Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Going West

I have some very exciting news...Sev and I are moving west! In a few weeks we will officially be residents of the great state Colorado...the land of whiskey, women and gold. After three wonderful years in Atlanta working in sales for Showtime Networks, I have decided to go back to school to pursue my passion of photography and will attend the Art Institute in Denver. I have always loved the Rockies and am so excited to be living in a city with so much to offer; from the amazing restaurants and nightlife to all of the outdoor activities I've been missing since moving to Atlanta. Starting over like this is a big, scary risk, but after everything me and my family have endured these past few years, the one thing I've learned is to do what makes you happy and have no regrets.

Sev and I will be living downtown with my younger brother (who is probably one of the greatest people in the world) and I'll also be a drivable distance to my parents in Nebraska which I couldn't be happier about. While we don't leave for another few weeks, I am so excited to start this new chapter in our lives. Stay tuned for updates and, hopefully, better photography on this little blog.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A Diamond in the Rough

After being together for 3 years, people are always asking me and Sev when we are going to get married, but we both still feel so young and are not quite ready for that step in our lives. It will happen someday, but that someday is not today. Or tomorrow. Or probably even a year down the road. Plus the thought of planning a wedding makes my head spin. Definitely not ready for that.

That being said, I do love jewelry and would never say no to a lovely sparking thing on my hand or ear. I find myself drawn toward the rugged, but delicate look of handmade jewelry, especially any item involving diamonds. Below is an amazing rough cut diamond piece that I love, as well as a few lesser-priced gemstone pieces that give you the same look at a fraction of the cost. Anthropologie and Sundance are great sources for this type of jewelry, and there are always endless finds on Etsy.

The Inspiration
Ring by Melissa Joy Manning $565

The Look For Less

Sundance Diamond Earrings $338
Quarts Earrings $28
Solitaire Ring $43
Anthropologie Ring $48

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

I love you because...

Today is Sev and I's 3 year anniversary. I cannot believe we have been together that long! I guess that's a good thing, right?! Although I often mention him in this blog, I promise this is the only day of the year I will get all sappy and mushy and annoyingly lovey-dovey on you.

Meeting and falling in love with Sev was (and still is) the best thing that has ever happened to me. I had just to Atlanta and barely knew anyone when we met, but he gladly took me under his wing, introduced me to his friends and showed me the city the way only a local could. I'm a plane ride and a long drive from my parents and brothers, but I couldn't be happier with our life and the little family we've created here in Atlanta, (that includes our child, a 3ft tall Cookie Monster stuffed animal we bought for $5 at a garage sale, and our adopted dog, Mika.)

People say that everything happens for a reason, and I know that the reason I moved to Atlanta was to find him. He doesn't just make me happy, he makes my whole world better and more complete. Before I met him, I never believed in true love or soulmates, but after the first night we met (at a bar. So romantic, I know) I was smitten and we've pretty much been inseparable ever since.

 Go Karts!
Kayaking with Dolphins

About 2 years ago, I started the tradition of sending him emails and leaving him notes in his car or bag while I was away on business trips.
I Love You Because...
...you always put me in a good mood, even on my crappiest of crappy days.
...you are so creative and smart. The work you produce continually amazes me.
...you are a true Southern gentleman; always opening doors and carrying my bags, and walking in front of me down stairs should I happen to take a tumble. (Lord knows I am absolutely capable of that.)
...you take the trash out. And the recyclables. And you water the plants and empty the dishwasher, and do laundry, and make the bed and I never have to ask.
...you love your family. And mine for that matter, which is probably a bigger feat.
...you have such a positive outlook, always seeing the good in people and the silver lining in any bad situation.
...you are my #1 fan, and always support me.
...you pick me up from the airport...often with flowers, even if I've only been gone for a day
...you have sick Frisbee skills, and lacrosse skills, and skiing skills, and golf skills, and skills in just about every other physical activity.
...you edit my photos for me :)
...you have an amazing sense of adventure that often takes us  all over the world.
...you can make a mean omelet.
...you rub my feet for me after a long day.
...you watch movies and TV shows that I want to watch and don't complain (very much)
...your hair (it often looks better than mine).
...you value the same things in life as me.
...you will have dance parties with just me in our living room.
...of your sense of humor.
... you love your nieces more than anything in the world and that is pretty much the cutest thing ever.

I love you for a million other reasons that I couldn't possibly list in a silly blog post.

Sadly, we will be apart on our anniversary because I am traveling for work. Not sure what we will do  to celebrate when I get back, but I don't think it really matters. Our best and most memorable dates are usually spent over a pitcher of beer and bar grub at the nearby Taco Mac, or polishing off a bottle of wine on our porch. Whatever we do, I'm sure it will entail lots of smiling, reminiscing, and time spent just the two of us.

Happy Anniversary...to us!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Thanks Mom.

I have the most amazing mom. I think most people think this about their own mother, which is great, but seriously, if there were a contest for this sort of thing, I'm pretty sure I would win. My mom is the most sincere and kind soul you could ever meet and she has a way of touching people's lives when they meet her. She is the most beautiful person I have ever met, inside and out. She is incredibly smart with a wonderful sense of humor, often displayed in the numerous inside jokes we share. She is sweet and polite and respectful. She makes a mean pie, as explained here, and always managed to keep a clean house (and by clean, I mean you could eat of the bathroom floor) and a weed-free garden while raising four hellions kids. She has always been my best friend and my biggest supporter (even when I wanted to move thousands of miles away. Sorry! I'm moving west soon enough!) She is a million and a half other things, but I don't want to bore you with a 13 page list describing her awesomeness.

 The whole family last Christmas
Sev and my mom in Denver

Mom and Dad
My mom challenged all of us kids to live in a way that shows compassion for others. If we are even a fraction as good of a person as she is, I'd say she did a wonderful job. Now that all of us have grown up and moved out, my mom has taken her skills to a new role as the Director of the Youth Unit in a Mental Health hospital. To the hundreds of children and adolescents that come to her hospital each year, many scarred by abuse or trauma, she is a mother, and a nurse, and a therapist, and an advocate, and I can't think of a better person for that job. I am always amazed at how kids are so at ease and comfortable with her, and while I've never actually seen her in action on the job, I have no doubt she is amazing (as shown by the numerous awards she has won...sorry Mom, I had to brag for you.)
Before an event during college

So mom, I'm sure I've probably said thanks for being so great a thousand times before, but I really mean it this time. Thank you for all you do. Thank you for teaching me kindness and compassion. And for making me laugh and cry. And for making me laugh so hard I cry. Thanks for teaching me to cook, and clean, and write a proper thank you note. Thanks for passing down your sense of style (but I am NOT thanking you for passing down your addiction expensive shoes and handbags.) Thanks for giving me a strong work ethic and for never letting me settle for less than I deserve. Thanks for always giving great advice (from both the therapist and the mom perspective). Thanks for teaching me that men who drive monster trucks around town have little you-know-whats. Thanks for coming to my soccer games, and cross country meets, and swim meets, and play performances, and for hauling me to all the practices in between. Thanks for introducing me to Joni Mitchell and John Irving and Robert Redford. Thanks for tucking me in at night and for going back down to the kitchen to get me a glass of water when I was thirsty. Thanks for sharing your love of good books with me. Thanks for your pancakes. Thanks for my brothers, who really suck sometimes, but are pretty amazing the majority of the time. Thanks for marrying dad. He's pretty cool too. Thanks for taking care of me when I was sick or heartbroken, or lonely. Thanks for giving me the courage to follow my dreams. Mostly, thanks for being you.

I'm so glad I get to spend Mother's Day with you!

Alright readers, now go tell your own mum thanks for everything she has done for you.