Fall Fever

Fall is officially upon us and I am ecstatic. Oklahoma tends to have very un-Fallish falls, where we go from oven scale heat to just a morsel of true fall weather, straight into months of depressing cold. So far we’re hovering in between ovens and true fall and I’m crossing my fingers that we’ll get some actual fall days this year, with the leaves changing and that fireplace smell in the air and hello, the clothes, the most important part.

Here’s a list of my favorite Fall pieces this year! The 90′s are calling and I’m saying helloooo! fall fever

1. oversized coats // I feel very breakfast club-ish in this trend and that is not a bad thing.

2. chunky shoes // i just love a good chunky shoe, they make me taller and immediately add a little pizaaz to an outfit.

3. anything plaid // seriously, give me all the plaid. Jared has started his winter beard which basically makes me feel like i’m married to a bear hunter so i might as well accept it and wear plaid every day of my life. plus it’s a great pattern mixer!

4. oversized knits // fall is characterized by two things: food and wind. big chunky sweaters that let me eat the whole room and also stay cozy warm? count me in

5. highwaist black pants // i mean really, what else do you need? they go with everything. they’re super comfy. they stretch for miles. they never show stains. drops the mic

6. wool hats // i’m such a fan of hats, they hide bad hair days with such flair.

7. cute sweats // picture me at a bonfire, roasting some mellows, maybe going shopping or something, and then I go home and never change clothes… and these are on sale so…

8. hints of leather // i love bringing a little edge to an outfit, like a leather jacket or a leather bag. perfect.

one year

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hello dirty mirror

it’s been exactly one year since i had my first surgery for Crohn’s disease, a name that I had never even known existed just one short month before surgery. At the time I wrote a post about how “normal” seemed such a far off concept, something that I wasn’t sure I would really ever be able to relate to again.

12 months later, I’m still here. I’m married, in a new home, with a few crazy looking scars on my stomach (which occasionally still resemble centipedes) that are the only physical evidence of one of the hardest experiences I have ever had to face. Normal? I still have no idea what normal really is. I think it might be overrated ;)

For any newbies around here you can read all about my surgeries in my about tab, but to make a long story short I was diagnosed with Crohn’s last September, an intestinal disease that flared up quickly and unexpectedly at the end of the summer last year. So quickly that within a month I was diagnosed, hospitalized, and went through surgery to remove my entire colon, some 5 feet of intestine. I spent four months with the end of what was left of my intestines sticking out of a hole in my stomach, with a bag taped over it which I named Tootie. I then went back under in January to reattach my intestines and say goodbye to Tootie forever.

I’m frequently asked how i’m doing these days, with a general wave at my stomach area to indicate that the question is in regards to my intestines and not my general well being, and I always say the same thing: i’m doing great. I’m fine, i’ve had no further complications. I’m a very lucky girl.

And it’s true. compared to many stories from Crohn’s patients I’ve heard, I’ve had it so easy. Years of pain and endless rounds of medication were avoided in two rounds of surgery. I’ve had to change my diet a little, less red meat, and I occasionally have to deal with back and hip pain after eating too much fried food (i know, so random but it’s all connected, basically Crohn’s is an inflammatory disease that doesn’t necessarily only inflame your intestines. For me it’s my lower back and hips, which is why many people with Crohn’s are either misdiagnosed or even develop arthritis)

This last year has been one roller coaster ride after another, but everything I have learned can really be boiled down to this: I have physically experienced the truth behind Proverbs 3 // Trust in the Lord. Lean not on your own understanding.

There are so many things that happen in this world that we just can’t explain. Pain and fear and abuse and evil and just plain bad days are regular occurrences in our lives and trying to understand and explain everything in one perfect little neat sentence is just not possible. life is messy. but trust in the One who is in control, who knows everything. He is loving and merciful and full of grace and He is aching to hold you. BELIEVE me, you can’t handle or control everything on your own. You weren’t made to, and you don’t have to.

Trust in the Lord.

oh and Mederma doesn’t work on scars this big. Just putting that out there.

wedding snaps- vintage furniture

vintage furniture is kind of my thing, so I wanted to make sure I used as many pieces as possible in the wedding. like my obsession with clothes, vintage furniture comes with a story and i just love a good story.details-17 copyfor example, the pink velvet chair was a Craigslist score of mine. I haggled with the lady for weeks over this thing and when she finally came down on the price, I just about lost my shorts. When you discuss vintage furniture with people on Craigslist you tend to get an idea in your head of what you’ll see when you meet them, and i pictured this chair belonging to a little old lady who was moving out of her house to a retirement home or something. just the way she wrote seemed very old fashioned. I almost fell over when we showed up to pick up the chair and the Oklahoma governor’s daughter was the one selling. (and before you get confused and wonder how you missed that i was so interested in politics that i’d recognize the governor’s daughter, let me tell you that she was sporting hot pink hair at the time and I had just seen her at Oklahoma Fashion Week.)ceremony copy

details-19 copythe green chair also has it’s own story as a Bishop family heirloom that originally belonged to Jared’s great aunt. When i mentioned how much i loved the pea green corduroy (who wouldnt?), Grandma said we could have it. It now resides in our bedroom. portaits-71 copy the runner was a gift from my very talent mother, with fabric from ikea. portaits-74 copy chair duo

portaits-90 copythe two couches we used belong to me and my sister Courtney. They are both currently at my parent’s house, since neither one of us have the room for them. I loved the idea of using the furniture for the bridal party to sit on during the ceremony, and i was stubborn enough to stick to my guns even after we found out that we would have to haul everything to Norman and set up the morning of the wedding. It seemed romantic and so me that I felt like it was worth it. One of the couches was also used in our engagement shoot.

details-93 copy we used my parent’s silver goblet and platter set that they received when they got married for our communion ceremony.  all of the vintage jugs and glass bottles came from Jared’s dad’s personal collection, set atop a runner of kraft paper cut from a giant roll i saved from work one day. details-91 copy details-89 copy the gold card suitcase was a vintage flea market find. I’m planning on turning it into a table one of these days!details-86 copy i was vehemently against a guest book. sorry, i think they’re dumb and no i don’t think i’d ever want to sit down and look through everyone’s signatures one day. so to compromise, i bought these vintage window frames and had jared staple chicken wire that i had spray painted gold to the backs of the frames. Our guests wrote us a note, rolled it up, and stuck it in a chicken wire hole. voila. details-85 copypast wedding posts here, here and here

 

fair time

last year I missed the fair due to being in the hospital, so this year I was determined to make it out at least once. I have zero desire to spend tons of money on carnival games, I would never trust a fair ride that can be constructed or deconstructed in less than 24 hours, and the rodeo/pig showings have never been of much interest to me. But I will stinkin devour a good funnel cake.

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Book Review // Happy Handmade Home by A Beautiful Mess

IMG_1151 copyI’ve teamed up with Blogging for Books to do some fun book reviews here on the ol’ bliggity blog., I decided to start with Happy Handmade Home, since it was on my list of books to take a peak at next time I was in a bookstore!

all following images via A Beautiful Mess 

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I actually LOVED this book. It’s a perfect little coffee table book, bright and interesting with lots of great images, all with the intrinsic Beautiful Mess flair for color and creativity. There are tons of fun DIY project ideas, some of which I would love to play around with in my own little abode. Even if you’re not into doing it yourself, there are some great low budget inspiration ideas for decorating your home. Of course, I would expect nothing less from the ABM girls! 6a00d8358081ff69e201a511cb8294970c-800wi

6a00d8358081ff69e201a511cb8282970c-800wiIf you’re looking for a great curation of easy projects and inspiration, this would be a great book to add to your collection.

wedding snaps: bridal party

my one rule for our wedding was that i wanted sparkle, glitz, and enough glitter to choke a horse. our wedding venue had some (understandable, but still annoying) rules against glitter and such, and i had a little photo op idea in my head that involved said glitter and such, so I knew that I wanted to take our bridal party pictures off site. My sisters and I drove around the area looking for good spots to use and we decided on the Norman Amtrak station, right across the street.

portaits-29 copymy girls picked different style dresses from a boutique on etsy in two different shades of gray. My sisters, who were my matron of honor and my maid of honor, chose gold-hued dresses. We were a small, matching, gorgeous little village.portaits-31 copy portaits-32 copyThe bridesmaids all came over the day before the wedding and we had a huge bouquet making party, creating their bouquets and all of the centerpieces. We bought all of the flowers from the Oklahoma Flower Market, using my mom’s small business license. The flowers were awesome and lasted forever, and the price was soooo much better than a florist’s. And since I was going for a “ooooh look at me, I just gathered these flowers in a meadow, aren’t they lovely” style vibe, our less then professional skills worked great!

My bouquet I had made back in the Fall, when I was stuck at home in bed recovering from surgery. There were a few hectic moments, creating a bouquet with a hot glue gun while laying around in a bed with limited reflexes. there might have been some burned fingers. my dad might have soaked my fingers in egg yolks. it might have grossed me out. but it all worked out! portaits-67 copyjared’s groomsmen all wore ties or bow ties we had picked up on a sale from Jcrew, with their own gray pants and white shirts. Jared’s brother and best man wore a cute little vest to differentiate himself. Jared’s suit was from Express and don’t even get me started on his boutonniere. biggest fight we had about the wedding! Jared didn’t want the guys to wear boutonnieres, it would poke holes in their shirts and besides he thought they were too prom-ey. I was totally fine with this, until about a week before the wedding when I had a bit of a bridezilla moment and basically out-shouted him and made him one. i really have no idea why i was so adamant that he wear a boutonniere, it’s not like i could forget which guy was mine. brides. portaits-49 copy portaits-62 copy^Jared’s favorite college professor and saturday morning breakfast date, Mr. Ballew. Yes he was a groomsman. He took a nap on the ceremony couches during the afternoon. We love him. portaits-46 copy portaits-47 copy like i mentioned before, i wanted the wedding to be an explosion of freakin glitter, but the wedding venue didn’t allow glitter or confetti inside (vintage original wood floors, psh) so I told Amanda that I wanted to do a little confetti throwing sesh with my bridesmaids. The week before we sat around cutting up tissue paper in various shades of awesome, mixed with some gold star confetti, and voila! our very own confetti. portaits-64 copy portaits-65 copy portaits-66 copyit wasn’t two seconds after we had tossed the last handful of confetti, a woman came out grumbling at us that we weren’t allowed to “make a mess here” and that we would need to pick up every piece of confetti before we left.

spoiler alert: we didn’t go back and pick it up. it was a public transportation station, on a concrete sidewalk, with a very high chance of rain in the near future. call me an earth killer, but i do believe nature can take care of itself sometimes.

to see previous wedding posts, click here and here!

 

 

high waist jeans-a walking head with legs

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IMG_0845 copytarget sunnies // forever 21 tee // target necklaces // old navy jacke (old) // target belt // riffraff jeans c.o  // hooker heels (not shown)

There are many instances in fashion where the phrase “you look like a weirdo” can be the highest of compliments. When I walked out of the bedroom and asked Jared if the fact that my pants came up to my armpits and i was 6″3 with my chosen heels on (so the jeans wouldn’t drag the ground, duh) made me look disproportionate, and he responded with “you look like a walking head with legs” I knew I had nailed it!

the fact that Jared had to hold my hand as I walked across the parking lot so i wouldn’t fall is completely normal. for fashion.

 

i blog and stuff

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IMG_0784 copy IMG_0795 copy IMG_0792 copy IMG_0799 copyTarget button down // Forever 21 gray tee // Target necklaces // ASOS pants // Shoe Dazzle heels

this weekend was the most perfectly Fallish weather. Stormy and cloudy and moody; an excellent day to eat pancakes and nap the day away. unfortunately this weather and i have a bit of a love/hate relationship because the sudden swings in temperature make my allergies go nuts, so i spent the day napping with the worst sinus headache in all of creation.  but i just kept thinking “this is just so great, i love this weather!” the whole time. luckily i have a precious hubby who will rub my neck and make me pancakes and only roll his eyes once when im in the tub long enough for the water to go cold and only grumble a little when i get cookie crumbs on his side of the bed, even though he specifically said “do not eat cookies in the bed”. sorry babe…

and yes I’m aware that it’s Tuesday and yes i know i should have posted this on Monday, but give me a break who is ever really ready for Monday? not i. and if Monday was a struggle, well then Tuesday is a bit harried as well. by Wednesday we’ll be rolling pretty good around here. don’t judge.

 

 

 

manifesto

 

IMG_0724 copy I’ve been thinking lately about why I do this whole blog thing. Why do i spend my time writing and taking pictures and commenting and following and planning and creating? why?  i realized that if i don’t have a clear understanding of what i’m doing, then no one else will either. so what’s my manifesto, my mission statement, my core values? what keeps me coming back to this little space on the interweb?IMG_0769 copyfor me, it comes down to two points which are pretty simple and are basically at the root of everything i do.

Because God created me in His image.

You can’t stand on the edge of the ocean, look off the top of a mountain, gaze at a newly born soul, and not understand that our God is creative. He’s the ultimate Creator.

and He made me in His image. The same creativity that birthed the Northern Lights lives in me. The same imagination that caused fireflys and freckles was placed into my soul, my heart, my being.

IMG_0764 copy but here’s an even more fantastic concept: God, in His infinite Creativity, gave each and every one of us the ability to create in our own, special way. Some of us may be doctors, or artists, or athletes, or speakers, or nurturers, or encouragers. God gave each of us this awesome gift of creativity, to use in whatever way fits our personalities and gifts best, and each time we use that creativity we are worshiping our Creator.

For me, my creativity just kind of falls out of me any which way it can. I like to call myself a Jill of All Trades, because I’m not the type to excel at any one thing. I’m kind of all over the place. And I’ve come to realize that that, in itself, is a gift.  i like to use my creativity in any way i can, whether that’s my style or my writing, whether it’s web design or graphics, whether it’s decorating my house or posting on stinkin social media. it doesn’t matter, it’s all creative and it’s all expression and it’s good. IMG_0747 copyMy second reason for this blog comes from one of my favorite verses, Colossions 3:23

//Whatever you do, do it with your whole heart, as working for the Lord//

This verse sums up my entire life, where my heart and soul reside, and what I want to teach others to understand. That whatever you are doing, whatever gifts God has blessed you with, wherever you are at: YOU are a story. You’re experiences and knowledge can be used to encourage others, in ways that you can only imagine. your LIFE is a ministry! every single time you CREATE you are ministering to someone, somewhere.

So whatever I may be doing, whether it’s writing a post or styling an outfit or fixing my hair,creating a graphic, or working at my job: I want to do it to the best of my ability, with my whole heart, guns blazing, all in. I’m going to take chances, make mistakes, get embarrassed, and learn from it all. Because in doing so, I am creating opportunities to encourage others, reach others, inspire others, to walk this journey with as much enthusiasm and and gumption and LIFE as they possibly can. IMG_0740 copy I truly believe that our Creator loves to see us creating. and THAT is my ultimate goal. To serve Christ in everything I do. So this little blog, where I can create as much as I want, where i stumble and mess up, crack up, goof off, and generally make a fool of myself, this is my learning experience. This is my living testament to what a Creative God can do with a willing soul.

So dig in, dear ones, and join in the ride. I fully believe that I’m in for a crazy one. IMG_0732 copy warby parker glasses//target tee//tj maxx overalls//dv8 heels c.o RiffRaff//

social security is not very social

social security is not very social

i should have known, when i stepped onto the building’s linoleum floors, heels clacking and people staring, that this trip was not going to be one without it’s fair share of uncomfortable.

but since i’ve never frequented jail or felt the need to change my citizenship, i had not previously enjoyed the atmosphere in the Oklahoma Social Security Offices until i had to go and change my last name.

let me just give you a hint: social security ain’t so social.

what exactly do you think i’m hiding in my shoes that causes you to demand I take them off and walk through a metal detector? drugs? i’m sitting in a giant room with scary people. why would i bring drugs in with me?

if you insist on calling us out by number like cattle don’t you think it would be in your best interest to invest in a intercom system that is actually understandable? I get more English from the teacher on Charlie Brown.

Gentleman with the scary tattoos (nekkid lady, KILL on his arm, scary looking skull thing smoking a joint, etc) and the shorts of questionable white color: why are you laughing like a sadistic rapist every time you look at me? and for that matter, why are you looking at me? or leaning towards me? or trying to read my book with me? (it wasn’t a funny part).

young woman from jail: congratulations. i’m sure you’re right and you didn’t deserve to be in there. but do we have to speak so loudly that everyone knows your opinion? my ears are bleeding from your shrillness. i’m sorry. please don’t kill me.

after three and a half hours (read it, that’s right), I was finally ushered out of the holding pen by a young woman who only stared at my shoes for a second (or 10). i’m going to assume she was riveted with jealousy and not cackling at my clacking on the inside.

after 5 minutes with staring girl I was given a new last name and an escape route that didn’t involve the holding pen. cue the hallelujah chorus.

Unfortunately, I now have a hideous driver’s license picture. Since i had been blessed with two pretty good pictures before this one, I think I was overdue for a stunner.

Photo Aug 25, 1 23 06 PM copywoah there blush. if you look closely you can see my glasses indentations on the side of my ski slope nose. also, i  thought i was having to sign to say yes i was an organ donor, not sign for my license. hence the chicken scrawl that vaguely resembles letters.

FACTS//

for those of you, like me, who want to change your last name after marriage and are thoroughly confused by the contradicting information on the Internet, here’s what you need to change your name in Oklahoma:

- you have to go to the SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE to change your last name. Not the wedding license registry, not the passport offices, not the post office. SOCIAL SECURITY. They really try to confuse you on this one.

- I took my wedding license,  my birth certificate, and my driver’s license. the woman looked at my driver’s license and my wedding license, but told me it’s a good idea to bring your birth certificate just in case. You can also bring your social security card but since I didn’t have mine anymore, it’s not actually required.

-YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY CARD IS NOT REQUIRED. i’m saying that twice because I called ahead and the woman on the phone was SO stinking confusing, i wasn’t sure if i needed my ss card or a vial of blood. also because of that lady…

- you have many different options in the state of Oklahoma for your new name.  I could drop my maiden name, hyphenate my maiden and married name, drop my middle name and keep my maiden and married names, or make my maiden name a second middle name. all are legal and do not require further paperwork. (take THAT you mean old heifer on the phone!)