It was June, and the world smelled of roses. The sunshine was like powdered gold over the grassy hillside. — Maud Hart Lovelace
Summer in Iowa, ‘tis the sweetest pinnacle of midwestern joy. From fresh Farmer’s Markets to late spring rains to iced coffee on the porch while neighborhood kids catch lightning bugs, this is my favorite time of year. Born in winter, I live for the heat of summer sweat and the vibrant sunsets. This summer marks my first full year in Des Moines, and for once, I plan to stay put for a while. I’ve planted garden flowers and carved out a space in my refrigerator for sun tea. Slowly, as the days fly by and the calendar pages flip one to the next, I settle in to this metro, this wild and wonderful city I’m honored to call, for now, home.
You make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
Let’s revisit the past. My personal history, if you will. These are photos that made me…while I was making them.
2018 has been a wild ride. Tumultuous emotionally, in many ways, but also such a year of sweet moments. Isn’t that just normal life?! Perhaps I’m just adjusting to life as an adult. I believe that reflecting on the past, planning for the future, and living in the present can add such insight for wise living. With that, this is my Personal post on 2018! Mainly for my processing, but you’re welcome to join me. ;)
I’m sitting here, emotionally bursting with quiet joy, as snow falls quietly outside. It’s the perfect storm— a January weekend in Des Moines, as Friday evening traffic moves hesitantly down the interstate just blocks from where I sit. A mug of mostly-drunk chamomile tea sits next to me on the warm, black radiator. I’m curled up on it, my seat warm and my back cool against the attic windows. In-between sentences in my new library book, I watch the snow accumulate and my neighbor back his car off the street and on to his lawn. The city will go into snow ordinance mode, something I’ve never had to learn about until this winter.
Ready for “the best Christmas playlist ever”?? Here you go!
One of my favorite instagrammer/bloggers in NYC posts her & her husband’s “12 Dates of Christmas” each year on her blog. I thought that this year, I’d join in! You can do these with a significant other, a group of friends, or just by yourself. Some of these activities cost a little cash, others are free or cheap. You can pick an choose which Christmas events you’d like to join in on over the month of December. All of these are things taking place around Christmastime in the greater Des Moines area! Please feel welcome to comment any suggestions of your own on this blog post. Enjoy!
If, like me, you’ll be doing some shopping online as the turkey and mashed potatoes settle this evening and into the weekend, I’ve got some great tips for you to look into! Besides finding great deals to help me stretch my bank account, I’m a huge advocate of shopping local and supporting small businesses. I have collected quite the resume of local shops in Iowa (mainly in Cedar Falls, Ames, and Des Moines) so pull out your legal pad of paper (or iPad!) and let’s get planning!
moving into a historic neighborhood in Des Moines (the drake neighborhood) brought about all the mood city feels this autumn. after living in smaller towns and cities in iowa, it’s exciting to live in a place that hustles and bustles just a little bit more! everything is new here, including living smack dab in the middle of every wal-mart and aldi in the metro. hahaha.
oh, this october. perhaps the best of them all.
As an Iowa wedding photographer, I’ve photographed over 50 midwestern weddings and attended 20-30 more! However, I’ve only been in a bridal party a few times in my life. Two years ago, my best friend got married and I had the honor of standing up with her as one of her maids-of-honors. It was a wonderful day, and I also learned quite a bit! Here are a few lessons from my day in Erin’s wedding.
Des Moines is a happenin' city. People continue to ask me (as happens when you move!) "Why Des Moines?". And I'll tell you why: because it's a fun place to live! It has the perks of a large city (lots of amazing restaurants, parks, social events, and shopping of course) with the advantage of a midwest town. Seriously-- I bump into people I know at the store or downtown. What are the odds!?
It’s been a busy summer of fun and travel. I can’t believe that we’re almost halfway through it already! Clarissa (the sister) and I traveled to Chi-Town, I camp counseled High School girls for a week, and we celebrated the 4th of July. What else could you ask for?! :)
I’ve got an exciting announcement today— I’m moving!
The Goodbye Road Tour, featuring creatives Johnnyswim, Drew Holcomb, and Penny & Sparrow, made their way to the Hoyt Sherman Place Theater last evening. The evening concert brought a wide variety of audience members together, dropping barriers and differences, to enjoy sweet music and good laughter!
It's wild to hear that 2018 is almost here, isn't it?! Being a 90's kid, I can't imagine that we are almost in the 2020's!!! But, crazy as it is, I'm also so excited. 2017 was such a growing, stretching year for me...and I have no doubt that 2018 will be even bigger and better.
So, what are my goals and dreams for this year?
One of the key things I learned about prayer growing up is that God always answers. It may just be that answer isn't the one you were hoping for. (The three options are no, wait, and yes. Just in case you wondered.) However, in all the Sunday School wisdom passed on to me, the one thing that never really stuck was that regardless of the answer, it is all God's grace for my life, and His absolute best answer for me. "No" isn't a secondhand, answer-for-the-sake-of-answering from God. A "wait" or "no" just may mean a better "yes".
In this grand year of 2018, I was bound & determined to host a Galentine's Party of my own. Below, you'll find some photos, tips, and thoughts on hosting your own heart's day fête!
"I'm so busy."
This simple phrase appears in almost every conversation I have these days. Every person I encounter seems to be overwhelmed by their every-growing "to do" list, running around from work to errands to events with hardly a glance to their bank teller or grocery clerk. And when we do have a free minute (or hour), they are quickly swallowed up by scrolling through social media, playing mindless games on a smartphone, or watching another episode of the latest TV show.