Friday, September 30, 2016

a month in review | september twenty-sixteen

-  i love sunflowers.
the best cookies evah.
-  trying out a coffee shop.
-  lattes with friends.
-  the girl behind the lens.
-  lovely flowers.
-  exploring kansas.
-  lattes at work.
-  tidbits of fall.


//  i started my third bullet journal. there is just something about getting everything out of my head and onto paper. earlier in the month, ideas + thoughts + goals + all the things had been swirling around in my head like a vortex. i finally sat down and basically had a brain dump. my mental health has benefited drastically by having a bullet journal again. i'm not even trying to make it pretty like my first bu-jo; just functional.

//  we camped at the lake for labor day weekend. it was so much fun. we spent saturday exploring a quaint town, coffee shops, and other parts of kansas

//  i bought an espresso machine for my office!

//  the series premiere of this is us gave me all the feels + i'm still not over it.

//  fall is here! we slept with the windows open at night + it has been glorious.

//  i made a 101 in 1001 list. i still have a few goals to add, but i'm super excited for this.


::  little by little progress is better than rushing to get something done in one sitting. i'm learning this in different areas of my life, and it's so freeing for my mental health. 

::  unexpected bonus of marriage: more sleep clothes. i wear jared's shirts to bed every night.

::  i started cooking meals more this month. our grocery bill has been cut in half. and cooking has actually been fun, guys. i know my way around the kitchen, but it's been so easy to pop in a frozen dinner for the past year instead of standing over the stove for hours. well, turns out it takes less than an hour to make dinner. i am starting to collect recipes, so send your favorites!

::  [see previous lesson] a package of spaghetti noodles from aldi will feed sixteen people. #leftoversfordayz

::  i've developed small habits of cleaning each day instead of waiting a few days + cleaning for hours.

::  the new keyboard click sounds on the iOS 10 update is my favorite part of the upgrade.

::  don't put off renewing your website domain name. chaos central.

 -  blog-tember challenge. YYYEESS. i didn't always follow the prompts, but i blogged twenty-seven times. my goal was 20-30, so BOOM.

deep clean our home.  little by little progress!

consistency.  not so much, but giving myself a little bit of grace here.

start working in the children's ministry at church.  eeeekk, yes! gimme all the babies.

read two books. i finished one book.


::  i signed up for a monthly ipsy glam bag again. i've had the subscription before + loved it!


::  how to say no to friends who want you to work for free.

::  i made a 101 in 1001 list.

::  i just started watching parks + rec. can we nominate leslie knope for president?

::  when your village is virtual.

::   "IT IS FINISHED. may those words land on your bones for the nights
when fear tells you the cross was the beginning and you must finish grace."
[jon acuff]

Thursday, September 29, 2016

101 in 1001

start date:  OCTOBER 1, 2016   //   end date:  JUNE 29, 2019

bold: completed  //  italics: in progress 


-  work thru four in-depth studies of the Word
-  be intentional with advent
help out with infants + babies during servies. i started this in fall of 2016. eeekk, gimme da babies. :)


-  have my art published
-  sell 2 pieces of my work
-  document a day in my life in photos
-  photograph a field of sunflowers
-  participate in the 100 days of happy challenge
-  shoot with film [1 roll]
-  take a photo in a photo booth
-  enter my work in a photography competition
-  photograph the keeper of the plains
-  offer a few free photos sessions


-  take a road trip to OKC //  here + here
-  take a road trip to see monument rocks
-  visit strataca [underground salt mine in hutch]
-  go to the state fair
visit the kansas cosmosphere + space center
-  ride a ferris wheel
visit the sedgwick co. zoo  //  here
-  go hiking
shoot a gun
-  visit tanganyika
-  take a big vacation with jared [cruise, maybe?]
-  explore three kansas state parks
-  visit a few of the eight wonders of kansas
watch transformers: the last knight


-  revamp 'about me' section
-  participate in the blogtember challenge
-  write a guest post for another blogger
-  start a monthly link-up


read thirty books
-  re-read all the harry potter books
-  read two classics
-  read two autobiographies
-  read the chronicles of narnia series
listen to one audiobook  //  big little lies


-  fill a bullet journal from the first to last page
-  write a short story
-  write two poems
-  journal thru fifty questions that will free your mind
-  make a list of 100 things that make me happy



try a macaron
-  make a homemade side/dessert for the holidays
visit every coffee shop in wichita
-  eat at a food truck
-  make a pinterest recipe
-  buy someone's meal
-  make homemade chili
-  bake a pie from scratch
collect recipes


-  get my eyebrows waxed
-  rock a crazy lipstick
-  get a massage
-  maintain a healthy weight
-  wear fake lashes for fun
-  run one mile [without walking]
-  get a facial
-  learn cat-eye liner
-  find/learn my style + make fashion my own


set intentional goals each month, even if it's just one goal
purge our home of every unnecessary item
-  take a dance class with husband
register to vote in kansas 
-  plant flowers around our home
-  make a floral watercolor painting
-  go to the drive-in
-  decorate my office at work
-  go bowling with friends
-  finish this list! [add 25 more tasks]
have a baby //  june 29, 2017
-  send five thank-you notes to others 
-  print photos for home + office
-  buy a wichita flag

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

tidbits of life // 09

-  pasta + turkey sausage + a cute puppy. i've been cooking more lately, and i love finding new recipes!

-  jared always picks out a bouquet of flowers at the grocery store for me. we shop together, but he'll disappear for a minute + come back with flowers in hand. he's the best, i tell ya.

-  the mornings have been crisp, cool, and dewy. fall is here!

-  i binged on the blacklist last week. why is raymond reddington so cool? [minus, ya know, the killing part.]

-  i am almost finished with legend by marie lu. a good book, but not great.

-  lattes with friends at my favorite coffee shop.


more tidbits of life on WILDBLOOM

BLOGTEMBER | day twenty-eight

HUSBAND  //  life is crazy + beautiful + messy. but with him by my side, it's crazy-beautiful in the mess.

COFFEE  //  whether we are hanging out at home or chillin' with friends or on our way to church or having a date night, coffee is always involved at some point. after jared + i ate dinner on our first date, we spent two hours talking over lattes about life + all the things. coffee is special + delicious + awesome, among other reasons. [insert poop emoji.]

WILD WORSHIP  // twenty-sixteen was deemed the year of wild worship for me. what started out as a twelve-month endeavor has turned in to a lifestyle. worship isn't just something i do on sundays when the praise band is on stage. it's seeking God + giving Him glory in each day, each moment.

BLOOMS  //  florals make something inside of me come alive. i am constantly on the lookout for these magical petals throughout my daily life. God has used flowers over and over again in the last several years to teach + speak to me.

MILO BEAN  // this puppy, y'all. he has brought so much joy to our lives. he is goofy + playful + a constant source of entertainment. and that face - he is our forever puppy. and we love him so much!


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

MONDAY TRUTHS | volume 05


monday truths is a series on WILDBLOOM geared to fill our lives with truth. 
not fluff. not feel-good nonsense. but hard-hitting, soul-feeding, life-giving truth. 
each week, i will post a quote, scripture, or word of truth to get you started for the week ahead. 

my hope is that you will remember these little tidbits of wisdom throughout your week
when lemons or curve balls or whatever random object gets thrown your way because, hey - that's life.

Friday, September 23, 2016


this new series is inspired by a girl named leney.

not a ceasar salad, in Jesus' name.

the nightstorms playlist on spotify.

this post by my friend, chelsea. [let's always look for the good instead of always being offended.]

i'm trying to convince husband that i need this in my life.

i'm working on a 101 in 1001 list.

i've baked these cookies twice this week + everyone loves them!


this week on WILDBLOOM:  fall favorites  |  if i were ice cream  |  monday truths 

blogtember | day twenty-three

rather than a family recipe, this is a friend recipe. a couple weekends ago, i was at a bachelorette party, and the bride-to-be made these cookies. it was like heaven in my mouth, y'all. the next morning when i was gathering my things, i searched for any leftover cookies like some kind of drug addict.

i got the recipe and made them earlier this week. i was a little nervous with how they'd turn out because they are baked with almond flour + coconut oil - two things i've never used. i sat the plate of cookies on the coffee table, they were gone in five minutes! everyone was raving about these cookies, which made me feel like betty crocker or something. :)


2 tablespoons solid coconut oil
3 tablespoons organic honey*
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups almond flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
1/2 cup of chocolate chips

preheat oven to 375 degrees. line baking sheet with parchment paper. 
[i didn't have any, so i used some liquid coconut oil. it worked great!] 
set aside.

add the coconut oil + the honey in a bowl. 
stir briskly with a whisk until they are mixed well. 
add the egg and vanilla, whisk until combined.

in another bowl, add the almond flour + baking soda + salt.

add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. stir well, and add chocolate chips. 

scoop onto cookie sheet. press down gently with finger. 
[i did this right before i took them out of the over, and it was fine.] 
top with additional chocolate chips, if desired. 
bake until edges are golden brown, 8-9 minutes. 

*the original recipe calls for maple syrup, but my friend used honey instead.
she also crushed up a chocolate bar, but i couldn't find one, so i opted for chocolate chips. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day twenty-two

WEAR // sweater weather. dark nail polish. flannels. cardigans. cozy socks. scarves & boots. layers. hoodies.
EAT  //  breakfast for dinner. pie. all the soup. candy corn. s'mores over the campfire. maple donuts.
SIP  //  chai lattes. pumpkin spice lattes. salted caramel mochas. all the caramel + vanilla lattes.
EXPLORE  //  pumpkin patch. hay rides. sunflower fields. taking photos of fall foliage. crunchy leaves.
WATCH  //  harry potter. the return of fall tv! monster squad. sooner football. scary movies. 
NATURE  //  chilly, foggy mornings. vibrant leaves created by the Creator Himself. sunflowers. acorns.
LOVE  //  october. pumpkins. thanksgiving. fall-scented candles. rainy days + a good book. halloween.  

more fall posts  //  fall to-do list  |  nature explorations  |  DIY fall pumpkins   

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day twenty-one

ice cream has been a constant friend in my life since the heartbreaks of my teens + early twenties.
it understands me, comforts me, and pairs well with my favorite dessert - cake.

an ice cream flavor that represents me is most definitely an affogato.

the ice cream itself would be vanilla bean. that might seem boring, but it kinda reminds me of my shyness toward others when we first meet. it's subtle [yet sweet] until you get to the good stuff.

as for the toppings, that's where you can see my crazy + fun + all the in-betweens.
chunks of cookie dough + mini peanut butter cups + swirls of caramel.
but then, i add delicious espresso on top of it all, because coffee basically runs through my veins.

affogatos are so special to me because it reminds me of when jared and i first started dating. we shared our first affogato at cocoa dolce - a cute, gourmet chocolate shop in wichita. we were surrounded by his friends, chatting about life + all the things, as everyone was getting to know me. such sweet [pun definitely intended] memories.   

a happy list // 011

getting an espresso machine in my office. waking up to a happy puppy jumping all over the bed. 
browsing the library. british accents. sunflowers. falling asleep next to husband. coffee.
my fun coffee + nails hashtag. baking cookies. the coming of fall. handwritten notes. worship music.
mornings light filling the kitchen. cute socks. words. watercolor florals. making happy lists.

Monday, September 19, 2016

monday truths | volume 04

my pastor recently talked about how we are always waiting on a miracle from God, yet we don't actively step out in faith to get there. we treat Him like a vending machine: say a prayer, expect instant results. we might cross our fingers that God sees how much we want this or that, but where's the active faith?

faith looks like many things. sometimes it's waiting; other times, it's moving. in zaccheus' case, it's climbing a tree. he is a wee little man in a crowd of much taller people. [i imagine this to be the equivalent of standing in a crowd of NBA players. homeboys are so flippin' tall!] he could have easily just gave up and walked back home. but zaccheus stepped out in active faith and climbed a tree.

i love the quote above because it reminds me that God shows up in many different ways. we see God's provision in that tree for zaccheus before he even stepped out in faith to see Jesus. i'm reminded that He goes before me to provide a way. i love seeing God in the details. and when i step out in faith, i see His goodness each and every time.


monday truths is a series on WILDBLOOM geared to fill our lives with truth. not fluff. not feel-good nonsense. but hard-hitting, soul-feeding, life-giving truth. each week, i will post a quote, scripture, or word of truth to get you started for the week ahead.

my hope is that you will remember these little tidbits of wisdom throughout your week when lemons or curveballs or whatever random object gets thrown your way because, hey - that's life.

BLOGTEMBER | day nineteen

when true love doesn't wait

this post is the best thing i've ever written. it's not eloquent, but it's full of truth.

my 2014 in polaroids

two years ago, i challenged myself to snap a polaroid each week to document twenty-fourteen. this was the funnest project i've accomplished to date! [i also documented this on instagram.]

all to Jesus i surrender

i still remember this day as though it had just happened. that moment will never leave my memory. Jesus showed up in my bedroom that day. i have never felt Him more strongly than that day. i was totally and + utterly broken, and He met me right in my mess.

twenty-six before twenty-seven

life lessons that i learned in the first twenty-six years of my life. number eighteen makes me laugh/cringe. what a hard life lesson. :)

year in review:  2013  +  2014  +  2015

recapping the year is so fun to write. i get to look back on the year and see how God moved + worked in my life. last year's review post was short and sweet because- well, what a crazy-beautiful year it was!

mentionable series:  happy lists  |   iphoneography  |  weekly musings


Friday, September 16, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day sixteen

taking care of myself is vital for my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. i never fully understood the importance of self-care until this year. i have battled one sickness after another, but Jehovah-Rapha has brought healing + mending to my body and soul. i'm learning to take care of myself day by day instead of neglecting the little things that can help maintain good health- mind, body, and soul.

the best thing i can do for myself - in any + every situation - is prayer. when i take it to God, i can leave it with Him. it took me a long time to realize that. He will take my burdens as His own. prayer changes me. it keeps me in tune with the Spirit + reminds me that the God of the universe walks right next to me every step of the way.

for the last five years, the best activity i can do for my overall health is photography. when i have a camera in my hand, it's more than just snapping photos. i'm physically active, moving and often stretching to get just the right angle of that flower. i'm benefiting mentally because i am feeding my creative side and fueling a passion that runs deep in my bones. i'm so blown away by the beauty of this life that i often talk to the Lord as i'm exploring, which contributes to my spiritual well-being.

something i've learned in the last six months is to leave work at work. when i got promoted at work, i acquired a few big bookkeeping clients. the stress of learning each account coupled with longer hours weighed on me, even outside of the office. jared made a comment one day that radically changed me: you're not at work right now. you're here. be here. work will still be there tomorrow. these days, i don't have as much stress, but when there's a deadline looming on the horizon, i make sure to leave it all at the door at the end of the day.

another stress-reliever + self-care remedy is coffee. sipping a hot latte does good things for my soul.

other acts of self-care include:

cuddle with jared on the couch + talk my heart out.
watch a couple [dozen] episodes of my favorite tv shows.
listen to worship music + blog or write.
give myself a manicure/pedicure.
read a few chapters of a book.
call my mama.
make a happy list.
wear bright lipstick.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day fifteen

the craziest adventure i've ever been on began on january 27, 2015. my best friend had convinced me to try online dating. i hesitantly agreed, not giving it much merit or confidence. there were a few guys who seemed interesting, but nothing panned out. i was sitting at my desk, probably blogging, when i got a notification from the dating app: jared has messaged you! i opened it up to read: 99% match is pretty good. agreed.

we messaged back and forth on the app all day. the next day, he asked if we could text. i agreed. and then he asked to talk on the phone. [you mean, like, talking to each other with real words from my mouth instead of my fingers?! instant panic ensued.] i agreed again.

we talked about everything in our lives for over two hours during out first phone conversation. before we hung up, he put it all out there for me: we should meet up in person. if either of us decides we're not into it, we don't have to see each other after that. again, i agreed.

i could share all the sweet details of the following weeks, but let's fast forward to march 14th. this is the day jared asked me to be his wife. YES. a month and a half after meeting on a dating app, this guy asks me to marry him. i agreed.

the next week was a happy blur of wedding planning + staring my my ring. i went up to wichita the following weekend. jared and i were driving to church when he looked over at me, and said "let's just go to vegas." after that week of wedding prep and searching and craziness, i happily agreed.

on march 27th, 2015 - two months to the day of receiving that message from him on the dating app - jared and i eloped in vegas! it was the best day of my life + the best decision i've ever made.

my crazy adventure hasn't stopped though. this life with him is the best adventure - full of crazy-beautiful moments. there is no one i'd rather have by my side. standing under a star-filled sky, he committed his life to loving + choosing me every single day.

and i agreed.  

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day twelve

i read the HP series for the first time three years ago. there were lots of late nights- just one more chapter, lots of laughs, and a few sobbing sessions. this series is why i love reading. from the first page to the last, i open an adventure in my hands. i go on the journeys with the characters, emotions fully invested with each turn of the page. harry potter reminded me why reading has always been a wonderful part of my life. i have been putting off reading this last book because - just like i did with the deathly hallows - i want to savor every word + detail. i plan to read fantastic beasts and where to find them along with this before the movie comes out in november, too. 

this series... i want to say i loved it, but i found it to just be kosher. book one was good enough to keep my interest for the second book. but then came book two, aka: the bachelorette on paper. you guys. i loathe that tv show with a passion. it had so much potential to be a great series, but america annoyed me so much in book two that i almost didn't want to finish it. but i did. and then i read book three, which was my favorite of the series. i guess because we see more of the chaos/fighting outside of the palace instead of tuning into another episode of the bachelor 2.0.


this book has been on my to-read shelf for months. i stopped by the library after work grabbed this book because every other one on my list was checked out. so far, it's intriguing. it's a dystopian novel, so of course i'm probably going to get sucked in, binge on books two + three, and then have a book series hangover for a day, mourning the fact that it's over + that so-and-so died + crying tears of joy because they lived happily ever after with the character they should have chosen way back in book one. [and then i'll start another book the day after that!] 

BLOGTEMBER | day eleven

of every social media site to keep us all connected, instagram is my favorite. i have been sharing my photos on insta since 2011. [my first photo!] in the last six years, i have met so many wonderful people. seeing the world through their eyes and following their lives inspires me on the daily. here are my favorite 'grammers:

take one look at lindsey's feed, and you'll know why she is one of my favorite instagrammers. 
her photos challenge me to create outside of the box + her words propel me to live deeply intentional. 
she loves Jesus + has great style + is effortlessly cool. 

y'all. this woman. 
the way she loves Jesus + women + community is encouraging and fruitful and pushes me to the feet of Jesus. 
her blog is just as wonderful, too!

this is a blooming social community for lovers of all things floral. 
shamless plug here, friends: this is my other instagram account. 
i started it because i am obsessed with taking photos of flowers. [my instagram is proof!] 
if you love blooms as much as i do, be sure to use #wildbloomdiaries for a chance to be featured.

other favorites:  @darrenisreal  ||  @kaleydignen  ||  @taylortippett  ||  @sydneyliann  ||  @brookecourtney

73 questions

in an effort to catch up on the blogtember challenge, i am taking a page from vogue [not a literal page though. i'm more of an instyle or stylewatch girl.] and sharing a 73 questions of my own. this totally reminds me of myspace surveys!

  1. What are you most excited about these days?  fall + holidays + these last few months of 2016.
  2. Favorite holiday?  Christmas!
  3. Favorite season?   spring for the blooms // fall for the... fall.
  4. Recent hobby?   getting back in to blogging.
  5. If you could be anywhere right now, where would it be?   in the mountains with husband.
  6. If you could have coffee with someone from the past, who would it be?   my grandma gracie.
  7. What’s the last thing you splurged on?  an expresso machine!    
  8. What’s the best way to decompress?   creating. photographing. writing. taking a walk.
  9. What’s the last thing you took a photo of?   flowers, of course.
  10. If you had one superpower, what would it be?   flying.
  11. Who do you miss most?   my family.
  12. Who was the last person to text you?   husband.
  13. Who are three people, alive or dead, that you would have dinner with?   my parents + brother.
  14. Last book you read?   "legend" - marie lu.
  15. Book you plan on reading?   harry potter and the cursed child.
  16. Book you read b/c everyone else in the world was reading it?  the fault in our stars.   
  17. A book from your childhood that positively shaped you?  all of them. reading has taken me on countless journeys. from the time i learned to read to present day, every book i've read has impacted me in a way that i hope to never shake.
  18. Favorite tv show that’s currently on tv?  i absolutely cannot choose one. the blacklist. brooklyn nine-nine. new girl. fuller house. stranger things. 
  19. Favorite ice cream?  chocolate chip cookie dough.
  20. What makes you smile the most?   sweet texts from husband + our puppy, milo.
  21. First pet?   boomer, our family cat.
  22. Worst subject in school?  ugh. science. i was a straight-a student, but science was my nemesis.
  23. Favorite game?  catchphrase + football.
  24. Coolest thing in the world?   taking beautiful photos on a cell phone. all my instas are with my iphone.
  25. Cutest thing in the world?   any and all videos of animals.
  26. Favorite thing in the world?  exploring + adventure.
  27. One skill you wish you had?  not being socially awkward.    
  28. One thing you still have from your childhood?   blankets + books.
  29. What’s your favorite drink?  gimme all the coffee. all day, errday.
  30. Last song you listened to on your phone?   "chains we wore" - warr acres.
  31. Favorite song at the moment?  "ever be" - bethel music. it's SO beautiful. watch the video. 
  32. What song would you probably be caught dancing alone to?  any t-swizzle jam.
  33. If you could work the runway, what song would it be?   "love on top" - beyonce.
  34. Best gift you’ve received in the last 5 years?  husband bought me a membership to botanica.  
  35. Fashion favorites?   i'm all about street style. i love how expressive fashion can be + for me: that doesn't involve showing all my lady bits.
  36. What did you wear to your prom?   an expensive beaded dress my mama told me i'd get married in.
  37. Who was your date to your prom?   my high school boyfriend.
  38. Favorite movie of all time?   transformers.
  39. Favorite movie of the last five years?  the new star wars movie.  
  40. Movie that made you cry?   marlee and me. never again will i watch that movie!
  41. Movie that made you laugh the hardest?   pitch perfect 2.
  42. If you could make a documentary, what would it be about?   photography/creating/art.
  43. Favorite TV show not on air?   one tree hill. gilmore girls. friends. saved by the bell.
  44. If you could make a cameo in any TV show what would it be?  gilmore girls because COFFEE.  
  45. Best piece of clothing?   cardigans. i'm always wearing them; even during the summertime.
  46. Twitter or Instagram?   insta. i do tweet frequently, though.
  47. Who should everyone be following right now?   people who inspire + encourage + share truth.
  48. Favorite food?   mexican.
  49. Favorite dessert?   CAKE.
  50. Favorite color?   purple.
  51. Favorite solo artist?   taylor swift, duh.
  52. If you could sing a duet with anyone, who would it be?   taylor swift!
  53. What would be the title of your autobiography? 
  54. Favorite sound?   when jared is singing in the other room and doesn't know i'm listening.
  55. Least favorite sound?   chewing/smacking. ughhhhhhh.
  56. Favorite animal?  our dogs + penguins.
  57. First celebrity crush?   JTT, duh.
  58. Current favorite beauty product?  nail strips + bright lipstick, always.  
  59. What is your kryptonite?   cake.
  60. Guilty pleasure?   cake.
  61. Most proud moment?   marrying my best friend.
  62. Biggest weakness?   cake.
  63. Skill still unmastered?  playing guitar.  
  64. What is the definition of misery?   living a life apart from the Living God.
  65. Biggest learning experience?   my twenties.
  66. What is your idea of a perfect date?   anywhere with husband. a coffee shop is always involved.
  67. An experience when you felt the most nervous?   flying. it scares me so much.
  68. At what age were you the happiest?   right now, at 30. it's more of a deep joy. happiness is fleeting, but joy? that's more than what's on the surface. it's not dependent on circumstances or people or things. just Jesus. always Jesus.
  69. What’s one vice you wish you could give up?   hitting snooze on my alarm clock.
  70. If you could teach a college course, what would it be called?   iphone photography 101.
  71. Favorite book series?  HARRY POTTER.      
  72. If you were an Olympic athlete, what would your event be?   cake eating competitions.
  73. If you could offer your 13-year-old self one piece of advice, what would it be?  when your parents tell you no - it's for your good. i promise.

Monday, September 12, 2016

COFFEE DATE | volume 03

if we were on a coffee date, i would order a caramel macchiato - those are my jam lately. i would mention that i just bought an espresso machine for work, and i cannot wait to start making lattes every day! i want to organize a little coffee corner in my office like this or this.

if we were on a coffee date, i would tell you about my weekend. our friends are getting married this week [CAKE.], so we had their bachelor/bachelorette parties over the weekend. the guys went down to OKC while us girls stayed in wichita. the weather hindered our original plan to go camping, so instead - we set up the tent in the garage. yes- you read that right. in the garage. and y'all, this weekend was so, so good. i have been praying for good girlfriends since i moved to wichita. God has placed a couple ladies who are filling those friendship voids. He is faithful to provide.

if we were on a coffee date, i would ask you all about dinner. for the first year of our marriage, jared and i just ate frozen dinners. i know how to cook, but it is so easy to pop food in the microwave after a long day. lately i have been actually cooking though. and guys- our grocery bill has been cut in half! AND the meals i am making are healthy and not full of preservatives and other unnecessary junk. i would ask you your favorite go-to meals as well. i'm always up for recommendations.

if we were on a coffee date, i'd mention how far behind i am on the blogtember challenge. oops. i did great for the first week, but a busy schedule [and the fact that season three of the blacklist is on netflix now] is contributing to my delayed writing. but i will get caught up this week! i'm only three posts behind after i publish this one. my goal for this month wasn't to post every single day, but to have 20-30 posts total. [grace - not perfection!]

if we were on a coffee date, i would tell you about my latest obsession: nail strips. i get asked about my nails daily. [see here + here + here] people are so surprised to discover that i buy them from the dollar general! they are great for three reasons: easy application + very little chipping + they're three dollars. if you like pretty nails as much as i do, you must check them out!

linking up with amber + erin for their monthly coffee dates
//   volume 1   |   volume 2   //

Friday, September 9, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day eight

i am in the middle of a deep clean at the moment, so sharing a glimpse of our home wouldn't been interesting or pretty for today's blogtember challenge. [and i also wonder if it's a way to tell thieves: hey, look at what you can steal! probably not. it's a legit thought.] instead, i want to share some weird confessions about myself.


my burps put grown men to shame.

and i'm not exaggerating either. when i was in middle school, i had a severe case of acid reflux. my doctor told me to burp when the urge came, so i was just taking the doctor's advice, y'all! it's not the most ladylike trait, but it's mine nonetheless. i should mention that i definitely don't do this in public. rude. husband is very impressed, often rating my burps on a scale of 1-10.

i don't like pumpkin spice lattes; only PS frappuccinos.

the first PSL i tried was hhhhheeeeaaaavvvvyyy on the pumpkin. i couldn't even finish it. last fall, i was waiting in line for my vanilla latte, and i noticed free samples of pumpkin spice frappuccinos. i decided to try it, but only because those sample cups are too dang cute. and then my life was forever changed. dramatic, but true. now i'm team #PSF - if that's a thing.

i don't buy the first item on store shelves.

jared finds this weird. [and it is.] but i just have this thing with the first item on store shelves. everyone has touched it or opened it or used it- grosses me out. i reach around to grab the one behind it. 

i asked my parents to take my brother back to walmart. 

true story. apparently, i wasn't to keen on the idea of sharing attention. some friends had brought my parents some essentials they picked up on their way to the hospital. i saw the plastic walmart sack laying there, and handed it to my parents. HA! these days, i wouldn't trade him for anything. :)

i curl my hair with socks. 

i get asked about my curls a lot. i use one of two methods: a curling iron or socks. lately, i have been rocking the sock curls. it is SO nice to wake up, unroll my hair, and go. it's is great for everyday curls. i made a video four years ago. [hello, brunette amber!]

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day seven

FLOWERS.  as you can tell by my instagram, flowers are my love language. in the wild or in my home, they bring such a sweet joy to my life. i really love photographing florals, too. just the other day, as jared and i were running errands on a beautiful saturday afternoon, i squealed, "look at those flowers! turn around so i can take a picture!" [he totally did, too.] there is a deeper meaning as well: for years, i would explore my parents' land with a camera in hand and a prayer in my heart. i would talk to God about everything, and flowers were always springing up in tiny, odd places, like little blooms of hope.

MARRIAGE.  as i typed that word, tears filled my eyes. jared is my best friend, lover, helpmate, partner, and bug-killer. the last year and a half has been the best of my life. i'm constantly learning about myself + jared - us as one flesh and as individuals. i am so incredibly thankful for a man who loves God and pushes me toward Christ.

COFFEE.  y'all. my love for coffee runs deep. i am fiercely dedicated to it. (i knew jared and i were meant to be when i discovered he loved coffee just as much as i did.) there is just something about the atmosphere + sipping a latte + having good conversation with friends at a coffee shop.

CREATING.  whether it's photography, blogging, writing, painting, etc. - i believe that expressing myself is an act of wild worship. in turn, i want my art to shout His praises + use my talent for His glory. living a creative lifestyle fuels my passions while pointing others to the ultimate Creator.

JESUS.  if the last five years of my life were a book, redemption would be all over those pages. the Gospel changed my life when i walked the red-carpeted aisle of the church i grew up in and gave my life + heart to Jesus. it isn't a feel-good kind of faith. it's not about religion. it's about Jesus and having a relationship with Him. i love the Lord with all that i am. like kari jobe sings: if i have You, i have everything; but without You, i have nothing.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day six

today's blogtember challenge topic is create a playlist. i look forward to picking up some new music suggestions, but as a blog topic, it's just not my thing. instead - i want to recap this fun birthday / labor day weekend!

we arrived at marion lake on friday night. the weather was perfect + the views were beautiful.
i noticed lots of changing leaves all around us. fall is coming!

 the next day, we took a mini road trip around kansas. first stop: coffee at craft coffee parlor.

we then ventured up to lindsborg, aka: "little sweden". i fell in love with this little town!
so quaint and full of hidden gems. 

how pretty is this building?! and those brick streets - all the heart eyes. 

 there was a museum that we visited with antiques and the dreamiest creaky, old hardwood floors.

more from the museum. 

"little sweden" 

next stop: coronado heights

vacay pose! 

this view was pretty (for kansas, at least!) 

i'm on top of the wooorrr-.... picnic table!  

our final stop was kanopolis state park to do some hiking, which turned into a long, sweaty [but fun] adventure.

Monday, September 5, 2016

BLOGTEMBER | day five

my most memorable birthday would definitely be my twenty-ninth. it was my first birthday as a wifey, which was the biggest answered prayer. jared planned a weekend in the mountains for me since i had never been! it was so, so FUN. we stayed in colorado springs with his sister and her family.

a close second memorable birthday was my thirtieth, which i celebrated last week! i felt so much love from my family and friends. it was such a sweet day for a milestone birthday.


we hiked seven falls 
where i almost keeled over because i had a severe cold. elevation is no joke, y'all!
my brother-in-law found me a hiking stick, which made me feel cool.

we took the cog up pikes peak
there has never been a view more breath-taking. 

we visited garden of the gods
we climbed the rocks + it was one of my favorite parts of the trip!

we camped at wilson lake
the stunning limestone rock formations + a sky filled with beautiful stars = stunning. 



even though twenty-nine + thirty were both memorable, i have to throw it back to 1991. 
who knew getting panties on my fifth birthday would be so fun?!