January 2015 in Photos

 

★ On January 1, I started The Red Tent.  I’ve had it on my bookshelf forever and it finally seems like the right time to read it.

★ Laced up my shoes and headed back to the gym

★ Started a year-long Bible study using the She Reads Truth app

★ Totally fell down the Serial rabbit hole – cannot stop listening!

★ I started a podcast!

★ I cannot get behind the new color of the year – Radiant Orchid forever!

★ Still loving the new-to-me apples

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October in Photos

Oct 2014 in Photos

★ Picked up The Fiery Cross again to read.  I just can’t seem to get through this book.  I was inspired to pick it back up after watching the first episode of the Outlander series.

★ So, yeah, the Fiery Cross got put down again and I picked up a new book/series – Kresley Cole comes highly recommended and a friend loaned me two of these books to read forever ago.

★ My new custom polish from Literary Lacquer called The Blind King (Black Dagger Brotherhood) – it has a crazy amount of holo in it! So pretty in the sunshine!

★ After 8 years we finally framed our map of Rome that we used on our honeymoon.  I’ve been wanting to frame it since then but it was lost for a long time, found, and now finally framed.  I love how it shows a lot of use and our circled locations.

★ October means State Fair time!  We always stop to hear the Killdares play and they never disappoint!

★ New phone (gold!) and I finally found the perfect phone case – Rifle Paper Co.’s Paris map.  Had to try two different places because the first shop had sold out.

★ The end of the month I headed out of town for the Houston Quilt Show (which is huge compared to the Dallas Quilt Show) with a friend.  We had a fabulous time, and I was completely inspired by everything I saw.  Lots of great vendors and the quilt show itself was amazing.  Since we were there on Halloween, I indulged in the signature drink at the hotel bar – Dracula’s Kiss.  Mmmmm!

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September in Photos

Sept 2014 in Photos

★ The month started a bit rough.  I always seem to gravitate to Beyoncé’s music when I’m feeling sad and hurt.

★ Still loving my Rifle Paper Co. Secret Garden calendar

★ Found the perfect dupe of NARS Stormbird, Sinful Colors Smokin’ Hot

★ I found my creativity!  Spent an afternoon with a friend cutting fabric for my Lady Mary quilt out of the Downton Abbey fabrics.  Worked on three quilt tops and immersing myself in color.  Pulled out the perfect Fall piece to stitch on too.

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July in Photos

July 2014 in Photos

★ Outdoor jazz concert working on the mini quilt for the swap

★ Finished swap mini quilt – so in love with that octopus!

★ Finished my re-read of Interview with the Vampire – my copy is autographed too!

★ Another re-read – this book has been on my mind a lot lately for some reason, so I decided to re-read it.  I absolutely loved this series by Zelazny

★ My ongoing travel project – hexies – perfect summer project Hex on the Beach quilt

★ Catching up on Downton – watched the end of Season 3 and the first two episodes of Season 4.  This show is breaking my heart!

★ New nail polish (365 Days of Polish Running Through Meadows) and new maxi dress

★ Wearing my new infinity scarf – my birthday gift from Sylvia – love it!

★ Started a new book while waiting to board my flight to AZ.  Enjoying the first book in this new series by Christina Lauren.

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May in Photos

May 2014 in Photos

★ All about the glitter polish this month – Orly Macabre Masquerade and Finger Paints Enchanted Winter

★ Back to reading Interview with the Vampire

★ Delicious caprese burger Eric made

★ Bounty from our garden – little tomatoes and lots of herbs

★ #tacotuesday

★ So so so in love with this CrowsToes polish in Huginn & Munin from the 9 Realms collection

★ Lots of rain = migraine = Mountain Dew

★ New fabric haul

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November in Photos

Nov in Photos

November started off with a bang!  The first Saturday I attended a book signing for Christina Lauren for their latest book in the Beautiful series – Beautiful Player.  I’ll have a post up soon on the series and the book signing too, but I finished Beautiful Player shortly after getting it at the signing!  And speaking of books, I also got to go see Catching Fire the night it came out in the theatre – loved it!

I spent some time during the month looking at my in progress craft projects, working on some, and planning for some new things.  One of my big projects towards the end of the month was working on finishing some Christmas ornaments I’d stitched.

Of course, one of the things I was excited about was visiting a local camera store and checking out a variety of camera bags in preparation for my trip to Germany/Paris.  I loved the bright yellow of the one in the photo, but I ended up going with something slightly different.  Post to come on that as well and why I chose what I did.

As the holidays approached, I celebrated with a super blingy manicure – I used my new polish, When Monkeys Fly, over a gold I already had on hand and wowza!!  Eric and I made apple pancakes for breakfast, which is our tradition for Thanksgiving morning, and then watched the parade.  We went to my mom’s for our cozy Thanksgiving dinner and it was really a nice, relaxing day.  So much to be thankful for!

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On My Bookshelf: Downside Ghosts Series

One of the best parts of my week’s vacation from work has been the time I get to spend reading.  I so rarely get more than a few stolen moments here and there to read, that being able to wake up in the morning, have a cup of coffee, and read for an hour is such a luxury!  As I mentioned in my last post, I’ve been remiss in posting some of the books I’ve been reading lately.  So what better time than when I’m actually getting a chance to enjoy my leisurely reads?

About this time last year I started reading the Downside Ghosts series that had been recommended by a friend.  I read all three books that I thought made up the entirety of the series, but it turns out there are two more books.  Oh happy day – more to read!

The series centers around Chess, the main character, who is also a ghost hunter.  These books are part urban paranormal part mystery.  I started reading Unholy Ghosts right around my birthday last year and zipped through it in a couple of weeks.

I took a little detour after finishing the first book in order to read Gone Girl.  I don’t think I even reviewed that one either (where has my head been??).  Anyway, after reading Gone Girl I went right back to book 2 in the Downside Ghosts series – Unholy Magic.  I read this one in October of last year, and enjoyed it a little more than the first book so I was anxious to pick up the third book as soon as I finished this one.

And I started City of Ghosts in mid-November and it carried over into January.  And the length of time it took me to read this one is in no way a reflection on how good it was.  I finished this one just a few days into the new year and it was absolutely another great read from Stacia Kane.

I’m really anxious to pick up the next two books in the series, now that I know they exist – Sacrificial Magic and Chasing Magic.  And it even looks like book six is due out in October!

The caution I was given when the series was recommended to me is that the main character, Chess, is an addict.  You know that right off the bat, so it’s not spoiler-worthy information.  And while I can see that this would turn a lot of people off, it does really play into who Chess is and why she does some of the things she does.  Definitely well worth reading.

I have the first book in Stacia Kane’s Megan Chase series sitting on my bookshelf to read too.  If that series is as good as this one, I’m already sold!

**In case you’re wondering – polish is Theon’s 5, Essie’s Berry Hard, and Essence’s Edward’s Love from the Breaking Dawn collection.

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July in Photos

July in Photos

This summer is just zooming by like nobody’s business.  Frankly, July was a rough month.  Started out fine but then it took a nosedive.  My crazy work schedule took over again and a lot of late nights left me feeling overwhelmed and stressed.  Near the end of the month I made some adjustments in my attitude and did my best to start looking at things from a place of gratitude and abundance.  Amazing what a difference that makes.  Two things that have really helped me are the IG posts from @tarotandtea, particularly her daily tarot advice, and Katie O’Keefe’s blog and IG.  I’m loving watching her moving through #intentionalaugust and #mth (making things happen).  Both are two roads to the same destination, a destination of re-engaging with myself and what means most to me.  All a work in progress, but I’m feeling a lot better equipped to deal with the “stuff” that’s going on in my life right now.

So, what adventures did I get up to in July?  It was so nice to have a long weekend for 4th of July, and you can see I celebrated with a fun mani.  I spent a day with some girlfriends over that weekend too – I even baked cookies!  Eric and I opted to not go out to see fireworks, but instead we enjoyed the evening at home and watched some of the specials on tv.

We had lots of rain in July and it actually made for a much cooler summer than we’re used to in Texas.  I love it when it rains, so it’s always a little bonus.

As part of my attitude adjustment, I spent some extra time on myself – nails (of course), some new makeup (eyeliner and powder), dug out my favorite summertime heels (don’t those cherries kill you?), and some summery statement necklaces like my starfish that jingle!  I even went through all the lipstick I have hoarded in my purse.  Amazing what you find in there.

I had a little bit of relaxation time that I spent working on a gift for my Goddaughter (a summery yellow quilt) and catching up on my DVR’d shows, namely the red carpet from the Oscars.  Yes, it was in February.

Eric and I also did something for ourselves, we finally ordered our frame for the photo we printed from our honeymoon so we could hang it over our bed.  The frame is perfect and goes beautifully with the warm tones of the sunset from the top of the Spanish Steps in Rome.  Apologies for the reflection/glare in the photo…but trust me it looks wonderful.  And it allowed us to mark our bedroom as complete on our home improvement list.

So that was July, and we’re already halfway through August so I’d better start thinking about my August in Photos post!

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June in Photos

June in Photos

I really am starting to wonder where the time goes.  It’s nearly the end of July and here I am finally posting about June.  Better late than never though!

After the craziness that was May, June actually seemed to take a turn for the better.  I felt like I was making strides in some of my projects at home and starting to feel a lot more focused.

I started the month off with a Disco Biscuit mani.  I mean, how can I go wrong with that?!  I also tried a couple of untried polishes this month.  I wore Sinful Colors Sugar Rush on my toes and I also decided to give the white mani trend a try.  I was a little leery trying it since the yellow mani was such a fail.  But the white mani I absolutely adored.  It was fresh, it was fun, and it was completely on trend.  I will be doing this again for sure.  I used OPI’s Alpine Snow for this one.  Oh, and I went back to another old favorite – Jade is the New Black.  It went beautifully well with my fabric.

I got to go back to Whiskey Cake in June to get together with some coworkers for Happy Hour.  That Foul Corsair is absolutely delicious.  I kind of wish I’d had the whiskey cake for dessert again though.

I actually spent a fair amount of time sewing in June.  I worked on two mini quilts.  One got completely quilted and finished and I was able to give it to my friend, Ava, for her birthday.  I’m thrilled with how it turned out with the Kaffe Fassett fabrics on the front and on the back.  I also started collecting fabrics for the full version of the Swoon quilt (I made her mini quilt out of one block).  I’m going to use Anna Maria Horner’s Field Study line for my Swoon.  So excited about it!

June unfortunately brought with it a series of car “things” that were probably directly related with Mercury being in Retrograde.  I started off the month buying new tires since two of mine were completely bald in order to pass inspection.  Middle of the month I got my first speeding ticket in like five years or so.  And then at the end of the month I had a car accident on the highway because my brakes went out.  I couldn’t tell you the last time I was in a car accident.  But, luckily very little damage was done to either car and everyone was uninjured.  But I had to get new brakes – my brake lines had apparently completely worn through.

But the biggest and most exciting news is that I am taking a trip in the Spring to see my sweet friend, Sylvia, in Germany.  I will spend a few days in Germany, but the most exciting part is that we are going to Paris!  It is an absolute dream come true.  I can’t wait.  I will be there for a total of 13 days I think.  I can hardly believe it.  But the flights are booked and we are renting a little apartment in Paris for the two of us.  But part of my preparation was to get my passport out and make sure it doesn’t expire any time soon.  I found my old passport though, while I was looking, and it’s one lone stamp.  Of course, the stamp was for our honeymoon to Rome, so I’m ok with it being the only stamp in there.  It’s a special one!

Before you know it, it will be August, so hopefully I can make it back here to blog more frequently in the next weeks.  And I realized it’s been forever since I did a book review…so I need to get on that.  Currently reading City of Glass by Cassandra Clare.  So good!

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