Wednesday, July 25, 2012

What I Wore: Mint Skinnies on Steroids

I've wanted colored skinnies forever!  Being a skinny-minny myself I'm all about the skinny jeans trend.  I'm not saying you have to be a size 2 to pull them off.  Even though my husband has a bigger build, he also looks great in them!  I originally planned on getting those cool mint ones that have been popping up all over Pinterest.  But then the brighter ones caught my eye.  I wanted to take a fashion risk.  I'm trying to make my style slightly more edgy so that I have some street cred. when I move to the East Coast to teach inner city teenagers (oh yeah, that's a dream of mine and Philip's if you didn't know).  So here we have it.  Just like those hipster mint skinnies, but amped up a bit.  Mint skinnies on steroids!

This whole outfit (excluding accessories) cost me $13 at JcPenney.  

P.S. doesn't my apartment look great?  Ha, I wish!  This was taken at the Davenport on my anniversary celebration and I finally got a minute to share it with you.  How do you feel about colored skinnies?  

pleated poppy

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Anniversary Weekend Wrap-Up

I had the best weekend, and let me tell you I did not want to come back to reality.  I am far from a morning person.  Philip has gotten bitten by waking me up to early.  But I woke him up at 6 AM because I was so excited to open our gifts.  Since the first anniversary is the "paper" anniversary he bought me some scrapbook paper and made me a coupon book which I can use to redeem things like breakfast in bed, snuggling, or shoe shopping.  He also got me a Sleeping Beauty barbie.  When we were on our honeymoon we bought a Prince Phillip doll...we thought it was funny because his name is Philip and he is my prince?  In Phil's words, "I know what it's like to have my princess by my side and I didn't want to deny Phillip of that any longer."  I gave him a nice leather "man-wallet."  He was embarassed using his old one because it velcros.  Plus, he's had it since like 8th grade.  I put a picture of us in there and wrote him a note telling him that I wanted to get him a man wallet because I had seen him grow so much in authentic manhood the past year.  After opening gifts we got ready and headed out on a little getaway to Spokane (our go-to spot for fun things to do).  We bought day passes for Riverfront Park which means we got to see an Imax (nerd alert!), play mini golf, and scream at the top of our lungs on some kiddie rides.  Philip made surprise reservations at Clinkerdaggers aka one of the nicest restaurants in the area.  The food was delish!  I had chicken tortellini and Philip had red meat of course.  The waiter was hilarious even though he was convinced we had fake IDs.  He still let us have adult beverages, he just said we were the ones who would get in trouble if we got caught so he didn't mind.  I'm almost 23 people!  We scored free dessert because it was our anniversary.  Have you ever had creme brulee?  Life=changed.  Then we stayed at the Davenport--the fancy pants hotel where we spent the first night of our marriage.  It was heaven.  At home we ate the top layer of our wedding cake which my mom had whisked away and frozen for us.  I thought it was such a weird tradition and I was sure it was going to be freezer burnt.  It wasn't.  I'll let the pictures do the rest of the talking.

What and how are you celebrating lately?

Sunday, July 15, 2012

How Do You Measure a Year?

In some ways I can't believe it has been a year, and in some ways I can hardly remember life before marriage.  For all the ways that we're compatible, and all the ways that we're not God was so smart to bring Philip and I together.  He enhances my life so much!  The best part:  I love and respect him more today than I did one year ago.  Here are a few of my favorite moments from one of my favorite days.

Love was in the air!  (and not just between the bride and groom, I felt so much love and support that day.
When my mom gave me a necklace made with a diamond from her first engagement ring.  She said, "You and your sister are the best things that came from that marriage."
The way my besties looked at me when they saw me all dressed up.
Even better:  the way he looked at me when he saw me.
After all the stress of planning and getting ready, finally being in his arms was my favorite.
Posing for silly...
...and sweet photos.
Meeting these two, Phil's buds from the East coast, for the first time.
Hanging out with these lovelies.
Dad praying for me before the ceremony.
Being walked down the aisle by both my bio and step dad (they are both so important to me).
Taking communion while my friend sang, "Beauty of the Cross."
Bridal party chanted, "Arnold's on 3...1, 2, 3, ARNOLD'S!"
The first time we got a moment alone as husband and wife.
Making it legal woot woot.
Trying to decide whether or not to smash cake in his face :)
Watching the awesome video my sis made with our childhood photos and dating/engagement pics.
Getting moments to connect with people...
...who I care about so much.
Country Swing dancing (even though I ripped the bottom of my dress).
Country line dancing.
Looking into the eyes of my super hero.

Friday, July 6, 2012

True Freedom

 I feel like this time of year freedom is on all of our minds.  Maybe you’re a student or teacher and you’re lucky enough to have FREEDOM from school for a few months (this is the first summer I haven’t had that luxury).  Maybe you just graduated from high school and you are so ready to be out from under your parents’ roof.  Maybe you’re thankful to those who sacrifice to protect our freedom in America.  Either way, freedom’s most likely on the brain.  

 We sure value freedom here in the U.S. of A.  But what does freedom really mean?  I think sometimes we define freedom as the ability and permission to do whatever we want.  I’m not much of a rebel, but that is definitely how I felt until I encountered this verse.  

"34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. 35  The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. 37 I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. 38 I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.” 

Before marriage, Phil and I struggled to keep our relationship completely pure.  We agreed that waiting until marriage to be intimate (emotionally, spiritually, physically) would ultimately benefit our marriage.  Still we struggled with that.  One root issue for me was the feelings of freedom I felt when I “broke the rules” and just did whatever I felt like.  Especially in that scenario, sinning only made me feel free for a little while.  Shortly after the feelings of freedom subsided they were replaced by things like guilt, isolation, fear, and a rift between Philip and me.  One day as I was asking God to help me be less of a screw-up in this area, he brought me to this verse.  At first it confused me.  The stuff about a slave and a son made my brows furl.  Suddenly, I understood.  If I were to translate this into the Chelsea Standard Version it might say something like this:

“Choosing things outside of my design for you ties you to those things.  Sinning might make you feel free for a little while, but being under my boundaries ultimately gives you more freedom.  Those things that you choose to indulge in don’t care about you.  They will use you and lose you.  I am invested in you—I view you as my own child!  Following me and my way of doing things allows you to get the blessings and benefits that go along with that.  How I desire you to have that better kind of freedom!”    

Think about it.  When you meet a child who was raised with no boundaries, do they seem free?  Or do they seem like a tyrant.  A dog without the boundary of a fence around a yard might be considered free.  However, how free will they feel when they get run over by a car?  Will your neighbors be happy about your dog’s freedom if he’s leaving droppings all over their lawn?  Probably not.  Having sex without any boundaries could result in STDs, unwanted pregnancies, emotional/relational despair.  (Protection is good, but it doesn’t protect you from everything).  We say we want to be able to do whatever we want.  We hate that there are rules in the bible.  But I don’t think we really mean it.  If we really thought about it, I think we would find that healthy boundaries are important.  The bible isn’t just a big rule book.  God doesn’t want to ruin our fun.  I believe he wants us to experience better freedom than we tend to settle for.  I belief he wants us to have life in all of its abundance (John 10:10) and staying within his boundaries and following his agenda help us to have that.  

What does freedom mean to you? (Whew...two controversial posts in a row!  Thanks for bearing with me.  P.S. I don't mind if you disagree, I'd still like to hear your thoughts).
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