Ok friends, I know I've been a little MIA.
BUT I've been working super hard on getting a few things up and running.....all while trying to bill 1400 clients at an accounting firm!
Needless to say, I've been a teeny tiny bit busy. ;)

BUT, BUT, BUT....I have won the battle.
I officially have a new photo blog. This has been a VERY long time coming.
So, um yeah, you should check it out. And yes it currently only has one post. I know.
I plan to post a lot more frequently on it, including tutorials, helpful tips, guest posts, and of course pictures and give aways! I'm so pumped!

The next HUGE thing I've been working on is my nonprofit. A while back I posted a rather cryptic post about starting this. Now it's officially incorporated.
Woo hoo!!!!
I cannot even describe how full my heart is. Sunday I have my first client.
The organization is called I See Love. We offer free photo services and products to families struggling with children suffering from critical and terminal illness.
I spent months trying to come up with a name. And I do mean months of thinking nonstop about it. Everything we came up with, I hated.
However, every time I would think about it, this song popped in my head, I See Love, by Mac Powell and Steven Curtis Chapman. Really just the chorus, that has these words:

But I see love (I see love)
I see love (I see love)
Light of heaven breaking through
Well I see grace (I see grace)
I see God's face (I See Gods face)
Shining pure and perfect love
When I see you
I see love

I mean honestly, when you think about it, most children that suffer from diseases have a special spirit about them and this chorus sums it up. When I told Chris how the song kept popping in my head, he said "well why don't you just call it that?"
Never thought of it.
And so a name was born!

The site for it is up and running too. We're still making a few tweaks here and there on the appearance, but at least it's up. Give it a visit: www.iseelove.org
We'll be sharing the stories of all the children we work with, there.

Seriously, my cup runneth over.


Bout to Xplode!

Hey ya'll! I've been a little absent lately.
So sorry.
Been extremely crazy busy!
And I have SO much to tell you!
So the plan this weekend is to get caught up.
Please don't give up on me!!! I haven't disappeared!
Have a fabulous weekend!


Made to Crave. Made for so much more.

Happiest of Tuesdays to ya!

A few posts back I told you about this book I was going to read: Made to Crave.
Umm.....can I just tell you how its rocking my world?
Like seriously.

I've been saying for a few years now that this weight issue I have is so much more than just about a diet.
The author of this book gets that!

I'm really trying to make this a spiritual journey. It's something that's really important for me.
But most of the time I make all these goals and try to do it all alone.

Not this time. I've enlisted a few people to hold me accountable. To really make sure I'm following the plan. I'm also going to get a few people to commit to praying for me on this.
This weight crap is stuff I've struggled with my ENTIRE life. But I've never asked anyone to actually pray for this area of my life. It's kind of refreshing.

I'm telling you, if you struggle with weight, you NEED to read this book. It's seriously like it was written just for me.

One of the things I'm taking from it is to pray every time I have a craving. Use it as a prompt to pray...even if it's about food.

See, the thoughts of food consume my entire day. Not necessarily wanting to eat it, but thinking about dinner, healthy choices, my weight, etc, etc, etc. No one person should be this consumed by it.

I want to be that consumed with God. Not food.
Because you see, I was created for so much more than this. So were you.
I don't want to define my worth by the numbers on the scale anymore.
My weight does not define me.
But in my head, it does. And I'm really trying to work on that.

This topic is really putting myself out there. But I know there are so many of us that struggle with it, and my hope is that in helping myself, I'll be able to help you too.

But seriously, did I mention you need to read this book?


me monday - love edition

happy valentines day!
personally, i think it's a bit of an overrated holiday.
but in the spirit of it, today's me monday is all about love.

i want to know what the top 10 things you love about your significant other are OR the top 10 things you look for in your future significant other. play along!

well this is my man.
meet chris.

he has my heart. cheese fest i know, but it's true.

there's tons that i love about him, but here are my top 10:

1. he seriously loves me unconditionally. i'm not easy to live with and he manages to survive.

2. he can't stand a fight. we must always, always resolve our issues before going to bed.

3. he makes me laugh uncontrollably. for realz. even when i'm mad and don't want to laugh, i laugh.

4. he loves to travel.

5. and oh how he loves him some jesus.

6. he knows how to respect a woman.

7. he's my very best friend.

8. he encourages my every dream. he believes in me.

9. he's understanding and likes to listen to what i have to say (most of the time)

10. and most of all i love that he's mine.


Friday Happenings

Happy Friday to my fabulous bloggin' peeps!

I hope you have some awesome things planned for your weekend!!!

You definitely need to chek out Kelly's Korner blog (she's on my blogroll on the sidebar) because today's she's linking everyone up with beauty secrets! Woot woot.

In other news, my hubby is on the good list right now. For realz. He got me the most awesome necklace from The Vintage Pearl. You need to check out their website. I absolutely love everthing there! This necklace originally said "Shutterbug", but Chris added a personal touch for me with "I See Love". You see, that sounds special in itself right? What you don't know is that "I See Love" is the name of the nonprofit I'm starting and this necklace has melted my heart like no other. It seriously is the best gift I've ever received. For realz.

I love everything about it.

And stay tuned......more info on the nonprofit is coming very, very, very soon!

I'm SO excited!!!

Please don't forget about Me Monday coming up! Monday's theme is the top 10 things you love about your significant other or look for in your future significant other. I hope you play along!

Enjoy your weekend!


circle of life.

how many of you now have the "circle of life" song from Lion King in your head now?
if you didn't before, bet you do now!

ok, so in my post yesterday i mentioned how life has come full circle for us.
it's funny, because about this time last year i wrote a post dedicated to circles.
i'm sensing a theme.

anyway, with the new job that chris has taken, it has brought us back to the same people and area as our first year of marriage.
this has been a god ordained plan in the making for 6 years.

allow me to explain. and please, try to keep up.

above, in the picture, is the brief version.
when chris and i got married we moved way out to R-town. now this was about an hour from our families, but we moved there to work at a church. that didn't go so well, so when we left that church, we started attending another random church during our healing process. through that we met some pretty cool people. chris and carson, one of the guys, started a band....now that's a whole other story in itself! anyway, the band thing didn't work out, but through carson, chris met brian. as we moved on in life, chris and brian stayed in touch. they had talked about the possibility of working together for years. well, just in the last few months, the opportunity presented itself and chris and brian are now working at the same church. however, this church brings us back to the same area of town where we started.

isn't that amazing?

i think it's something special. i mean seriously, what are the chances?

i truly feel, and hope with all that's in me, that this is where we'll stay and settle. i love the new church. i love how god brought us there. i love how god never ceases to amaze me and how intricately he has woven our lives.

it's a good thing.



there's so much on my mind today.
so much i feel i want to share, but to do it all at once would create a post of unacceptable length.
i think i'll break it up over a few posts.

i'm feeling a little overwhelmed by life at the moment.
see, god has given me some pretty awesome dreams for my life.
and i want them all right now.
and honestly, i feel like now is the time to start.
however, i get so overly anxious about the details, requirements, stress, etc that i give up before i even start.
these are things i've been noticing in myself for a while.
i over think and get stressed about the possibility of getting stressed.
what's worse is having someone call me out on it.
luckily it was just my hubs. but he hit the nail on the head.
"you've given up before you've even tried."
never fear......i am making an appointment with a life coach.
i just need a little help and encouragement.
my extreme need for someone to spiritually invest in me has led me on a self-help book binge.
i know i'm not going to get everything i need out of a book.
i just need to start somewhere.
maybe open my eyes to a few things.

maybe i'm too scared of failing.

that's a scary word and no one freely accepts it.

but it finally feels like chris and i are taking a good turn in life.
he has a new job at a new church that we've been praying about for months.
i know that will change my outlook on a lot of things.
mainly because in the past year i've been to church only a handful of times.
i just didn't fit with the last one.
but this one i do.
and i'm so excited!
i need this in the worst way.

you wouldn't even believe how god has brought us full circle. i'll have to save that for another day - it's a post in itself.

i'm just ready for a big change.
like a really big change.


Me Monday - Favorite Things To Eat

ok, so this week's topic is all about some grub!
which i know is totally ironic given all my posts about weight issues.
diet or no diet, i love a good meal.

here's a list of my faves:
  • cheese and jalopeno nachos from la parilla. mmm, mmm, mmm. and i love to dump a big bowl of salsa right on top too. call me crazy, but i love the texture the cheese gets with the acidity of the salsa breaks it down.
  • buffalo chicken sandwich - pretty much if it's on the menu, this is what i'm guaranteed to get. throw some blue cheese on there and i'm even better.
  • chick-fil-A - anywhere, anytime. enough said.
  • french fries in wing sauce. oh yes.
  • french onion soup from longhorn's - but i then pick out the onions. still yummy.
  • taco casserole from my own kitchen. oh how i love it.
  • i love our homemade fajitas. TASTY!
  • a new fave is the spinach and pasta vinaigerette from my own kitchen as well.

i am now officially starving for all of the above! haha. and from the looks of my first few items, it is truly no wonder i have a weight problem!

what are your favorite things to eat? go ahead and post on your blog about it.....and let me know so i can come visit!



i'm reading this life coaching book....how to achieve your dreams through god.
the chapter i read today is about exhaling.
it really spoke to me.
see, for a while there, i was sort of numb....just waiting for the next catastrophe to hit.
i was breathing shallow in a sense, as a sort of security blanket.
i feel that i have improved greatly.
but i still need SO much work.
so much.
but there was one quote that really hit me today.
the greek translation for holy spirit is breath.
god is the breath of life.
and that makes me want to breathe deeply.


Read Much?

for whatever reason, i've been on a book kick.
i keep buying them.
my goal this week is to actually sit down and read some of them.
Women, Food and God. This book is supposed to help me figure out the deeper issues of my eating habits/weight loss journey. We shall see...

As i've mentioned before, i've been thinking about seeing a life coach. yesterday i decided to buy one in a book. i'm really excited to start this one. like for real excited.

and then this one, Made To Crave, well, i'm really looking forward to this one too. I follow Lysa's blog and she always has some great insight. Not too long ago, she sent out some helpful scripture to read when having one of those bad food days. i don't know, there's just something that draws me in to doing this journey with God and making it about Him rather than going at it alone. After all, if i could succeed myself, i wouldn't still be on this journey binging on self help books!
i'm hoping that as i read through these that i will find some awesome stuff to share with you fine people.
also, here's my latest dilemma. i am looking for a daily devotional to assist me in a daily quiet time. however, i have not had any luck finding a good devo. either the books are for students, singles, or women - but most of the women devos deal with being a mother.
i just want one for busy women who are married with no kids. something i can identify with. so if any of you know if any......please please please share!


Reviews.....Good Ones!

it's finally friday.
woot woot!

over the last couple weeks, i've seen a couple movies, bought a couple cds and i think you all need to add them to your collections!

seriously that good.

first off, let's go to the movies.

No Strings Attached - a MUST see. oh my, it was sooo good. a total chick flick but oh so cute. and it helps when you have ashton kutcher to look at!

my favorite part of the whole movie - he makes her a period mix cd. it has songs like sunday bloody sunday, i've got the world on a string, bleeding love, etc. SO funny! i love it!

now for some tunes. ok, if you've not heard of the civil wars, you need to look them up. they're a country-folkish type feel....great chillin music. they're sound is awesome. you need this on your ipod. for realz.

and adele. oh my. her voice is stunning. i've seriously been looking at this cd for a couple years. i have no idea why i waited until last week to buy it but i seriously love it. LOVE it! and she's got a new album coming out this month that i'll definitely be buying. her first single from it is out and i'm hooked!

now here are a couple individual songs that i'm loving. matt maher's hold us together is AHHHMAZING! amazing i say! love it to the nth degree!

and then chris august has a song called starry night that i'm obsessing over.

well i hope that leaves you with a few things to explore this weekend! if you check it out, please let me know your thoughts on all these!
later homies.



oh my, i have fallen behind on sharing my beauty secrets from my super special beauty book that i got for christmas!

so today's here's a couple tips for your reading pleasure:
  • What's the best way to hide a raw nose when you have a cold? find a moisturizing concealer that contains vit e, jojoba oil, or beeswax to replenish dry skin. a concealer with blue undertones will help mask the redness.
  • Deodorant marks on your clothes? use a facial cleansing wipe to remove them instantly.
moving right along... i had the most fabulous photo shoot on sunday. we chose a random barn on the side of the road and i luh-luh-loved it!

and that's about all i've got to say on this here thursday.


You Have To Try This Recipe!

so as you can tell, I've been on a roll in the kitchen!
a healthy kitchen i might add!
friday night i made a spinach-pasta salad.
so very good!
i must share!

let's start with the recipe for the vinaigrette itself. it can be used lots of ways.

1 1/2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
1 TBSP white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, minced

combine ingredients stirring well with a whisk.

easy peasy!

now, for dinner, i cooked some bow tie pasta, added some baby spinach, and tossed in the vinaigrette. awesomeness.
the recipe called for sliced red onion as well, but i don't care for onions, so i didn't include.

here's the exact measurements:
1/2 cup pasta
3 cups baby spinach - uncooked
1/4 cup red onion (optional)

Yield: 4 servings
Calories: 106; Fat 5.4g; Sodium 108 mg.

other variation:
you could mix the vinaigrette and spinach on top of a baked potato with feta cheese crumbles for 225 calories. Haven't tried this one yet, but i might!