30 December 2011

Goodbye, 2011!

goodbye 2011

Dear 2011,

First of all, let me just say thank you for being one heck of a year and for holding so many memories that I will hold onto for forever. By far my absolute favorite part was getting married to Ryan on July 30th and spending the honeymoon with that unforgettable fresh feeling of "oh my gosh, we're actually married" and just staring at the wedding bands on both our hands. And the five months that followed that have been both blissful {because of so many "firsts" in our marriage} and stressful {because the weight we both felt from going to school, working, and taking care of a place of our own}.

But I can honestly say that every step of this year has brought about beautiful things, emotions, and changes in my life. All of which I feel like will be unforgettable memories. I feel that I have grown so much during these past twelve months. I feel more confidential, outgoing, and I feel like I have been a more loving person to my friends and family. The change is inspiring and I hope that it continues into 2012 and that I continue growing and changing. I went through some difficult times in the beginning of the year, but I can truly say that I now feel stronger because of it. And the changes of marriage have definitely humbled me in a way that I cannot describe.

2011, thank you for all the lasts and all the firsts that happened throughout the year. My last night in the house I grew up in, my last night sleeping alone, the last trip {with Ryan} that we would ever pack separately for. The first night as a married woman, the first vacation with just the two of us, our first night in our own house, our first married Thanksgiving and Christmas. I will never forget those things.

So 2011, you've been really great. I will certainly be sad to see you go but I am very excited to see what the next year will hold.


statement tights = purple legs

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2011 12 30b
2011 12 30a
2011 12 30d
Dress: LOFT (Similar Dress), Tights: Vera Wang via Kohl's (Similar Tights), Shoes: Nine West

What a co-worker said: "I’ve been noticing that you girls have been dressing awful nicely for the last couple of days, and I was just wondering is this for something? Are ya’ll going on a bunch of lunch dates, or what?”

What I thought to myself: Well, actually we both write blogs and we are in the middle of this thing called, Style Busters, so we’ve been thinking extra hard about our wardrobe ensembles as of late. So if by dates you mean each other and if by lunch you mean the time frame in which we take pictures, then, yes.

What I actually said: We’ve just been wanting to wear the clothes we got for Christmas.

What Katie actually said: We have to wear jeans and t-shirts to class, so we like to dress up whenever we come here.

Epic fail. Why is it so hard to just say that I write a blog? It’s like the intimidation factor outweighs everything else and I just can’t bring myself to do it. Not that anyone at work would be super impressed {refer to the 1990’s work reference from yesterday’s post}. But even if it wasn’t a co-worker, even if it was a friend, I still don’t think I would have blurted the secret. I think I’m going to put that on my resolutions list for 2012: take claim as a blogger.

On another note, whenever Katie first mentioned the idea of statement tights, my immediate thought was colored tights…because that’s what I own. Little did I know at the time there are more than one type of statement tights. Katie’s tights for today are patterned/textured with polka dots. Um, duh, why didn’t I think of that? I have definitely put patterned tights on my “to-get” list. Along with about 1387496218 other things.

style busters button

29 December 2011

12 by 2012 reflections


Remember this list of goals? Well the results are in.

The ones I completed:

5. Order our wedding pictures. These came in two days before Christmas, just in time for us to give some to our parents as gifts. And the CD of pictures arrived this week so hopefully I will be sharing our special day with you sometime in January.
6. Decorate our Christmas tree. We did this just 5 days before Christmas and maybe things were a little rushed, but at least we can say we did it and I got to snap a few pictures.
7. Find a plaid shirt. I had been on the hunt for this one and finally found what I was looking for. I was a little unsure of it at first, but now it's become one of my favorite shirts because of the color scheme.
8. Make a dessert from my Pinboard. Okay, I didn't post pictures of this, and I'm so sorry for that. But I did make some Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Brownies. Husband and I were addicted {me more so than him!}.
9. Purge my closet. This one happened early on, and I'm glad it did, otherwise I probably wouldn't have gotten around to it. I think it will be in need of second round of purging soon as my style continues to change and develop as I near the end of college. Now I just need to find a way to get rid of it. Maybe a clothing swap party?

The ones I almost completed:

1. Host a party in our new house. We are have a small get togther with family and friends on New Year's Eve. We're going to have some snack foods and drinks. It's not the party I dreamed of with lots of decorations and things, but I'm sure it will nonetheless be a cherished memory.
2. Studio Project (painting and decorating). We did get the room painted. Er, my family painted the room for us while we were at work. That's as far as we made it. I still have moving, unpacking, and decorating to do for that room.
12. Starting a book about mine and husband's lives. I bought a book from Ruche, where I can just fill out about a sentence each day, it was working at first and I liked picking my favorite thing from that day and writing it down. But, not too far into it, I found that I had too much to say and it wouldn't all fit in the box. Plus, I like pictures. So, for 2012 I'm trying to come up with a new kind of book to make for our memories that can include pictures, unlimited words, and whatever else I may dream up.

The ones I did not complete:

3. Finish patching husband's jeans Yeah, this one didn't happen because I never moved my sewing machine over from my mom's house because it's part of the whole studio project that didn't get completed. I discovered it's rather difficult when one goal depends on the other.
4. Completely switch email accounts (maiden name to married name). Basically this one I just procrastinated because I dread it so much. Hopefully something in 2012 will give me the extra boost I need to do it.
10. Do a mini home tour for the blog. I have to admit that this one was somewhat intimidating, no matter how easy it seemed when I wrote it down. Hopefully I will get around to posting it after we get our wedding pictures on the walls and some things like that.
11. Bedroom furniture project. And this goal never even got started because of my indecisiveness. I just couldn't commit to a color. I just know one day it will hit me, what the perfect shade is. And if not, hopefully husband and I will be buying new furniture at some point in our lives.

5/12 Complete
3/12 Almost Complete
4/12 Not Even Started

I'll take that.

a little pattern on pattern

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2011 12 29d
Sweater: Target, Blouse: AE, Pants: LOFT, Shoes: INC, Brooch: The Old White House

Pattern Mixing. A Difficult Task.

Guess what girlies, these red shoes are making a second appearance today. I basically never want to take them off. They’re just the right amount of comfort, and they kind of scream because of their brightness. I’ve never been one to own bright colored shoes, but from now on, I will be on the hunt. No bright colored shoe is safe.

On another note, how many of you have ever tried out pattern mixing before? I’m pretty sure that I have done it. But, this morning I found myself staring at my closet blankly wondering which patterns I could mix. Should I go monochromatic? Should I wear the same pattern in a different size? Can you even wear leopard print with plaid? That one might be too much of a stretch. I guess that is what I get for lack of planning. Life is much easier when I pick out clothes the night before. So there I stood, looking at my closet, scratching my head in disbelief with my red shoes calling to me to please find something to wear with them. What goes with red shoes? Well, I’m starting to think that anything goes. As long as you make it look intentional, no one will ever know how long you spent fretting over if it goes together.

So eventually I came to this conclusion to wear stripe on stripe. And I tied in the blue pinstripe on my button down with a big blue flower. That flower was seriously a smart investment. I feel like I can pin it on a t-shirt and instantly look dressed up. Plus it’s so big, and I just love it. The red shoes were happy that they got to be a part of the ensemble today. And I was proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone at work today. A huge flower, pattern mixing, and red shoes with not a single other red accessory? Wowza. I stepped out big time from my little 1990’s style workplace. They were in shock. I laughed.

Whatever you do, do not forget to check out Katie's pattern mixing for today. A little zebra print with a little stripe makes for one killer of a mix. And because I forgot to mention before, Katie took all of these photographs of me for Style Busters. We scurry over to an apartment complex by our work and take these pictures during lunch. We're just hoping it takes a while for people to realize that we don't actually live over there. Weirdos.

And as always, if you have some pattern mixing of your own, leave a link in the comments!

style busters button

28 December 2011

ladies. in red.

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2011 12 28b

ten things
1. I am in love with my new red shoes.
2. That skirt, is from Forever 21. Katie was shocked when I told her.
3. That necklace? Yeah, I snipped it off of an older shirt. Voila!
4. It rained pretty much all day today. And it was dark. Hence the drab pictures.
5. In planning for tomorrows pattern mixing bust, I discovered it's harder than I think.
6. But that's what challenges are for.
7. It was freezing today. I needed more clothes on.
8. I'm feeling a high amount of optimism and goal planning as January 1 approaches.
9. You should check out Katie's amazing red lipstick for today's style bust. That girl can rock red lipstick.
10. If you love pops of red too, link up in the comments and put a button on your blog or post. We want to see! Because we love red! And because we're nosey and we like to look at other people's fashion.

style busters button

Happy Wednesday!

27 December 2011

next year...

Christmas 2011

{ Next year } at Christmas time I am going to...

1. Make mine and Ryan's stockings for the mantle.
2. Hang a Christmas wreath on our front door.
3. Put up some mistletoe in the doorways for extra kisses.
4. Make a tree skirt out of burlap from our wedding.
5. Add some red throw pillows to the couch.
6. Make some new ornaments to hang on our tree.
7. Decorate the mantle with more than the usual evergreen garland and lights.
8. Put bows on all of my presents.
9. Give more handmade gifts.
10. Make cookies and brownies to give out to our neighbors.
11. Send out Christmas cards.
12. Put up lights outside of our house.
13. Host a Christmas party.
14. Put the tree up sooner than 5 days before Christmas.
15. I'm going to do an ugly Christmas sweater swap with friends where we embellish ugly sweaters and then exchange them just for laughs.

a.k.a. things that didn't quite make the cut this year

glasses are sassy

2011 12 27a

What more perfect feature to start off the Style Busters than glasses? They’re kind of like a combination of class and sass. As for me, I went through several stages of love for glasses starting from when I was really little. I think every child goes through a phase where they think glasses are ugly, and then a phase where they think glasses are awesome. Kind of like how kids tend to want braces, sometimes? Although I’ve never figured that one out.

But from about the time I was in the 7th grade, I wanted glasses. I thought they were chic, cool, grown-up, and I wanted my very own pair. It wasn’t until my second year of college that I discovered I actually needed glasses. We figured it out when husband (boyfriend at the time) discovered that I couldn’t read street signs that he could see plain as day. Seems I inherited near-sightedness from my mother. Lucky me.

2011 12 27c2011 12 27b

So, to be completely honest…I was ecstatic about going to the eye doctor, with high hopes of having to wear glasses. And sure enough, I needed them. I wore them basically every day for the first month. They kind of felt like an accessory to my outfit. But, as all new things loose their appeal overtime, I eventually got to the point where I didn’t feel like wearing them everyday. And unfortunately I’m still in that rut today.

But nonetheless, I still LOVE glasses. I think I would wear them more if I had several pairs. Maybe that will go on my Christmas wish list next year. And if you haven’t already seen the Girls with Glasses blog, you need to. They make glasses look amazing and they have the prettiest clothes.

2011 12 27d

So are you a girl that thinks glasses are sassy? Katie and I want to see your glasses! There is a linky tool below this post to link up if you do your own sassy glasses post, or even if you just want to share a picture of yourself in glasses. Make sure that you link directly to that post so that we (and others) can find it!

Tomorrow we will be featuring red.
Until then, stay sassy, classy, and wear your glasses.

style busters button

23 December 2011

an introduction of sorts

style busters header

If you remember a few weeks ago, I told you that Katie and I were working on a project. Well now you get to see that project and even take part in it if you would like (which, we would love).

Starting on Tuesday, we will be hosting tweleve days of Style Busters in which we will take some of the commonly thought "fashion rules," or as I like to call them, fashion myths, and we're going to bust them. So you think that brown and black don't go together? Or you think red lipstick just can't be done? Well, we think it can, and so many fashion bloggers think so too!

Each day we will be focusing on one style bust, and you can see the schedule below. We created the list based on styles that we like or we think are trendy, but that are sometimes controversial in the world of fashion. Remember, it starts Tuesday (December 27). What we are hoping for from you is that you participate in busting these myths with us! Take a look at the schedule and see which styles you think you can do, post it on your blog, and then link up with us from either one of our blogs.

style busters schedule

Even if you aren't interested in posting, I definitely want to encourage you to still look at your closet and try to break some of the rules (if you haven't already). You might be surprised at what you come up with. And if there is a style you aren't sure about, send us an email! Pinterest is also an excellent source for fashion inspiration. I like to think that there aren't really any rules to how I should dress. I mean, obviously some of us need a few guidelines like "don't wear your underwear on your head" but do we really need someone telling us that stripe on stripe is a no no? No. We don't. Break the rules, bend the rules, bust the rules, however you want to look at it.

We made a little button for you to stick in your sidebar, or at the end of your post to show that you are a style buster. And don't feel obligated to participate everyday, you can only post one style bust if that's what you want to do. Remember, we don't like rules.

style busters button

22 December 2011

DIY Project with Christina of 6petals blog

Happy Thursday! Today we have an amazing guest post by Christina from 6 petals blog. Christina posts about amazing vintage pieces, inspiration images, and this girl creates some awesome DIY projects. I fell in love with her painted utensils tutorial and asked her to share the process with you all. Her blog will blow you away with all it's gorgeousness. And while you're at it, check out her vintage Etsy shop, 6petals.

Christmas most definitely snuck up on me this year. Hopefully by now you've wrapped presents, decorated the house (yours looks amazing, Jessica!) and have all the ingredients for deliciously savory treats. Here's a fun way to serve those appetizers and desserts...

A few months ago I created a pretty set of yellow utensils. This time it's just for Christmas. You can find some extra silverware at most thrift stores. I found a little set with a few cake forks, spoons, knives + a little floral pattern on the stem.

It's super easy + a fun way to spread Christmas cheer. Enjoy!

*And, a BIG thanks to Jessica for having me over today. I told Santa to get you something nice.

21 December 2011

things that really matter

Our first ornament. We were given it last December (the month we got engaged).

For some reason I thought it was good idea to procrastinate all the Christmas activities until after finals week ended. Now that I am cramming everything into one week, I’m having second thoughts about that one. I feel like I have gone to bed every night with at least 10 things still on my to-do list. I feel like I have spent most of my time shopping for gifts for family & friends (as well as wrapping them). Not that there’s anything wrong with that. But, it kind of keeps me from being able to truly enjoy the Christmas season.

I started thinking this morning about all the things that I have to be happy about this season. All the things OTHER THAN gifts.

My husband and I are getting to spend our first married Christmas together. At first I was upset because we haven’t had much time to decorate or just spend time watching Christmas movies. But then I realized that it doesn’t really matter. Even if our first Christmas together isn’t the picture perfect sequence of events I had pre-planned in my head, it is still always going to be our first Christmas and that in itself is special. Just the fact that we have each other and I get to wake up Christmas morning to his face is enough.

The weather we have been having is awesome. I can’t lie, I would love to have a white Christmas with snow and everything. But, the 50 degree weather has been a nice change. I love not having to bundle up to go outside and I loved not having to trek to class in the snow these last few weeks. My friends and I have an annual Christmas party get-together. Last year we had to leave early because the snow and ice were getting so bad. This year, I wore a light jacket and it rained.

My Savior is the best gift I have ever received, and it’s a never-ending gift. Okay, so maybe I am going to mention “gifts” but not the kind you buy at the store. I’m thankful year-round that God sent His son, but Christmas time is always a nice reminder that he has given all of us the best gift that could ever be given. He sent His son to die on a cross for us so that we could be washed clean of our sins and spend eternity with Him in Heaven. All because he loves us that much. The best gift that could ever and will ever be given.

better last minute than never, right?

Christmas decorations

Christmas mantelOur little Christmas tree

Christmas fireplace mantel

oh, Christmas treeampersand in the tree

We finally decorated the house last night. Well, we decorated the tree and the fireplace mantel. That was as far as we got. After getting things out of boxes I finally realized, as newlyweds, we don't have a lot of decorations. Looks like we will be hitting the sales right after Christmas and stocking up for next year. I'm thinking I need some red throw pillows to put out in the living room, just for Christmas. I love pops of red. It's like my new favorite thing.

And the bow on top of our tree, that's all husband's doing. His family owns a florist shop so he has become like an expert bow-maker. Not that he goes around bragging about it. He had to give me a lesson in bows last night. It's kind of bitter sweet that he's better at bows than me. I picked a keeper, girls.

(check. one more goal off the 12 by 2012 list!)

19 December 2011

awkward & awesome - Christmas Party edition



I skipped out on the awkward & awesomes last Thursday because of finals week, and after this weekend's Christmas Party with my office, I decided an a&a post would suit it nicely.

-Not one, but two, old men that asked Katie and I if we wanted them to take our picture together whenever I was snapping a few of just her.
-Our boss. Dancing. Kind of like a chicken.
-The number of times we were dragged out to the dance floor during some oldies songs that we had never heard.
-Katie's boyfriend eyeballing one of our co-workers coming to beg us to dance, to the point that he missed grabbing his drink and knocked it over. Water went everywhere, but we didn't get dragged to the dance floor for that one.
-Music that you can't or at least shouldn't dance to.

-The chicken piccata I had for dinner. It was delish.
-Oh and did I mention, dinner & dessert were free?
-Getting all dressed up. I even tried out one of the hair-do tutorials from The Small Things blog. She's the blonde haired girl that's all over Pinterest, and believe me, she's good with hair.
-Katie video recording some of our co-workers dance moves to help them remember themselves on Monday. Only we discovered we can't show them because the video includes our commentary.
-My metallic, glittery, gold nail polish. I'm in love with it now. I love me some holiday sparkle.

16 December 2011

try in 2012

With 2012 approaching on the horizon, I am feeling really optimistic about what it is going to bring about. I found #WEverb11 via {un}commonplace and was really inspired by all of their December prompts. Since December is already halfway over (OMG!) I decided to choose just one prompt to write about. Day 11 is called Try. and prompts to write about 12 things to do or be accomplished in 2012.

Here is my list:

1. Officially start a photography business.
During this year I was given several opportunities to take pictures for friends including engagement sessions, a family session, and one for some pictures for a musicians facebook page. I discovered my true love for photography and why I love it. I can't wait to make it a bigger part of my life.
from Boutwell Studio

2. Get a new vehicle.
I have had this car since I was 16 years old and while it has served me well and probably saved me a ton on gas, the last two years of owning it has had a lot of problems. My transmission recently going out was what finally pushed me over the edge. I plan to keep the car while commuting to class, but we are hoping to get me something else whenever we think the time is right. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we can find me a jeep. I've always wanted one.
via Pinterest source unknown (please contact me if you know)

3. Read more books after graduation.
It's so commonly said that the life of college students ruins your reading habits. And it's true. I haven't felt much like reading for enjoyment because of the overwhelming amount of reading and writing I have to do for school. I hope to change that after I graduate. And I have full intentions of re-reading the Twilight series before the last movie comes out next year.
from Coralie Bickford-Smith

4. Cook more. Cook better.
Being a newlywed + a college student means that my cooking skills are very limited and I hardly have time to learn anything new. I'm hoping that after graduation I will have more time to improve my cooking skills and actually know how to cook a variety of things. I think it will be easier to enjoy cooking when I'm not trying to rush through it so I can eat and get my studying done at a reasonable hour to go to bed.
via Pinterest couldn't track all the way to the source, contact me if you know

5. Focus more on my Etsy shop.
I want to devote more time to my Etsy shop so that I can learn things about running my own business and to keep myself creatively challenged. And to have lots of fun product photoshoots.
from chronicle Books

6. Blog consistently and with purpose.
Starting the jessica chronicled blog was something in steering myself in blogging about things that are personal to me and that I feel passionately about. That being fashion, photography, and faith. I have found the world of blogging to be so inspiring with all the friendships that can be made the stories that can be read used to inspire. Plus, it's good eye candy. But my goal is to continue blogging about what I am passionate about and to not slack off or loose sight of why I started blogging in the first place.
from marta writes

7. Restyle myself and my closet.
I definitely want to restyle myself after I graduate and incorporate more pieces that speak to the style I love and that are beyond the t-shirts, cardigans, and flats that I like to wear to class.
from The Daybook - I love her style!

8. Pay off all our student loans.
This might be a little overly optimistic to accomplish within the first year, but I would still like to try for it. We've both worked hard to save, so I think anything is possible!
via Pinterest (source unknown, please contact me if you know)

9. Do something drastic with my hair.
(Again.) This year I cut off about 12 inches of my hair! It was really fun to do and I loved having the drastic change. I want to do something like that again in 2012. Maybe I will dye it a completely different color.
from marie claire

10. Decorate our house.
The house husband and I live in is just something we are renting. I think for that reason I have been really timid about doing a ton of decorating (and even unpacking some things) because I keep thinking of it as temporary. But, when I'm honest with myself, we have no living plans as of right now, so who knows how long we will be in this house! It could be a few more months, it could be a few more years. I just want to stop thinking of it as temporary and actually make it home-y.
from Country Home

11. Take more pictures.
As much as I love photography and capturing moments, you would think that I would take more pictures during everyday life. But I don't. No matter how much I want to, I just don't think about going and grabbing that camera and taking pictures of what we had for dinner or the two of us washing dishes. It's simple things like that that you sometimes cherish the most, and I want to capture those moments for us to keep forever. I'm even debating doing a 365 challenge (a photo every day for a year).
from Mike Peters Photography

12. Graduate.
Sometimes I think I take it for granted that I am going to be graduating in May, but it really is a goal that I am going to have to continue working at for another semester.
via Pinterest uploaded by user
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