Thoughts Collected :part 2:

a collection of thoughts from my week;


















the older the kids get, the faster life moves. it is times like these that i wish we werent here yet, like maybe sometimes i wish for a do-over. to hold on to memories a bit more, to make more memories than what was made, to not rush things, to let things just “be”.

perhaps this is my chance for a do-over? who says i need to rewind times? there is no perfect time like the present. a lot has been going on for sure, but my main goal is for my babes to know how loved they are, forever and always.

there have been hidden tears, for all reasons. im so tired, so very tired. but i keep going…….and going. because i need to. there is no other choice but to do that, but given another choice would i even accept it? no, probably not.

A trellis of orange blooms, via loveallthingscomfy

i love this image and thought it to be a lovely ode to the closing of fall.

wishing you all a simple and lovely thanksgiving


…..table talk……

i want a table that talks…..i want stories to be shared, to be kept…..i want a gathering of friends and family, to break bread with one another, to be elated with one another’s company. i want to hear goodness in others lives, mine too…..i also want to be the ear to those who may be facing a struggle or 2…..i want tons of laughter……i want realness……raw…….emotions…….truth…….friendship…….lovers…….

i want new memories made, memories to recite for next years gathering. i want to watch my kids grow, my friends and family to  flourish…..

i want food to be amazing… create a sort of comfort for all of us…….i want different flavors that unite strikingly…..i want candle light to last a bit longer, to encourage us to linger a bit longer…..

i dont want to be rushed or those to feel rushed……i want us to savor each other, our moments, our memories, our food, our surroundings….

i cant help but think of november as a month to be thankful, for the obvious of course……this month contains a world of heart break for me as well…..but this month i want to be thankful……i need to be thankful….we all do

i want to set a table this thanksgiving that inspires and reassures all of the above…..all that i crave this thanksgiving……

Dark dining space with farm-style wooden dining table.


Thankful Jar

Outdoor Fall Dinner

Industrial Chic by Whitewall Photography for Magnolia Rouge Magazine

Holiday Inspiration | Kara Rosenlund

Thanksgiving Table Settings

dreamy whites - gorgeous table for thanksgiving


all of these tablescapes are lovely and such great inspiration……..what do you want your table to say?

november…….losing a baby…….losing a brother

november……well november has proven to be a little shitty for me. i have lost a lot in the month of november, the month of thanks, the month of gratitude…….

2003 at 19, i was pregnant…..young, scared, nervous, new. i was going to be a mom……a mother….i was going to have a little hand to hold, little rosebud lips to kiss, a little chubby body to keep warm and safe. i fancied what this little boy would look like…….i wondered his personality.

it wasnt just another teenage pregnancy……being a mother was a wonderful dream, a wonderful idea, a wonderful concept……but it wasnt my dream. but there i was, 19, pregnant. suddenly, it became my dream… had to. i was going to nurture this baby boy with my whole being, after all, he deserves nothing less

my due date was may 15th, 2004. a late spring baby. a great day to have a child.

halloween arrived with a scheduled appointment. my workday ended and i noticed my fear had turned into something beautiful. ahhhh i was going to be a mother…….words of sweetness. i could not wait to see this sweet baby on the monitor once again, moving about. the day was so gloriously dark, with rain pounding the pavement

i was there….lying down hearing the doctor telling me the heart beat of this sweet baby was no longer……….i was hearing her, but i wasnt listening. i laid there, numb, as she was staring at me to make sure i fully understood what she was saying. “there is no heartbeat”. he lived one day…….and didnt the next. i was nurturing a life. i was going to have a son. i already had his name. i turned my fear into something beautiful. i was going to love him with my entire soul. now what? i sat up, walked out and went to my car. that was it…..nobody was there to hug me, nurture me, tell me it was okay…….i sat next to my boyfriend (my husband now) in the car as he was crying and i was just staring at him……’why are you not comforting me’ i thought…….why do you get to cry…….you werent pregnant, you werent protecting a life inside of you, you didnt have the severe morning sickness, ‘what the hell is wrong with you’ i thought.

and then it happened… eyes were burning…….my eyes were welling up to the brims…….my cheeks were completely stained with tears……there was a bit of a permanence upon my face. this is what true heart ache feels like. to know the very feeling of being a mother only to be robbed, like a cruel joke was played and taunt you as if to say “just kidding”… dare you take him from me…..whoever “you” are. he was mine and i want him back…..and what about all the people who are going to ask about him and the pregnancy……i lost him……he is no longer mine…..that morning i was happy, i knew i was going to be a mother, i knew i would smell the infamous new baby smell, i knew my heart would be completely full…….and just like that, i am a mother no more. losing my first broke me… did something to me. i told my family that night and words of comfort were not found, but i was met with “thank God”…….thank God? im hurting…….im devastated…….there was a heart beat and there isnt anymore……i had a miscarriage you fools, this wasnt by choice, i didnt want this, but the best you can come up with is “thank God”

i chose to have a natural miscarriage, no medication or inducing, but some time had passed so i opted for the meds to induce the loss. this sweet baby that i was picturing in my arms with that sweet new baby smell, my son, would soon be leaving my body. i couldnt help but feel like an absolute failure that i couldnt protect him, that i wasnt nurturing him, that i couldnt keep his hand in mine like i promised i would….but instead i had to let him go, i had to let those thoughts of wonder go, i had to let go what i dreamed up of him…….i was alone every.single.step of the way……..not one person was holding my hand as the medication was working and i was lying there, cramping, breaking out in fevers, in and out of some trippy nightmare, just to get up every few minutes to the bathroom and watch with horror what was happening to me…..what was happening to my son……it was just me, all alone……a promise i made to my unborn son a feeling he would never feel…..alone…….

we officially lost him November 15th

2009 had arrived and i had given birth to my 3rd child, a chubby, perfect, baby girl. i had a perfect baby boy in 2005 and a perfect baby girl in 2007.

i had an older brother, Jonathan, who was 27 at the time. he was different……he was quirky, he was mischievous, he had a certain humor about him. he was special. he didnt know it though. jonny was rough around the edges. he had a drug problem, a drinking problem……a problem with life…..not his though…..a problem that was inflicted on him very young. he was robbed of his childhood to say the least. he grew up too quickly, too fast. i helped when i could, not enough though, nor did anyone else. he was treated like a lost cause, the black sheep, the problem…….he was none of those. he was always kind to the elderly, helped whenever he could, a hard worker,he was ridiculously smart, he was everything a big brother should be, he had a smile so big that his eyes would literally light up along with his smile and his smile was pure truth. he was raw. he was numb. he grew too old for his young age, he had seen too much, he had been subjected to too much. his million dollar smile faded too soon. his light was gone. he was sick. he was succumbed to demons.

my mother arrived at my home on Sunday, November 15th, 2009. i saw her as i looked out the window and her face was so sad. she had been crying i could tell. my grandfather was very ill at the time, so i assumed the expected. but i studied her face a bit more and realized that in fact it wasnt him, it was someone else. it was my brother. she came to my house last, to tell me last……my brother was dead. he died November 15th, the same exact day i officially lost my baby boy a few years prior. my brother was gone. as i was processing this, i quickly handed my mother my 7 month old baby and fell to the floor. my knees completely gave out and a sound of despair loudly left my mouth… thing i knew i found myself in the bathroom throwing up…….i was panicking, i lost my breath……..i could only imagine this would be the feeling you get when someone reaches deep in your chest, grabs your beating heart and crumbles it to dust right in front of you, looking in your eyes as you slowly die.

my brother took his own life that day. he couldnt go on, he no longer had the fight, so he thought. he was done. he was tired. he thought very little of himself, not enough to continue on. my heart was broke into a million pieces the day i lost my first child and i was not aware that it could happen again. how many times can one suffer heartache? more than once it would appear. my heart aches everyday, some days it would seem that every minute of my day is consumed with such heart ache and others, just an hour or 2. i pray often to meet my brother in my dreams, to see him, to tell him i miss him, to tell him i thought the world of him, to tell him that he was worth something, more even. i ask the same of my first baby. i bet he is perfect. i bet he is the epitome of “new baby smell”, i bet he has dimples on his knees and thick black hair. i think God is keeping him at the doors of Heaven waiting till i get there, to hold his little hand in mine and to keep him safe for all eternity.

i had a healthy baby boy last year, May 15th……the projected due date of my first baby boy. May 15th……November 15th…..2 days…..heartache and heartfelt.




recipe……pumpkin bread……

i bake……a lot. that actually may even be an understatement. during fall and holidays, my home usually smells of cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla, brown sugar…..all the good stuff. baking (cooking too) brings comfort to me……i bake if my babes have had a particularly rough week at school, i bake in the time of mourning, i bake for ones’ happiness……

every fall i bake pumpkin bread……one thing to know about my baking, i never add salt, even in the butter, always no salt, always unsalted butter…..unless of course if im making something with salted caramel.

this pumpkin bread is so heartwarming. it is insanely good….the flavors marry one another in this eternal bond……..the bread is moist and perfect in so many ways. i love it in the morning with my coffee, my babes enjoy it topped with some homemade whipped cream……its good stuff folks……it freezes very well too (up to 3 months)


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3 1/3 c. organic flour

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp organic cinnamon

1 tsp organic ground nutmeg

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 1/2 c. organic granulated sugar

1 1/2 c. organic brown sugar

1 c. vegetable oil

4 organic, cage free, eggs

2/3 c. water

1  15-ounce can of organic can pumpkin

this recipe yields 2 loaves, which you will want ;)

preheat oven to 350. grease loaf pan (standard size 9x5x3 could use other sizes, just adjust bake time accordingly). in a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin pie spice. set aside.

in a large mixing bowl, combine both sugars and oil. beat with electric mixer on medium speed until well mixed. add eggs and mix well. alternately add flour mixture and the water (starting with the flour mixture and ending with the flour mixture) to sugar/oil mixture beating on low speed after each addition just until combined. beat in pumpkin until mixture is mixed well.

spoon batter into pans, spreading evenly. bake 50-60 mintues, time varies depending on oven and what size breads you are baking. bread is done when toothpick inserted in center of bread comes out clean. cool in pan for 10-20 mintues and remove loaves from pans to cool completely. you should allow the breads to rest overnight (wrap in plastic or put in gallon freezer bags before you do)….however, we have not been able to wait that long to do so.

to store: bread keeps in fridge (wrapped) for up to 1 week or put loaves in freezer bags and freeze for up to 3 months.

make this bread folks……its fall in a bread. play around with some ideas…maybe top with a streusel, a light frosting….cream cheese, toffee nut, dulce de leche? just a thought.




the sun was bright this morning….no breeze, no songs of birds. the sun started to fade, a breeze picked up and the earth was alive with singing birds, it was almost spring-like. my heart danced….i do enjoy the cloudy skies…..always have.

i opened every window i could to allow nature in my home….the scent, the coolness, the shadows of gray skies against my snow white walls. things were a bit different today. my sweet baby wanted his mama all day…….he is as busy as they come, a lot like his older brother when he was quite young. but he wanted to nurse all day…..linger in my arms a bit longer……twirl his little fingers in my hair to put hisself to sleep.

as i watched him frequent the open window, it was so picturesque. the breeze gently moved his messy hair about, his little chubby hands on the screen as if to grab every piece of nature and keep it all his own. he heard the birds talking and he pointed his little finger out…..”where are you little birdie” as i imagine his thoughts. the clouds moved faster to cover the sun and he would run back to me smiling.

as i watched his every perfection, i knew that i wanted to capture that very moment…..the way he stared at me, his magical little being.


far from a “perfect” picture….but this is what is perefct to me…for me

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his face of intent

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he has his daddys feet….little porkchops is what we lovingly call them

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his gentle little hands that will one day turn into those of a man…a bit rougher, tales of hard work, no longer fitting into the palms of his mamas hand

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his sweet face….his perfect eyebrows

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his face of hurt feelings……

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dissecting his lunch and mashing it between his fingers

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my heart… sweet Sparrow Moon

….fall fashion im diggin’…..

2 posts in 1 week…..pretty rad. im stoked with what this season brings….cooler weather, cozy fires, dressing the part. i cant wait to bring out my scarves, my boots, my cozy sweaters…..the following photos im using to refresh my own wardrobe.

oxblood nails + stacked rings are just a few of our favorite fall accessory trends!

this is toatlly me, holding a coffee mug, nails painted a rich winter red and the different variations of the rings is super cool….i could maybe, just maybe, pull it off if i was a tad younger ;)

Fall Booties! I only have one pair from Victoria's Secret that are extremely uncomfortable. I need more of these! Literally wear mine all the time, best booties ever!!!

both photos above showcase some super rad booties…..i would love a pair or 2…

There's something really appealing about this scarf. It doesn't take itself seriously, the lace makes it seem more delicate :)

really diggin’ the lace incorporated with the fabric on this scarf

grey infinity loop; anthropologie


i am a huge fan of anthropologie and this scarf is no exception…

Plaid infinity scarf with leather snap placket?! yes please!

System63 on Etsy

i LOVE plaid….always have….go take a gander at this girls shop on Etsy…System 63….she has some seriously rad things over there and she is obviously crazy talented

Superdry Lumberjack Hood - but the price >.

speaking of plaid……i think i need this….i mean, i know i want it, but i need it

Style Scrapbook: Plaid Jacket + Dress + Wide Brim Hat


H&M Fall Fashion Trends - Classy Grey Jacket #H&M #Jackets  Get a 20% H&M Coupon Code here -


my style….completely….love h&m

Best gray, taupe and brown nail polish colors!

i love me some nail polish…..apparently passed that trait on to my girls. “me time” is not too often as i am a busy wife and mom of 4….but when/if the time arrives, i lock myself in the bathroom and paint my fingernails and tootsies. it makes me feel good, its that extra accessory for me but without spending and insane amount of time. the color board of nailpolishes above i feel like were put together just for me….brilliant colors

butter LONDON 'Steampunk Ball' Nail Lacquer Collection (Limited Edition) ($60 Value) | Nordstrom

the butter steampunk collection is pretty lovely and i must say how much i love this brand. if i can afford it and nail polish is in the budget, i usually buy butter/london or essie. great polishes!

one of the reasons i love to blog is to share my ideas and thoughts, like hopefully others out there live in the same dream world where money isnt a concern and we can afford all of these outfits and such…..the following outfits live in my dream in my dream world……..;)

Casual Outfit Ideas for Women 2014 | Casual Plaid Outfit, plaid shirt, tan scalf, Skinnies and Brown Knee ...

my outfit for apple picking…

2014 fashions for women:Black sweater, jeans, black bag, glasses and shoes for ladies

my outfit for casual saturday….


outfit for date night…..really need more date nights…..

it’s not just the look of things, but the colors, the atmospheres…..that make fall “fall” i know im walking away from this post with tons of inspiration…..xoxo


……Home Tour, Country Living, Baked Goods

how do i decorate? what style do i gravitate towards? what color/s do i use in my home? click on any/every photo to enlarge…

let me first off state that i adore the Country Living magazine, as long as i have known about it, i have adored it. got it from my mama….one of my dreams is to be featured in a publication….fingers crossed. i love that Country Living scours the blogging world to find future homes to showcase and i can only hope that one day, i will have that home they are looking for…..fingers crossed again. my current camera does not have all of these fancy options to achieve a “perfected” look, but if i dont get my ideas and such out there, however will i be noticed, shabby camera and all? so i would like to start with my decor theme. i love love love gray and white, with earth tones here and there. i love industrial, french chic, farmhouse, eclectic….all rolled into one.

change of course here… of my passions is baking. i host bake sales at my home and use what is currently in season. majority of what i bake/make is organic. i never use boxed mixes, i have quit using dyes and start my baking days a lot of the time before the sun decides to wake. i know it sounds cliche….but i put a little love in my baked goods and i am very pleased with how well my bake sales do and the amazing amount of positive feedback i receive really just makes my heart happy. i will share some pics of what i bake

so there you have it….home tour, Country Living, baked goods


my home is about 75 years old with a lot of original work and this fireplace is one of them. i adore our fireplace. i dont do a whole lot of decorating for halloween and i only add a few touches of “fall like” decor. which means more muted colors and some leaves here and there.

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the framed picture is a Goodwill find priced at $3….the vintage print is currently priced at $40 online….score! the “O” represents the intial of my last name. i bought it at Hobby Lobby for $2.5 (it was heavily clearenced) i painted it a gray shade and sanded it down to achieve more of a vintage look. i bought the terrarium at Home Goods clearenced down to $4 because it was missing a couple of glass panels, i simply added a birch log (thank you Mother Nature) and some ivy from my local nursery. i love this terrarium, it does a lot of hosting of vignettes throughout the year and i love the rustic look of it. the glass bottle was another clearence find at Target, i love the French text of it and how it looks like an oversized apothecary bottle. i threw in some twine….because i love twine

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this owl is huge, heavy and one of my most prized possessions….i should say obsession. he is perfect, original price tag of $40, bought it for $15 because he has a slight chunk missing in a place no one will look……he is completely rad.

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love him…..

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bought this candle lantern at Goodwill with Pottery Barn tags still on…..$2….score


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built-in bookshelves, one of the originals in my home and it is the perfect space to display my oddities, collections and totally rad finds.


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i bought this little $0.88 pumpkin and painted it a matte black shade, put it on a cloche base and used some live moss as fillers… the contrast.


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my feather loot collected on my walks is a nice homage to nature and using an au naturel look in the home….its simple but i love the statement.


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a dried hydrangea from my garden that diplays another natural aspect that i really try to bring into my home…..displayed in a petite vintage square cake pan. the colors are serene and have a slight look of fall


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a little collection of books that i like to look in for inspiration. the Vintage by Nina book is my all time fave and seems that everytime i look into it, there is something new


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a sweet little nest adorned with some lovely fall leaves


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another cool owl….this one a bit more playful, not as serious as the other, but still a ridiculous price i paid of $4 at Home Goods….the stuff they clearence trips me out sometimes


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this is a cool statement piece i have hanging on my living room wall. meant to look like an idustrial, rustic chandy. i took a vintage wood frame that was a horrid brownish color and painted it white and sanded some areas to achieve a bit of a worn look. i begged,pleaded, whined nicely asked my husband who jumped with joy ;) and nailed the frame to the ceiling for me. i had this dome shape accent piece that was not created for what i am using it for, but that makes some of the best design pieces (which I bought for $4….and it is huge), i hung up some real crystal accents i borrowed from my real chandelier and voila! a super rad design piece. please excuse my tiled ceilings…….ha!


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close up the frame


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close up the crystals


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one of my favorite purchases is this antique physicians table that i bought for a mere $20….it has these secret drawers and cubbies…


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i bought this vintage inspired cylinder bottle set at World Market. i dipped some of my feathers in gold paint and placed them in the glass bottles for chic look. i really love how the feathers turned out


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close up of feathers


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another view of my bookshelf


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industrial rustic type chandy


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another view of the fireplace

now onto the baked goods…….


homemade cinnamon roll….not yet frosted, but it was so delicious without

caramel marshmallows….yes, homemade

vanilla marshmallows….and again, yes, homemade


double chocolate and triple vanilla cupcakes

homemade graham crackers with homemade marshmallows

there is a lot…..a lot more where they came from…….

thank you all for reading and following along, i am quite grateful! xoxo


fall is here….althought the weather still screams summer….i love fall, some of my fondest memories are centered during this time. cooler weather…..jewel tone colors….gray skies…….cozy…..scarves……boots…….baking………everything inside of me breaks open and free’s my soul. God exists and autumn is proof

i cannot wait to bake in the kitchen with my girls. collect nature loot with my boys. cozy up with the hubbs. pure perfection folks….pure perfection

i love getting inspiration and feeling encouraged to continue on with home ideas…..finding new recipes to make my own. there are so many photos out there that just make me happy……they tell a story. photos that are just straight eye candy….like the ones below…..

Washed grey with a hint of pumpkin


the gray pewter velvet with the muted pumpkin color……rad

I love this this neutral living room, decorated with natural elements. #living_room #neutral


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my walls are painted white in my home but these cement colored walls are influencing me in another direction. i really want a cowhide rug…….the lighting fixture is ridiculously amazing and i love the live plants under cloches, something i do in my own decor statements. the coffee table is completely rad. nuff said

Apple cider caramel pound cake

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really?? apple cider caramel pound cake….totally

Vanilla Cinnamon Iced Coffee at home!

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vanilla cinnamon iced coffee….homemade…..possibly my new best friend

Thoughts from Alice: DIY Feather & Plate Art - antique ironstone, transferware, gold frames, feathers and masking tape - simple gallery wall for dining room

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a way cool project to do with the nature loot that my boys and i have plenty of……and the fact that i have the very same platter (3 actually) is very inspiring

Got to try this... orange peel star garland

(Tea with Ruby )

what is something i collect? a lot, but to name one…..twine. i dont know what my deal is with twine but i love it. simply. this is too cute not to do….to use as a garland, packaging a gift or sweets…..whatevs. love

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i want to wake up in this space one morning…….

Emile et Ida . Fall-Winter 2014 .( )

adorable. and that has been verified by my 2 daughters. which both have informed me that they would really really (really) like to have this outfit. i think this is such a great alternative to halloween costumes too…..paint an extra set of whiskers on the face and your good to go. certianly better than buying ridiculously high prices on something that wont be worn often and wear easily…..


what are you looking forward to this fall? xoxo

…..glimpse of heaven

5 years ago in november my mother offered to pick me up and head out to buy an outfit….my reply “sure……i suppose” with much hesitation. i didnt want to…..i didnt think i should….i wanted to stay in bed.

it was an outfit for my brothers memorial service.

we took the long way……we went down a tree lined street. one where every.single. tree. was pure perfection. the wood was dark from the soaking of rainfall the night before and the leaves were handcrafted by God himself. the colors were those of an apple orchard…..golden delicious, granny smith, jonagold, red delicious. the veins in the leaves gave such contrast of beauty….they were reaching every which way as if to extend each leaf to its full potential. it was raining too. a soft rain. a still rain. i put my face upon the window to feel the coolness as the rain lightly touched the window. the drops of rain matching my own drops of tears.

everything around me at that very moment was still. my breathing. my heartbeat. my entire world. the rain was quietly falling on the leaves….it was a bit magical….to see tiny drops of rain dancing atop the freshly fallen leaves.

my mom was conversing with me the whole while to which i have no idea what she said. i was nodding in agreement when i thought appropriate and gave the casual replies of “yes” “no” “sure” when i thought they were due. i dont even know what day it was. i dont even remember what day my brothers memorial service was. im good with dates but after november 15th 2009 everything just stopped.

i think of that day often. replaying it my mind over and over again. how placid that moment was. how i know nothing else of that time but that moment. it was a moment where it was just me, even surrounded by others. it was a moment where i caught a mere glimpse of Heaven and what it must be. it was a moment where i understood that no more pain lived in my brothers life. i imagine a young boy on this tree lined street with the colorful leaves and the soft rain and see him dancing as the raindrops did atop the leaves at that moment. no care in the world. just him. just his leaves. just his dancing. his moment.


Thoughts Collected

my thoughts collected as of september 1st till now.

early morning rush.

3 hours of homework. 2 of which belong to one child.


coffee driven.






clean home.


mischievous baby.


wishing more hours in the day.

loving myself.

finding my worth.

who am i.

prayers for my children.

prayers for my husband…..prayers for me.

short days.

long nights.






what else is there.


Recycle a vintage frame - hang picture using clothes pin on rope. No glass needed - would work great for kid's art work too.


i really like this image. its kinda me. i feel a bit weathered sometimes. tired. lived through seasons and it shows. i wear some of my past. but the winter tree is me too. waiting for something new. to be refreshed. waiting for a new season. waiting to be green. knowing my past and all that i have seen. heard. anticipating more. spreading my branches. reaching out.