Monday, September 30, 2013

Did you ever play hide and seek as a kid? (If you didn't- you're never too old to start) I have to brag for a second here and say that I was really good at hide and seek.  I was smaller than all of the other kids so I could fit in places that none of them could.  Sometimes, though, I was almost too good at it. As the person who was "it" slowly counted to ten, I'd nestle into my compact hiding spot and wait... and wait... and wait.  I learned quickly that it's no fun to hide if people stop looking for you.  Secretly, I wanted to be found.

As I got older and grew into an angsty, attention-hungry teen, this desire took on a different form.  There were a couple of times when my mom and I would get into huge fights and I'd "run away" from home.  I'd very conspicuously leave my window open, dramatically run down the block, and wait.  I didn't actually want to run away.  What I wanted was to be searched for.

Now, as an angsty, attention-hungry adult, I sometimes find myself doing the same thing with Tyler.  I'll be trapped in a vortex of insecurity and occasionally I'll pick a fight just so I can walk in the other room, shut the door, and wait.  The truth is, I don't need alone time to cool off.  I need to feel missed. I need to feel like I am being pursued.  I want to be found.

As embarrassing as it is to share these shortcomings, I don't think I'm alone in these desires.  I think we all intrinsically want to be pursued, to be sought after, and to be found.  I know in my heart that while Tyler can help soothe my wounds, he can't in and of himself fulfill those deep desires of my heart.  And it wouldn't be fair of me to expect him to- that's far too heavy a load for any one person to carry.  But fortunately I serve a God who does.

"Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life.”
-Psalms 23:6
                                                           **This post is linked up at Wedded Wednesdays**


Friday, September 27, 2013


Thursday, September 26, 2013

When I was 19 I visited Scotland, and while I was there I wrote this in my journal:

"It feels like I belong here... if people have soulmates, then I think it's possible to have a soulhome too.  I know we'll never feel fully at home while on this earth but I think there are some places where each person's soul feels a little closer to heaven."

That is the exact feeling I experienced upon returning to Chicago.  Ty and I both are fully enamored with that city that we once called home.

Don't get me wrong.  We love our lives in Los Angeles and could never in good conscience complain about living in California.  But there is a part of our hearts that will always live in the windy city, and we are happy for any excuse to go back.  Here are some photos from our trip.

the University Club- an exclusive old club in downtown where our friends got married.

Celebrating my uncle's birthday at Topolobampo

The "work" portion of the trip included bald eagle demonstrations...
...and holding baby ducks.  I guess my job is okay.

If I had a private jet I might just fly to Ipsento every weekend for a Cardamom Rose Latte.
my old apartment

my cute grandparents

It was so wonderful getting to show off some of our favorite spots to our family.  Chicago, you can be sure that we'll be seeing you again soon.

Thanks for reading!

Chicago Bound

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Today we are off for a quick little trip to Chicago! The visit is a mix of business and pleasure and we are so excited to visit our old favorite spots and stuff our faces full of pizza. Have a great weekend!

How To: Choose a Frame

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Below is an article I did for Baller Artware on what to know when getting a photo or piece of artwork professionally framed.  You can see the original article here!

It's no secret that getting artwork professionally framed is an investment.  Not only will framing enhance the beauty of your pieces, it will also protect them for years to come.  Good framing is in and of itself an art form, and thus the decision about where/ how/ with what to frame your art should be well thought out.  Professional framers often have an intuition about what will look good on a piece, but ultimately the decision is yours to make.  Here are some things to think about when you go in to a frame shop.

Know your budget: Frame shops typically carry hundreds of selections for frames, so knowing your budget ahead of time will help the framer narrow down the selections to those that will fit within your budget.  Frames can range anywhere from $4 per square foot to $30 per square foot, and there are beautiful options within every price range.

Think about the style of your home or office: Is it earthy? Modern? Classic?  You will want your piece to match the decor of the room that it will be in, so make a mental note of the overall feel of the surrounding area.

Decide on a mood for the piece: Would you like this piece to look ornate or simple? Do you want it to blend in with other art work or "pop" as the focal point of a room?  Communicate these intentions with the framer.

Know the environment: If your piece will be in a room that gets a lot of light you will want to have glass that offers UV protection.

Don't forget about matting: If a fancy colorful frame is simply not in your budget, fear not.  Adding a colored mat to your piece can contribute to the "wow" factor without severely jacking up the price.


Monday, September 16, 2013

All of us at one point or another have been victims of injustice.  Likewise, all of us have in our lives been unjust to someone else.  Often these injustices are minor, and in the best of circumstances apologies are exchanged and forgiveness is bestowed.

There are times, though, when the unjust one is not apologetic and seemingly no justice is served.  We see it often in the news, in court cases, and occasionally in our own spheres.

I'd like to believe that I am someone who fights for justice.  I am not easily angered but when I am it is most often due to the oppression of an individual or group.  But I confess that as a third party onlooker, despite getting fired up, I can also let go of these injustices pretty easily if they are left unsolved.  At the end of the day, laundry needs to be done and the cries of the mistreated are all too easy to leave at the computer screen.

Recently, however, I myself have become a victim of injustice.  Though not as severe as the injustice we read about in the headlines, it is certainly far more serious than a quibble between friends.  It involves lawyers and documents and money and a great deal of physical & psychological harm to someone I loved dearly.  It's grown-up stuff that I never thought I'd have to deal with.  And, unfortunately, it has become quite clear that justice will not be served.  The bad guy will win.  I can't help but weep at the fact that someone who deserves so much punishment will walk away with reward.

It's not fair.

{The voices of all the parents in the world respond in my head: "Life's not fair."}

And it's true.

It's times like this that I have to remember that my hope lies not in the juries of this world, but in the hands of an eternally Loving and markedly Just God. When the forces of injustice wreak havoc in our world we must remember that God is with us and it is He who has the last word.  Though I am called to "to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free..." it is not my job to seek revenge.  It is my job to forgive even those who seem unforgivable.  It is my job to make my own heart right with God. And it's my job to live in a way that looks ahead to the day in which we live in a "new heaven and a new earth in which righteousness dwells"

Image credit

Currently on Repeat

Monday, September 9, 2013

I fell in love with The Head and the Heart in Chicago and listening to their first album has the power to transport me back there in an instant.  I've been listening to some of their newer stuff lately and it definitely doesn't disappoint!

What songs have the power to take you back to a certain place or time?

With All Your Heart

Thursday, September 5, 2013

I'm meditating on this thought today.  I'll be the first to admit that there are plenty of things that I do halfheartedly.  I've mentioned before my fear of committing to a particular path. However, as I mentally prepare to go back to school (in less than a month!) I am committing to do so with all my heart.  It's scary to think about the logistics (homework, finances, etc) as well as the "what ifs." What if I hate it? What if I'm terrible at it? What if I made the wrong choice?  However, I know that both Ty and I have gone forward in our grad school choices with prayer and guidance, and at this point it's up to us to trust that God is leading us every step of the way.

Ty started school last week and has already thrown himself into it with everything he's got.  So here's to going forward wholeheartedly and not looking back!

Destination: Chicago (part 2)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Later this month we will be taking a trip back to Chicago and, while we'll only be there a few days, there are so many spots I want to revisit. I've had quite a few people contact me about my favorite spots in the Windy City, so I've compiled a short list of my recommendations. (If you missed Part 1 check it out here)

Revolution Brewery: Decent food, excellent beer.  Tyler highly recommends any of their stouts.
Piece Pizza: Excellent hefeweizen & dunkelweizen.  If you eat in expect a long wait.  Great place to watch sports games.  Sundays they have a special for a pizza and growler of beer for $25 (take out only)


Burgers, beer & bourbon at Owen & Engine

Bad Apple: You can't go wrong with anything on the menu.  Every burger is spectacular and their draft list is a mile long.  Also....those truffle fries... just do it.
Kuma's: Wait times are typically an hour long so call ahead and don't attempt to eat there.  These are gourmet burgers for super cheap so go out of your comfort zone and try something new (Cholula Lemon Vinaigrette burger, please.)
Owen and Engine: This isn't a burger joint, but Tyler insisted it be added due to their Tuesday special: a beer, a shot of bourbon, and a burger for $15.  Can't beat that.


First taste of Chicago pizza at Giordano's

Giordano's: I may get some hate mail for this one.  Every Chicagoan has their preference between Gio's Lou Malnati's and Gino's East.  Gio's was our favorite because their crust tastes like a legit pie crust.  The 25 pounds of cheese on each pizza doesn't hurt either.
Pequods: Much lesser known than the aforementioned three, pequods is a little different than traditional deep dish.  Thicker crust, less cheese, cooked in cast iron.

Cheap Eats 
Ribs N Bibs: A true taste of the south side.  Bucket of rib tips, anyone?
Big Star Taco: Hip, cheap, delicious, airy.  As with most places in Wicker Park, expect a long wait.


Typical Saturday morning at Ipsento

Intelligentsia: Chicago is the birthplace of this coffee snob's Mecca.
Ipsento: This was often my Saturday morning hangout.  Cozy, cute, and offers really unique drinks.  My favorites are the Cardamom Rose Latte and the Ipsento (with coconut milk and cayenne pepper). Also some of the friendliest baristas around.

Bang Bang Pie: Great homemade pie and biscuits in an uber trendy shop.  Their coffee is also pretty fantastic.

Mojito Mimosas

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Yesterday Tyler and I made a Labor Day brunch inspired by Bobby Flay that included Cuban torrejas with cinnamon maple syrup & cream, a homemade Spanish chorizo tortilla, and these amazing mojito mimosas.

They may have well been my favorite part of the meal.  These are perfect for a hot day and are probably best served at a later brunch, as they are a bit higher in alcohol content than traditional mimosas.  Salud!

Mojito Mimosas
adapted from Bobby Flay
Serves 2

  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 oz white rum
  • Champagne or Sparkling wine


Muddle mint, sugar, and lime in a cocktail shaker.  Add rum and shake with ice.  Strain into champagne glasses and top with champagne or sparkling wine.  Garnish with mint sprigs.