I’m excited to share the full story of how Ben & I got engaged with anyone who is interested to know! Over the past couple years I have really tried to refrain from being too cheesy or obnoxious about our relationship. But I’m laying it all out here so look out!

Ben and I met right before we went on a BCM mission trip to New Orleans. We were placed in the same van to ride all the way there, and we actually became pretty fast friends. I remember enjoying conversation with him because he was easy to talk to. And I liked this Mumford & Sons band that he kept talking about. I definitely had a crush on him, but it didn’t last past the week in NOLA. When I think of my freshman self though, I’m quite thankful God decided that just wasn’t the right timing! 🙂

Way back on the NOLA trip. Now that I know him, I'm sure he was silently critiquing my painting skills. I'm positive.

Way back on the NOLA trip. Now that I know him, I’m sure he was silently critiquing my painting skills. I’m positive.

I was happy being friends with Ben Carter because his dry sense of humor was always fun to be around. The summer before my junior year, we started hanging out in groups a lot, passing the summer nights with group outings to movies like the Amazing Spiderman or Prometheus. (**DO NOT see Prometheus. Ever. No.**) We all watched the Summer Olympics and went star-gazing on South Milledge Avenue. Through all of this, my crush on Ben was re-developing, but I was trying to deny it. He was just hard to read. At the time, however, he was starting to get a crush on me as well! Our first date wasn’t until November. So, yeah, I wondered for quite a long time if he felt the same way. Our first date was after the Ole Miss football game, which we had to leave early to go see Argo in theaters. I truly remember nothing from that movie, other than Ben Affleck having a beard. I spent more time watching Ben Carter out of the corner of my eye, wondering if his hand was going to hold mine, trying to make my hand open for grabbing in case one of us got brave. He finally did, and it was quite magical!

Someday I can tell the rest, but for now, I’ll go back to the engagement story.

Ben moved to Auburn a little over a month ago to take a new job, so our visits are rare and precious! He was coming home to Madison for Labor Day weekend, aka Clemson weekend. The Sunday after the game, he had planned a “fancy date” where he wouldn’t tell me the location. Of course, this is where I started to get suspicious. I’m not good at surprises, and the honest truth is that I’d been waiting for this day to come. We’d been talking about marriage and had been what I like to call “pre-engaged” for a long time! But I tried my best not to question all of this too much, even when he commented on how nice my nails looked…what.

Fancy Date started with a stroll through North campus. At this point I’m getting pretty sweaty, and am really concerned about that. What if he really does propose and it won’t fit on my big fat finger???? I wondered. What if you’re out of your mind??? I also wondered. But thank goodness I actually WASN’T out of my mind. We sat down on a bench in front of a small fountain on campus that we’ve always loved. We sat for a while and then he started saying some sweet things. He told me he loved me and that I help him to be closer to the Lord. Some other nice stuff I can’t remember because I was too excited. He said he had asked my parents’ permission a few weeks earlier when they passed through Auburn. He got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! And I’m pretty sure I said yes. And guess what? That ring went on without any hang-ups on my sweaty finger. Also, I love the ring. And him. Especially him.


Then I saw Ethan creeping behind the bushes with his fancy camera in hand. That sight gave me joy. We went over and talked to him for a minute, when suddenly, we saw this happy family with a bulldog puppy. Eeek! They joked about how we should take a picture with him, but I took them seriously and went and asked the people. What I learned that day is that bulldogs are very top heavy, even as puppies. When I sat the dog back down, something just went wrong. His poor wrinkled face hit the ground before the rest of his body, which I felt pretty bad about. We left ASAP.


Dinner turned out to be at NONA, a New Orleansy restaurant in downtown Athens. That was very special because we consider New Orleans to be an important part of the beginning of our friendship! He surprised me by inviting our parents and my sister and her boyfriend all together to eat dinner. It felt like a dream, really. It was the first time that we were all eating together as a family.

After all of this, we celebrated the right way: Blizzards from Dairy Queen. And that’s why I must marry him.


I’m so excited to spend the rest of my life with a best friend that can tell it to me straight when I’m being unreasonable, but will support me with my dreams like the Etsy shop. I never felt okay with the fact that I’m such a crier until I met someone who would hold me even when I’m crying over the most pointless things. I like to think that our personalities balance each other out. We will for sure have hard times but I can’t even imagine giving up on him. I can’t believe God blessed me with him! I’m so thankful we both showed up at the same place.



It’s been a fantastic week for the shop, and if you haven’t seen these already, check out my new Athens prints!


You might think I’m a little weird for this, but I love packing. I love to gather up my belongings and clear out old stuff that I no longer need. Packing everything up signifies a new beginning just around the corner. I also love unpacking. You get to start fresh and have a new beginning. Maybe you can choose how to decorate things a little bit differently. Why not?

But this week, I learned about my hatred for the process in between packing and unpacking.
It started out all fine. I was slowly packing up my things in Pineview because I had a few days and not much to pack. Then Scarlett said she was stressed that I hadn’t packed much. I looked around thinking, okay, I’ve actually packed a lot and you just can’t tell.
But guess what? I own a lot of crap. A lot.
A lot.
I didn’t realize this until the third or fourth car load in the middle of the day in late July. I was literally growling out loud in anger with the verse “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth” running through my head.

So I went back and looked up that verse.
Matthew 6:19-21

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

So…why do I need all of this jank? Why do I have so many DVDs and over 15 knitted scarves? My things might not be moth ridden or rusted, but some of it has gathered dust. Some of it has been pushed to the back of my closet and forgotten. Yet if someone tried to take my things away from me, I’d be upset. Don’t take my treasures!

What are the treasures that you’re guilty of holding onto? Your iPhone? Your computer? A closet full of clothes you don’t really wear?
Me too.

The thing I seem to forget is that these things will wither away. They are truly meaningless compared to the treasures in Heaven that I should be preparing.

I’m not saying that I’m going to sell all of my possessions and live out of a cardboard box (although that would make moving a lot quicker and less sweaty), but that verse does put things into a clear perspective for me.


Posting two days in a row? This has never happened before.


One problem that I tend to have is procrastinating on online homework or any other little task on my computer..job applications, email, etc. I had about 9 tabs open at once this morning and it was just stressful to look at! I can say that I’ll never be as bad as Ben, though.. I know he’s been messing with my computer when I open it to find 12 tabs open, one of them always being ESPN. Anyway, what a glorious moment it was when I came home from the GACE, finished my online homework, and cleared out all of those tabs! That’s a fantastic feeling.

Now I have the rest of the day to do what I want to do without any guilt: create. (And watch Parenthood.)

Just when I was starting to get discouraged about a dry week in the Etsy shop, two people contacted me about custom orders. I definitely feel like it’s the most rewarding when I get to create a specific design for somebody. That’s what I’m about to be working on!

photo 1


photo 2The top one is still in the works, but the bottom one is done. I’m super excited about these because I love writing out custom verses that speak to peoples’ hearts. Especially when they’re for a child’s room! Eeek!


But first, I want to do this little thing I found on Oh Simple Thoughts:

Lately I am:

Making | custom prints for a lovely customer!
Cooking | umm..cookies?  Okay but actually, I cooked some squash and zucchini last night and sprinkled Parmesan cheese on it. Definitely a success. 
Drinking | Coke Zero.. trying to wean off of Coke. Slowly..
Reading | Sadly, nothing. But I ordered Sparkly Green Earrings by Melanie Shankle yesterday!
Wanting | Cold Tangerines by Shauna Niequist
Looking | forward to picking up Ben from the airport tomorrow! He’s been job training in San Antonio.
Playing | Parenthood on Netflix… y’all. It’s too good. I cry on average once an episode.
Wishing | for a CFA ice cream cone.
Enjoying | being done with the GACE.
Waiting | on God.
Wondering | how many cookies I will eat before this day is over.
Loving | my campus minister and his words of encouragement today.
Watching | Oh whoops.. Already said Parenthood! I also relived my childhood with the Parent Trap the other day with the little ones I babysit. I enjoyed it way more than they did.
Marveling | at God’s blessings. One being that he brought me to UGA four years ago.
Wearing | Nike shorts and a t shirt. All summer long.
Buying | floss, face wipes, and sunscreen. CRAZY.
Getting | to live with my sister in just a couple of weeks! Yay!
Feeling | FREE!

What’s In My Bag?

This is my first time ever doing a link up, and I’m pretty excited about it! My friend and shop partner Lindsey showed me this link up that’s cohosted by In It’s Time and Rivers and Roads. I just love following good blogs. 🙂



This is my beat up Fossil bag that I bought for myself for Christmas a couple years ago. It’s been the best purse I’ve had. I’ve learned that I really prefer bags with a shoulder strap because I like to have my hands free! This one has always been wonderful.

So here are the contents of my purse, set up in a lovely way just for you:


Wallet – Another Fossil purchase, but this one was great because I found it in an outlet store so it was super cheap!

Dachshund greeting cards –  These cards were made by Natty Michelle Paperie, my favorite Etsy shop…other than my own, of course. 😉 I’ve been carrying them around with the intent to give them to my sister as a birthday gift, but just haven’t gotten a chance to get over to her apartment yet. Side note, in only a couple weeks it will be OUR apartment!

Athens Farmer’s Market coins – I had to get these when I went to the market and didn’t have cash. But don’t let these fool you into thinking I’m trendy and frequent the Farmer’s Market. I’ve only been twice.

Chapstick, Hand Sanitizer, & Band Aids – Because you always need these.

Orbit Gum – My favorite!

Sunglasses – I love my retro looking sunglasses! I bought them a few years ago but it took me this long to become brave enough to wear them.

Stamps – Because you just never know when you’ll need to send some snail mail!

Bubbles – These are leftover from my super fun weekend celebrating the wedding of Josh & Emily Mosley! We sent them off with these cute little bubbles.

Micron Pen – These amazing pens came into my life when we started working on our Etsy shop. Now I keep one on me all the time because they’re just great for writing quick notes or writing in my planner.

2014 Planner – How CUTE is my planner? Sorry but it just is. I really needed a planner that was small enough to fit into my purse so that I could always have it. It’s become pretty important to me, being used for school and work, but sometimes to scribble down a prayer in the middle of the day.  I also have essential lists in there that I would die without.

Keys – I try to keep my keys simple but I found this recycled license plate keychain in a shop in DT Chattanooga and loved it! It’s my favorite.


I hope you enjoyed the contents of my bag! I’m excited to see what’s in yours. 🙂

In Its Time

Olaf & The States of Matter

ImageThis is a future teacher post. Sorry bout it!

I know Frozen has been a little bit overdone lately. I love the movie, of course, but I have really tried my best not to become obsessed. BUT…as I was watching it tonight, my teacher side came out. When Olaf started singing his summer song, I was thinking about how funny the whole thing is. Then I wondered if kids would even get the irony of the song. And THEN I realized that this could be a Science lesson on the states of matter!!!

Olaf’s summer song.

So I created this very quickly. It’s really just a rough draft of something that could be used in the future for a second grade class, or really any younger grade. I just used a second grade standard because we went over the states of matter in my second grade class last semester at Winterville! I kept the focus on liquid & solid matter for this lesson, and would use it to lead into gas.
When filling out the worksheet, I would start by having the class put in water in it’s different forms–you could even write Olaf in the solid category, and then go from there.

Google Doc


S2E3. Students will observe and record changes in their surroundings and infer the causes of the changes.
a. Recognize effects that occur in a specific area caused by weather, plants, animals, and/or people.
EQ: What causes ice to melt? What causes water to freeze?

  • When ice is warmed to its melting point, it will melt into water.
  • When water is cooled to a temperature known as the freezing point, it will freeze and become solid ice.

Vocab: freezing point, melting point

Why is this video silly? Do you know what is going on that might be wrong? What would really happen to Olaf in summertime? (Compare to ice, popsicles, etc.)

Work Period: Discuss the states of matter with whole class. This should be an interactive time where students are identifying different states of matter that they see in their everyday lives. The States of Matter chart can be handed out and then worked on together as a class.

Quick Assessment: Students answer the following question on a sticky note on their way out the door: What state of matter is Olaf in? What would happen to him in the summertime?

Let’s Hear It For New York

New York City is probably the place that I know the most about having never been even close to there. I can’t even imagine how many movies and TV shows I have seen that are set in New York.


I feel like I know the place! However, I also feel a little bit like I only know this completely fictional version of it.


But TOMORROW, I finally get to experience it for myself. I’m going with a group of juniors and seniors from BCM on a mission trip where we’ll be staying in Brooklyn. The cool thing is that we’ll be split up into different tracks. I can’t exactly describe what my group will be doing there because I don’t even fully understand it. I know this: it involves spending time with Southest Asian people and drinking chai tea. I’m not going to lie.. I requested this track based on the words chai tea. There’s something very exciting about the idea of sitting with a cup of tea getting to talk with people and hear their stories. I’m not sure if that’s how it will be, but it’s how I imagine it.

So at 6 am we will depart from Athens and head to NYC. Please pray for our team–that we will reach people in the city and grow through this experience. That we will grow closer together and learn more about each other. That we will be brought out of our comfort zones to have new and exciting experiences!





Thank You


Tonight I was reminded of how great the old hymns are. How forgotten they are with all of this great new worship music we have to fill our hearts. Some artists have taken them and given them a modern twist. But what I really enjoyed was hearing a group of beautiful voices singing Amazing Grace the old fashioned way. The way my grandmother sang it to herself when she was cooking in the kitchen when I was little.

I was writing whatever I felt down in my journal, and I came up with a few things to say thank you for. It was wonderful to say thank you to God for a while instead of just praying for things to happen. I suggest that you just sit in quiet time for a minute and write down a few thank yous to The Lord and see where it takes you!


Thank you for this night of worship.

Thank you for this community of believers.

Thank you for your Words of comfort.

Thank you for amazing grace.

Thank you for my weaknesses.

Thank you for making me vulnerable.

Thank you for making me compassionate.

Thank you for listening.

Thank you for responding.