Saturday, July 16, 2016

Happy 30th Jen!

Friends, I recently had my 30th birthday.  Some may find that life event to be super scary or they feel like they have to get their shit together because of this approaching number. I am not one of those people. I will not let a number define me. My 20's were very self explorative and turned out to be really amazing once I figured out who I was meant to be and I'm all for continue that trend in my 30s. I'm anticipating zero changes. I'm still going to be fangirling over Harry Potter, making all the quilts and just being the typical mess that I am.  Age be damned!

I decided a few months ago, that a cake smash was the way to ring in this momentous occasion. I'm not a very serious person.  I'm super silly and full of nerdiness so I thought this type of celebration would embody the real me.  Plus, who doesn't want to smash their face with cake? I mean, it's cake!

  Heather was nice enough to photograph the occasion as well as celebrate with me. She is seriously the best bestie any girl could ever have!

Most of the props for this shoot were either hand crafted by me over the years or is stuff I picked up from thrift and antique stores. The quilt, in fact, was a project my grandmother started and gave to me in pieces in a shoe box.  All the "bow-tie" fabric is made out of vintage fabric. The bunting used to hang in my living room until my husband got sick of it and tore it down. Luckily, I'm a bit of a hoarder and saved it for this special occasion. I really wanted this shoot to have a very vintage-y tea party type theme and I think I nailed it. 

These gnomes typically live in my china cabinet protecting all my treasures.

Outfit details:
Shirt: Etsy / Skirt: Rue 21 / Jellies: GoJane / Time Turner Necklace-gift from Bestie

Since I'm an adult and typically don't eat with my fingers, I was a bit apprehensive when it finally came down to cake smashing time. In theory I was all for it, but once I got my fingers dirty, it was pretty gross. But overall, it was hilarious and I don't even care how much I had to scrub my hands to get that sticky icing off.  I now understand why parents strip their kids before the cake smash. Way easier to just hose them off.

The progression is hilarious.

I feel like I'm just screaming "eeeeeewwwwww" at this point.

But, then I just decided to embrace it and shoved some damn cake in my face.

At this point, we were both laughing so hard that I was literally crying.

The cake smash was a blast.  I always love and excuse to get together with my bestie, plus I've kind of always wanted to do a tea party type shoot so I feel like I'm checking things off my bucket list left and right.  And now that I'm 30, my bucket list is becoming more and more a priority.

Overall, my 30th birthday was everything I hoped it would be.  I took some time off work, smashed a cake, got some super nerdy presents (entire series of Friends, entire Harry Potter movie collection and a kickass iron to use on all my sewing adventures {thanks bestie!}), read some Harry Potter, made a sasquatch quilt and chilled with my favorites. I'm not certain what more a girl could ask for.

Here's to keeping it nerdy and not letting the 30's bring me down.



Monday, July 11, 2016

June Rewind

Read:  Oh, you mean besides Harry Potter? I was able to squeeze in two other reads.  Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman & The Sky is Everywhere Jandy Nelson.  Vengeance Road was a straight up western that I thought was only ok but the cover is gorgeous.  I really enjoyed The Sky is Everywhere. It was about a topic I'm not crazy about, but I super enjoyed the writing style.

Watched:  Straight Outta Compton. Ok, I know I'm a little late to the party, but I LOOOOVED this movie. I found the racial injustice maddening and the story behind the gangsta rappers fascinating. I will forever be a lover of biography type movies.  Oh, I also finished up season 2 of Kimmy Schmidt. I'm absolutely loving that Phoebe is Kimmy's mom! Oh, Spoilerish Alert!

Listening:  Bo Burham's new standup on Netflix.  Bo has a rare talent.  He is the one singing comedian I can actually stand.  Bo is a true performer and his shows are pretty intense. You should check him out if you are unfamiliar with his work.

Also this month:

1. Stashbusting Quilt Finished. 
Guys!!! It's finally finished on made up on my bed as I type. I seriously love how it turned out and I love how thrifty of a project it turned out to be. I only spent about $15 on the backing.  I'm going to plan more stashbusting projects in my future because I love being thrifty where I can plus it is satisfying to create something made out of disregarded scraps.

2.  Pin Game Overhaul.
So, since starting my pin collection I have become obsessed with owning all the pins. This month got a little out of control and I added more than 10 to my collection. I'm really loving the added flair and attitude the pins give to my outfits.  But my purse is feeling pretty light.

3.  Soul Searching.
I spent a good part of this month trying to nail down anything that is causing me unhappiness.  I think the main goal of life should be happiness and I'm all for weeding out all the things I shouldn't have to deal with or cause me serious unhappiness.  I think I'm pretty close to making a few serious life changes which scares the crap out of me but I'm excited to start taking some positive steps.

Most of my month was spent reading the first 3 Harry Potter books for book club, but I did manage to squeeze in a few more besides that one. I reread The Elite and finished The One, which are book 2 and 3 in The Selection series. It was a fun light read that helped make my drive from St. Louis to Minneapolis go by quicker. I also listened to The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday, which was really wonderful and motivating. I think I'll listen to it again at some point because there were so many great quotes that I want to jot down and remember. 

I watched season 4 of Orange is the New Black and wow, it was pretty intense and crazy. I was not into it until about half way through the season and then I felt like it totally redeemed itself at the end on the season. I am officially on board for season 5, but officially off board for the character of Piper in any form. Can she be released from prison or something so we can get rid of her bland story lines? Thanks.

I've been very into podcasts this month and I started My Dad Wrote a Porno, which is hilarious. Jamie discovers his dad wrote an erotic novel and he reads on chapter a week with friends. It's literally made me laugh so hard I was crying and could not see the road while driving, and also have to stop running because I could not breathe from laughing so hard. I am sure I looked great to anyone seeing either of these events. The book, Belinda Blinked, is so bad it's hilarious. I just cannot handle it and it's one of the best things I've ever heard. You should also know I am a fan of really terrible movies or books, but only when they are so sincerely bad that it's funny. 

Also this month:

*Minnesota or Bust 
Jarrett and I took a long weekend to go visit my friend Meredith and her boyfriend Aaron in Minneapolis. It was seriously the best time. Minnesota is a really cool place. We spent a day hiking at Minnehaha Falls and eating all the best food. I finally tried Indian food for the first time and I am hooked. I wish I could have spent more time exploring the city or even the surrounding lakes and hiking spots. It's a 9 hour drive from where I live so you better believe I will make my way back to Minnesota as soon as I can! 

*Bullet Journaling
One of my June goals, and one of my birthday goals, was to write and journal more. I've been intrigued by bullet journaling for awhile now and decided to give it a shot. I've found a format that works well for me and I'm having fun recording each day as it happens. It's a nice mix of a to-do list and journal. I'd recommend it to anyone who loves making lists like I do but finds yourself making lists in multiple places. This helps condense it and gives me a spot to record my day and things I want to remember to get done as well! 

*Living that lake life 
We are lucky enough to have Jarrett's dad invite us to spend time at his lake house at the Lake of the Ozarks a few times in the summer. We went for Father's Day weekend and had the best time. The water was so warm and we spent like 4 hours swimming. Even the beebs got in and swam all over the lake in their life jackets. We all had so much fun riding on the boat and eating BBQ. I can't wait to go back in a few weeks and do it again. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

July Small Goals

We in into July and summer if flying by! I'm loving my summer so far, basically one of the best ones I've had in awhile. I feel like instead of letting summer happen, for the first time in awhile I'm taking advantage of it and making the most of it. I have a 2 week vacation in July coming up where I'm staying home and hanging out with my kids. I literally cannot wait! I hope your summers are amazing as well, but now it's time to revisit the June small goals we set for ourselves. Honestly, mine did not go as well as I hoped but I'm ready to try again in July. Let us know your goals for July and as always, we are linking up with Nicole at Writes Like a Girl

Jen's June Small Goals

1.  Finish 12 Days of Christmas Sampler.   Demolished this goal and watched a lot of New Girl.  I even overachieved this goal and was able to start the new summer sampler by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery.
2.  Enamel pin display.  Major fail, like didn't even think about it more than mumbling I needed to think about it. Obviously, this needs to become a huge priority.
3.  Read 1 ARC from Bookcon.  Yup, so didn't happen, thanks a lot, Harry Potter
4.  Cut out Sasquatch quilt.  Cut out and sewing together a bunch of happy little trees, Bob Ross style.
5.  Buy a kiddie pool a/k/a reading pool.  Probably my silliest goal yet, but I still took is seriously and accomplished it. I'm pretty dedicated to my sunshine reading.

I'm pretty ok with my accomplishments.  3/5 isn't bad considering life.

Jen's July Goals

1.  Buy ZERO pins.  For reals, it is getting out of hand. Yes, I want to support all the artist and own all the adorable pins I see on instagram, but I need to take a short break from the pin world. *crosses fingers*
2.  Rewatch the 1st 4 Harry Potter Movies.  Obviously with the reread it is only natural to want to watch all the movies again. My husband bought me the entire set for my upcoming birthday and I plan to put them to good use.
3.  Buy a comic from a new series.  It is so easy to get stuck reading your favorites or just trying to get caught up on a continuing series. This month I'm going to get crazy and buy a comic or two from a new series.
4.  Journey to the Splits.  I plan on making flexibility the focus of my fitness regime this month.  The blogger's workouts I follow has a journey to the splits routine but that sounds crazy even to my own ears. I've gotten some resistance bands and am just going to focus on becoming the most flexible me, whether or not it results in the splits. But it would be super cool if it did. 
5.  Update Resume.  I think it is probably a good idea always to have an updated resume on file.  You never know when you are going to need to whip it out like a secret emergency rocket pack.

Heather's June Small Goals 

1. Walk 10K steps daily  Major fail. I hit 10K steps 7 times in June, which is not great. I do consistently hit between 6-8K most days but I do want to keep making an effort to hit this step goal. 
2. Drink 64 oz water at least 5 times a week  Another fail. I have been upping my water intake but I have been getting between 32-45 oz. most days, which is good but not great. 
3. Write once a week  Done! I got into bullet journaling this month, and it's really helped me get back into writing almost daily, which is great. I would like to write more essays so maybe I will focus on that for the rest of the summer. 
4. Spend one weekend day mostly outdoors  Done! I spent at least one weekend day each month outside and it was good for my soul. I love summer and I want to soak in as much as I can. 
5. Engage more on social media Another fail. I really need to get better at engaging on social media platforms. It's on my never ending to do list. 

So 2/5 completed for June. Not my best month for small goals. 

Heather's July Small Goals 

1.  Run one mile without stopping  I've been working on my goal of running 3 miles by September, when I'm doing a 6K, so I've been following the couch to 5k app on my phone. I'm on week 4 and it's brutal but I can feel myself getting stronger. I would like to run one mile without stopping this month at least once to see what my time is. 
2. Embroider 2 projects  I made a cross stitch project for a friend in June and it kickstarted that crafting bug I have. I have a few embroidery projects floating around my mind and it would be fun to get 2 of them out into the world. 
3. Buy ZERO items of clothing  I'm working on my small goals list on July 2nd and already this month I've purchased two items of clothing. Yikes! I need to make a ban for the month of July and put the money I've been spending on clothes into my savings account 
4. Cook 3 new meals  I have a pretty sweet deal going where my boyfriend cooks most of the meals in our house. I commute an hour to work so he gets home before me and it makes sense for him to handle dinner. Buuuuut with my two week staycation coming up, I'm hoping to cook more dinners for us and to also try out a few new recipes, which is one of my birthday goals as well! 
5.  Buy a bike  I bought Jarrett part of a bike for his birthday and I'm wanting to get a bike for myself so it's on my list to officially get done this month. I want to be able to bike to some wineries before the summer ends! 

Saturday, July 2, 2016

July Book Club

Hey book friends! Also hey regular friends! We don't discriminate against friends here. June was full of rereading the first 3 Harry Potter books and it was magical. I feel like I remembered a lot of the first 3 books, but I did rewatch the movies as I finished the books and was surprised at all the changes I didn't realize were changed or removed from the books. It was a fun experience. I also found myself reading a lot on my lunch break and between calls at work and got to find out a lot of coworkers are Harry Potter fans too! I'm literally always down to fangirl about things I love, especially Harry Potter. 

For July we are reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. These books really ramp up the Voldemort action and start getting intense. I'm really stoked to get started. I always have to wait until the first of the month to start the next book club selection and I've been waiting for like 10 days to get back into the Hogwarts frame of mind. 

It's not to late to join in and read along with us! We seriously want to chat about anything Harry Potter related, even if you aren't rereading them right now! Happy reading friends!