‘Tis the Season for Beautiful Pictures

I love Christmas time. Even before I got into photography I loved taking pictures of everything. From the decorations to the happy faces, to the mess in the living room after unwrapping presents. I think the holiday makes for some great kodak moments. So I’m going to share them with you. This being my first Christmas with my Canon, I definitely had some fun with it.

Lights and decorations:


Lounging around by the tree (with wine most nights):




The trees themselves. One is mine, one is in the front window of my parents house. It’s the fake one though…we have a real one that the presents go under

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My mom’s beautiful table setting:

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Party time:

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Baking cookies

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Unwrapping said presents:

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Ryan wearing a bow in his hair


The mess in the living room after unwrapping presents

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French toast and mimosas for breakfast this morning



Happy Halloween!

So this Halloween, Bryan had more of a say in the costume. Past years, I kinda picked out our costumes and then asked if he was okay with it, which he always was because he’s awesome. Last year he even agreed to be a fairy (because we were Cosmo and Wanda, the coolest fairies ever).

I gave Bryan more of a say this year..I picked out some options that I liked that I thought he would also like and let him pick his favorite. We ended up with Ash and Misty from Pokemon. Nerdy? Maybe. Awesome? Definitely. I love costumes that allow me to relive my childhood.

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So the main purpose of this post is to show how EASY it was to make our costumes for this year. I spent a total of $23 on both costumes. For the Ash costume, the vest and hat took me about an hour or two. For Misty, I just cut up a yellow tank top from Goodwill and hemmed it. The rest of the costume I bought or already had. So this is what I ended up with:



Here’s a list of things I used:

-Blue Tshirt – $3
-Green and Yellow felt (bought extra of this in case I messed up)- $0.90
-Yellow Ribbon (w/ 40% coupon) – $2.40
-White Collared shirt from Goodwill – $3.39
Red and White trucker Hat from Amazon – $6.50

Bryan already has:
-workout gloves
-regular jeans and sneakers

-Yellow Tank Top from Goodwill: $3.39
Red Suspenders from Amazon: $7.64

I already have:
-Red sneakers
-Denim shorts

Other things I used that I already had:
-iron on hem stuff…i think it’s called fusible hem or fusible something or other. Not sure.
-basic sewing supplies/sewing machine
-wax paper

I’m going to go into detail on Ash’s vest because it was the only really involved part of the whole costume.

1. First I cut the sleeves off of the blue tshirt and hemmed them.


2. I folded the shirt in half and took a sharpie to mark where the middle was. Then cut it on that line as straight as I could. The Sharpie line is hard to see in the picture…the lighting in my craft room kinda blows.

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3. I ran out of blue thread and also figured I didn’t want a visible seam in the middle of the vest, so I used some iron on hem stuff that I already had to hem the opening in the vest.


4. I then took wax paper and laid it over the vest and drew the general shape and size of the yellow strips that go on it to look like pockets. I measured the rectangle I drew and then cut straight lines on the wax paper with a paper-cutter (a scrapbooking tool I already had). I pinned the piece of wax paper to the felt and cut around it as straight as I could.

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5. I sewed the felt strips on. I did the same process for the circles that look like buttons but hand stitched those because it was easier than trying to use the machine on a small circle.


6. Then I sewed yellow ribbon along the bottom of the vest.


7. The hat I didn’t take a before picture of but if you clicked the amazon link it’s just a plain red and white hat. I used the green felt and my Silhouette Cameo (again, another scrapbooking tool I own. First time cutting felt out of it though!), to cut the logo on Ash’s hat. To be honest, there are Ash hats you can buy off amazon…but they were a few bucks more and shipping was not free or fast. I don’t think when I went to order it I would have gotten it in time for Halloween. But this was easy and cheap enough since I had the cameo to help.


That’s it! I also had to cut up the white shirt to make it short-sleeved, but that’s another simple hem job I didn’t bother photographing.


October Original

Time for Fair Pics! The fair was so much fun to photograph. I went twice so I could do day and night. It’s a world of difference between the two. Morning is calm and there are lots of families with small children walking around. Nighttime is crazy – lines are long, everything is lit up. I think I did a pretty decent job capturing both.

The Food:

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The Rides:

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The Games:

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The Ferris Wheel (and the view from it)

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And This Picture:


So much fun!

How to Sew Seat Cushions and Other Romantic Things

Yesterday was mine and Bryan’s 4 year anniversary. And of course I got the brilliant idea to do something adorable for it on Tuesday…which gave me 4 days to prepare. However, I managed to pull it off. I put together a cute little dining area on my balcony which was previously sans furniture. The only thing out there was my recycling. I took this photo after I bought the furniture this week, but before I did anything else to it.


So I went to town with some simple and fast decorating ideas. It helps tremendously that I have my own craft room now or I would not have been able to do any of this. one thing I knew I wanted for my furniture was seat cushions. So guess what I was doing until 11pm Friday night? Sewing seat cushions. BUT they turned out awesome. I really like the fabric I picked out. And considering sewing isn’t my forte when it comes to crafts, and the fact that I just kind of winged this, I’d say I’m pretty damn proud of them.



And then came the complete picture. Before I show it to you though, here’s some background info. I was cooking dinner while Bryan went to a nearby Chinese place to pick up rice, (because I burnt the rice), trying to get all dressed up, AND set up this table all at the same time…so it’s a miracle I even got a picture of it before we sat down to eat.


A few little details:

1) I dressed up some dollar store candle holders with ribbon and lace (and cute little tags with the number 4 on them).


2) I made little menus just for the full restaurant effect.


That’s about it. It was a pretty calm anniversary, with the exception of the moment of panic when I burned the rice. Seriously though, if you know me, you know that SOMETHING had to go wrong with this plan. I’m just glad Bryan knew exactly what to do to fix it.



Happy Fall!

I believe the first official day of fall is tomorrow. But I am in bed slightly under the weather, sipping a pumpkin smoothie this morning, and what says fall more than pumpkin flavored things and colds?

Also I had quite the fall-tastic weekend. I got carried away a bit since it was still in the upper 80s this weekend. But I just couldn’t wait any longer! I made pumpkin french toast on Saturday morning.


As far as french toast goes, the only kind I ever usually eat is our family recipe of cheesy french toast – that’s right it’s basically just french toast meets grilled cheese. Sounds weird but it’s incredible. So when I make this cheesy french toast, I’ve always used a bit more milk than is required because I don’t like eggs so I don’t like my french toast to taste like them. I did add more milk to this recipe but not enough more because they were still pretty eggy. Aside from that though, the pumpkin flavor was so good mixed with the maple syrup.



After the french toast I had to finish off the can of pumpkin so I made muffins. They aren’t that fantastic. But they make for a good little snack when popped in the microwave for 20 seconds.


After I spent the morning baking, I went to Food Lion for some beer to bring to tailgating. I ended up getting a mix-n-match six pack of all different fall flavored beers. Yea, like I said, I got a little carried away. But again…what says fall more than football and pumpkin beer?

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All Those Pretty Lights

Vacation has begun. We’ve been in Corolla, NC for two days and it’s been wonderful. While I’ve been avoiding taking my camera to the beach for fear of damaging it, I’ve had plenty to take pictures of around here. My personal favorites are the ones of the sunset off the private pier we have, and the fireworks show we got to see last night because it was conveniently rescheduled due to the hurricane.

Enjoy all the pretty colors.

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Freedom Never Tasted So Sweet

Last night was the Fourth of July and although my boyfriend was out of town, and I missed the fireworks (cancelled due to dryness despite a hurricane passing through 24 hours prior…)…I still got to hang out with two of my favorite people (my brother and his gf) in Chapel Hill. We got dinner at Sup Dogs, and went to this cute little ice cream place on a farm just as the sun was setting.  07-05-201405chapel hill 070414-02chapel hill 070414 Today I spent prepping for our week long beach trip (which also included prepping to move because I’m moving the week after we get back). I made cupcakes to take with me and share with my family. They are oh-so-delicious and their secret ingredient is tequilla. Recipe here. 07-05-201401 Except lots and lots of beach photos for the next week. 🙂