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pickin' our own blackberries!

Posted on: 7.16.2017

coming to you live with a few sweet nothings dedicated to the blackberry. can we take a minute? just one minute to discuss and appreciate the blackberry? oh man. i don't know where my love came from. as a kid, i couldn't tell you if i had ever even tried a blackberry and I'm nearly convinced they weren't invented until i was in my mid twenties. But somewhere in there, I met my first blackberry and ever since then, I eat them plain at work or covered in whipped cream or in smoothies or frozen. or or or .... I could go on forever. 
So Jon has been working on his family farm all summer and wouldn't you know it, they are covered in blackberry goodness. We drove deep down into Kentucky a few weekends back for his birthday and while sitting along the patio table, his dad set down a huge bowl of fresh blackberries straight from his farm. They tasted as good as they looked so when he invited Andrew and myself out to pick blackberries for ourselves, there was no way I wasn't going to take advantage. Those pick-your-own-food places aren't really my jam. Too much quiet and direct sunlight for my taste... so it was definitely more fun to partake in the activity with friends, a nine year old, and a precious pup running around. Plus, you gotta love my fiance that will take pictures of fruit with me. What did I learn in that hot hour under the sun? Let's see. Well, just remember that the darker the berry is, the sweeter they'll be. Blackberries grow faster than weeds. and... when you get home, the berries pair well with gin.   

some people have libraries, I have my greenhouse

Posted on: 6.26.2017

when I get a text from Andrew that he'll be late to get home after work, the possibilities are endless of how I'll entertain myself. Our apartment sits dangerously close to a gold mine of a thrift store, the most gorgeous Cemetery that you could get lost in for hours and, my personal favorite, this greenhouse. Everyone knows that our apartment is bursting at the seams with plants but I just can't get enough of those deep green beauties and this green house is by far the best in the city. There's always countless staff members running around that leave you alone unless you want to be bothered with rows and rows of every plant you could image. 
I'll never forget my first hanging plant; I was at a flea market like 4 years ago and bought this fishhook succulent that was $30 and the neatest looking thing. I so excited to get it home and hang it with pride.. but it was already dead and I got totally screwed by whoever sold it to me. It was a few days later that I ventured to AJ Rahn and found the exact same hanging plant, twice the size for half of the price, and I snatched it up instatly. Like I said, this was about 4 years ago and that succulent is still hanging in my house, growing like crazy. From that point on, I trusted their plants. I just took a look around in fact and have 16 plants from AJ Rahn.... That's insane!! But anyway, there are worst ways to spend my money I guess. If you're ever in the area, hit up this greenhouse. It's quiet and wet and a nice escape from ambulance sirens and blaring music outside. And make sure to love on the greenhouse cat!!     

The rat in the hallway is keeping me humble

Posted on: 6.24.2017

That isn't some sort of deep metaphor that I used for the title up there. It's really actually and truly happening right now and in this moment. There is a real life honest to god rat in the hallway of our apartment building and it makes me need to take a shower just talking about it. There has been an unheard of amount of rain in the city lately and, as these things go, it's coming up from underneath us. I love the smell of wet sidewalks and the sound of rain hitting the roof as much as the next girl but when rain brings critters into the building, then I need it to all go away and dry up real quick. 

I got home from work yesterday and all I wanted to do was clean up the apartment, maybe light a candle, and take care of some laundry. Laundry is by far my favorite chore of all and nothing makes me happier than an empty laundry basket. So here I am after a long week, read to do my chores; a simple honey-do list that I had lovingly written for myself. And as I finished up the sweeping and spraying of some lavender scented multi purpose god only knows what kind of spray all over the marble coffee table, I scooped up the overflowing basket of laundry and hauled off to the laundry room. The laundry room, as I affectionately call it, is also our building hallway, where our mailboxes are lined up, as well as where the basement steps are. There are only four units in the building and I guess you could say we all kind of keep to ourselves, but it's pretty common for that area to be cluttered with ladders and amazon packages so stepping on something foreign isn't out of the ordinary. However, on this particular Friday night, i was not alone in the laundry room. As I carried my basket in front of me and flipped on the light, I heard something clicking on the ground and without even a second to think, a dark grey and furry rat ran across my left foot. My naked foot was touched by a rat's naked foot and now we're linked for life, or until our landlord puts him out of his misery. I'm sure he was terrified and ran quickly behind the dryer. As far as I know he's still back there, smoking a little rat cigarettes and stressed the hell out. 

This post has no point, like most of what I write about, but it seemed important to write about something ugly. I share a fair amount of life on here I guess but it's mostly about my near perfect fiancĂ©, our beautiful home, and all the fun stuff we fill this place with. So i wanted to share that while this apartment is beautiful and I'm so lucky we get to live here, there is currently one extra tenant, covered in fur, that resides in the laundry room. He's in there currently, probably right next to my tipped over laundry basket full of dirty clothes that will stay there until maybe forever. 

how to: clay ring dish

Posted on: 6.17.2017

last week, I was standing in the kitchen doing dishes (does anyone else have a dishwasher but sometimes doing dishes by hand feels therapeutic, but if you didn't have the dishwasher you would be annoyed? OK, me neither) anyway, I'm standing there and I took off my engagement ring and and it sitting on the windowsill. I never took my eyes off it as though it was going to grow legs and run away from me like an apprehensive groom and then Andrew walked up behind me. He mentioned that while he was growing up, he remembered that his mom kept a small dish by her kitchen sink and kept her wedding ring on it while she did the dishes and for whatever reason, I just found that to be such a sweet, simple little anecdote that I wanted to find my own ring dish to keep my newly most prized procession safe from dishwater and danger.
I found a tutorial on the good old internet but as most tutorials go, I crashed and burned and my dish was not great. So I switched around a few things and had much success that I'm sharing with y'all now. yay! There's photos to try and match up the process, but honestly, this is a pretty simple craft. Here we go!

--- oven bake clay. (You'll want 2x more black and white clay. It doesn't take much clay to make one dish so I recommend going in on your clay with friends or making a few dishes at a time. I went with maybe 10 different colors but would have bought them all if I could!
--- clear nail polish
--- silver/gold/black nail polish
--- small oven safe dish (this will be used as your mold, so pick whatever size you want)
--- knife & drinking glass (the glass is what I used as a cookie cutter and a rolling pin)

1. pick out your colors and cut small slivers, also cut larger slivers of white and black (then check Google to see if "sliver" is a word)
2. Roll them into a worm-like shape
3. once they're all rolled out, roll them up together, twist into a spiral, and gentle make a ball.
4. Use your glass to roll out the ball. This is where I started making changes from what I found online. This simple rolling will NOT make a marbled look. So roll it out, use your glass cookie cutter, and just start overlapping scrap pieces and rolling them flat. You want your colors to be disconnected and random. The more you roll it out, cut it into pieces, and reconnect them, the better and more unique it will look!
5. Once you have rolled out the piece enough times and you love it, use your drinking glass cookie cutter and make a circle. (this will be your dish so make sure to smooth the edges)
6. Flip over your oven safe dish and lay the circle onto the bottom, gently smoothing the edges down.
7. Bake for 15 minutes at 275 (put it on a cookie sheet) and let it cool. gently remove from your mold.
8. Once cooled, use your preferred nail polish color as a trim color (I went with gold. Because gold) and then use your top coat nail polish as a clear glaze on your dish. (keep in mind they 100% make a glaze you can buy at a craft store but hey, I had 4 bottles of top coat polish just wasting away so I used them and they worked out great for this!
I have now made like 8 of these babies and they're kind of addicting, super simple, and something I'm excited to hand out to a few of my favorite women. yay! Good luck!

I gained another pound today. But I think it's a pound of knowledge.

Posted on: 6.03.2017

every day, I get closer to the 30-year mark, being married, being in a year-long office job, and actually feeling fulfilled in my life. this time last year, I was sitting on a bathroom floor crying to myself and wondering if my life was ever going to actually fall into place. I felt like I was behind everyone else in life and I tried to force relationships, I wanted to please everyone, and I had a reckless mindset and lifestyle. I can't thank Andrew for every good thing in my life, but I can definitely say that from the moment he moved in and we started our relationship, life got easier. I was happier. I felt like this had to be what normal felt like. every day is a blessing of straightening up the living room, leaving post-it notes in his closet, and creeping through traffic to get home every night to someone that loves me for exactly who I am. it all feels good. and with feeling normal along the outside came feeling normal on the inside, too. for the first time in my life, I have let so much go and have been so much more content, confident, and grown.

A few weeks back, I stopped by my aunt's clothing shop just to thumb through the racks of pretty goodies and in the back of her shop, I saw a very intimidating rack of jeans and they caught my eye. The washes looked like my style and they were perfectly worn in.  and let me jus say for the record that I hate jean shopping. They're tight. They don't' feel good on my stomach, I used to care waaay too much about the number on the tag, you get it. Whatever. and for the longest time, every morning when I got ready for work, I would stare at the insanely tall- almost threatening- pile of jeans and just felt bleh about picking any of them up. So when I found a pair of boyfriend jeans on the rack, I figured eh what the hell, let's just see. I tried them on in the fitting room and holy shit, they fit like a glove. I would say that I've worn them maybe 8 times since I brought them home and they're getting better with every wear. Each time I bend and break a thread across the knee, I love them more. I've learned to ignore the number on the interior tag and be comfortable zipping them up with ease. So while yes, I have definitely gained some weight this year, I would like to think of every pound as a pound of happiness, contentment, and growth (literally. ha!)

fun things around the web

Posted on: 6.02.2017

flight attendants share some thoughts. 

Hey Cincinnati! Cincy Fringe is here! 

it's National Donut Day and here's some deals around the city.

I am low-key obsessed with seagrass woven baskets right now and some of my favorites are herehere, and here

this is on its way to my apartment right now and I'm sooo excited to report back. 

some of the prettiest candy out there

I love my "Jamie Dawn" bar necklace but I can't wait to get my new one for the wedding!

and speaking of weddings, we'll be avoiding these spots for our honeymoon

do you hate cilantro? it might be in your genetics 

have the best weekend!! 
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