birthday weekend!

my 22nd birthday is this coming tuesday! but since tuesday’s are full of driving and classes for me, ike and i decided to celebrate my birthday the few days leading up to the 29th. i’m terrible at letting people know what i want for my birthday, partly because i never really know and partly because i don’t like people spending money on me. so this year i told ike that rather than getting me a present, i’d rather us just enjoy a few nights out with friends! 

on thursday, ike rode up to athens with me so i could go to my two classes, and then we went to terrapin with lots of my friends! terrapin is a brewery based in athens that gives tours three nights a week. for $10, you get a pint glass and you’re able to taste all of their different beers. my favorite of theirs, moo-hoo, is a chocolate stout that is only available in the fall and winter, so going to terrapin is a must during this time of year. however, thursday night they also had wake-n-bake on tap, which is a coffee oatmeal imperial stout! basically it has all of the elements that a good beer needs. but as ike pointed out to me, terrapin doesn’t make a subtle beer, so this was super heavy on the coffee — so one of the innovative bartenders suggested mixing the two, which was delicious. after terrapin, we headed to ted’s most best in downtown athens and enjoyed some yummy carb-filled calzones before heading back home!

  

                          

                            high school reunion! callie, jonathan, myself, and lauren

  

                         

                         

        me and caroline, who happens to hail from griffin, right near my new town!

i had such a great time with lots of friends that i haven’t really gotten to see since the wedding, and i’m so thankful that everyone came out. and i’m also thankful that i’ve got a husband that enjoys reminiscing on our wedding, because we were asked a thousand questions! we both had an incredible time on our big day and love telling people all about it. 

then friday night, we met up with some of our close friends, rod and henrietta, for dinner at maguire’s in downtown senoia! we stuffed our faces with their saucy wings and then headed over to zac brown’s bar southern ground social club to watch our friend steven play with a band called gin house (gin-house.com). if you haven’t heard of them before, you need to. we’ve seen them multiple times now and they’re seriously great. 

                         

today is a completely packed day with sunday school, church, a church potluck lunch, paintball with the high school youth, then pizza and youth afterwards. whew. the birthday celebration will continue tomorrow night with sushi at the restaurant where we had our first date 🙂

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at the beginning of the wedding planning process, ike and i decided that we wanted the day to be full of personal details that celebrated our relationship, our friends, and our families. i quickly determined that all of our centerpieces, bouquets, and boutonnieres would be handmade; not only did i not trust a florist to fulfill my vision, but i also wanted to cut corners monetarily wherever possible. 

my wonderful mom ordered the flowers from the tallahassee costco about a month prior to the wedding, and then had to reorder them from a local florist three days before the wedding. long story short, costco messed up and never actually placed our order, so a friend came to the rescue and got us wholesale prices at the local florist! hooray for connections. we used creamy white hydrangeas (my favorite), baby’s breath, white roses, and tons of greenery that i won’t pretend i know the name of. and thanks to my parents’ green thumbs, we even incorporated greenery from their yard, which was extra special to me.

lauren and i began brainstorming boutonniere ideas in november or so and immediately  fell in love with this photo from pinterest:

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i wanted the wedding to be laid-back and full of nature yet still modern and beautiful, and this boutonniere design completely captured that idea so i knew i needed to use it. plus, once i showed ike, he reacted the same way lauren and i did! i found a bag of pheasant feathers online from JoAnn’s for around $2, bought fake cotton bulbs from the florist, and used leftover greenery from the bouquets and centerpieces. i made all 15 boutonnieres by myself the day before the wedding and it only took around an hour and a half. they received so much praise and the groomsmen were so happy with the look!

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here are some more shots of how handsome my man looked:

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all in all, these babies cost around $2 a pop, nowhere near the $25-30 that a florist would have charged. so basically, i made all of them for the same amount that it would have cost to have one done professionally. and if i do say so myself, they turned out pretty dang well. 

check back soon for a look at the bouquets!

it’s officially awards season! this is one of my favorite times of the year because of the incredible (and sometimes not so incredible) fashion, the inevitably ridiculous red carpet interviews, and the annual tradition that my older sister, Jennifer, and I do which is make best- and worst-dressed lists. i actually received this text from Jennifer last saturday:

Golden Globes tomorrow! Let the awards season begin!!!!

so yeah, it’s a big deal. since ike and i are at church on sunday nights until about 8:45, i missed the red carpet. but never fear, the trusty people.com was waiting for me when i got out with all of the amazingness that is awards season. this post is probably going to bore most of you, but i’m going to reveal my top picks! this year was definitely heavy on the nudes and reds, which isn’t that big of a surprise. there were a number of dresses that i loved, but nothing that completely wowed me. i guess i’ll have to wait until the oscars or the met gala for a jaw-dropper. enough small talk, here are some of my top choices!

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this somewhat column/mermaid silhouette is stunning on both of these women, who are stunning to begin with. anne hathaway (in chanel) can do no wrong lately (except for that Tom Ford fiasco a few weeks back), and emily blunt (in michael kors) is flawless and also married to john krasinski.

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while i wouldn’t necessarily pair this blush color with amy adam’s pale skin, she is breathtaking in this marchesa gown. the shape and proportion of the dress are perfect for her. love. jennifer lopez (in versace) proves that she gets more beautiful everyday, and that her body is better than ever. i love this dress.

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now the ladies in red. jennifer garner (in vivienne westwood), just had a baby last year and she couldn’t look more radiant. the dress, even though it’s safe and the silhouette is overdone, fits her perfectly and is extremely tasteful for a mother of three. naomi watts (in zac posen) executes this gracefully and with an incredible body. this woman is 44 years old.

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last but not least, my top look of the night! kerry washington in miu miu. i’m obsessed with the beading, the sheer skirt overlay, the color, the high neck overlay but deep v beading… i could go on for hours. she has recently been promoting a movie and has been knocking it out of the park every red carpet she’s done. kerry isn’t usually on my best dressed list, but she nailed it at the golden globes.

to the people who actually made it through this whole post, thank you! and to those who skipped straight to the bottom, i promise to not make this whole blog all about dresses. just some of it 🙂

i love DIYing.

that being said, it can be difficult to find time between school on tuesdays and thursdays, church all day on wednesdays and sundays (perks of being a youth pastor’s wife), and usually some type of youth event on fridays or saturdays. our apartment has really started to feel like home thanks to my handyman husband, so there are actually only a few projects left. one of those projects was our bathroom mirror. we didn’t bother buying a brand new one because the original one wasn’t in too bad of shape, and also because money doesn’t grow on trees.. however it was a dark wood, which made the small bathroom feel even smaller to me. so i made use of the two days off i had last weekend while ike was out of town and used a little bit of leftover ceiling paint to bring the mirror into the 21st century!

i completely spaced and forgot to take a before shot of the mirror in the bathroom, so this will have to do:

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as you can see, i had already began the process of taping off the edges (with masking tape.. i’m resourceful).

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and that’s the lovely taped-off mirror.

then i took the mirror outside, placed it on a box to keep it off the ground, and began painting away:

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now if i had truly been trying to create a masterpiece, i would have used some sandpaper to prepare the mirror for paint. but since i didn’t know where any was, i just gave that baby three coats.

while i waited for each coat to dry, scout and i enjoyed some play time — she’s so cute, it hurts.

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after a couple of hours, the third coat was finally dry:

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and… tada! such a simple project but it made a world of difference to me:

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now i just need to figure out an inexpensive solution for an outdated bathroom light fixture. if you have any ideas, please let me know! i’ll try anything at this point.

also, one of my next projects will include finding art to cover the large, bare areas of our bedroom walls. we’ve got a huge wall opposite of our bed that is begging for some frames. my favorite DIY blog Young House Love recently tackled their own bare walls, and it’s serving as my inspiration:

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check out that blogpost at http://www.younghouselove.com/2013/01/some-sunroom-art/  !

they’re here!

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the moment i’ve been desperately waiting for has arrived! our stunning wedding pictures are here and ready to be loved. once i receive the CD with the entire library of photos, i’ll post a blog containing some of my favorites. until then, enjoy our photographers’ favorites on their blog at http://theredflystudio.com/blog/?p=7511. 

i already knew how good-looking our friends and family were, but these pictures are breathtaking. i am so thankful for every single person that had a hand in our big day! 

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after watching this video twice in a row, ike and i have decided to get married again as soon as possible! the video is proof that it actually was as much fun as we remember. the wonderful dustin maeno was able to capture all of the small details of the reception that i missed, and even some dance moves i wish i had missed. please note my amazing grandmother and new brother-in-law getting jiggy at 3:37.   

thank you to all of our friends and loved ones who made the reception more perfect than we ever imagined it could be!

for christmas, i planned a surprise caving trip for ike and a few of his buddies. needless to say he loooved the gift and has been anxiously awaiting its arrival. well yesterday morning, ike finally headed out of town with his guys for a weekend of adventure! this is the longest we’ve been apart since getting married.. they are in the cave right now, so i’m passing the time while i nervously wait for the call that says they’re safe.

it was actually almost an entire year ago that i went on my first caving trip, which will remain a special memory for me. i love the outdoors but i also live with a healthy fear of anything that could cause me true harm, and ike doesn’t really seem to have that fear. there is no doubt that he’s the man for me because i allowed him to convince me to climb into a cave with him for 5 hours, army-crawl through freezing water, and squeeze my way through cracks that i was positive i would get stuck in. though the experience started out as a terrifying thrill, i eventually grew to enjoy the adventure and was so proud of myself afterwards. ike was my constant cheerleader and kept encouraging me throughout the entire trip. i couldn’t have done it without him! i’m actually looking forward to the next caving trip we take… crazy, i know.

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the crew pre-cave from L to R: spencer and megan, hunter, jonathan, ike, and me

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     aaaand post-cave! L to R: me, ike, hunter, jonathan, spencer, and megan

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probably one of the main reasons i knew i could make it out alive: megan was 3 months pregnant during this trip! one brave mama.

we were all famished afterwards so we headed to where the guys always go after a caving trip: cracker barrel! nothing like hundreds, if not thousands, of calories and way too many carbs to perk you right back up after hours of crawling in mud. 

i can’t wait to have my cave man back 🙂