Tuesday, January 31, 2012

love lists: january.

january has been a whirlwind month of planning. with a big move coming up, as well as an impending wedding, & you'll understand why i've been a busy, excited girl. although january is definitely one of my least favorite months, i still managed to pull together a list of things i've loved. 

1. bath & body works 'be enchanted' spray.
2. nyc high definition volume mascara.

3. essie 'jag-u-are.'
4. urban decay naked2 palette (esepcially 'ydk').
5. garnier nutritioniste moisture rescue refreshing gel cream.
6. simple jewelry.
7. 'parisian chic,' by ines de la fressange.
8. top knots.
9. c.o. bigelow mentha lip tint in 'violet mint.'
10. revlon lip butter in 'pink truffle.'

also, since i enjoyed filming my first ever vlog so much, 
i thought i'd film an accompanying video for my favorites:

here's hoping february is both productive & relaxing.

Monday, January 30, 2012

carolina new year: the main moon effect.

on one of my evenings in kinston, we went to pick up dinner at a little chinese place called main moon. it's a place that justin had told me about on one of our countless phone calls since he moved there. it even became a little joke, since the name of the place is admittedly silly. so, you can imagine my excitement in finally getting to dine at this little hole-in-the-wall myself.

and it really got me thinking: this is the kind of thing i'm looking forward to most about living with justin. the little things we'll get to do together, the little dates we'll get to go on at the drop of a hat, since we'll always be in the same place. the little things we'll be able to celebrate, every single day. i hope that we'll treat many things like the main moon experience: taking something seemingly insignificant, & turning it into something to enjoy, celebrate, & savor. the main moon effect.

when i move to kinston, i will never take being in the same place for granted, ever. because now we have known what it is like to live states apart.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

starbucks sunday: justin's iphone artwork.

this particular starbucks sunday is lovely, because right after i pulled out of the drive thru & back onto the open road, i called my sister. 

as i sipped my tall nonfat caramel macchiato (the drink of choice lately, it seems), we talked about millsaps life, things we should be doing but don't feel like, & we laughed about things not fit to be posted on the internet (as per usual). 

this particular starbucks sunday is lovely, because after getting off the phone with my sister, i made a little impromtu pop into walgreens to buy some makeup i've had on my mind for quite some time.

this particular starbucks sunday is lovely, because i am about to share with you some of justin's recent iphone art. get ready, ladies & gentlemen.

perhaps in order for any of this to make sense, you will have had to read this particular post. with my discovery of the emojicons for iphone, a new trend has been born: the moomoo symbol... a little cow. 

needless to say, justin is nothing short of an iphone artist. the barn one has a special place in my heart, because it was the very first i ever received. i find the sailboat particularly impressive, but the tennis depiction is the obvious favorite. i mean, look at their little rackets. how can you say no?

thank you, justin, for keeping me endlessly entertained with your creativity. 

photos: iphone

Friday, January 27, 2012

friday's fancies #18: i'm dreaming...

friday's fancies #18: i'm dreaming...

today, over on {long distance loving}, {av} has put together a fun little blog swap of sorts. unfortunately, however, i did not sign up in time to be paired up with another friday's fancies faithful. but that's ok, because i have cooked up a little black dress post for this week - & it's safe to say i will now be admiring all of these selections from afar for a very long time! i am especially loving the sparkles & lace accents. the preppy items shouldn't be overlooked, though... they are begging for a place in my closet as well.

here's to the weekend!

link-up: friday's fancies at {long distance loving}

Thursday, January 26, 2012

book club: to kill a mockingbird.

last night, i attended my second-to-last shreveport book club meeting, before i move to kinston.

the meeting was held at diane's, & right upon walking up to her front door, i was greeted with this cute chalkboard illustration. diane is such a crafty gal, so i wasn't surprised to see such a nice touch.

since our bookclub likes to coordinate the cuisine of the night to the book we've read for the month, southern fare was the obvious choice this time. from the fried chicken, greens, homemade potato salad, & avocado-laden goodies... to the lemon bars, french king cake, red velvet treats, & chocolate chip cookies, there was not a dish i did not try or did not like. this group of girls knows their cooking!

embarrassingly enough, i did not make time to read to kill a mockingbird this month. but it was not without effort - every time i went to the library, it was closed for a different holiday. i suppose i could have popped into barnes & noble, but i never did.

but the enlightening dicussion we had in relation to this classic has piqued my interest once again. i do remember reading this book in middle school, & now i have a hankering to read it again. we'll see.

it should go without saying that one of the things i'll miss most about shreveport when i make my way up to kinston, is book club. i look back on this past year, & these meetings with these lovely, creative ladies yield nothing but fond memories. and i certainly think that is something to be thankful for. so, thank you, girls!

photo: iphone

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

carolina new year: new year. new bern.

after i arrived in raleigh a little before noon on new year's eve & we made the trek over to kinston, we relaxed for a while before getting ready for a dinner in the neighboring town of new bern.

to get to new bern from kinston, you drive east for about 28 minutes (give or take), then you are on the water. there are boats everywhere, & even though it was cold on that new year's even night, i insisted we walk by the docks & take in the sights. i love being on the water. 

we ate at persimmons waterfront restaurant. it was cozy & delicious (and i thought i saw robert deniro, my favorite). i can't wait to go back!
when midnight actually rolled in, we celebrated by watching the ball drop on tv as we lounged on the couch together, eating donuts & drinking chocolate milk - who said we don't know how to have fun?

photos: iphone

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

carolina new year: the arrival.

i set out in the wee hours of the morning
on new years eve, a saturday,
bound for raleigh, north carolina.
& as the wheels touched down, i realized -
this place will be my new home.

as i passed through the arrival gate
of the serene, modern - beautiful - RDU,
i was happy to see justin waiting for me
at the airport starbucks.
we chose our lattes - our fraps,
and departed for lunch.

woody's at city market was our
restaurant of choice - burritos & sandwiches.

then, it was finally time to head to kinston -
finally time to see where justin had been
living & working all this time without me.

i was so excited to see what kinston
simply felt like.

and i have to say - i'm happy with what i found.

photos: iphone

Sunday, January 22, 2012

starbucks sunday: a vlog.

as i sipped on my tall nonfat caramel macchiato on this lovely starbucks sunday,
i thought it was finally time i tried my hand at vlogging.

as a lover of the beauty gurus on youtube, i have thrown around the idea again & again of making my own videos. however, as i do not yet have the appropriate equipment to properly film makeup tutorials & such, i have opted to film the accent tag today. this tag has been floating around the internet for what feels like an eternity, & i have watched what feels like millions of these uploads, but i thought what the heck...

so, there you have it! i hope you enjoyed my forray into the vlogosphere.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

our wedding venue.

today, my mom, dad, & i are headed south to baton rouge to tour the wedding venue. in case you're wondering where exactly justin & i are getting married in the coming months, here's the answer:

nottoway plantation, in white castle, louisiana.

when i was younger, my family would often take trips to gulf shores, alabama, for a stay at the beach each summer. we always traveled through baton rouge, & every once in a while, we would take tours of the historic antebellum homes on the river road, on our way back to shreveport. nottoway was always my favorite, & from the time i was about eleven, i have proclaimed that this is where i want to get married. my love of this historic landmark is immense, & i can't wait to simply be there again.

i couldn't be more thrilled that it's actually happening.

i wish justin was making the trip with us!

photo: via nottoway

Friday, January 20, 2012

friday's fancies #17: outfit inspiration.

friday's fancies #17: outfit inspiration.

this week's friday's fancies theme is outfit inspiration, & when i saw this little number on pinterest, i simply couldn't resist recreating this look with my own personal twist. i love how this outfit has an overall sleek feel, but with edgy, fun accessories. this is something i would wear to work, for sure. for my version, i chose these navy whistles audrey skinny trousers because i like their structure & pocket detailing. while it appears the girl in the photo has on a kelly green cotton cardigan, i chose this marc by marc jacobs michaela silk dragon top because i simply adore it. that collar detailing is out to win my heart, i tell you. the superette leopard scarf is an excellent dupe for the one in the photograph, although i would like to have found a silk or satin one. i absolutely adore the bejeweled flats from aldo - though i did consider using some fantastic loafers i came across. however, these conveyed more of the vibe i was going for with this look. the jessica simpson sunnies are similar in style & shape, & the navy color is awesome to boot. they are definitely something i'd like to add to my collection. i think the yves saint laurent gold plated rope-inspired cuff & the bond edith envelope clutch complement one another perfectly. top this outfit off with a chic, undone updo & nude, glossy lips, & you're ready for anything the work day may throw your way. 

friday's fancies at {long distance loving}

Thursday, January 19, 2012

on taking my time.

ya know, dogs really have the life.

they sleep all day, have their meals prepared for them, get taken outside to run around & explore, & they get to spend time with their loved ones without worry of appointments to catch, dinners to attend, or projects to work on.

they get to really experience the little moments of life, because really, that's what their lives are composed of - the little moments.

sometimes i really wish for this lifestyle. not because i don't enjoy all the events & get-togethers in my life, but because i feel like my life is plunging ahead & i can't even be bothered to be a spectator of its events. because i don't have time.

whole days go by, & at the end of them, i have to sit there & think, 'wait... what happened today?' and you know what? i just don't think that's the way life is supposed to be lived. in my opinion - that is one of the worst ways to go about living your life - without purpose, without being deliberate, without being present. 

one of my new years resolutions is to be more present. and while i have put up quite the effort on that front, i know that i haven't totally succeeded. i'm still physically at the dinner table, while my mind is in the far-off land of 'what do i need to buy at the grocery store again? and when am i actually going to get to the grocery store? why am i so busy? why can't i get anything done that needs to get done? i feel crazy.' 

yes, my mind is in that place.

and that's not where i want it to be.

this is old news, but i put too much pressure on myself. i have to do lists that are miles long. i make workout schedules, then break them, again & again. i start diets & then stop them, again & again.

so, what's the solution? well, i think it lies in taking my time. slowing down. examining my life. i know this won't be a quick journey - it's a long one. one of trial & error. failure. but also eventual success.

until then, i'll just dream of the days i'll get to lay in the sun & not worry about anything.

just like abilene.

photo: iphone

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

wedding planning update.

with the whirlwind of the holidays behind me, i thought now was as good a time as ever to share a wedding planning update. since returning to shreveport from my kinston adventure (posts coming soon), i have hit the ground running, in a sense. i have been working hard to get as much taken care of, as quickly as i can.

here's what i've got lined up for the rest of january...

the dress. this week, i have another appointment at a certain wedding dress shop. my mom & i ventured into the land of white tulle, lace, ribbons, & bows the day before i left on vacation. while there, we found two stand-out dresses. since my sister is returning to jackson at the end of this week, i wanted her to pop into this particular shop with me to weigh in on the two current options. i think i may still have to try my luck at a couple other shops, but only time will tell.

the party people. i'm thrilled to relay the information that all of my dear bridesmaids have accepted their invitation to stand with justin & me on our wedding day. and yes, it's true: i subjected my bridal party to an email with this picture. funny? maybe. scary? definitely. luckily all of them have known me for ages, & have come to expect such nonsense (or at least i hope they have). we have begun discussion of their bridesmaids dresses, & i'm excited to see what we all end up choosing. i am so happy that the girls have already started sending in suggestions for the dress they'll wear - my friends truly have fabulous taste... & the truth is, i think we're already close to choosing the dress.

the look. earlier next week, i will have my first hair & makeup trial. i am exceedingly excited about this particular appointment, & a special thanks goes out to one of my bridesmaids (& future sister-in-law) julianne, for refering me to (a), & also setting up the appointment! 

if you know me, you'll know that i am absolutely obsessed with hair & makeup. the only reason i won't be doing my own on the big day is to cut down on stress. i know that if i tried to do it myself, i'd feel a lot of pressure & freak out about if it 'looked right,' and other such silliness. i decided to go ahead & take those worries out of the equation. and this appointment will be the first step out of the dark on that front.

here are some hairstyles i've been eyeing:
the venue. that weekend, i will finally be making the big trek down to baton rouge with my mom & dad to tour our wedding venue & meet with the coordinators! more to come on the details of the venue, but suffice it to say, we are getting married at a place that i positively adore. an extra-plus-bonus of this trip is that i just might be able to see two of my bridesmaids - laura & jenny - while i'm there. 

the hues. after an enlightening conversation with jenny last night, i have almost 100% decided on my color palette. although the colors i'm wishing for aren't necessarily those associated with the season justin & i will be getting married during, i feel confident that these colors will be exactly what i'm looking for. i'm currently working on building inspiration boards to really put my vision together, which i will share soon.

the paper. the following weekend, another of my bridesmaids - anna claire - will be sitting down at the work table with me to begin the design of my wedding invitations & programs. anna claire is one creatively talented girl, & i can't wait to see what our two minds converge to create. plus, it'll just be nice to spend some quality time with one of my best friends!

the stress. after a few melt-downs last week, i'd rate my current stress level as moderate. i'm aware of all i have to do, periodically it freaks me out, but overall, it is only serving to motivate me to get things done. and motivation is good, right?

so, there you have it: my january has been booked up with tons of fun wedding planning events, & to tell you the truth, i'm looking forward to them all with equal anticipation. and another source of excitement comes in the form of (m), my ultra-fabulous wedding coordinator! we made things official this week, & i know she is going to make all of this planning business a piece of cake! so now, on to the above-listed events! of course, there will be a seeming myriad other little details swimming around in the in-between time, & as those come along, i'll keep you posted. 

for now, i'll just sit back, relax, & get to work.

photos: all found via pinterest; i compiled them with photoscape

the sunday currently, volume 125.

reading a mish-mash of things right now. I don't usually like to read more than one book at a time, but I am in a reading rut... and I...