously the COOLEST.
-Star Wars. Watched The Empire Strikes Back for the first time in ages the other night. For once I was the last one awake, biting my nails in suspense- even though I've got it practically memorized.Why I still do not own the Trilogy I don't know. But that's got to change, stat.

Rachelle: sister 2 of 3 (me being the first), Brad: brother 1 of 5, PLP: Platonic Life Partner (my bff)

Monday, June 20, 2011

Scenes From a Hauser Lake Bike Ride

















Andrea made me go on a long bike ride around Hauser Lake. I didn't want to- I had tried P90X for the first time earlier that day (ow!)- but I was SO glad I went! The smells alone were invigorating- not to mention the scenery! I still think Idaho has the best clouds I've ever seen.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

I see you out there!





Just a couple snaps of my nephew Levi looking out at Shawn, brother Brad, and my niece Skyla on the deck.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Thankful Thursday: Idaho Rain



Thankful today!

-To be home with my five brothers, two sisters, mom, dad, niece, nephew, my love, and soon my bro in law too. The clan is all together!
-For the river rafting adventure we're embarking on Sunday. In freezing cold water!
-For the beautiful rainy cloudy weather
-For the lilacs and flowers and green everywhere brought about by the weeks of rain
-For the next six days I won't be at work
-For the talk I had with the big boss man on Tuesday. That bomb that was dropped on me? Retracted! Of course I shouldn't have freaked out til I got all the facts. Plus, I got good news about money, and I get to stay at my current location a month longer than expected!
-For all the musical talent in my family. It's so fun to play the piano with everyone!
-For the smooth, quick flights that got us here

How about you guys?


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Hearted















Since we are going to have strung hearts everywhere at our wedding, and since my brother Brad is going to hopefully
take some engagement photos of us this Idaho trip (starts tomorrow! yippee!), I thought I'd bring the two together
and make some hearts to use in our love pics. I used this easy-peasy tutorial, and Shawn actually helped choose
some colors to use AND helped me make the strings. It was fun! I can't wait to make all different shapes sizes
colors and types of hearts to hang all around my parents' place for the big day!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Be Bigger Than That



Last night I got a bomb dropped on me about work. And I fretted about it all night.
When I woke this morning from what little sleep I got, I decided enough is enough.
Why am I letting this affect me so much? I can decide how it's going to affect me.
There's no reason to let someone I don't respect get in the way of my success and happiness.
(And as a friend said, "Thing is, if you respect them, that's the last thing they would try to do" ) 

Another friend directed me to this quote:

Let others lead small lives, but not you. Let others argue over small things, but not you. 
Let others cry over small hurts, but not you. Let others leave their futures in others hands, but not you. 

-Jim Rohn

Friday, June 10, 2011

What's Not to Love?



Reasons I love my life right now:

1. Family
How could I have hated on my big family so much when I was younger? I obviously did not realize it would be the best part of my life once we all started growing up. Each of my seven siblings has a unique voice to offer the world. Although we try each others' patience (or pull each others hair (ahem, that was me)) now and then, most of the time I appreciate our differences- they make things interesting! And fun. And full of love. And let's not forget I have cousins, aunts, uncles, plus entire family-in-law too who I also get to see from time to time and enjoy. I really am surrounded by family. Gotta love it.
2. Love
We've come a long way, baby. Uh-huh uh-huh. Seriously though, to be with someone for eight years, to grow with them, to have all kinds of low points that made you want to leave, but never do it, because a life without each other wouldn't be right. To question everything. To change. To stay the same. To weather every storm. To learn to appreciate the everyday moments. The small kindnesses. The rearranging of goals and dreams to make room for sharing them. These reasons and more are why I can't wait to stand with him in front of our dearest people and thank each other for all of this- this life we're creating together.
3. Friends
I am blessed to have a best friend in the world who I can talk to about anything and be uplifted. But my blessings of friendship go beyond my plp. I have friendships at work, wonderful people I have worked with at some point who still enrich me, old chums from the past I still adore, friends-of-friends I rarely see but love it when I do, and new kindred spirits emerging all the time. My world is so much brighter sharing it with so many awesome people.
4. Work
How blessed am I? I have a job that challenges me, where I get to hang out with all kinds of cool people on the regular, that isn't going anywhere, where I get to eat healthy delicious food (and unhealthy too- hello fries!), see people develop their skills, and learn all kinds of things about food, business and people that a classroom would never impart!
5. Tea
I know it's cheesy, but I am seriously thankful for my cup of hot tea every single day!
6. Future
It's going to be here soon enough. And I'm learning to enjoy the nows- those are what get away from us the quickest!
7. Home
I know we complain about our tiny studio. But I still love it. I love the nature, the views, the neighbors, our landlords, my plants, our porch, our stone steps, the morning light, the neighborhood, and our outside cutaway in the hillside, which will soon be a lovely party and relaxing space.
8. Good Habits
Getting some form of physical activity every day, and letting my body decide what kind I need, has been the best (and easiest to stick with) program I've ever tried. And I'm finaly, at 29, learning to wash my face every night. Why didn't I start these habits fifteen years ago??
9. Photography
Makes me feel alive. I love how photographs capture moments and feelings. And how taking pictures can bring you joy, no matter the camera, equipment or experience.
10. Piano
I've been getting used to playing more. Easing back into it. I've bought new music to try. I've got the number of the best repair guy around. I've learned to play a song I've adored as long as I can remember. And it's soothing. And challenging! I use parts of my brain that have long lain dormant.
11. This Space
Having somewhere to come to vent, catalog ideas, relive memories, enjoy pretty pictures, and purposely be thankful is awesome. And I love reading the many other blogs I've come across. So much inspiration out there!

What are you loving about your lives right now, friends?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Idaho Faves















Going through my folders of Idaho pictures always puts me in the best mood!

From top:

Chillin by the stream (May 09)
The front garden (May 10)
Nick (brother #2 of 5) and I at dusk atop the home hill (May 10)
Passing fields (May 10)
Cousin Tina (practically a sister) (with Dad in the background) on an evening walk (Sept 08)
Jacob (brother #5 of 5) paddling upstream (May 09)
Trees and sky- two of my favorite subjects (April 08)

Monday, June 6, 2011

Bachelorette Girls' Weekend



Tonight we're having a girls night to make some fun plans for my plp's bachelorette.
I'm stoked because she is the anti-bride. No boring bridal games or frilly decorations!
(She wants to play drinking games!)

We're going to stay in a rad house in Palm Springs for a weekend.
It's going to be HOT (the end of July!) so we'll probably be drunk and trying to stay cool (hello, pool!) and hydrated the whole time.
How fun would it be to have a water balloon or squirt gun fight?

I'm thinking about making Oreo Truffles. And these cookies would be a super fun surprise!
And oh, how cute are these signs??

Oh yeah, we'll have to eat actual food too, won't we? The other girls seem to be pretty excited to cook, but I've got a few ideas too.
Like this salad, and this pasta. Refreshing!
Oh and these are definite easy morning crowd-pleasers as well.

For decorations, Teresa bought this awesome banner already. Love it!
Also loving this bunting made out of fashion magazines.

Can't wait! What's your favorite girls' night activity or recipe?

(image via)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The City by the Bay: Wandering, Shopping, and Lunch



Our first day was spent wandering Fillmore, Chestnut and Union streets, and the areas surrounding (on this lady's recommendation).
Shopping and just taking it all in. The sun came out to play a little bit too!
Check out that cool garden above. Reminds me of the Secret Garden kinda!



We had a nice glass of wine at Rose's Cafe.



Teresa had just purchased that rad necklace up the street. Love it!









It was so lovely just relaxing and enjoying the afternoon in a new city in between all the walking!



Whatever they put in their mustard for their samies, it's delicious!



Psst.. More of our first day in SF: one two three