Monday, January 31, 2011

My Bridal Prep

Almost a year later, I am finally able to edit my wedding. :)

My Grandmother has a videography business in Louisiana, so it was no question that we would film/edit my wedding. Due to major computer issues I was unable to edit the HD footage...until now. At the end of last week my computer was returned to me and I spent a lot of the weekend editing. I had a blast and I am thrilled to finally be able to create something for Keith and I.

I'm not sure if I'm going to post the whole wedding, but here's the cinematic version of my Bridal Prep. I hope you guys like it. : )


Happy Monday lovelies!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Lovely Little Friday

I have determined that the absolute best song to brush your teeth to is this one:


:)

******
Playing along with Fill in the Blank Friday!

Find it here!

1. If my house was on fire and I could only grab 3 things I would grab...if my house was on fire I would probably freak out and not grab anything, but if had to pick three things I'd say my editing computer (and the box of unedited wedding tapes), a box of pictures that I've collected from my childhood, and my three turtles. (That would be a sight to see...)

2. A smell I really like is my house after I've been cooking a roast all day, or my husband. He has the best natural smell ever. :)

3. Something you might not know about me is that I'm double jointed and can bend my pointy finger all the way back so that it touches the top of my hand...gross, I know.

4. Some of my favorite websites to putter about on are SparkPeople.com, Etsy, my favorite blogs, and FoxNews.

5. This weekend I will be attending a Young Married Life event at my church tonight, going on a date with my sweet tomorrow night, spending time with my sister and nephew, heading back to church for service, editing a wedding, doing homework, and trying to relax.

6. Nothing makes me happier than the moment that I get home from work, sit on Keith, and we just fit perfectly. (He gives the best hugs)

7. A bad habit I have is not managing my time well. I usually complete every task on my to-do lists, but lately it's been harder to juggle life.

I hope you guys enjoy your weekend!


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The First Trip of 2011


In about a month, I will be heading to Colorado for my first solo business trip. 

 via

This both excites me and makes me a tad bit nervous.

I've only been on one business trip before this one, and I was with a co-worker in a city I know very well, New Orleans. This time I will be alone, and in a place I have never been before. My job will be to attend a conference and represent my company to attendees of the conference and fellow exhibitors. No pressure...right? :)

But that's not the part that makes me nervous.

When I was 18 years old I moved to California to be a nanny. By myself. To live with a family I didn’t know. HOLY. MOLY. What in the world was I thinking??? (AND where were my parents?!??!)  ;) I was definitely na├»ve and thought of myself as fearless. And while I think I’m still a little fearless, I am definitely more alert and aware of what’s going on in the world. (Thank you, Criminal Justice major) 

But again, that's not the part that makes me nervous.

What I am worried about is driving in the snow. This Southern girl has only seen snow a hand full of times, let alone driven in it! I’ll be flying in to Denver, CO and then driving an hour to my destination. I'm not sure if I'll even have to deal with snow while I'm there, but it definitely makes me nervous. 

  via

While my first and most important priority is my job, I will have downtime in the evenings. This will be my first time visiting Colorado and I am excited to explore! I’ve been looking at my 30 Before 30 and would love to knock something off while I’m in CO. I have my eye on “Go horseback riding” but I’m not sure how possible this will be in the evenings.  
 
Have you ever been to Colorado? I’ll be staying in the Fort Collins/Loveland area and would love any recommendations you guys have for restaurants, “must sees”, or anything else! 

Monday, January 24, 2011

.M.O.N.D.A.Y.

* Well, I finally saw Inception...and to be perfectly honest I wasn't that impressed. It's not that I didn't understand what was going on -- it's just not my cup of tea. I thought it was a good concept for a movie, but I just didn't see what all of the fuss was about. Oh well, at least I can scratch that one off my 30 Before 30.

* Today is my oldest sponsor child's birthday! She turns 13 today and is officially a teenager. (Eeek!) I've only been sponsoring her since last June, but knowing this little girl has made me a better person. Her letters always seem to brighten my day, and she is a wonderful child of God. :)


* On Friday I was given an award by the lovely Chloe at Tryin' to Throw My Arms Around the World and the wonderful Jodie at Bursting at the Seams!


The rules:
1.  Thank the person who gave you the award. 
2.  Write seven things about yourself.
3.  Pass on to seven other bloggers.
4.  Tell the seven awardees of their award!

Chloe and Jodie! Thanks mucho for thinking of me when it was time to pass this award on. I am so grateful to have bloggy friends like you in my life who are always so encouraging and lift me up when I'm down. I have loved getting to know you both through your blogs! :) (Chloe - I'm hoping that the hubs and I can make it to VB soon!)

Seven Things

     * I used to be the girl that couldn't boil water, but now I like to think of myself as a pretty decent chef! I love to cook and love having people to cook for. My husband is a meat and potatoes kind of guy, but I love making casseroles and Cajun dishes! This weekend I tried out a crock pot Lasagna and it was delicious! :)

     * I was born and raised in Louisiana, but have been living in South Carolina for two years. Here's a little secret: I am craving boiled crawfish extremely, very badly.


     * The 1940's is without a doubt my favorite era. Lately I've been asking my Maw-Maw tons of questions about life back then, and I am falling more and more in love with this time frame.

     * I not only admire Audrey Hepburn for her beauty and grace, but more importantly for her heart and the work she did with UNICEF. Her love for children and those in need is forever inspiring.

     * I love to read, but thanks to my hectic schedule I don't get to do so very often. :o(

     * I've always wanted to have a short pixie-like haircut, or even shave my head for charity. I pray that one day I'll be brave enough to try one of these out.

     * My right foot is slightly larger than my left foot. So. weird.

I'd like to pass on this award to:




Christy at 25 Before 25

Elle at Elle Sees


Happy Monday lovelies! 

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

Friday, January 21, 2011

Happiness on a Friday

 via
  • One of my dear friends, Kori, gave me a CD for Christmas called Freedom. This CD was produced by the International Justice Mission and proceeds support IJM's fight against modern day slavery. To sum it up, this CD is absolutely AMAZING. Everyone from Natalie Grant, Sanctus Real,  TobyMac, Tenth Avenue North, MercyMe,  and Jars of Clay are on the CD! There are so many encouraging songs and they speak to the soul. My favorite has to be "Arise" by Third Day.

This song is now officially my anthem. :)

I sit alone and think about the world and all the people without freedom
Without justice
And then I wonder if there’s any more that I can do to help the broken
To help the hopeless
And Lord you know I can’t do this without you
God I need you now
Help me to make a move
Arise oh God, life up your hand
Bring freedom and forgiveness
Arise oh God, help us to stand
For mercy and for justice

  • On to something way less important, but nonetheless exciting. I have been back on SparkPeople for 10 days, and I have lost 4 pounds!!! I've been following my nutrition and fitness plan and am feeling great. Besides the fact that my pants are fitting amazing, I have more energy and I just feel better. YAY! 
  •  Is it just me, or is Ryan Gosling one of the best in Hollywood? From The Notebook to Fracture to Murder by Numbers, I just admire his acting style and the way he carries himself. Not to mention he's seriously funny (and handsome). I saw this clip of him  on Jimmy Kimmel and couldn't help but share it. I can't wait to see Blue Valentine! :)

Happy Friday lovelies! Enjoy yourselves this weekend! 

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Breathtaking Views

Derek Jeter, the captain of the Yankees and one of my absolute favorite players, has listed his gorgeous Manhattan penthouse for sale. This penthouse measures at a whopping 5,425 square feet and is listed at $20 million dollars. Oh. my. word. Apparently he was having a little trouble selling this place (ya think??) so he enlisted the help of a Home Stager to make his place dazzle. 

While I personally think spending this much on a home is borderline psychotic, I have to admit that the views are stunning. And when you've played for the New York Yankees, this price probably doesn't even phase you. (Not sure if that's a good or bad thing.)


Bedroom

Bedroom #2

Living Area

Kitchen

Study

 Living Area, Part 2

My absolute fave...can you imagine having dinner right here? And that table!!! *sigh*

 Look at the view!

While I am pretty confident that I will not be living in a place like this anytime soon, it sure is fun to look at these pictures. A girl can dream, can't she? 

*All pictures from here*

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Disturbing News

Last night I read an article that made my heart hurt greatly. And while I understand that the media can twist the facts, there is much truth to what I read. Please know that I never intentionally want to be a Debbie Downer, but this is where my passion lies, and this not a "rainbows and sunshine" kind of post.

The article I read was about a 20/20 episode that focused on the Peace Corps, and featured a young woman named Kate Puzey. Kate was a volunteer serving in West Africa where she taught English at a local school.


Upon being informed that a fellow teacher and Peace Corps volunteer was sexually assaulting students, she sent an email to the local Peace Corps office notifying them of his actions. She requested that her identity remain anonymous so that she would stay protected.

Not long after, Kate was found murdered.

Local police held a suspect in custody -- the man Kate emailed the Peace Corps office about. This man was recently terminated from his job at the school as a direct result of Kate's email. The police and her family believe that her murder was absolutely linked to the breach of confidentiality by the Peace Corps. This beautiful girl was murder in March of 2009 and almost two years later the Peace Corps has yet to come forth with any responsibility or information for the family.

The 20/20 episode went on to tell the story of the women who have come away with their lives, but who have been raped while serving in the Peace Corps. While it was disturbing to listen to their stories, what was even more disturbing was that the Peace Corps practically discarded these women. They encouraged false stories to cover up the rapes, and also did nothing to help these women recover offered only a few counseling sessions to help the women cope. To make matters worse, the girls were told that they must have done something wrong to have been raped.

The only word that comes to mind when I think of the way the Peace Corps has handled these situations is pathetic. I highly doubt that this is what President Kennedy envisioned when he created the Peace Corps. I am well aware that we live in a fallen world and things like rape and murder happen, but it is the responsibility of the Peace Corps to protect their volunteers instead of failing those who have been abused.

I am not writing this post to point fingers and scream judgment. I know that the Peace Corps has done amazing things in this world, and I believe that a few bad apples shouldn't ruin the whole barrel. This 20/20 program focused on the murder of Kate and the rapes/cover ups of other volunteers. I'm sure that they could have easily produced a show that highlighted all of the wonderful things the Peace Corps has done. I don't know all of the facts, and I'm sure 20/20 does not know all of the facts. However, certain things remain true:

Kate Puzey was murdered.

Volunteers have been raped, and feel betrayed.

I believe that the 20/20 story has shed a vast amount of light on what is going on within the walls of the Peace Corps, and I can only hope that the government will step up and make things right with those who are victims, and protect those currently serving.

*****

It is stories like these that push me to go further when I feel like quitting. It's this type of injustice that boils my blood and drives me to continue on this path that I have been called to. God willing, I will graduate with a degree in Criminal Justice in May 2012, and will enroll in law school in August 2012. The day where I can stop dreaming of helping and start fighting for what I believe is right will be a powerful day, indeed.

(To watch the 20/20 story click here)


Monday, January 17, 2011

A Wordy Miscellany Monday


* This weekend was the kind that I wish happened more often. It was relaxing but yet productive. Keith and I spent some wonderful, quality time together, watched a movie, watched some football, did our homework, went to church, I finished editing a wedding, Keith spent time with his small group, and I used my new crock pot. *sigh* It was lovely.

* The movie that we watched was Avatar, and I am a bit embarrassed to say that this was my first time seeing it. I tend to be that person that doesn't see those "talked about" movies until way later (I've yet to see Inception)  but I'm going to work on that. Anyway, Avatar was great! I truly enjoyed this movie and am glad that I finally had another James Cameron experience. According to IMDB, there's going to be an Avatar 2 and 3 in a few years...can't waiiiiit!


* Remember last semester when Statistics broke my heart? Remember how I said in round two that I'm going to own this class? Well, I am. This first two weeks of class are already finished, and I've made nothing but A's. :)  This is a drastic improvement from the last class, and it has to do with my new sense of determination and my new professor. Each week we are required to answer a discussion post question. For week one I used the exact same answer I'd written in the previous class, and received an A+ as opposed to a B-. Hmmm...

* Have you guys ever heard of SparkPeople? It's a free online diet and fitness community that I absolutely adore. I've done their program a few times, but have always fallen off the wagon. Sticking to my 2011 goals and my 30 Before 30 goal of meeting my target weight, I rejoined Spark. This past week I've stuck to the nutrition guide and will begin the fitness program this week. While I haven't weighed myself yet, my pants are already fitting a bit looser. :D YAY!

 via

* Speaking of my 30 Before 30, I've decided to make a little change. After much thought, I'm going to remove #18, Read 50 of Time's Top 100 books. This goal only requires that I read 10 of the listed books a year, but after just reading over the list I felt a bit nauseous. This is not something that I think I'd enjoy, nonetheless, happily accomplish. So I am replacing #18 with "Take a dance class." This could be ballet, swing, or modern...with Keith or by myself. :) Additionally, I'm going to increase #17, Watch 100 of IMDB's Top 250 movies, to Watch 155 of the Top 250.

Enjoy your Monday lovelies! 

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

Friday, January 14, 2011

It's Finally Friday!

 via
 
Is it just me or did this week draaag? As always, I am thrilled that today is Friday. :)

I'd like to take a second and thank you guys for sharing your clumsy/semi-clumsy stories with me. While I felt super bad that y'all have been hurt before, it made me smile knowing that I'm not alone. I am so grateful for the support I have through all of you. I am still feeling a bit sore, but I can tell my body is healing and I should be back to normal soon. 

On another note, I wanted to post an update on something I wrote back at the end of October called The Unspoken. In this post I shared problems in my life that were just too personal to write on my blog. These problems had become a constant cloud hanging over my head and were quite frankly taking over. Well, I am overjoyed to report that those problems are no more. 

They are GONE. 

Do I still have problems? Absolutely. But those suffocating very large problems from October are over. God has not only handled the issues, but He has made things a thousand times better. People issues have been resolved and relationships are forming. Geographic issues have improved drastically and I am starting to have roots in my current location (and I'm starting to like love it here!). And the issues I had with myself? Let's just say that the walls I've built have been getting shorter by the day. 

Life is good and I am unbelievably thankful. More so, God is good. But let's face it -- even when things were difficult, even when things just flat out sucked, God was still there and He was still good.

I hope you lovelies have a fantastic weekend. Take some time and enjoy life. Relax. Be productive. Sing. Nap. Kiss your worries goodbye. Whatever you do, enjoy it. 

All my love,

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Just Call Me Grace


I would not consider myself a graceful person, but I am also not extremely clumsy. I'm somewhere smack dab in the middle where I tend to have random injuries. Last night was one of those nights, and I ended up falling down the stairs.

This is the fourth time it's happened in the past 2 years. 

My explanation? 

I am absolutely convinced that the carpeting on the stairs is extra slippery. (And I tend to walk/run fast down them.) I have never had a serious injury, but last night was the worst fall yet. :( I have a lovely "A League of Their Own" type bruise on my left leg, a bruise on my foot, and I'm pretty sure the right side of my back/ribs are bruised as well. Did I mention that I was holding my computer when I fell? 

Needless to say I am feeling pretty sore today. Remember Carl's stair lift in the movie Up? Well, I'm halfway considering having one of those bad boys installed. Prayers are most definitely appreciated. 

 Has this ever happened to you? 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Little Makeover

I'd like to thank the talented Sarah Ann over at Bon Blog Designs for my new and improved blog! :) 

For the most part the layout is the same, but I've added a few new pages at the top. The "My Story" section has been updated, the "Near and Dear" is new, and a work in progress. I want to list projects/organizations/places that are close to my heart. "30 Before 30" will follow my journey accomplishing the featured 30 goals, and "Contact Me" is my email. :) 

I am so happy with this new design! If your blog needs a little makeover, please head over to Sarah's site right now!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Our Almost Flight


Last week I shared my 30 Before 30 list and was hoping to scratch "Fly a plane" off this weekend.

Unfortunately, it didn't happen. :(

Keith and I headed to a local airport on Saturday morning, only to discover that the winds had picked up a bit too much and our instructor suggested that we reschedule. Had this been flight training we would have absolutely flown. However, because it was a Discovery Flight he wanted us to have the best experience possible.

So while we didn't get to fly, we did get a mini-lesson, some great information about flight school, and a few pictures.

Sitting in the plane :)


KC and I in front of our would-have-been plane

We were very impressed with the flight instructor, Ricky, and the school in general. He was extremely knowledgeable and very nice, and Keith and I will most definitely be rescheduling this flight. I have always had a love for aviation, but after leaving the flight school on Saturday I'm pretty sure my husband's interest in flying was raised tenfold. :)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Set Sail

all found here

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones that you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
*Mark Twain*

Amen. :)

Friday, January 7, 2011

25 Years Ago...


"And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years."
Abraham Lincoln

Today is my 25th birthday. :) I had planned to publish a really long post about life and happiness and everything in between, but I decided it was just too much.

I simply want to say that I am thankful.

For my family and friends, my lovely/amazing/supportive bloggy friends, my sweet and incredibly handsome husband, my passion, my health, and most importantly, I'm thankful that I am a child of God. I am His daughter, and no matter how many mistakes I make, He will always love me.

I am just plain thankful for the life I am living. All of it. The good, the bad, and the ugly make me who I am, and I wouldn't change a thing.

This blog is called My Dolce Vita, which translates to My Sweet Life, and it is...it truly is.



Thursday, January 6, 2011

The List

The end of each year calls for reflection on one's life. For me, that means the making of various lists. A list of goals for the new year, a list of moments to remember from the year that just passed, a priority list, and a prayer list.

This year was a little different.

Tomorrow I will turn 25 years old. My birthday is two weeks after Christmas, and I am typically way too distracted by the holidays to even think about it. However, turning 25 seems different. There's just something about being a 1/4 century old that makes a girl think. Now I know this is dramatic, but 25 is nearly 30 and halfway to 50! Um...WOW.

Anyway, back to the point. I'm a list girl, and I've decided to start a new kind. Inspired by various blog friends, I've decided to create a 30 Before 30 list. A few weeks back I stumbled upon this blog, and was beyond impressed by Celine's drive.

I realize that giving myself 5 years to complete 30 tasks may seem too easy, but keep in mind that during the first half I'll be finishing up my undergrad, and the last half I'll be in law school. So, without further ado, here is my 30 Before 30.

1. Ride in a hot air balloon
2. Fly a plane
3. Learn to speak Italian
4. Go sailing
5. Graduate from college
6. Go to Italy!!!
7. Pay off debt (excluding student loans)
8. Run a marathon
9. Read the whole Bible
10. Go on a mission trip
11. Visit the Grand Canyon
12. Meet my weight loss goal
13. Learn to sew
14. Go skydiving (AH!)
15. Learn to play tennis
16. Visit at least one sponsor child
17. Watch 100 of IMDB's Top 250 movies
18. Read 50 of Time's Top 100 Books
19. Learn to surf (again)
20. Go snowboarding or skiing
21. Go to a Hillsong Concert
22. Go horseback riding
23. Walk the Brooklyn Bridge
24. Attend a Yankee game in NYC
25. Volunteer regularly at a nursing home
26. Visit at least 5 museums
27. Go on a cruise
28. Learn how to shoot a gun properly
29. Do an anonymous pay it forward
30. Get accepted/Graduate from law school

I am really excited to begin this project! Of course I'll be writing about my experiences, and I can't wait to take you guys along for the ride!!

First up: Fly a plane!
When: January 8th in celebration of my my 25th!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

84


Today is my Maw-Maw's 84th Birthday. :)

Every morning before work, I call her and we have a little chat. Sometimes they are funny, other times they are serious. But most times they are just plain nice. Over the past few years I've been asking her questions about her life, and here's a little of what she's told me:

She loves chocolate (and chocolate cake)
Her favorite character is Betty Boop
She worked in a hardware store for 50 years
She's been a widow for the same amount of time as she was married (I think 30 years each)
She prefers Perry Como over Frank Sinatra (AH??!?)
As for Hepburns, she prefers Katharine over Audrey (AH again??!?)
Her favorite birthday was her 60th
Her favorite actress is Sandra Bullock
She loves the color pink
She won't ever give up on anyone
I am her favorite grandchild (Hahah just kiiiiding, maybe.)

Happy Birthday Maw-Maw!!! I hope today treats you like a princess!

Monday, January 3, 2011

A 2011 Miscellany Monday

* Yesterday, Keith and I surprised my sister with a new toddler bed for Baby Joe. It was a pain in the neck to put together thanks to the rods not lining up, but one look at Joseph's face made it completely worth it.

Think he likes it?? :)

* Last week Keith and I were finally able to watch Charlie St. Cloud. I had high hopes for this movie, and it did not disappoint! One of my favorite parts was the sailing aspect. This movie was filmed in different parts of Canada, and I am completely in love!

* I previously mentioned a road trip that I would love to take with Keith for our one year anniversary. Unfortunately, it has been confirmed that this trip will not take place. The reason for this canceled trip is an amazing job opportunity that was offered to me last week. The company I work for often sends sales reps to different shows and conventions throughout the year. Last year I went to New Orleans, and this year I'll be going to Colorado.

The Colorado trip is scheduled the week before our anniversary, and at the same time that our road trip was to take place. While I am bummed that we will not make it to Virginia Beach, DC, or NYC, and I am excited about this opportunity. Keith has been very supportive and encouraging, and I am so blessed to have a husband like mine. As a bonus, we'll still be able to sneak away for the weekend to celebrate our first year of marriage, and that is definitely good enough for me.

*My third to last semester of school starts today. I am excited to begin tackling these classes, and hope and pray that I kick the snot out of Statistics! (This is round two.) As the end of school nears I am both excited and nervous. The end of undergrad means the beginning of law school, and I cannot wait to see where this journey is going to take my family.

Happy Monday lovelies!

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

Sunday, January 2, 2011

NYE 2010

New Year's Eve was absolutely fantastic. One of my greatest friends, Kori (aka Flaml) and her boyfriend came to visit! We spent the day touring downtown Charleston and then headed to Folly Beach. That night we spent time together and had a delicious homemade dinner. It was the perfect way to ring in the New Year.

Kori and I :)


Kori and her sweet. (They got pretend engaged in SC)


The hubs and I stealing a kiss


Baby Joe!


A lovely sailboat in the Charleston Harbor


My sis, Lauren and her son, Baby Joe


Us at Folly Beach


The pier!


Group shot at Folly


We climbed on the roof to watch fireworks. So. fun.


Lau had a great time!


Happy New Year!



I hope that you guys had a blast ringing in the new year!

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