Category — personal
What’s GOLD to me today… FAMILY! I am so lucky to have an amazing family that all live within 20 minutes from me! I am also so thankful that I have amazing in-laws and brother-in-laws (and soon-to-be a sister-in-law)! They are all a total blast. I have plenty of stories that I could share about my awesome family, but I thought I’d share a few photos today from a trip we took back over Thanksgiving to visit Jeremy’s grandpa. His mom, aunt, cousins and brother joined us out in the desert of California to celebrate the 75th birthday! These are just a few snapshots of the fun we had together…
We rode a Rhino off-road vehicle!
Even Jeremy’s mom and aunt took part in the fun!
Cheers to a weekend of fun!
March 13, 2012 1 Comment
I had THE most fun time on my vacation to Hawaii. I was so lucky to spend a week with my best friend’s family and meet her son, Jake! I pretty much had my camera, ipad or phone (with camera) glued to my side the entire trip. Side note — if you are my facebook friend or follow my instagram photos, you most likely thought I adopted this adorable baby last month. I just couldn’t get enough of his cute little face !
He turned one during my stay there and we had loads of fun planning his “uno” themed birthday party. I have a few projects to share when we were in party-planning mode coming soon to the blog. For now, just a few photos of Jake’s adorable face! I love this kid!
We stopped by the new Disney resort on Oahu, as well. Jake got to meet Mickey Mouse!
Evelyn and I have been friends since we were in middle school. We can pick up just where we left off with our silly jokes and giggles… even if we live across the ocean from each other.
March 6, 2012 No Comments
Happy Wednesday! I’m finishing up a beautiful vacation in Hawaii and thought I’d pop in for a quick update! First off, I’m SO excited to be featured over at Basically Bare again today! Woo hoo! There’s a really fun recap of a lot of the Basically Bare projects that I’ve been working on lately!
Also, I thought I’d share this ADORABLE apron that my mama made me for Christmas. Isn’t this just the cutest? I love the fashionable, halter top apron with the fun, retro colors. I’m going to have to get in the baking mood and put this apron to good use! I thought I’d have some fun modeling the apron over the holidays at our Christmas dinner. Pssst – I’ll tell you a secret. I didn’t really make the pie. Grandma did!
Isn’t my grandpa so cute? His 80th birthday is Saturday! He’s looking good!
We thought we should let mama in the photos since she made the awesome apron!
And of course – me and my sister being silly!
Oh, and cute!
After mom made me such a cute apron, I decided that I’m going to need to learn to sew. Adding it to the to-do list!
January 25, 2012 No Comments
I’ve just got into the Instagram obsession. I can’t be as cool as the other Instagramers because I don’t actually have an iPhone, but I do have an iPad and it’s pretty much with me all the time. Over the holidays I got into taking Instagrams for those “in the moment” glimpses into my day. Here are a few photos over the last few months that I’ve shared.
- Row 1: Baby Girl Album Design | Can we say PINK? | Our Tree | Our Decorations | Hubby under the Table
- Row 2: Carving Pumpkins | New Years Eve Party | Leia | Sleepy Pup | Vegas Chandelier Bar
- Row 3: Beautiful Day | Who Sleeps like that? | Cutie | New Pup Max | Rainy Day
- Row 4: Favorite Scrapbook Pages | Christmas Apron | Santa Puppy | Little Leia | Reindeer Leia
- Row 5: A Christmas Layout | A Chargers Pumpkin | Glitter Love | Fancy Pumpkins | My Bio Picture
I’m SO flippin’ excited because on Friday, I am headed to see my BFF and her baby in Hawaii! I can’t wait! The countdown is on! There will be plenty of photos and stories to share from that trip! Yay!
January 16, 2012 No Comments
Here we are on Day 3! We woke up bright and early and ready to go on Day 3 to raindrops on our tent! Worried about the weather, we scrambled to take down our tent, pack up our bags, grab breakfast and get to walking as soon as the course opened up.
Throughout the walk, we kept joking about these signs: “Stay Alert – Stay Alive!”. Good thing we had Megan on our team because she saved multiple lives by pointing out cracks in the sidewalk, signs that people might run into and any potential safety hazards. In her awesome poncho, we felt it was critical to capture Megan with slogan.
There were a couple of fans that brightened our day as we saw them along the walk. Many of these “walker stalkers” would just follow us along the journey and say hello a few times a day and offer some words of encouragement. These guys cracked me up with their melons!
Ok – so we will finally admit it. About halfway through Day 3, we were TIRED. Luckily, it had stopped raining on us! With about 2 hours left to go, Megan and I split a 5-hour energy. Sidenote – I don’t usually have a lot of caffeine and whenever I’ve taken these, I get a little crazy. I figured “2.5-hours of energy” was good enough for me to finish the walk strong. I have to admit, I was a little hyper those last 6 miles or so – I was jumping around quite a bit! Here’s a fun photo lacing up the shoes with our 5-hour energy!
We did it!!! We made really good time and got downtown San Diego probably by 3pm. We really powered through the last few miles – and, even skipped lunch (thanks to the madness of 5-hour energy!). Megan was a trooper and had a few blisters that we needed the medics to help with… I left those photos off the blog, but you can find them on Twitter, ha! We made it! We met our friends and family at Basic for some pizza and beer before the Closing Ceremony!
Here’s my favorite photo of the whole walk… this is our entire team at Petco Park after we received our official “you-did-it” 3-day long sleeve t-shirts! Go Team, 60 Miles for Bust, Go!
And, just as soon as we put those shirts on… it started raining! Here are my girls in their ponchos getting ready for the Closing Ceremony. We had pretty much avoided the rain for most of the day except for a little patch in the morning, but it was getting dark and cloudy very quickly!
This is at the Closing Ceremony at Petco Park. It’s incredible how many participate in 3Day Walk and just how much money Susan G. Komen raises for the San Diego community and nationwide. Pretty impressive!
At one point during the Closing Ceremony, everyone takes their shoes off (smelly!!!) and salutes the survivors. It was a pretty powerful moment.
All in all, this was an AMAZING experience. I’m so glad I signed up and did it. I was completely shocked just how our bodies held up and we were able to walk the entire course. We definitely couldn’t have done it without our friends, family, walker stalkers and teammates! Thanks for following along our fun, walking journey!
January 13, 2012 6 Comments
Here we are on Day 2 of our 3day walk! Everyone had told us that Day 2 – specifically the afternoon was the toughest part of the entire walk. I think I have to agree… the end is still pretty far away and the enthusiasm from Day 1 has slightly dwindled… However, we were still super motivated and excited to DO IT! 20 miles down – 40 to go!
Here’s a quick photo of us. I loved this cute little sign: “Cheers and Smiles for 60 Miles!”
Again, have I mentioned how beautiful San Diego is? This is in the Point Loma area as we started down a big hill. We had the most beautiful view of the ocean, so Megan and I went for an artistic shot – 3 days, baby!
Who can resist some sweet treats? As we headed into the Mission Bay area, Golden Spoon ice cream was giving away mini frozen yogurt cones for all the walkers. How exciting is that? So many people were ensuring we were well fed and hydrated on the walk… it was hilarious! Cookies, candies, mimosas, tequila shots, water, sports drinks – you name it! Oh, and this is outside the official 3day walk pit stops where they made sure we had plenty of food!
The most challenging part of the walk for me was mid-day Day 2. For some reason, lunch was scheduled really late and I was getting super hungry. I wasn’t sore or physically tired, I was just getting hungry for real food. As we passed through Robb Field, we were greeted by so many of my favorite people to keep us motivated! My mom, grandma, grandpa, aunt, cousins and bestest friends (aka “the mutt pack”) were all there… and, they were holding signs! How cute was that?! Cherish even made us cookies. They all had our team shirts on and were so excited to see us. That kept us going!
As we made our way around Mission Bay, my coworker Wendy was there to encourage us! She had walked a few years ago and had some down to say hello and gave us a giant pink ribbon balloon to carry! It ended up as a great tent decoration at the end of the day! Then, when we entered into Belmont Park / Mission Beach area, our friends and my sister had camped out at The Wave House, a restaurant along the boardwalk. We decided it was only appropriate to stop and enjoy some company before finishing the last few miles for the day. We also saw my friend Jen further down the boardwalk in Mission Bay with a bunch of people. They were a hoot!
When we arrived back at camp at the end of the day, my grandma, grandpa and mom met us at the entrance. They were so excited to see us – 40 miles down 20 to go!!
Did I mention that we smuggled some wine? Here is a silly picture of Megan and I with our very classy box of wine at camp!
Also, here is Megan hanging out in our tent. Love the pink tents!
One of the most exciting parts of Day 2 is that Ivie and Winita won the tent decorating contest! Check that out. They had the best tent in the entire camp! We are so proud of their creativity!
Check back tomorrow for the final day of our 3day walk! 20 more miles to go!
January 12, 2012 2 Comments
My Motivation: We found out that my grandma was diagnosed with breast cancer a little over a year ago. I had always heard how inspirational the 3day walk was, so I decided 2011 was the year I was going to WALK! A good friend of mine, Ivie, signed up first and stepped up as our team captain. A few of us girls followed her lead and also signed up for the big event.
Prep for the Event: Preparing for the 3-day walk involved a few things — #1 Fundraising and #2 Training. Each participant must raise a minimum of $2300 for Susan G. Komen for the Cure in order to participate in the walk! After hosting many fundraisers and sending out donation letters, I met my goal! (yay!) Then, it was on to the training! I probably could have trained a little more, but walking takes A LOT of time. At times during our training walks, I just wanted to run (and I’m not a runner!) or hop on a bike to go a little faster. Thankfully, I had some great company. And, thankfully – I’m a talker! Our team: Ivie, Winita, Saritha, Megan and I trained quite a bit together! We also had some friends like Ash, my mom and JoAn join us for a few practice walks to keep us company and spice up the conversation! The longest training walk we did was about 20 miles about 3 weeks before the real deal, so we felt ready to go!
Day 1: We arrived SERIOUSLY early on Day 1… around 5:30 AM! We dropped off our bags full of sleeping bags, changes of clothes and some wine we smuggled in! Then, we headed over to the holding area. It seemed like ages that we waited around for the Opening Ceremony to begin and head out on our first mile. Here’s a photo of us before we started walking… in the dark… bright and early in the morning!
Opening Ceremony: The opening was inspirational and exciting. It was so fun to see a sea of pink and all the creative outfits. The participants were ready to WALK!
The Route: Umm… so to start – San Diego is SO beautiful. Participating in the 3day in San Diego was so exciting because we got to see just how beautiful this city is! We started at the Del Mar Fairgrounds and headed down the coast. My favorite stretch of cheerleaders was through Del Mar! Maybe because it was early on Day 1 or maybe because Del Mar is such a great, supportive community, but I was blown away by the number of people cheering for us! We were like celebrities! One of the tougher parts of the walk was Torrey Pines. We walked up the hiking trails, past the golf course and down Torrey Pines Road by UCSD. The morning was going great. We were pumped up and having a lot of fun! As we walked toward La Jolla Shores, we were greeted by Megan’s parents (who had been following all my crazy Twitter updates) and my dad drove by a few times honking! Megan and I stopped and took a quick picture down by La Jolla Cove.
Jeremy greeted us on Day 1 a few times during the walk. He showed up in an awesome hot pink hat on a bike around lunchtime to bring us more sports drinks and snackies. Also, he met up at his coworker’s party in Pacific Beach. We had about an hour or so left in our day, but stopped by for a little while to enjoy a beer on Mile 19! We deserved it!
The Camp: We finally returned to camp toward the end of the day. We were hungry and anxious to shower and rest up for the next two days. A family of little YMCA campers helped us set up our tents and even carried our gear for us! So sweet! After showering and eating some dinner, we headed back to our tent for the night. We were exhausted! Here’s Saritha’s cute little head poking out of her tent!
Oh, and we can’t leave out Megan with her headlamp! The camp literally goes “dark” at 9pm. Although that sounds early, after walking all day and getting up so early that morning, we didn’t have a problem with it! The only challenge is if you need to get up to use the portapotty, then you need a headlamp!
Here we are all bundled up! We were very grateful the forecast was clear (no rain!) but sleeping out on the beach was definitely chilly! Brrr…
Stay tuned for Day 2 of our adventure tomorrow!
January 11, 2012 3 Comments
It is always fun to look back on a year of super fun memories! Last year, I was motivated by my sister’s blog and created a 2010 recap. I’ve got to say Lauren’s 2011 recap was even more exciting! You may see some overlap in our favorite memories from the year (hint hint, someone got hitched!) Here is a photo a month (or if I was really a busy girl… a few photos for each month) in 2011. Enjoy!
January: At the end of 2010 we found out that my grandma had breast cancer. Well, I’m excited to share that she beat the heck out of that stupid cancer! Here’s a snapshot of most of the girls in our family at lunch celebrating that she had a very successful surgery. In her honor, we supported her by hosting a no-bra-luncheon (since she couldn’t wear a bra!). I’m so thankful this is officially in the past!
February: In February, I got a new car!!! Yay! This was so exciting. As much as I loved my little jeep grand cherokee that I had been driving since my sophomore year of college, we had to part ways. When the repairs needed to keep her running outweighed about 5 months of a car payment for a new car, I got a new car! This is my oh-so-cute Pontiac Torrent – a totally random compact SUV that is hardly spotted on the road.
March: In March, we hosted the cutest birthday party ever for our favorite 3-year old in the world, Dustin! Cynthia planned an AMAZING party – an adorable cake, party favors, photo booth, carnival snacks (hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy!)… We only supplied the backyard, so I can’t take any credit for this extravagentlyfun birthday party, but check out how flippin’ cute our yard was decorated with carnival games and Baby Dustin in the photo booth!
April: In April I made my first pie! We have a loquattree in our backyard and I was determined to find something to do with the loquats, so after picking tons of these tiny little loquotsoff the tree, peeling and pitting them, I made a delicious pie. This is a snapshot before I baked it and covered it with a crumb topping. Yum! My recipe is coming soon to the blog… just in case you have a loquat tree in your yard!
May: In May we celebrated Jeremy’s mom’s birthday by taking a 7-day cruise to Mexico with the whole family. The trip was a total blast. We ate, drank, napped, went to the pool, drank margaritas on the beach, played some bingo, gambled a little in the casino, ate, drank and relaxed. It was so much fun! Here’s a snapshot of Jeremy and I before heading to dinner one evening. (Did I say that we ate?!)
Also in May I hosted my sister’s bridal shower at my house. We went with the theme “sweet and spicy”… We had food that was sweet and spicy, lots of pink and red and… of course, some “sweet” and “spicy” gifts. The day was perfect and even included toilet paper dressed brides!
June: At the start of summer I expanded the Embellish team by bringing on three fabulous interns! These girls are truly the most hard-working sweethearts in the world. They are going to graduate soon and become the most impressive professionals out there. Let me know if you are hiring… you are going to want these girls to work for you! I’m so thankful to have them by my side the second half of 2011 – and into 2012. Thanks to Carla, Yvonne and Ariel for all your hard work this year!
July: July was by far the busiest month of the year! Lauren’s bridesmaids and I planned a super fun bacheloretteparty for my sister. We enjoyed a day loungin’ by the pool, was picked up in a limo and dropped off downtown for an evening of festivities. We started with dinner and did a little bar hoppin’ and all spent the night in a gorgeous house. It was a total blast. Here are some of the goody bags I put together.
Also in July, I was invited to volunteer at CHA-Chicago with Charity Wings. Elena and her gals are so awesome – check out what they have in store for the Winter CHA Show in Anaheim! This is a snapshot of us at the American Crafts boothwith Amy Tangerine. I was completely insipired by the amazing designers and new products in the world of scrapbooking!
And… We can’t forget that my little sister became Mrs. Miller in July! Here is a beautiful photo of Lauren and Matt and the entire silly wedding party. They are the cutest couple ever and their wedding was absolutely stunning. Lauren’s creativity and DIY decorations for this backyard event looked like it came straight out of a magazine. A shout out to their photographers for capturing such a beautiful wedding. (Check out their blog… so many adorable photos!)
Oh! And, if I didn’t have enough going on, the last weekend of July we hosted a massive fundraiser for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day walk. The event was a huge success – we raised a few thousand dollars for our 3-day walk team, had live music, drink and food specials and a big raffle! Here are me and my girls fundraising away (and posing for a photo!).
August: As soon as one wedding finished up, we were on to the next! Our dear friends, Orrin and Shawndene, also tied the knot! Their beautiful vinyard wedding was in September. It was also absolutely gorgeous. My sister and Shawndene are bothso creative when it comes to pulling off the most impressive DIY weddings. Here is a snapshot with the bride-to-be at her Bachelorette Party weekend. We enjoyed an eventful girls night downtown San Diego!
Oh! And, Embellish was a finalist at the Moms in Business Unite Conferencein the Inventor Showcase for the Best New Product or Service designed by women! Yay!
Oh! Sheesh – this was a busy month! We also went with Jake and Ash to Vegas for a long weekend! We saw the show Blue Man Group! So much fun! The boys played a lot of craps while us girls went shopping.
September: On to September! In September, we launched our new website and online shop and introduced Embellish DIY Kits & Projects. These kits were a huge milestone for Embellish. Up to this point almost all of our sales were custom orders, but now we are offering an awesome collection of kits full of boutique papers, ribbons, embellishments and albums ready to inspire your creativity!
Also in September… a snapshot of Jeremy and I from Orrin and Shawndene’s wedding. Jeremy was quite a handsome groomsmen!
The last major milestone in September was planning my 10-year high school reunion! Somehow I didn’t end up with any photos from the evening, but I promise – I was there! We had a great turnout and I think everyone had a good time!
October: Before we knew it we were celebrating our 2-year anniversary! Where does the time go?? (By the way, I’m just now getting to changing my name on everything… such a long process!) October was an exciting month because back in July at CHA I fell in love with the new Sihouette Cameo personal die-cutting machine (and so much more!). This was my first project that I made. A little “BOO” banner for my mantel. I also had the pleasure of teaching a few scrapbook classes, including a class at YWCA Becky’s House, a shelter for women and children.
November: I didn’t do too much in November… just walked, and walked, and walked! I walked 60-miles in 3-days to raise money for Susan G. Komen for the Cure. It was an inspirational experience close to my heart since I was walking for my grandma. Our team (pictured below) raised a total of over $12,000 to fight breast cancer. We did it!
Also, Jeremy and I visited his grandpa in Inyokern for his 75th birthday party! What a fun way to spend Thanksgiving weekend!
December: The holidays are always the busiest time of year – especially when you run a business making custom photo albums! We attended a ton of events showing off our super cute stuff, created beautiful custom albums, added new DIY projects & kits, developed our 2012 calendars and mini albums. It was a tad busy… plus, holiday parties and the “normal” Christmas festivities. Again, I was so grateful to have an awesome intern team by my side! Here’s Ariel helping at an event…
To finish off the year of photos, here’s a fun photo of Jeremy and me at his company party this year. I definitely have been bragging about my interns, friends and family in this post, so I owe Jeremy a few shouts outs, too… Acting as the Embellish “IT department” & ”CFO”, official brainstorming partner and my #1 cheerleader… I definitely couldn’t have gotten through 2011 without him! I’m one lucky lady!
In summary, it has been an incredibly busy BUT FUN year! So many accomplishments, celebrations and festivities! Both personally and professionally I feel like I’ve grown so much in 2011. I can’t wait to see what 2012 will bring! Thanks for following along my journey!
January 4, 2012 4 Comments
To get you in the holiday spirit, check out these adorable puppies!!!!! When we were in Ridgecrest visiting Jeremy’s family over Thanksgiving, we were so lucky to be around for a puppy Christmas photo shoot! Jeremy’s family breeds these super cute pups. They are only a few weeks old… and, adorable. Did I say adorable? Yes, beyond adorable!! I wanted to steal one!
After they were such great little models, they got lunch. How cute!!!!
December 15, 2011 No Comments
The countdown is on! Two weeks from today I will be walking along with 4,000 other (maybe crazy!) men and women walking 60 miles in 3 days to raise money for Susan G. Komen for the Cure. We will be camping in hot pink tents down at the beach fueled with enthusiasm and energy to show our commitment to this important cause. Sadly, many women in my life have been affected by breast cancer – including my grandma… so, in a few weeks I will be walking for them! Together, our mighty little team of five “60 Miles for Bust” has raised over $12,000!
Although the fundraising goals have been challenging to meet, training for this event has been even more of a commitment! Over the last six months or so, I’ve been trying to carve out time from my schedule to walk… and walk… and walk… Last weekend, my teammate Megan and I walked 20 miles. Here are a few snapshots. We walked from my house to my parent’s house (where mom and dad greeted us with a wonderful brunch), did a few miles with the family in their neighborhood, then headed over to Lake Murray and walked with our friend Ashley back to our house. It took us from about 7am to 2pm. Generally, we felt tired but no aches, pains or blisters! Now, doing that 3 days straight is another story, but we are pretty optimistic that our training has paid off!
Thanks to all of our wonderful friends and family for their support so far. We’ll see you at the cheering stations in two weeks!
Breakfast with the family (well, mom is behind the camera!)…
November 4, 2011 5 Comments