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heart writing, My Lifey

When An Unforgettable Summer Ends // A Short Life Update

September 12, 2017

“It’s the oldest story in the world.
One day you’re seventeen and planning for someday,
and then quietly, without you ever really noticing, 
someday is today, and that someday is yesterday
and this is your life.”

| n a t h a n    s c o t t |

 

 

Oh my, this long neglected little corner. I’m surprised it still lets me log in and doesn’t boot me out with a “Sorry, we’ve forgotten your username, please try again later.”

But if ever I had a good excuse for playing hooky, it would be these past few months.
I know I’ve used this excuse before so I’m probably loosing credibility with it, but let me give you a brief window into my recent life and let you draw your own conclusions.

A P R I L  2017  >> About exactly a week after I scribbled my last post,  I got engaged (eeeek!) to my long time childhood friend and love, Luke. I could gush on and on here, but I’ll keep it short for now *wink*. He totally surprised me with the most sentimental proposal ever at one of my favorite spots, the Chattanooga Choo Choo. I’ll have to post our proposal story soon as a whole separate post of it’s own, because it will need it’s own word space. Needless to say my April 22nd on was pretty much spent completely in the clouds.

 

 

 

 

 

M A Y 2017  >>    Family high school graduations, beach vacations, the start of wedding planning and engagement pictures. The merry month just flew by, such a fun start to the summer, it was a packed month! Oh yes, and I was still in the I-just-got-engaged clouds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

J U N E  2017  >> Wedding planning. Getting to sit down and finally plan a wedding with all my dream Pinterest boards open was so surreal! Getting to choose a color palette, style, outfits, food and decor. It was so fun, and a little overwhelming at times even though I chose to do the “simple, small wedding” route. But what a fun season of my life it was.

 

 

J U L Y  2017  >> Packing up all my *cough* many belongings, and active wedding planing. Nothing triggers emotions more than packing up a bedroom which you’ve shared with your two sisters all your life, boxing up your office/studio and moving to a place without your family which you’ve lived and breathed with for your whole 20 years. There were so many “Oh my gooosh, is this really happening? I’m so EXCITED” days, and there were also the “Am I really doing this, and leaving home and getting married?” days. All such good emotions, but definitely threw this sentimental girl for a loop sometimes. I’ll always look back on those days with sweet savoring.

 

 

A U G U S T 2017  >> Wedding of my dreams and marrying the love of my life. When three months of wedding planning is finally done, family and friends surround you, and your wedding day dawns as the most gorgeous day in August, and you get to marry your best friend, it truly was the best day ever. I will do a post on our wedding day soon and share more of our beautiful wedding photos taken by the amazing Allix Ruby. August also saw us honeymooning for the first time/out of the country for the first time in my long dreamed of trip to P.E.I  Canada, and coming home to start a new life as a wifey in our little city apartment in Chattanooga, TN. (detailed posts coming soon).

 

 

Which brings us to today, S E P T E M B E R  2017.
So,  I am so tickled and happy to be back writing in this little corner and for the first time in my new home… a little apartment across the river from the bustling Chattanooga, TN. I’m back from our honeymoon travels and this crazy transition of moving, marrying, and becoming a wife. Now I just can’t wait to jot down all these stories to share. I have quite a few of them coming your way in the next couple o’ weeks.

The smell of fresh muffins made in my new muffin tins just came out of the oven, I made a walk to our little P.O. box to check our mail, and now I’m happily situated on our new couch amidst the throw pillows with my laptop writing these stories down to share with you.

It’s been the very happiest summer of my life, complete with every kind of emotion that comes with the territory of big life transitions.
It’s crazy to think the summer is ending, and with it my days as a single girl. I welcome autumn, as a new season in a new season of my life, living admidst a new city with lots of new things to learn and explore.

So much new, it’s exciting and daunting at the same time. I long to hold on to past days, and to hold on to even these new exciting days as a newlywed forever. But I’ve been realizing something, if we always just held on to old sweet memories, we would never go make new amazing ones.

“… go have a new adventure.”
| e l l i e ,  from UP |

 So here’s to the new; new seasons of the year, of life, and new seasons of memories.
It’s been a completely unforgettable summer.

How was your summer? What memories will forever be etched in your heart from April-August?

I’m so happy to be back!

always,
A  B  B  Y

Photo l o c a t i o n s: 

#1: Charlottetown Yacht Club, Charlottetown PEI Canada
#2-#5: Chattanooga Choo Choo
#6-#8: Navarre Beach, Florida
#9: Walnut Street Bridge, Chattanooga, Tennessee
#12-#13: Sunset Rock, Lookout Mountain, Tennessee

travel

Thanksgiving in N. Carolina

December 1, 2015

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There’s just something about spending Thanksgiving in North Carolina.
It’s an excitement that’s enveloped me since I was a kiddo, remembering that serious itch of travel excitement at the thought of going to “Uncle Mark & Aunt Vickie’s house” to celebrate one of the best holidays! That feeling returned this year as we packed our duffle bags for the seven hour trip, I can’t put my finger on exactly why it did and still does have a happy-dance-feeling for me, but I think it has something to do with thought of dear friends and family on the other side of those mountains! North Carolina beauty too has always been a spoonful of the happiness, similar to home but different enough that beckons an exploration!
So, it was with very happy hearts that we began our journey at 5:30am Thanksgiving morning!
For once it wasn’t hard for this certain night owl to awake, the cause because excitement awaited outside of the covers.
I had to laugh at myself as we headed out of Nashville realizing how very few times I have gazed at the beauty of a sunrise, all that beauty that comes up and I normally miss it due to snoring (I speak figuratively of course).  It was a grand to experience it again, and maaaay have tempted me to greet more of them!

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May I just say spending Thanksgiving with friends is one of the happiest things to experience? Honestly words just can’t describe the absolute gratefulness I felt as we all set around the table laughing, talking, eating, sharing and just enjoying being together! I was reminded yet again what blessings the Lord has given us, what gifts he plants in our everyday lives that appear so ordinary but when seen in greater light, are everything but that. This is what Thanksgiving is about, reflecting on those things and and not just reflecting but glorifying the Lord from whom all blessings flow!
24 hours isn’t long enough when spending it with dear friends, but somehow we managed to fill every minute to the brim with memories! So thankful for this amazing time!

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This trip seemed the king of short & sweet, after hugging good-byes to friends, we headed towards the embrace of family two hours away for another 24 hour stop! It had been over a year since all family on Dad’s side had been reunited (since my grandmother’s passing on a year ago August) so it was with much laughter and joy that we all touched base! (we all had a good laugh about the rounds and rounds of hugs, with 19 people it can take a while!)
Playing numerous games, catching up on each other’s lives, reminiscing old memories and mishaps, retaking the family photos and being amazed at the change that’s taken place. . . special beyond end!

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Good-byes. They’re hard. I much prefer hello’s. But it’s a realization and reminder that good times and get-togethers can’t be a steady diet, or they wouldn’t be unique and exciting, they would become ordinary.
That is the true beauty of wonderful relationships with family and friends, it’s that you can come together (even if it’s only for a couple dozen hours) have a blast, have a hard time saying goodbye, but move on and look forward to the next reunion!
Even though the visits were quick, they were wonderful! Jam packed with more memories for the banks and gave me much to reflect on with thankfulness on the way to our last stop.
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As the season of Thanksgiving unfolds and meshes into the glorious season of joy and giving, our last stop was Asheville and then on to Clyde, North Carolina for our favorite christmas tree farm! As a mental note, if you find a hole-in-the-wall place kinda by accident and end up loving it. . . please make sure to document it well! Such was not the case with this little farm we stopped at last Thanksgiving. When trip planning came around this year we had a humdinger of a time trying to find this place, eventually, when we had almost given up, google maps came to the rescue. It’s now well documented in a numerous safe places; address, location, and phone number, plus a business card in everyone’s wallets.

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After much discussion as to which tree was “the one” we finally all agreed and got it loaded up. Hands smelling of fresh fraiser fir, I snapped a few photos of just the glory of North Carolina pre/winter beauty.

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Our trek home was a soggy one, our windshield wipers didn’t rest the whole way back and our tree got enough water to last it a good long while! My family all reflected on how quiet I was on the way home. . . I laughed, not realizing I hadn’t said more than a few sentences put together every hour or so.
Home-going usually produces such an outcome for me, I love thinking about the time spent, the memories collected, and especially this trip, just reflecting with thankfulness.

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Thanksgiving. It’s more than just a day, it’s a lifestyle. It’s a way of living each and everyday with praise to the Lord and recognition of His goodness. From thanksgiving stems an indescribable joy!
Let us keep this spirit of thanksgiving ever present and near us as we move into the beautiful season of joy and giving that characterizes December!
It was a wonderful way to spend such a beautiful holiday, I am left with the faithful remembrance of the time and smile whenever I think of the memories!
Aren’t times like this the best?

>>> a b b y

jotter's journal

Jotter’s Journal // november

November 6, 2015

Jotter's Journal // november

I seriously realize with all due consciousness that I haven’t been here in a while. Actually, that would be an understatement in itself, but I can’t think of a better answer other than the normal clichè, “Life’s been good & busy.”

But I’m not going to be one who fills posts with apologies excusing my not being here, instead here I am again, absence makes the heart grow fonder, right?

November has gotten off to a rollicking start, though I think I left my brain back in May somewhere, but I’m doing my best to catch it up to speed!

//Out-of-doors. . .
November in Tennessee doesn’t necessarily mean barefoot days are over! On the stroll to the mailbox this afternoon I traipsed through a carpet of leaves on the front walk, leaves that but two days ago were all neatly raked. Oh well, so much for that! All it took was one rain and a bit of wind. Looks like more raking is in order!

//Busy working on. . .
Each day is different but, for right now I think I’m in the skill-building/study-and learn-all-you-can season! I’m working my way through numerous books (finally making some headway on that ever growing list!) and the Lord has also blessed my etsy shop which has kept me on my toes filling orders!
Fun fact: People actually buy Christmas gifts the last week in October! (don’t laugh, it’s true.)

//Currently reading. . .
The Digital Photography Book by Scott Kelby
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Champagne Butterfield
Lady in Waiting by Jackie Kendall & Debbie Jones

//Favorite book recently read. . .
Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
Jim and Elisabeth Elliot’s story is so sweet and shows just the amazing-ness of the sovereign hand of God in their lives! Their testimony of how they trusted the Lord, even in regards to their relationship, was an enjoyable read. And plus, Elisabeth Elliot was such a grand writer, in case you didn’t know.

//At the desk. . .
My newest skill I’ve been burying my head in is book-binding! I’ve made several journals now and am LOVING the process! The smells, the textures, the finished project. . . ah, you get the idea! I’m having fun!

//Beyond the desk. . .
Cross country season being over for the younger siblings, we still get to watch them race every now and then at an occasional race around TN, and lately a trip to the pumpkin patch was a fun family excursion. Family time is precious.

//In the evening. . .
Late nights talking with family, early nights in which I head to bed and read, some nights when work carries over until it’s time to hit the hay; a little sampling of each, makes my night-owl-at-heart-ness happy!

//Reflecting on. . .
The contrast of my selfish and stubborn tendencies to the Lord’s self-sacrifical and ever good ones. Learning how to die to myself and surrender my own will daily, taking every thought captive and looking to His grace every day for strength.
Amazed at the Lord’s goodness.

//Through Scripture. . .
I’ve really enjoyed going through a scripture study by She Reads Truth called Women in the Word (Old Testament) which walks you through a 5-week study of the women in the Old Testament through various passages, each day focusing on a different woman. It’s been encouraging and convicting and sheds light on so many areas.

//Happy about. . .
/Celebrating this month about being truly thankful, it’s one of my favorite things about this time of year.
/New plans and ideas regarding this blog (I know this is getting old, but I’m a change lover, new ideas are just a part of my brain!) 😀
/Just life, each and every day, the opportunities!
/Getting more chocolate from Trader Joe’s soon, I’ve been too long without it!

//Inspiring quote. . .
“Let not our longing slay the appetite of our living.”
>>jim elliot

I’ll be back soon, I promise! In the mean time, enjoy every moment of this glorious season of November! (I have a feeling it will be a fast one!)

>>>a b b y

lifestyle

//small hands , apron strings , a spot of tea

September 29, 2015

 

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The weekend had begun. Friday morn, autumn light streaming in, hands eager to begin. Her fingers flipped through the well-loved American Girl Doll cookbooks as she scribbled a list of all the yummies she wanted to make.
A tea party was in the works!
Gingerbread, jelly biscuits, chicken salad and your hot tea of choice. These made the cut and with excitement she donned her pink apron, itching to begin.
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Her hands needed only a little guidance as the recipe was worked through, intent on her work she smiled through every teaspoon, and asked if she could taste the dough.

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She climbed the counter top, and carefully handed down her tea set. Excitement and mischief danced in her eyes as she asked if she could pull a “tea prank” on her mother when she got home. She emptied the new box of tea bags and placed the bare box back in the cabinet, then began rehearsing how she’d pull off the trick.
Table set, ready for the luncheon to begin.

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Conversation starters began the tea time. . . her eyes were lit up with excitement and her delighted chatter showed all who sat round the table just how such a simple thing as a tea party can just make a little girl’s day. What a sweet time, memories came to mind of the days when such a little gesture also brought so much joy to me. . . those are the days worth remembering and holding on to, and also re-experiencing with other little ladies!

Such was the start to the weekend! Thank you Hannah for letting us bake along , laugh along , munch along and hang out along with you!
You’re a very special young lady. Looking forward to many more such times with you!

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*A very special thanks to the awesome White family!