Thursday, July 12, 2012

Outfit Inspiration: Jade + Yellow

from J's Everyday Fashion

Now that it feels more like summer in the PNW, I am able to think about actually wearing shorts, tanks, and sandals. Also, I am going to Southern California for about a week in August and will be needing some fun summer outfits.

I love these colors that J put together (I can't quite tell, it could be teal and yellow but w/e you get the idea right?!). She did a great job of using bright colors and then toning them down with nude tan sandals.

I can't wear yellow too much because it makes my skin look red, but I could get away with it on the bottom. This is a great outfit for hanging out at Disneyland! Colorful and practical!

Check out her blog for more awesome outfit posts!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Etsy Finds:: Simple Necklaces

One site that I thoroughly enjoying browsing on a regular basis is Etsy. I love the variety of handmade items from sellers all around the world. Recently, I have come across some lovely dainty necklaces and am considering getting one or two. This year I am trying to only buy handmade jewelry (locally or non). I love the selection of handmade items and feel that many fit my changing taste in necklaces. Currently, I am loving small chain necklaces with little details. I think they go along better with the type of shirts I wear and are more practical for teaching.

Find here
From jennijewel's shop, located in Los Angeles, California. She has a variety of handmade necklaces and earrings. Some of her necklaces have a simple chain with a arrowhead stone or a little cross or multiliple small colorful beads.

Find here

This little heart necklace is from Coco Handcrafted Jewelry, located in Sterling, Virginia. This artisan has many simple jewelry pieces -- sparrows, initial charms, and dainty bracelets. 

Find here
This delicate colorful necklace is from the shop, seven9, located in Kailua, Hawaii. Seven9 has many lovely little necklaces and gorgeous earrings -- another favorite of mine is the golden leaf necklace.

Which one is your favorite? What are some of your favorite Etsy finds?

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

A Little Harvesting -- Week 5

"Take thy plastic spade,
It is thy pencil; take thy seed, thy plants,
They are thy colors."
--William Mason, The English Garden

On the 5th week of growing a garden, we got to harvest a little. As you saw on July 4th we picked some lettuce and then used it just the other day in a delicious salad. Last night we picked some Spinach leaves -- hoping they will be tasty for tonight's salad. :) 

Check out those pumpkin leaves! Those things are going to take over!
As he walks around the garden, he makes a beeline for me :) 
Lettuce is growing back quite a bit even since the 4th -- thanks to these awesome summer days!
My happy herbs growing. I need to pick & dry them.

The Kohlrabi haha
If you look closely you can see tiny Romaine lettuce leaves growing
Delicious salad with greens from the garden and those Early Girl tomatoes from FM

Oh how I love the garden! I am particularly excited for my tomatoes to grow. I can't wait to compare the varieties! I had the chance to try the Early Girl kind because we got some at the Farmer's Market on Saturday. Let me tell you, my mouth is watering at the thought of having our own batch of Early Girls! Those are some tasty juicy sweet tomatoes... oooo yeah. Summer is here folks :)

I am thoroughly enjoying the summer right now... It's FINALLY here! We have had several warm (as in like 80 degree temps) days. Sunshine feels oh so good. Ahhh.... Lovin' this season!

PS -- If you want to stay mostly updated with the happenings in my life, find me on Instagram @ sincerelyangela1 ;-)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Mid-Year Check Point on 2012 Goals

Technically, I should have done this post on June 1st as that was really the mid-year check point.... but technicalities aside, this works. I had to laugh when I saw that Bonnie at Going Home to Roost was thinking the same thing (this link will take you to her post). She posted her mid-point check recently and it was fun to see her progress. I feel like I have been doing fairly well in some areas and need to worker harder in others.

:: Goals for this year ::

1. Faith : Spend time reading the Bible and attend a few church services. -- I was fairly good at reading the Bible for 40 days of Lent but haven't done a good job of continuing that lately. 

2. Finances: Be mindful of money that is spent; be careful not to spend lots of money on little things that add up. Save as much as possible! -- There have been lots of unplanned expenses lately and I think I would do better if I wrote down everything. 

3. Giving: Donate to causes/ charities during the year. -- I need to get on this one! I would like to donate to Dinner & A Movie, CAT (Cat Adoption Team - where I got my one kitty), a charity for soldiers/veterans and maybe one or two others. 

4. Personal Style (somewhat funny to list this after the above goals, I know): Improve my wardrobe while being reasonable financially and sensible based on weather patterns in the PNW. If choosing to buy clothes, I will do so thoughtfully. -- Doing much better on this and I have been creative using new items with clothes I already have. Keep it up!

5. Health and Fitness: Try a variety of healthy foods and recipes. Make physical activity more of a priority- find some activity to enjoy consistently. -- Actually, on the food part, I am doing very well. I still have a bad bad habit of not eating lunch too often but I am trying. I also recently signed up for Zumba again and have that class tonight! I am looking forward to it!

6. Literacy: Read more than I did last year! (won't be hard lol) I have a giant stack of books on my nightstand. -- Now that school has settled down I can do this more. I just don't have the interest in reading much when I have school work. Unfortunately, that's just how my brain works! I've got a giant stack of good books on my nightstand and I'll be digging into them.


Big challenge of the year (and really my life): Seek the goodness in commitment. Learn how to make commitment positive, try to be less fearful of the word and its meaning. Try committing to something - even if it is small. Just try. -- Ironically, this is the one goal where I have made the most progress! While I am a bit 'gray scaled' on the others, I feel I have made leaps and bounds in meeting this goal. Being that it is a difficult one for me, it feels great to have grown so much. I have decided to fully enjoy my relationship with Brian. We have a wonderful relationship and it feels so good to now have our family be a part of it; I think that has helped me to be less fearful of commitment. I think if a relationship is healthy it should be shared with those you love and should include people most important to you. There is nothing better than having the support of those you love, support the one you love! Oh goodness, I sound mushy... haha Forgive me ;-) I just feel very happy and relieved in so many ways. 

How are your goals coming along? Where do you need to improve or continue good work? 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

4th of July Celebrations

"This nation will remain the land of the free only as long as it is the home of the brave." -- Elmer Davis

I have much blogging to catch up on but I thought I would do a separate post for the 4th of July (as I have done each year) and then do a few posts with updates. I think I will let the pictures do most of the talking....

The day started out with picking lettuce... I got a bit carried away and picked it all! haha It's not the best kind, very limp. So we are growing Romaine which will be better for salads. We are first time gardeners so this is all a learning experience!
Picking away, quite happily. 
LOTS of lettuce!
Mr. took a picture of me - I need to teach him a few tricks of photography but hey, I made him pick lettuce... a girl can't complain too much right?! ;-)
We had so much it was more efficient to wash it all in the sink. I enjoyed "swishling" it around.
My B and I went to the Blues Festival on the Waterfront in PDX. I loved watching people and the music was pretty good. He is so good at getting me out and about!

Yes! Our corn is "knee high by the 4th of July" :) Yay!! As of today it is even taller!
I was attempting to do a slow shutter picture of Mom with a sparkler.
The day ended with watching people around the neighborhood set off illegal fireworks. We hung out with our neighbors from next door and lit a few sparklers. I loved hearing people out and about hooting and hollering as they lit off fireworks. What a great 4th of July! 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Flourishing -- Week 4

"Plants cry their gratitude for the sun in green joy." -- Terri Guillemets

I can't believe it, a whole four weeks has gone by since we planted the garden. We have been enjoying watching it steadily grow each week, taking the beating from the wind and rain... and striving upwards for sunshine. The lettuce is very bushy and ready to be harvested, the corn is trying to reach our knees, the carrot leaves are fluffy, and my mini pumpkins are getting ready to take over. So much is going on! My mom and I have also gotten a kick out of seeing our large cat, Cheese Puff, fly through the garden when he gets a certain twang in his fur. It's quite a sight seeing him jump and run! haha During the day, however, he is quite relaxed and often sits on one of the corners while he soaks up the sun too. 

On Sunday, July 1st our garden looked like this -- it gets "fluffier" by the day: 

My mini decorative pumpkins are doing great! They are neighbors to Alyssum in the front and carrots in the back.
Kohlrabi growing like crazy and Spinach in front. 
He followed me as I went around and inspected the garden. Farmer Cheese!

Today we are going to see if the corn is "knee high" as the saying goes, "Knee high by the 4th of July." I think it is there!

Happy 4th of July!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A Little Taller-- Week 3

"Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty, and generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity." -- Lindley Karstens

Oh I am embarrassed! I am so behind in documenting my lovely garden but since the weekend of the 23rd & 24th, life has been going nonstop. I went to Spokane with Brian that weekend to see his mom (unfortunately she has declined greatly in two weeks) and the last two weeks of June were spent doing na in-person, two week condense course. The week after the trip was absolutely crazy because I didn't have the weekend for homework and a lot was going on. My cat had a serious health issue that had to be taken care of and go figure, I didn't sleep much or well much of the week. Needless to say, posting took the very last back burner. 

On the plus side I can say this:
My cat is okay -- FINALLY (been several weeks of not having her healthy)
The trip was good and it was very important that I went with B
I survived a very hectic week on little energy
I can breathe easier now, yippie!

Alrighty.... on to what this post is really about. ;-) Here is what my garden looked like on 24th:

Check out that lettuce! 

Four happy zucchini plants -- there are two others in a different area of our yard that are growing well. We did lose  one or two -- probably a good thing actually! We're going to need to start a Farmer's Market stand if all these plants are good producers! haha
So there ya go, Week 3! Stay tuned for what I saw this Sunday -- Week 4!