Wednesday, January 14, 2015

It Was the Year 1938...

Hello Hello!

Hope all is swell in your worlds today! So far since my last post on life goals, things have been moving right along. Gym, Broccoli, Washing my face... all on par for now. As I started to delve further into these goals I began researching a few things. Whats on the list? Well it goes as follows:

1.) New exercises to work on at the gym. You know, so that I don't get bored after 20 minutes and decide that having walked 1 mile and pretended to know how to use the ab machine is a sufficient work out.

2.) New recipes that include mainly veggies and meats. Thus far anything mixed with Spaghetti Squash is my jam. I mean seriously this stuff is so easy to make, facades itself as a pasta, but is actually a veggie and only 42 calories a cup. Boom. Your mind has been blown. My favorite spaghetti squash recipe is to cook the squash, separate the inside into "noodles" by scraping it out with a fork. Then create your favorite pasta sauce and top the squash. I usually go ground turkey, tomato basil sauce, fresh basil, mushrooms, broccoli, and a little bit of mozzarella if I'm feeling frisky. 

3.) PinkLouLou Valentine's Weekend Mini Glams! Our NYE Mini Glam sessions were such a success that we decide we better bust them out again for the big V Day. You can learn more about these bad boys and book yours with us today by visiting our boutique site here. :) They will be a blast! Champs, apps, and girl gossip while glamming? Don't play, you know you'll be there.

4.) Learning more about Beautycounter Products and the culture of the company and how it originated. One of the most eye opening things I learned can be revealed in this super quick and sweet 2 minute video. Please enjoy. 



I'm sorry, but did she say 1938 was the year the US last passed federal law regulating what we use in products that we put on our freaking faces, skin, lips, eyes, hair etc? WTF? To really give you a sense of what was going on in 1938 let's check out some advertisements of the time...

1938 
Umm this is a lingerie Ad from March 15, 1938. I thinks some of these are actually coming back 77 years later.

 
An Ad for basically what existed prior to the rolodex... I actually didn't know there was something before that... Anyway it appears that its a "Ideal Xmas Gift" so hop on that for next year. 

Apparently, this lady took an adage from Beyonce's playbook and just woke up like this. Oh plus vitamins of course. 

I mean you get the picture... it was a long freaking time ago. The government tends to regulate most everything else for our "safety", but why not these products that we use everyday? I'm a little shocked that this issue has not been addressed by any of the major beauty companies out there to but I guess if its "not broke don't fix it", right? Well something is broken, and Beautycounter saw the need and stepped into fix somethings. We live in a world with almost unlimited access to the best foods, exercises options, sometimes jobs depending on the year, and even knowledge at our fingertips due to the growth of social media/ the internet. It's amazing to me that Beautycounter is about to turn only 2 years old in March and already reaches thousands of women across the US with 1 main mission in mind. 
To get safe products into the hands of everyone.
This is why I knew I had to be part of this change and part of the growth in this incredible company. You can learn more about the mission and other terrifying facts about the chemicals in most of our daily products here. To be a part of the change yourself, take the first step and checkout some basic products that you can use in your household. My post last week explains what basics you can start with here. There's even quick links to purchase with me. {Wink, Wink}
Meanwhile, when I was doing research on the above ads from the 1930's I found some amazing dating tips from the same time period. I mean with Valentine's Day right around the corner I figured we could all brush up with these little gems. They are super helpful after all. 
Out, damn wrinkles! Eyebrow raising re-adjustments of the underwear department are most certainly not encouraged
You can ask my husband, and I think Brad Paisley agrees, you will always be waiting on a women. I'm sorry that I'm not sorry.
Lookin' good: Or not, as the case may be. Men DON'T LIKE to witness public make-up application, it seems
Meanwhile, in 2015, I'm trying to figure out how I can convince my husband to learn to spray tan me. Guess I've got this all wrong.
Look happy: Never look bored (or at least not on dates) order the tips authors
Sometimes I sit like this, but maybe also in my underoos. I think that violates this rule and the next one.
Girdles and stockings: Specifically, a problem of the past, perhaps, but let it be noted that men have wardrobe malfunctions, too
I wish I could find my girdle. 
Not the rear-view re-touch: Heaven help she who uses a mirror for anything another other than reversing
Oopsie. I do this within the first 30 seconds of being in the car. Every. Time.
Nice threads: Your new knitted tee may look a million dollars, but do not bore your man with the details
Wait, he doesn't want to talk about the puppy picture I found on Pinterest?
But, darling: Public displays of affection were far from the done thing in 1938 - Tom Cruise, take note
Ok, in his defense, she appears to be giving him a wet willy and I think I'd be annoyed too.
Strictly deserving: All men deserve women's attention, say the tips' authors - this poor woman is in a catch 22, we sense
Well, this is a good point. Maybe don't talk to your waiter about how you were just here last week with your other boyfriend and it was actually way more fun than this guy with all the rules about stockings, mirrors, and wet willys.
Seemingly clever: Alcohol will make a girl silly, apparently. We wonder what it does to men in 1938
Well hell, don't be getting clever now. Good thing most of us are just silly.
Green-eyed monster: Focus on your date, lady, not on hers
Maybe she should've sat at that other guys table? He seems cool with the public head rubbing.
Game over: While we can't fault the 'don't drink too much and pass out' tip, pandering to your date's every whim IS likely to be tiring
Passing out is maybe not your best move. But hey, he's still paying the tab so that's a win. Plus, she looks super comfy and still has her cocktail in hand like a true lady. No spilling on that pencil skirt, girl.
Ok single ladies, get out there and get you a man for Valentine's Day. Then call us for your Mini Glam. :) 
Cheers,
D

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Skincare First... Then Makeup... and other Life Goals.

Hello Lady Loves and Happiest of Fridays!

I am still in shock that it is now 2015. Where did 2014 go? I feel like it flew by in a flash and then it was on to the next. I'm sure you are reading a lot of 2015 proclamations at this time of the year. Sorry, this will be slightly in that vein too, but hopefully informative in your personal success goals for 2015 as well. I have some goals that I am going to reveal to you... some embarrassing and some pretty fun. In an effort to try my best to make the most of 2015, and not let time slip away, I think having a group to answer to is helpful.

2015 Personal Goals... yikes.

The Big Thirty is upon me in only a few short months. March 13th to be exact. If you've read my blog before you know that I did pageants, danced competitively, and basically spent the majority of my life up to this point dieting. That said, I hate dieting. I absolutely love carbs in any form. Bread is #1 on this list followed more specifically by pizza. The fact is that I have, what I assume is a 700 pound woman living inside of me. Its a struggle daily to remind her that I can't afford to buy new pants right now so we need to not gain weight. So I would like to attempt to get between my competitive pageant weight (which was 105) and my wedding weight (which was 115) by my 30th bday. Possible? Yes. Easy? Not exactly. I am currently 126. EKKKK. I just told you my weight. Don't repeat that. I'm only slightly over 5 feet tall so I think hitting 112-114 is an attainable goal. More so than anything else... what you eat makes the biggest difference in your weight loss and overall feeling of your health. Sadly the old saying "You are what you eat." is accurate. My name is Dana and sometimes I am a whole loaf of bread from Malone's, perhaps a delicious cupcake from Gigi's, or even an ever delightful slice of Jet's Pizza. For the next 2 months I plan to be mostly green veggies, fruits, and meats. For some amazing meal plan and cleanse options visit my buddy Bryen here. I have followed one of his cleanses for years now when I am in need of a reset on my body. It ALWAYS works, when I WORK IT. Enjoying some gym time won't hurt either. 

In addition to the weight loss goal... taking care of my skin is next on the list. Why forget about your skin health when you are already focusing on the inner and outer health of the rest of your body? As a makeup artist, people ask constantly what to use makeup wise to have the best skin possible. The answer is not makeup alone. The origin of the solution is washing and moisturizing your face. If you aren't taking care of your skin, makeup can only go so far on a daily basis as well as for a special occasion. I mean the point of makeup is not to look like Mimi from Drew Carey.


While I do enjoy a nice toddlers and tiaras style headshot, this is not the goal image for a Tuesday dinner with the gals. The point is to look like a naturally enhanced version of yourself. With 30 fast nearing I was afraid if i didn't make it a priority now to handle skincare first... I might look like an old mop in like 10 years. Not great for business. For this reason I have become a consultant for Beautycounter.  Allison and I both decided it would be a huge benefit to the brides who patron PinkLouLou Design Studio if we both became consultants so we could provide the natural, safe, and effective products made available to us through Beautycounter. I am taking this in stride because I had to get in the habit of ritually washing my face each night and applying moisturizer both day and night. Believe me ladies, after a night of cocktails the last thing I was to do is lather up, but I'm trying to make it a focus. So far, we are good, 8 days in of course, but good. If you are interested in trying any samples of Beautycounter to see if this is a goal you can set for yourself... hit me up dana@pinklouloudesignstudio.com . If you want to just give a few of the products I recommend a go... then order here. :) I suggest starting small and adding on as you like products. The good news is that there is a "no questions asked 30 day return policy" if you don't like a product. Thats pretty amazing if you ask me. The full Essential Face Collection is a big assortment as shown below.


I would say to start small, like I did, and select maybe 2 products you can commit to using everyday. I actually selected 3 products for myself and they are the Routine Cream Cleanser, AM Hydrating Cream, and the Lustro Oil #3. I mix the oil with my moisturizer. I struggle with rosacea on my face and the #3 Oil has really helped cool that out under my makeup. The next addition for me will be the PM Hydrating Cream because I have loved the AM Cream so far.

2015 Professional Goals... Bring it!

For some reason, personal goals are always a little more daunting than the professional ones. I think when you love what you do it never seems like much work... just more like your life. Allison and I were truly beyond blessed in 2014 and could not be more grateful for those who supported our work. 

Weddings galore is what we really want. In 2014 we were so excited to work with our brides and we worked with a lot of them! In 2015 we want to keep that momentum growing and building and work to have as many amazing brides as we did last year, and then some. From bridal party chats full of laughs to pinning the final veil in, this past year was more than we could've hoped for. 

Marketing like whoa. You may have thought we marketed before, but in 2015 we plan to bring the heat. We stepped it up with some awesome opportunities with KY Bride Magazine and the new Lexington Scout Guide. GET YOUR COPIES PEEPS! Social media is such an incredible tool to grow our business and to help spread beauty tips and ideas to anyone, anywhere. Sometimes I slack on the social media game like not blogging for a long period of time... forgetting to post photos to my instagram, pinterest, Facebook, and twitter. No more. Prepare to want to unfollow me. Just kidding... don't unfollow me. I promise they will be worth scrolling through. 

Say 'YES' to new things and don't be scared to try something different. We typically pride ourselves on saying 'Yes' to requests and finding a way to make it work. I think 2015 will bring a huge assortment of new opportunities that we didn't know would be out there for us and we are ready to take them on. From photo shoots to destination weddings we are ready for some adventure. 

Meet, greet, and collaborate with vendors, old and new, even more. We are lucky to be able to work with some of the most incredible vendors out there and if there are opportunities in 2015 to do that more... we're in. If you are a vendor with an idea in mind of something you need hair and makeup for, contact us! We would love to pass ideas around and find a collaboration that works for us all! Reach out to me at dana@pinklouloudesignstudio.com. 

Sell things. A lot of the things. We have a shop via our website which you can check out here. We want to expand that shop and bring more unique gifts to our brides and their bridal parties. Send us your requests! We both want to expand the sales of our Beautycounter collections as well. We truly feel that this line of skincare, for adults to kids, will be hugely popular with those conscious of using health focused products.

Welp friends. I think that about covers it. Stay tuned for updates on how these goals are coming. Especially the birthday weight loss goal. If you see me devouring Drake's tater tots... remind me that your read this. 

Cheers to 2015 and to you!
Dana



Thursday, November 13, 2014

Those Little Touches


Hey Boos... This is a little party planning follow up from the previous post. :) 

With the holidays upon us there are some key party tricks I feel we all need to have in our back pocket should an impromptu parlay arise... or even a well planning soiree. 

There is a piece of advice I feel we should all consider when we party plan that I certainly take to heart in my own way when planning...

“Before leaving the house, a lady should stop, look in the mirror, and remove one piece of jewelry.” -Coco Chanel

This quote from a woman who certainly knew how to party like a lady in her day is completely spot on with attire. Now, let's apply this quote to the idea of party planning, but let's think the opposite. I know your immediate reaction is to assume that I like tacky things... but I swear in parties this theory is true. Your tacky assumption is correct in my love of glitter and sometimes I do remind myself to tone that down. Im thinking in more simple terms here... Maybe its one extra flower in your arrangement, a couple candles intermixed along your table, or maybe its as simple as changing the lighting just a bit. I love things to look full and plentiful because it seems like theres more than enough to go around. These are the "Little Touches" I end up finding myself engulfed in right before any party. These are also the things that literally bring my husband into his own personal hell because it typically requires an additional set of hands. 

There are a few staple pieces I have on hand at my house that I use as my "add ons" for a party on the regular. These are cost effective, simple, easy to store, easy to transport, and add that little extra touch anytime your husband comes home and says "I forgot to tell you, XYZ and their wives are coming over tonight." While you scurry around, mostly to make sure your underwear aren't the first thing sitting on top of the unfolded laundry basket for everyone to see, you can also throw these items out on the table and you look like the hostess with the mostess. 

Typically, 5 minutes before anyone comes in my house, I am still hiding things under our furniture and wiping dust off surfaces with my sleeves so they appear clean... but hey I look ready. Your friends will compliment you but secretly envy your preparedness for this impromptu event. Jokes on them if you are like me...

Important party success supplies include: 
  • Paper Straws in Multiple Colors - Who doesnt like drinking out of a fun party straw? I try to keep at least one box around, but I plan to add on with some multi color packs to really step up my straw game. Because thats whats truly important in life. Cheap and Fun. Ideal.
  • Mason Jars - Ladies we are in the south so these ALWAYS work. For those of you who aren't, they still work because mason jars are the shit, but as an alternative perhaps a stemless wine glass set. Anywho... stemless glass and/or Mason Jars are perfect for SO MANY THINGS! Think about is... holders for straws as mentioned above, holders for utensils, candle holders, mini vases, serving device for desserts, the possibilities are endless and these are REUSABLE which makes the investment worth it! Oh and also, you can drink out of them. Clearly. 
  • Folding Tables - Invest Girls! A Small plastic folding table is ideal for any occasion. Toss a table up and make it a bar, or a dessert scape, or even just have it handy in the event that a flip cup game ensues...preparation for a surprise game is clutch. You're setting the party tone and let's face it a drinking game is rarely not happening. 
  • Table Cloths/Runners - Tossing a table cloth on a folding table makes the the party look well planned and clean. Add a table runner and minds will be blown. People think runners are only for weddings... wrong. Runners are kinda my fav right now because they really step up the look of any get together and guests minds are blown... "OH My gosh... your table runners are so cute. " Swoon. I know girl. Grab ya some from Smarty Had a Party for quite the steal. 
  • Poster Board and Metallic Sharpies - Ladies, the main thing that can take your party from "Oh this is nice" to "Oh Wow, look how cute!" is labeling. I swear to the Lord above that putting a sign next to a bowl of Candy that says "Candy" is mind blowing for guests. Honestly there's something mentally for a guest who sees a label on something that draws the conclusion that the hostess spent time on this. I do. Im a slave to all marketing and in my mind a party label is just that. You are marketing to me your chips and salsa, and sister Im buying because of your delightful chalkboard mini stand labels. God, I love mini things too. That alone gives you hostess points. Labeling things is where I really loose control in parties. I love signs, labels, notes, directions, and most importantly glitter. I get crazed when drawing these out and I literally label everything.  I. Can't. Stop. Myself. 
  • Tea lights/Flameless Tea Lights - These are so fun for anytime people come over. Set them out in your stemless glass or mason jar and they just add a simple glimmer or planning to any event. Target and Crate and Barrel normally have good flameless tea lights, the Dollar Tree normally has real tea lights for very inexpensive...duh $1 for a bazillion.
Where can you find all this gear?
  • Ummmm The Dollar Tree - For any party you are planning go to the Dollar store First and Last to find items. If you go at the start of your planning you can save money on items you were planning to get and get ideas for other "Little Touches". After you do the rest of your party prep, breeze back through the Dollar Tree and see what other gems you find.
  • Marshalls/TJ Maxx/Nordstrom Rack - Places such as these alllllways have the key go to party accessories you never knew you needed. I can't tell you how many times I have kicked myself for putting down that $12.99 such and such that I didn't let myself buy, when now it would be perfect for a table scape. Just buy it. 
  • Save on Crafts, Shop Wild Things, Smarty Had a Party - I am obsessed with these sites. I buy things from these places for almost all parties. Whether its awesome lights to inset in a ice bin of cocktails or mini disposable serving pieces for appetizers... these are the bees knees. Shop them. And be glad you did.
  • Hobby Lobby - Needs no description. I could spend an entire day shopping there and small to moderate fortune. Much to my husband's dismay. 
Lady Bugs I hope these tips and tricks are useful in your party preparation for the Holidays and in having an impromptu party whenever you may need to! I am interested to hear your ideas on parties and your favorite places to find goodies! Where do you shop? What are you staples? I would love to add pieces to my party collection!

Cheers!
D

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Planning a Party Pants Kinda Night...

...It ain't easy Gals, but it's sure worth it.

Those of you who know me well, know that I love... I mean LOVE... a good party. If its one I am hosting or helping to plan that ups the anty significantly because I have a problem when it comes to coordinating a soiree. I get obsessed with it. Honestly, I think its the the "little touches" that really send me into the unhealthy place of obsessed, but damn if it doesn't make it fun. I am assuming since most all of you follow me because you were introduced to this blog via my big sissy... the one and only PinkLouLou... that you have seen the pics she has posted of many a party. Some of my favorite parties to plan are bachelorette parties as seen here.... or our annual Panty Parties as seen here.

I love little "add on items" for parties that just make everyone smile. For bachelorette parties you can really get sassy with these and stay on a good budget as well. These "Little Touches" included a beautifully designed invitation created by the amazingly talented Brooke. You can find here crafty goodness here. The image she designed for Ellen's bachey was plastered on everything for the event... koozies, bedazzley name tags and labels, itineraries... EVERY. THING. Little gifty goodies are also a great add on for the ultra planner ...monogrammed champagne flutes for the lingerie shower are a must and can be ordered NOW via the PLL Boutique HERE

I also love to know when and where I'm going places and I love it when people feel like they know as well. Then we can cocktail in peace without 100 questions on when we are leaving/going/ dressing/ drinking/ etc, Thus preparing every room for the girls before they arrive complete with an itinerary of events for each room is a must for overnight party planning. The itinerary for Ellen's bachey included things like...a pre-planned fiesta for lunch poolside, a lingerie shower in a private room by the pool and gorgeous dinner with wine and cocktails. While these items may sounds elaborate for planning... it was actually really easy. 

Planning steps for Newbies...
Call hotel, ask questions about WHAT they have that a regular guest may not see from the website, be nice, and ask for free things. :) Hell if you don't ask for it they can't give it to you, so just throw it out there. If they say no... who cares... you're no worse off then before you asked, and hey they may say yes!

The set up is key... just like you can't make a second first impression, you can't recreate someones image of an event after they walk in. Their arrival should be an "entrance". As the hostess your job is to create a special moment for each guest so they feel like it was on purpose that they were invited, that they have arrived, and that you planned accordingly just for them to be there. To do this... you really have to do the leg work but it is totally worth it. When your guests arrive and are full of excitement because they know its going to be an awesome time after that walk in... you know you did it right. 

We were very fortunate to have the uber talented Claire Marie with us to capture the first night of the bachelorette party! I will let her fabulous photos tell you a bit about the first nights details of Ellen's event. Little Ellen has been happily married for over a year and we like to think aside from her awesome husband, that this ladies send off set her up for success.

DETAILS.

DETAILS!

Having a professional photographer friend is ideal. :) Love You Claire.

Party Pants

Hostesses With the Bridey

Girlfriends

This brings me to the Annual Panty Party which Emily and I host each year. Often the most drunken evening of the year, but also the most fun and filled with Shennagains. This year Emily and I determined that we needed to create a "Winter Wonderland" of sorts. Each year the party gets bigger because everyone gets a "Plus One" on their invite. Our goal is to mix girls from all groups of friends and make it bigger each year.... 30+ girls usually come and thats awesome!

Emily and I went about making our winter wonderland by determining first where this could ensue... the garage. Mostly empty... semi warm... easily manipulated by draping table clothes from the ceiling. DONE. And to this decision winter magic became ours. Garage Style. We always want to one up the year before. I fear eventually our only one up remaining will be a Santa Stripper but thats a bridge to cross later. Anyway, the result of winter wonderland below.


You'll also notice that there is a Photobooth set up here. AGAIN... the doings of one Claire Marie. I'll now dazzle you with some of her captured moments. Please remember there had been a number of signature cocktails consumed at this point.

All our Ladies!


Yes it is tradition to wear the panties you won over your outfit.


The Hostesses.

This brings me to signature cocktails, other details and those " LITTLE TOUCHES". Each year we like to think about special details that will make people laugh because the panty party in and of itself is about laughing. The whole premise is set to the idea of the White Elepahnt gift exchange only using panties. Additionally, Emily and her husband wrote a "Night Before Christmas" parody which is read at the start of the panty exchange each year to get things moving. From there panty opening and stealing takes place. Now prior to all of this happening, we have food. Lots. And Cocktails. Make it a double. 

In years past we have come up with a fancy plethora of cocktail accouterment and last year was no different. People LOVE a fun cocktail especially if served in a unique way. See some of our party cocktail history below.

The Prep.

 
The Product at the Entry.

Cocktail Table and ornament cocktail disposal.


Now amongst the cocktails you will also find little fun holiday details. Headbands. Never did I think crafty holly jolly headbands would result in adult women having a knock down drag out over who wore it longer. I usually make 12 for sharing and typically all are gone, having been worn to the bars at nights end. I love it. 



In closing ladies... get creative with it. Check Pinterest for ideals and such you can follow me here, but be your own party innovator. What would YOU like to see when you walk into a party? Go from there! We will see what panty party 2014 brings to the table here in a few short months! Here's to all the parties coming in 2015!

Cheers,
D






Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Life Changes

Oh hey boos. Long time no speak. Girl, I know. Sorry about that. 

Life happened and I got really busy, but now life has happened again and these life changes entail a lot more of my time blogging, branding, and beautifying. 

Let me explain...

My little lady love PinkLouLou and I have been glamming up friends, family, models, and bridal divas for the last several years. Overtime and many glasses of chardonnay we decided about a year ago that it was time to get serious, make it a business, and see what happened. Guess what? We got CRAZY busy by nearly doubling the number of weddings we had last year to this year AND we opened an online boutique to help our little bride muffins in finding unique and custom gifts for themselves and their bridal parties. We started small and let it grow organically as any blonde, ambitious twosome would, and we were overwhelmed by the growth we saw this year. Thanks to all of you who have been a part of our growth in the past several years and who have already booked us for 2015! 

YES... I said 2015... we are already booking in November of 2015. I can hardly believe it! We are just so excited to now have the chance to make this a full-time employment adventure so we can fully discover what we can make this little nugget of an idea into. 

Hairs and Face
We have delighted so much in being a part of the most special day in our brides lives over these last few months. The joining of two people in marriage is so sacred and we are blessed to be a little part of that process for our ladies. Plus... You know we have your poofs, curls, and lashes covered and we are not putting those combs down until you are perfectly quaffed and all veils/hairpieces/perhaps faux hair are securely tightened for all photography elements... climbing, wind, a clumsy groom, etc.

Glitter and Goodies
Over the next few months we will be adding custom, unique, and many handmade items to our online store to help our brides not only find the perfect gift for their friends, but to make it individualized by girl and party. Our goal is to help our brides feel beautiful inside and out on their big day and ya know what... giving a special gift to the girls standing by your side on that day certainly makes a girl feel beautiful inside. Plus everything has to be monogrammed because we are in the south so you may as well let your lady lous get that done for ya :)

Peep our site here for updates and new factoids about your girls! We will be adding new things daily starting at the end of this month! We are excited to see where this will take us and look forward to sharing the journey. 

In the meantime... I'll be typing away and finding you all the most precious treats and gems for our website in this little home office escape. 




Cheers Friends!
D

Monday, June 3, 2013

Anniversary

Hello All,

Remember a year and a half ago when I used to write semi-regular blog posts? Me either. Ya know family, work, traveling, and life in general catch up with you and slowly you let things fall to the way side until you forget that you used to really love something you once did normally like ... writing a blog.

Well in light of June 4th being a very special day, and since I am currently in California for work, it seemed appropriate for me to bust out a blog to share with you something important. June 4th is our 2 year wedding anniversary and as much as I love San Diego I would surely love to give my husband a big hug tomorrow and tell him how much I love and appreciate the last 2 years he has given me. Since I can't be with him in person I thought I'd share with him, and you, all that I am grateful for in the life we are building together.

* Avert reading now if you are not interested in reading sappy love notes.*

In the last 2 years we've sold a home, moved 4 times, bought another wonderful home we love, and have since been doing home projects every free moment we have. Michael has spent a lot of his time trying to perfect every aspect of our home so that I am happy and comfortable. I am picky so this is a tall order. He never ceases to amaze me with his eye for understanding how I might think of something and than making it even better than I could've imagined. His dad is quite the handy man and Michael has been learning the tricks of the trade. When I begged him to make the tree in our front yard look like a Christmas tree during out first xmass in our new home, did he disappoint? Duh, Of course not. 


When I think of our home everything, about it makes me think of him and how much he cares about our home being, well... Ours. From his immaculate yard work, to replacing a water heater after only 2 weeks of owning our home he makes it ours. It's my safe place, my happy place, a place we want our family and friends to be, and most importantly it's ours.  

Alongside many home updates and projects we have tried to spend a lot of time with family over these 2 years. We have had some injuries and illness and a little worry especially in the last year. Michael is a rock for his family, mine, and for he and I. He may be sad at times and he may worry but he is a man who moves all of us to be strong. When his grandfather struggled this year with injuries Michael was the first to hop on a plane to Florida and drive him 14 hours back to Kentucky so he could get the best care alongside his mother, grandmother and several friends. He prays for people when they need it, he prays for them even when they don't. He finds faith when hope seems limited and he always finds the positive in a situation and tries to resolve it. Michael is a man prepared to do great things whether big or small... I love that about him.


In Michael's everyday... He works hard. He works in wound care sales and he helped developed the territory he now maintains day to day. He loves his job and he works very hard everyday to be good at it. I admire him so much for the dedication he has for his work. He cares not only about doing well professionally but the patients he helps by being the professional he is. 

The bean... What can you say about his love for the bean? I mean look at this face....

Bean plays ball... All day... Everyday. Basketball is definitely her favorite, I suppose she takes after her daddy's love of UK basketball. He loves that baby bear and she loves him with everything she has. (They also share a deep love for the 49ners.) 


Our groups of friends tends to set sail on a number of adventures. All of us together or the girls and guys alone it doesn't matter. We are all a bit obsessed with our little group and our excursions. We live for weekends where we can play and enjoy each other and maybe a few cocktails. Michael is the eternal planner and he likes to help plan for every event we may have. He loves his friends and he loves to see everyone having a good time... Including himself. This portion I feel is best portrayed in photo... 


Michael, you're the best man I have ever known and I am lucky to know you. Thank you for all you do and thank you for being the man you are. I couldn't be happier to have spent the last 2 years with you. You have created something special in our life together already and I look forward 100 more years of everything you are and will become! I love you so! 

Cheers,

A Mrs of 2 Years! 

Saturday, December 3, 2011

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Hello sweet bloggie lovelies!

This is the time of year that I look forward to the most! Not only because thanksgiving is my all time favorite holiday (hello carbs), but because of everything it embodies... Which includes the fact that your Christmas decor is finally unleashed into the glittery light filled splendor that it should be! This holiday season I find myself grateful for a number of things. I'll talk of those first and then of course Christmas decor photos is a must!

I give every thanks to God for...
The good health of my family, my friends, and myself. (I had my first mammogram a few weeks ago and it shows I am cancer free!)
The faith that I have I God.
The husband God brought into my life this year.
The amazing celebration we were able to have with everyone we and our families know and love in honor of our wedding.
The simple things... A home, food, jobs and simple comforts that we often take for granted.
Love... In family, in spouses, in our true friends, and that of strangers who help others.
And also glitter... Glue guns... the ever wonderful "50% Off Sale" that is always going on at hobby lobby... I am thankful for girlfriends to invite over to enjoy our newly made Christmas delights during our annual HOLIDAY PANTY PARTY!

That's right ladies! It's that time of year to gather the best girlfriends you know and enjoy a night of girlie holiday fun! Martinis, treats, a girlie games all by the light of the tree and the sparkle of each ornament! It's one of my favorite nights because it's so relaxed, silly, and girlie! The Panty Party will be our first holiday gathering of the season and to say I am excited is a serious understatement. The Panty Party is hosted by my bestie Emily and I and it began as a tradition while we were in college. Over the years our group of girlfriends has evolved a grown... As it continues to do... and now its a much bigger night than when we first began! "The More the Merrier" is absolutely the perfect sentiment for this party. Each year with each new friend in attendance it's better and better. This year it is being held at my house and Em and I have lots of great treats in store! Party Pics will follow in a later post gals!

For now let's talk Pre-Party home prep! I love making christmas decorations. Garland, wreaths, trees, more garland, and possibly 3 more wreaths... I love it all. From the application of each sparkle to every burn I will surely suffer from my glue gun, I basque in the glory of a fully blinged and perfect Chriatmas original. Advisory... If there's no glitter your craft is not complete gals! Hello people Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Jesus! Thus, it is only natural that my home should look like it's a birthday celebration the entire month of December (and possibly January if I can convince Michael the holiday splendor should remain!). To prepare for not only this special occasion, but also for my own personal love of all that is Christmas decor, I give you my personal winter wonderland...

Candy Cane Wreath... with lights in the mesh ribbon!

 A little "P"ersonalization! 



Bay Window Decor for the Bean!

Sofa Table Entry

Front View

Apothacary Jars with Ornaments inside! My Fav addition this year!

The Hearth and Fireplace.

Front View

Christmas Tree!

Second Tree in the Kitchen

The Peacock Tree Topper my Mom made! Crafting runs in the family.

Burlap Table Runner! So easy to make...Outline a letter.. add glitter...string ornaments with fishing line! 

Front View

Full Length

Kitchen Wreath :)

This was made by one of my Besties and other Party Hostesses... Emily Bradley...TOO CUTE!

Cheers Lady Bugs! 

A NEWLY MRS.