Friday, November 21, 2014

5 on Friday



It's already Friday! Woo hoo! I had a short week this week as I was in Florida last weekend and returned to SC on Monday, and then took Tuesday off to recoup from the vacation. Yep, I needed a day of vacation after vacation. #firstworldproblems

Anyways, thought I would linky up with A. Liz Adventures for 5 on Friday to share some of my latest favorites!

ONE
I went shopping at the outlets while in Florida and bought my first J. Crew item. Well first 2 actually. I know, I know, slow to jump on the J. Crew bandwagon, but it's not normally in my price range. I think I lucked up though with some decent finds! I got the pleated mini skirt which I had been eying for a while now. I got a great kacki color and a grey wool blend color. I love them both! I decided to get neutral colors to go with different tops and sweaters! I love the weight and the elastic waist! Perfect for work or play!
J.Crew Factory - Factory pleated mini
TWO
I loved loved loved Florida!! Last Sunday we visited St. Augustine for the day! It was so beautiful, sunny and 75 degrees! My favorite part was visiting the Ponce De Leon hotel which is actually part of Flagler College now. It was beautiful. St. Augustine was Charleston with Spanish flare.
In front of the Fort
In the courtyard of Ponce De Leon
THREE
Concealer. I am loving concealer all of a sudden. Again, not sure which rock I've been under, but it has quickly become my best friend. #nomoreundereyebags #easyhighlighter I am currently using Mary Kay concealer in Ivory 2. $12 #steal

FOUR
Puffy Vests! I just can't get enough! I love them! They are perfect for days where it is a bit chilly but you don't feel like being bundled up in a sweater or coat. I like my arms to be free! Also great to wear when shopping so that you don't have to hold on to a bulky coat and it's easy to get in and out of when trying on clothes. A few weeks ago I ordered the knock off J. Crew herringbone vest from groopdealz. I've been on this site for a while now and every now and again they run a really great deal on cute stuff. I HAD to have the vest and for $35 including shipping it was worth it! Now it just needs to hurry up and get here!

Love that all of these diff patterns go together

FIVE
A month or so ago, there was an estate sale in my parents neighborhood. I'd never been to one before, but decided to go with my mom. I didn't expect to find/buy anything, but instead I think I spent $45 before the weekend was over. Anyways, my favorite buy was an antique champagne bucket. It of course hasn't been touched with a polishing cloth since probably 1965, but I'm working on that. I have found so much inspiration on Pinterest of what I can do with it. I have put a few here! Eek! I can't wait to get it shined up and use it with Christmas decor!
 15 Vintage-Inspired Handmade Christmas Gift Ideas : Decorating : Home & Garden TelevisionMirror with boxwood wreath and paper whites in silver urn from atthepicketfence.comJulie at Creating This Life blog uses a silver champagne bucket purchased at an estate sale to hold kitchen utensils.  IMG_5969
Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend....

Friday, October 31, 2014

Halloween 2014

I guess since I haven't blogged in a while, I'll take the opportunity to do so today and show off our Halloween costumes!

This is the 3rd Halloween that Will and I have been together for, but we've never dressed up! That in and of itself is horrific! I LOVE Halloween and have ever since I was a kid! There is just something about actually being able to dress as someone else for a day, oh and candy of course! The past couple of years we haven't dressed up because the Halloween party that my college friends throw is always the Saturday before Halloween which has conflicted with Will's birthday or a home football game, so we weren't able to go and therefore no real need for a costume. Well this year was different, Will could have cared-less about turning 32 (we did celebrate the day of) and there was an away game so off we headed to Rock Hill for the 8th annual Halloween party at my best friend's house!

Back up for a second. When we realized we could go we started to brain storm costume ideas. Will has a nickname at work, "TBird," which is play-on word to his last name. So I said why don't we be Danny and Sandy from Grease and have "TBirds" on the back of your jacket. He happily obliged. I stopped off at the fabric store on my way home from work on September 30th and bought 2 yards of hot pink felt and some wide elastic. Got home, all excited to sew it and realized my stupid machine was broken. Borrowed a machine in the next couple of days and sewed that sucker together! I had a friend put the poodle on and Voila! I had a poodle skirt! Will is more proud of the skirt than I am. He keeps telling everyone I made it. Makes me feel special! :)

Here are a few pictures from the party!
#wegotogether

college girlfriends!
Since we were already equipped with costumes, we decided to participate in our church's trunk or treat event! We had a blast putting everything together. Next year we might make a juke box! Here are a few pictures from Wednesday night!


















Will's jacket came from Party City and then he made a Vinyl sticker with the logo and put it on! Him and two of his friends have a sticker business so that made it easy! It turned out great! His "Chuck Taylors" were a Walmart find! I purchased my shoes from Payless.com, I HAD to have them! I will admit Pinterest played a major role in my costume! I made the skirt from this tutorial, and the collar was made from this pattern. I bought the records at an estate sale and I purchased the jukebox door decoration from ebay. The table cloths and balloons were from the good ole Dollar Tree. We got so many compliments from the parents at trunk or treat, but of course the little kids didn't quite get it! This was a great event that brought tons of people from our community to our church and was a great outreach! We will definitely participate next year, with the same theme! I think we're going to use these costumes for several more years to come! :) Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

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Friday, August 15, 2014

Finding the New Normal

I realize it's been a hot minute since I posted. But lately there have been a few changes and I felt it important to sit down, reflect and write.

If you know me at all you know I'm not a fan of change. However, you can't continue through life without change. In my life I've gone through several changes that made such an impact on who I am. Those would include moving when I was 9 to a new town and school, graduating high school and moving to college, and in that same time frame my parents selling the house I grew up in and moving to a new house. I also remember graduating college, moving home, then moving into my own home. In fact, I just "celebrated" living in my house for 5 years this past July. I was thinking about it, I've lived in my current house longer than I've lived anywhere in the past 10 years. #crazy

Other changes that have made an impact are career changes. Normally, I'm the one that leaves and that creates the change for myself. However, now the shoe is on the other foot. Since May, four people that I was close to at work have moved on to other jobs. Totally by their choice, which is great for them! But crumby for me! It made me think that everyday you come to work and you think "oh it'll just be a normal day," and then one day you realize that it's not the same anymore. You won't take a 15minute break to walk to someone's office to have a conversation and laugh about pointless things, because that person has moved to California. Or you won't sit in your managers office and discuss work items only to have the conversation divert to clothes or men. So you have to find a "new normal." Finding that new normal is difficult. I've only been in my current position for about a year and 1/2, and so the people that have left are people that have been here before me, therefore I've never known it to be "different." Well now it's different.

I'm excited to see who is hired to replace my manager, although I don't think you ever replace her. She was truly a mentor to me. I had finally met someone in my professional life that not only cared about my success but also cared about me as a person and friend. I was able to take on a few of her responsibilities which I have come to love and I hope I get to keep them even when the position is filled. So, change has actually brought on a learning opportunity. #winwin

Another change that always seems imminent is relationship changes. I have two close girlfriends I still keep in touch with from high school. Both are married, however, one has 2 children now and lives across the country. The friendship dynamic is completely different. Normally, I would say that we are able to pick up right where we left off the last time we were together. But this most recent visit she had here, I can't say that. It doesn't feel like we are strangers, it just doesn't feel like we have anything in common. Again, not a good change, but a necessary evil of the evolution of time.

I guess my point is that I understand and accept that change is important, however, I never said I had to like it. Some changes are good and bring new opportunities, experiences and relationships. These changes have effected me indirectly and I'm having to find my "new normal." I can only pray that when a change impacts me personally that God creates in me feeling of security and reassurance that all change is part of his plan and he will reveal his true purpose in due time.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Soap Box// Contemporary Worship

{Disclaimer: I know normally I don't discuss to many hot topics on my blog, I really do try to keep it light and happy. After all nobody likes a "Debbie-Downer." I also never talk about money, politics or religion. Today, I'm breaking that rule. Sadly, I don't use my blog as a format to share my faith, but I'm also not someone who feels the need to overwhelm others who might not believe the same things I do, with my Christian perspective. However, this post is likely to include a few bible verses and my opinion on modern worship, I totally understand if you don't agree and I'm not here to offend.} 

Over the last few months my mostly traditional southern baptist church has been in transition mode, to a more modern, contemporary style of worship. This has occurred for many reasons including logistics, size of the church, members of the church, leadership, and overall the direction that worship is going in this day and age. I understand that every generation probably endured some type of change in worship style within their lifetime in church. I would be naive to think that worship should be the same it was in the early 1900s. I'm sure the first church to have an orchestra accompany their choir got a few push backs from the elders in the church. I can hear those church ladies now sitting in those hot sticky pews, fanning themselves with the bulletin with their big hats saying, "remember when we just had a few choir members and the organ?"

Well, now I'm that little old lady sans hat. Except I'm not old. I'm in the demographic (between age 10 and age 50) that SHOULD like contemporary worship. The upbeat songs with lyrics projected on the screen, the keyboard, the 4 necessary guitar players, the variety of vocalists and let's not forget the drummer. However, I just can't stand it. Honestly, I've never been a fan of singing the same song that has 7 verses, 11 times. (We call the 7Elevens) And that is an exaggeration of sorts, but, sometimes the songs seem to go on forever. In fact our "new service" has been extended by 15 minutes, just so we can get all the verses in.

I'm really trying not to be critical, because I know this is how a lot of people worship. However, I am distracted by so much during the service, like, how the worship leaders recite scripture during a song, or how they raise their hands to the ceiling, and how informally dressed they are. None of that actually matters when it comes to worshiping Christ. You can worship Christ whenever, wherever you are, but it should be reverent no matter what. I feel that a lot of the actions are done because the worship leaders want everyone to think they are so worshipful and it just has a feeling of "look at me, look at me." While I could totally be wrong, it makes me uncomfortable and embarrassed for them. There are churches (in our area) where this is solely the only style of worship they participate in. I guess it's hard for me to understand why a traditional church with a steeple is trying to compete with the hard-ware store converted to a church. There needs to be a balance. I had chosen not to participate in contemporary style worship, which is why I was still attending my traditional style church. Now, I have no option.

Finally, I grew up where we sang "contemporary songs," not hymns, at summer church camp or during discipleship weekends, or on church trips. They were part of the experience and helped to create the spiritual high that we all got while on the trip so that when we got home our experiences would be reflected and we could reach others for Christ. Those songs served a purpose there, then every Sunday we would sing reverent hymns that our grand-mamas had sang to us since we were babies. Now that those contemporary songs are the norm, and the praise band is the norm, and the choir and orchestra are in the backdrop and the piano and organ are on the sidelines, the hymns are barely existent in their traditional form. It all feels like such a production. Sometimes less is more. I will miss the days of picking up the hymn book and singing one of the greats. Hymns can transform you mentally and spiritually to a place that I can't seem to get to through modern songs.

I know the devil is attempting to have a foothold on my heart during this transition. All my concerns, my reservations, my distractions, my negative opinions and attitude are all from him. I know that the Lord doesn't care how we worship Him as long as we do. Change is hard for me in regards to anything, and this is no different. I am continuing to pray about the situation and that everything will work out for His glory.

All the nations you have made shall come and worship before you, O Lord, and shall glorify your name. For you are great and do wondrous things; you alone are God. 
Psalm 86:9-10

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

5 People in My City

Hello lovelies... it's been a few weeks, er months. I apologize. Clearly not sticking to my resolution of blogging on the reg. Ooops! I have stuck to the one about cleaning out/decluttering my house! So there's that! :)

Anyways, I follow Ashley over at Love and Wrinkles and she posted this cute little post about 5 types of people you would meet in her town in South Dakota. I've never even known someone in South Dakota, but because of her post I feel like I've been there. So it got me thinking about Columbia and thought I would do the same!



 The College Student

I'm lucky enough to live in a city where there is a major university. Though I did not attend the University of South Carolina, it gives the city the feel of a college town. On any given day you can find students around town or on the Horseshoe in their leggings worn as pants, or in running shorts with Ugg boots, complete with messy buns on the top of their heads. The university also provides the city with collegiate sports entertainment. Fall is for football and spring is for baseball.  

There is also a section of town where mostly college students hang out called 5 Points. It's an eclectic part of town with neat shops, small pubs and restaurants and a street named after Darius Rucker, lead singer of Hootie and the Blowfish, who got their start right in the heart of the district.

The Young Professional
 

There are quite a few large companies and industries in the area and since it is a college town, many of the students stay in the area for employment. However, they move their social lives a couple miles away to an area of town called, The Vista. Young professionals as well as professionals in general migrate to this area of town during happy hour as well as on the weekends for fine dining and entertainment. It's a great place to meet up with friends after an event at our arena!
 
 Politicians

Columbia is the Capital City, and the state house is located smack in the middle of downtown. When legislature is in session it is not uncommon to see members of the house and senate around town. Not to mention the protesters, rally's, etc. that go on on the state house grounds. If you recall SC is kinda famous for it's politicians, ie. Strom Thurmond and Joe Wilson.

The Socialites
You can find this group socializing downtown in Vista, but you will find them shopping on Devine Street. A trendy boutique district. If you want high-end specialty shops, this is the place to be and be seen in your Lilly Pulitzer, or seersucker. They are all locally owned businesses so while the prices are a bit higher, there is something about saying, "Oh I got this at 'Just the Thing' on Devine Street."

Lake Lovers


Just outside of the city is the "jewel of SC," Lake Murray. She is beautiful. I have the pleasure of seeing her everyday on my commute to and from work. I am lucky enough to have grown up on her shores and enjoyed many a summer evening on my parents boat. The lake actually spans several counties. On a beautiful day you can find many people walking on the dam, and in the late summer you can watch the Purple Martins swarm over Bomb Island.



 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

New Years Resolutions...

...can start anytime right?? Who says they have to start on Jan. 1? Oh wait. Nevermind. Well Jan. 1 was on a Wednesday, logically you can't start something new in the middle of the week! So you start on Monday, Jan. 6, unless you wake up with a migraine from hell and it's freezing cold. So then you start on Tuesday, oh wait, nope you can't because it never gets above 30 degrees all day, your pipes freeze so you have no hot water for half the day, and your office has no power for the majority of the day. So that brings you back to Wednesday and again you can't start something new in the middle of the week, SO I'll start new years resolutions on Monday, Jan. 13th... although it's the 13th. Not a very lucky number! ;)

Oh who am I kidding, other than myself! I guess I'll start them this weekend and gradually ease into them full force. I was planning on posting about my resolutions earlier this month or even before Dec. 31, but that didn't happen because I LOST the piece of paper I wrote them on! Fantastic. So from what I can remember these are my 2014 most likely to not achieve resolutions/goals.

  • Lose weight. Well duh. This is an annual goal. I even tried the Whole30 diet in November to kick start my resolution. Eh.. not so much. I did learn a lot during that 30 days, but I think I will go with a diet that is a little less extreme. I mean, cheese isn't all bad for you. Lean proteins, veggies, fruits, minimal amounts of dairy and no sugar sounds good to me. My 10 year high school reunion is in August, so I have a motivator. I CAN. NOT. go the way I am right now... so I best be hitting the gym come Monday!
  • Keep a cleaner house. Once upon a time I thought of myself as an organized person, now not so much. Somewhere along the way laziness began to creep in. I let mail pile up on the counter, I let laundry linger for days in baskets, my closet is in a constant state of explosion, and there is normally clutter from the front door to the back. I could NEVER have friends just stop by without shoving things here, there and yonder. Well, in 2014 I resolve to throw stuff away, clean junk out, donate, and overall have a "clean sweep" and keep a constant smell of PineSol. I have too much stuff and I don't even use it all. I am taking on a minimalist mind. Less is More. #purge
  • Dive into Devotion. In previous years I haven't been one to do much of a daily bible study. I know I deserve a slap on the wrist for that, but I felt like I was "getting enough" from worship and Sunday School. WRONG. I was given "Calling Jesus" last year around my birthday/graduation and I didn't want to start it in the middle of the year. (I'm a classic procrastinator.) So I am going to read that daily as well as a devotion book that is distributed monthly in our Sunday School class. Also, we are getting more involved in our Sunday school class and look forward to opportunities for us to be involved in that Christian community.
  • Be more organized. At home and at work. I need to be more diligent with keeping up with bills/finances and important adult (tax) information. For example in 2013 I let my car insurance lapse because I'm an idiot. That won't happen again because I have insurance drafted now, but I can not afford another costly blunder such as that. At work I need to do a better job of organizing electronic files, emails and anything I do with our accounting department. Make copies, copies, copies!
  • Read. Traditionally I am not a reader. In 2013 I read a lot for graduate school, but had NO time for pleasure reading. This year I want to read a book a month, but that is setting a really high goal, so I'm going to go with 6 books for the year. 3 of which can be chick-lit, but 3 must be non-fiction/self-help/or on a subject of which I am interested. I need to relocate my library card.
  • Cook. This kind of goes along with the first one, to lose weight, but I have GOT to stop eating out so much and just grabbing something quick after work. For Christmas I got an electric fry pan, two new cooking pans, an electric veggie chopper and a potato masher. Now I just need to get to cooking some veggies and meat! Less eating out, more eating in. We even have a grill, so really beyond laziness I have no excuse. 
  • Blog more. Let's face it sometimes I'm not a regular around these parts. I really want to be a better blogger, ie. figure out some HTML stuff/improve my writing abilities. I really would like to acquire a few more readers. But I promise to make more appearances on here.
  •  Professional goal: I am presenting a webinar in March with my manager on "Employability Skills." I want to also write an article on that topic for our magazine and possibly present an ed session on it at a regional conference in the fall. Lofty goal, but on a topic that is becoming more relevant as more millennials enter the work force.
I'm sure there are more items I could add to this list.. and maybe I will once I find that stupid piece of paper I originally wrote them on. At least blogging the list will hold me accountable, or at least it should! Stay lovely...