Sunday, December 18, 2011

Lookie! I'm makin' stuff =)

I'm just gonna say it; I have been borderline depressed lately. Relationship meltdown + Best Friend Breakup + Potential Move to COLORADO (more on that later!) = Stressed out & just not in a good place right now.

So, what do you do when you need to de-stress? Bottle of wine? Calorie binge? (Or maybe that's just me...) This weekend I chose a healthier way to recoup. Have you joined Pinterest yet? It's my new favorite online addiction. This Saturday, I wrote out a supply list for a few projects I'd pinned and headed to Hobby Lobby. Craftiness ensued.

 Simple Bracelets:

Before: Charms, Embroidery Floss, Scissors, & Suede Laces.

The End Result: Look how pretty!

Mantra of the Moment: Be creative. Do something positive every day. Don't be Eeyore.


Easy & informative tutorial here. I swapped out the embroidery floss for soft suede for a few of the larger charms.

*All Photos Personal

Thursday, December 1, 2011

In a perfect world...

...I'd begin every morning with lots of snuggles from my two favorite animals.

 The weather would be 70 and sunny, with lots of color!

I would spend my days in laughter, song...and maybe a dance or two.

...maybe someday

Thursday, November 10, 2011

When covering your ass crosses the line

The nicest thing I have to say about the Sandusky/Paterno situation is this; There is NO grey area when it involves children. If people would have had the morality to take their suspicions to the police immediately, how many victims would have been spared? This world makes me sick sometimes. Cover up abuse to save face for a University? Really?

It is our job as adults to do the right thing and speak up for those who cannot defend themselves. Abuse of power seems to be running rampant these days, although I'm not naive enough to believe this is anything new.

The Grand Jury presentment is shocking and offensive and I can't help but think that most of these horrible acts could have been completely avoided. I made it through the first two pages.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Photobooth Fun

Last night, I attended the wedding of a dear friend of mine. It was perfect! The ceremony was appropriate and very true to the couple, it was less about traditions and expectations, and more about the two of them and their love for each other.

Unfortunately, there was a giant pillar and a photographer in the way for most of the evening, so I didn't get to take as many pictures as I would have liked. The couple opted for one of my favorite wedding trends, a photo booth. Photo booths are so much fun and provide a great parting gift for your guests. My only complaint? Not a fake mustache in sight! Maybe next time =)

photo cred

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Ode to 303

Dear Colorado,

I love you because...



*all photos personal unless otherwise noted

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

In other news...

Have a great rest of your week/weekend, folks! I'm off on a little roadtrip to Denver with the bf and his mom & little sis. Oh, don't worry...there will be pictures. ;-)




Monday, September 26, 2011

Shine a little light

I feel that I have been living under a little bit of a rain cloud as of late.

 For the most part, I am blessed with a great family, supportive co-workers, fun friends and a man I love very much. Over the past month or so, however, I have allowed myself to be caught up in negativity. Here's what I'm learning;

As we age, our life experiences shape us. Up to a certain point, we are who we have been raised to be. The timing is different for everyone, but I believe there comes a moment when each person becomes aware of the flaws of their upbringing. Then there is a choice to be made. You can either accept things the way they are and always have been and continue along the beaten path, or do something a little fearless. You can change. Appreciate the past for what it was, a lesson in life, and strike out on your own. 

I'd like to write a bit about marriage. (Have I lost my audience yet?) I find few positive paintings of marriage in western culture. Tabloids are filled with pages of cheating starlets and 72 hour celebrity marriages, Primetime is wrought with sit-coms chronicling frustrated wives and their foolish husbands as they navigate their way through the life they've resigned themselves to. Maybe it's just the recession talking, but it seems to me that making the best of it is the name of the game these days. 

How did we get here? Television programs like The Bachelor (and many others like it) draw millions of viewers but same-sex unions between people who actually know and love one another are destroying the sanctity of marriage? Really? Something about that just doesn't vibe with me. Call me old fashioned, but I don't want to 'win' the man of my dreams by being the final contestant on a reality show. I'll keep my fairy tales. 

I was raised to believe in marriage. My parents have been married for 30 years and in all that time, I can remember only witnessing one major argument. It was about money and it was the first time I'd ever heard a profane word come out of my father's mouth. My family is not necessarily wealthy, but we've always had enough. I'd never wanted for anything, mostly because I was raised to be grateful for what I have and to place my value not in material possessions, but elsewhere. Faith in God is and always has been the cornerstone of my family. It was obnoxious at times, because I couldn't tattle on my little sister without being reminded never to "create strife", but I am thankful beyond words to have been raised to know the meaning of true, agape, love. 

I am not into the idea of needing a person to complete me. I have a God who loves me and did not make me with a few missing pieces. I am an ever changing, living, breathing example of His grace and compassion. My life has a purpose, just as all do. When I find myself fearing that my life without my boyfriend would be empty, it's a reality check for me. I am not where I need to be in my walk with the Lord. Relationships shouldn't define us, they should bless and edify our lives. If I am hit by a bus tomorrow, I would hate to think that I would be remembered only by titles via my Facebook profile; Teacher, Singer, Blogger, Josh's Girlfriend. Yikes! These things are amazing, important parts of my life, but they are not my sole purpose and motivation for living.

My goal should be to live in such a way that people are pointed to Him by the love pouring out of me. I don't want to be preachy, because I don't think that is what we are called to be. Somehow, "Go and spread the Good News.." has turned into shoving religion down people's throats or ostracizing them for thinking differently. Whatever happened to leading by example

With each passing year, I find myself a little less the hopeful romantic I claim to be. I struggle with a need to know. I overanalyze things and people which robs me of the joy and surprise of learning something new. Nothing seems natural anymore. It takes courage and faith to release oneself from the worry of tomorrow and focus on the blessings of today...I fear I'm lacking both.

Instead of letting ourselves be bogged down by the flaws and failures of the world, my wish is to focus on that which is good and perfect. I believe in the healing power of love and of music, because it is Love that saved me and continues to sustain me, even in my most cynical and darkest of moments. Each day is a precious gift, and I long to spend the remainder of mine surrounded by the ones for which my very heart beats. 

Maybe it's the daydreamer in me who wishes to think only on the positive. Instead of the constant panic of the nonsense of this world. I feel homesick, and I look forward to the day when our time on earth with all make sense. I am certain of one thing; there is meaning it all, each heartbreak, each burned bridge, each moment of laughter at a favorite song heard on the radio and the list goes on. Although society is wrought with addiction, deceit and divorce, doesn't mean there is a place in my future for any of those. Life is what you make it. Really.

& here's the quote that began this entire rambling:
"Marriage is not a ritual or an end. It is a long, intricate, intimate dance together and nothing matters more than your own sense of balance and your choice of partner."
- Amy Bloom
...I think that about sums it up. =)


"Out of Nowhere" Miles Davis
"Across the Stars" (Love Theme from Star Wars: Attack of the Clones) John Williams
"With or Without You" Vitamin String Quartet
"Butterflies & Hurricanes" Muse
"Today" Joshua Radin
"Time" Billy Porter

Monday, September 19, 2011

So long sweet summer

Autumn weather is headed our way, bringing cooler temperatures and.....


I love this time of year. Fall always seems to fill my weekends with good food, great music, and amazing people. This past weekend Joshua and I were lucky enough to see the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra's opening performance of the season, Cirque de la Symphonie, at the Lied Center for the Performing Arts here in Lincoln. The Orchestra played many well loved pieces, and were accompanied by artists from Cirque du Soleil. It was terrifyingly beautiful. Good music makes my heart happy, and I must say, the human body can do some amazing things. The Cirque performers turned acrobatics into an art form. I was blown away to say the least.

We have also recently reconnected with an old friend of Josh's from back in the day. I had a blast getting to know him and his wife. Last weekend, the four of us met up with a couple of my co-workers at Mary's Place (local dive/biker bar) and had a great time drinking gin and tonics and dancing to the cover band that was playing. 

 Good times had by all.

Welcome, Autumn! Stay awhile, I'm really enjoying you so far =)

xoxo, V

*all photos personal

Ringo, you're a Star.

Josh's beloved pet, Ringo the dumbo rat, is approaching his second birthday and isn't doing so well. He has little rat tumors =(. Now listen, I may not be the world's biggest fan of rodents as pets. at. all. But this little guy is Josh's pet and he's raised him since he was an even littler guy. It's sweet, sort of.

Given the circumstances, I thought it would be good to get a few pictures of Josh and his little buddy. Here are a few photos we shot this weekend. 

I must admit, that's a pretty sweet face.

Look at these handsome guys!

*all photos personal

Monday, September 12, 2011

[A little more than] Two Cents

My sweet love-

If I could push a button and erase the doubt in your mind, 
about family and relationships and faith, 
I would. 
If I could cut a deal to take your pain as my own, 
I wouldn't hesitate.  

I wish I had a looking glass,
or a genie with a magic wish.
I'd take you with me far away,
into the future that could be,
and will be if you let it.

I see friendship, 

This world holds so much good for you,
my dearest friend.
Great success will come to you,
happiness is yours for the taking!
...if you could only get out of your own way.

Don't deny the ones who love you,
just because holding a piece of your heart
puts you at risk to have it broken.

People will always let you down,
place your trust in the One who made you.
He knows you best of all and loves you
exactly where you are.

I've loved you so long
but He's loved you longer.
Forgive me for thinking I knew better.
My intentions were pure but my execution-

If I could ask one thing of you,
please stay awhile.
Ride it out, 
don't lose hope.

Come what may.

Let's take this journey,
this chance,
this adventure.

Sink or swim.

I love you more than I can reason.
Will you ever know?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

10 years later

The kiddos made this last week.
Although they weren't around to have memories of September 11, 2001, I wonder if they realize how much it affects their lives.

Just an observation, whether it be watching the news or listening to a casual conversation, I am stunned by the amount of prejudice that has been allowed to persist in our culture and around the world. Why does it take a tragedy (or a sporting event) to pull people together? Each day is a chance for change and to spread some positivity around this place. I am thankful for the good in this world, let us focus on the things which bring about joy. It seems we're headed for demise, be it from rising temperatures or nuclear weapons, so why waste time bogged down with fear and regret? I refuse to let my mind be so stuck in the past that I miss out on the beauty of the present. In whatever time we have, let's make it count.

It's been ten years, friends.
What have we learned?

*all photos personal

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

So there.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The weekend is officially over; I miss it already. This weekend I had the pleasure of attending a dear friend's wedding. I am beyond happy for her; she never fails to bring a smile, or a shot of tequila, to my lips. That's the kind of woman she is, so down to earth. During the ceremony, when things were getting a little serious, she flubbed a vow or two, providing the perfect amount of comedic relief and even had the pastor cracking jokes. I love moments like that. Real life, real love. Neither one needs perfection in order to be beautiful.
Look how handsome he is! Those eyes...*swoon*
 Too bad I couldn't center the photo!

Another not so perfect picture of us...I kinda like it.

The happy couple!
What a lovely family they make.

The groom's daughter, the flower girl, how adorable is she?
First dance
He loves her so.
Happy Monday, everybody! Let's make it a great week.
all photos personal

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Baby, You and I

Really diggin' this tune right now. Most likely due to the Nebraska shout out and the fact that it's such a different style for her. I love my cool Nebraska guy, too.

Hope you're all having a great evening and safe and sound. It's a crazy world out there, folks. Natural disasters and terroristic threats abound. Josh and I are cozied up on the couch after a great workout at the boxing gym watching Craig Ferguson on CBS. What is your nightly ritual?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Oh, and by the way...

I just want you all to know that I just chipped a tooth on a piece of SUSHI. I don't know who, I don't know where, but I must have done something to somebody to deserve this awful karma. OVER it. Who wants to donate to the "Vanessa needs to fix her car/computer/tooth/relationship/life" fund?

"Hate My Life" Theory of a Deadman
"All or Nothing" Theory of a Deadman

I heart the zoo!

Last weekend Josh & I drove to Omaha with his mother, Dixie, to the Henry Doorly Zoo. The weather was perfect! A day at the zoo was a great change of pace from our usual weekend activities (read: lay around the house and do nothing because it's too hot to commit to an entire day of being outside).
Did you know my name means butterfly in Hebrew?
I've always loved them!

another beautiful butterfly

I think this guy is so cool.
He seemed to be studying the zoo patrons just as much as we were studying him.

Begging for peanuts. 

No photo editing needed for this one.
The Lord makes animals in the most beautiful of colors.
The Aquarium is by far my favorite place.
I could stay there all day.

I didn't capture a very high quality photo of this guy.
I didn't take very many pictures in the aquarium because I was too busy enjoying it!

The object of my affection.
yup. matching sunglasses.
In short, if you are in the area and have not yet visited the Henry Doorly Zoo, it is well worth the drive and the $13 admission. Every mile a memory.

*all photos personal unless otherwise noted

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Breaking up is hard to do

Love this song. Hate that I understand the lyrics in a way I never could before. Emo post, much? Sorry all, that's where I am at the moment. Enjoy the music.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

oh, Hi there!

...just sayin'.



Saturday, June 18, 2011

Three o'clock.

If my life were a reality show, tonight's episode would feature a makeup-less me, sitting alone in my apartment, snoring puggle at my feet. You would see me walk around in various states of undress, trying to get comfortable enough to fall asleep. Failure. In attempt to distract my restless mind, I turn on the computer and navigate directly to my hulu queue, hoping to be lulled to sleep by the adolescent drama of Pretty Little Liars (I have no shame).

The first set of commercials is nearly over when the screen freezes. Great. Restart the computer. Check the security system, firewall and malware protection turned off? Amazing, how long has this been going on? Thanks for the heads up, McAfee. Screen freezes again, shortly followed by the blue screen of death. Expletives abound.

Now it's 4 in the a.m. and the only thing I've managed to do is ramble my way through this post on my phone, cursing the person who convinced me using swype on a touchscreen phone was a good option for me. I just had to type the word "option" 5x before it understood that I was not trying to say "litton", whatever the eff that means.

Also, I now desperately need the wen haircare system thanks to Alyssa Milano and this half hour infomercial.

I am coming to the realization that alone time is not working for me right now. All of this "space" is suffocating me. That's my obvious observation of the night.

No one would watch this reality show.

No xoxo tonight kiddos, it's more like...


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Monday, June 13, 2011

& so she went to bed with only her sunburn to keep her warm...

All photos personal

...and slipped into a dream of brighter days spent with the one she loves.

Nebraska is where my roots have grown deep. I love my family and friends and as trite as it may sound, there really is no place like home. Lately my heart has grown restless. Sleep evades me and I find myself constantly searching for the exit to the routinized existence that has become my life. I feel a storm brewing in my soul, it's time to go...but this time, I don't want to do it alone.

Nothing is for certain. If I've learned anything over the past few years it is that my carefully constructed plans have a way of turning themselves into complete chaos, and my stumblings have a way of turning themselves into great memories, life lessons, and the happiest of accidents. There is perfection in the disorganized randomness of my life.

Time for a change in scenery?
Colorado looks good on us, no?

Someday, maybe.
We shall see. 


"Falling" Florence And The Machine
"Hometown Glory" Adele

Monday, June 6, 2011

le sigh

Ah, you guys. Things are kind of sucky right now.

Tauri the Taurus is a goner. My beloved car (may she rest in peace) is no more. We've finally come to the point in our relationship where it's either time to put a lot of work into her or call it quits. I had to make a judgement call and I just can't justify spending more than the value of the car to replace the transmission. Sad face. Now I'm dealing with the buy another clunker vs. take on a car payment debate. I freaking hate making decisions, y'all. To make matters worse, while I hem and haw around, I am switching between borrowing my parents'volvo and relying on the boyfriend to haul me around. I feel like a nuisance and a little bit of a failure because I don't have the financial freedom to resolve the situation immediately. 

I'm a big fan of gameplans, and right now the name of the game is save as much dinero as possible. Mind you, this breakdown landed smack in between my birthday and our (soon to be blogged about) Colorado trip. Happy fun times. It's just been one of those eff my life weeks, and it's only Monday! So, if you, my dear readers, could send a happy thought my way...Gosh, I'd really appreciate it.


We've been through a lot, old girl. You took me to college, made the Neb-TX drive so many times without breaking down on me...ever, and served as hideout during my freshmen year lunch breaks when I didn't know a soul in town and would cry over my Chik-fil-a waffle fries. I made new friends and drove them around in you. You served as the backdrop to many a break up/make up. Your radio always knew how to play the perfect song at the perfect time to cheer me up, or inspire me to write a blog. I think I even spent a night or two in the backseat when I was too broke to afford a hotel room that night in Austin. Come to think of it, thank you Tauri (and baby Jesus!) for keeping me safe that night in Austin. 

You will be missed, my jelly bean shaped car, thanks for the memories.



Saturday, June 4, 2011

[birthday] wishes come true

Yes, I know. I haven't posted in awhile...again. I'm not lacking in material, just the time/motivation to sit down and type it all! I will do better, I promise. Until then, there are a few photos from my birthday on the 21st of May. I'm 24 now...eep!

After dinner at Carmela's (very happy Vanessa)
My bday present from Joshua

I didn't really believe in the whole "Judgement Day 5.21.11" thing
...but we watched these clouds carefully, just in case ;-)

May 21 is also Penny Lane's "gotcha day!"
It's been a crazy year, but we love her soooo much!
Nothing like a birthday serenade from my love.

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