minus & plus

I may or may not have brought to work the lifesaver mints
that Jared put in my stocking at Christmas & ate, ummmm THEENTIREBAG in one day.
is wint-o-mint addiction a real thing?  BETTER QUESTION - is wint-o-mint overdose a real thing?
there are worse things to nom on, I guess. things that don't make you
breathe minty freshness. like combos. or garlic.

we started a financial class at our church two weeks ago, & I feel a
little bit like all I can think about is BUDGET BUDGET BUDGET!!!
but that's totally not a bad thing.
in fact, after a year of marriage without any financial plan except to tithe & save-here-and-there,
it's a little bit of a GREAT thing. as much as our budget is consuming our thoughts right now, 
I know it's laying the foundation for the rest of our money makin' lives, & there is much peace in that. 
plus, talking about money almost always results in talking about future babies... 
& I just LOVE talking about future babies. they'll be little, & soft, & smell goody & little...

found out this week that some very precious family members are moving out of state. 
*sniff* I'm not really even processing what that means just yet.
but change is good, & in their case, it is great. 
we're really, truly happy for them & we'll just be adding another city to our dropping-in-to-visit list. 
consider yourselves warned, you roaming bethunes, you.

running out of shredded cheddar cheese.
replacing said cheddar cheese with crumbled feta to create what may
just be mashed heavenly clouds of potato wonder.

taking out my contacts.
placing contacts in medicine cabinet.
waking up.
tip toe-ing to bathroom so as not to wake jared.
opening medicine cabinet.
apparently opening the medicine cabinet too quickly...
contact case, sucked out by physics & gravity, 
coming FLYING TOWARDS MY FACE only to crash onto our tile floor 
& making a sound closer to what I would imagine 
the entire medicine cabinet would sound like if it had fallen.
nearly pass out from fear/trying not to scream.
get angry that something dared to make such a loud noise in my face when I'm barely awake & definitely not functioning.
lid is knocked off.
contact is missing.
curse contacts.
scratch that, curse my eyes for needing contacts.
my glasses are cute.

having people over for a movie & not having any sweets on hand. 
besides some girl scout cookies.
& when I say some I mean the six that I hadn't already eaten.
mama would be ashamed.
still having a grand ol' time, even if it felt like there was a vacant
space at the table without cupcakes to eat. LESSON LEARNED.

having to pick glitter off your friend's face because they did something ridiculous 
like walk into your apartment, which is a sort of glittery aftermath STILL.

acting like I had my life together this morning when I stumbled out of bed & decided to make myself lunch... 
then proceeding to forget my breakfast AND my cell phone.
boss walking in with panera & guessing the right kind of bagel because YOU GUESSED IT, 
she couldn't get ahold of me on the phone that I left at home. 
she is all sorts of wonderful to me.

happy leap day!
I hope yours was full of pluses... es...'s.

xo, kelsey


a tale of four succulents

the word succulent actually gives me goosebumps,
& not a watching-"angels in the outfield"-scene-when-everyone-starts-flapping-their-arms sorta goosebump.
it just sounds icky.
but I do love succulents, & don't let the two that I killed last year come back from the grave to tell you otherwise.

I actually love them so much that I start feeling bad when picking them out,
& I end up with an armful of succulents & teary eyes, looking at Jared
(who is shaking his head telling me no, we can't take them all home)
& saying, "but little petal blossom needs a home too, & I already put her in my arms,
so she thinks I love her! I CAN'T PUT HER BACK NOWWWW."

& that's how we ended up with four succulents.
& no potting soil. so they're sitting on a plate.

I wrote a lonnggggg post for today,
then the screen sorta flickered & it was gone.
so instead, you get a story about succulents,
& outtakes from our sunday best "shoot,"
which should reassure you that I'm not taking this whole style post thing toooooooo seriously.
there's basically three times as many pictures of me than there are of Jared.
shocking. I know.

xo, kelsey


lately: phone photos

from our kitchen - pretty farm eggs & ombre lettuce
from the drive home from work - stopped by a train & rainbow sunsets at 60 mph
from the men in my life - valentine's flowers from Jared & valentine's cookie cutters from dad
from my finger tips - a repurposed h&m bag & handwriting practice
from the passenger seat - jared's mints of choice & a cotton candy cloud


the oscars

why do I love this photo from the Oscars so much?
(hint: click the "read more" below)

sunday best

& the best of the sunday best:

I gotta tell ya...
I think we were both a little more awake this morning as we got ready for church
knowing that we had these pictures to take after the service.
but it is totally fun, especially when it's not raining outside.
Jared says this is his "500 days of summer" look,
& wants me to tell you that I "Joseph Gordon LOVE-itt."

I am a little excited, since my boss & I have tried to watch as many of the best picture nominees as possible.
SADLY, of all the movies that I think I'd love the most,
I haven't watched 'the artist' yet! so so sad.
alas, it's my turn for our sundate after our financial class at church tonight,
which I may value a little bit more than watching an award show.

... although, I bet ice-cream & the oscars would make for a pretty good date.


xo, kelsey


like a rather blustery day

it's been a little quiet around here, yeah?
*insert excuses here*
there was a spell of really beautiful 75 degree weather in our little city,
& it was fantastic. dinners on the porch, walks, windows open...
all sorts of spring weather wonderful. 
except it was in february.

I'm currently sitting in the cafe of Jared's store,
waiting for his shift to end in 41 minutes.
I mostly just want to stare at the clouds with him, but:
 a. might be blown away by the blustery wind that has sent my little cabrio into the other lane multiple times today,
b. we have tons of stuff to-do today, like reading, writing, & grocery shopping. which is better than arithmetic.

it's a short little hello, but I have a power point to make.
but! you can take a peek at the new "about j + k" page under the kissy picture.
it's like a BONUS entry.

happy saturday, friends!
enjoy your wonderful, marvelous weekend.

xo, kelsey


home is wherever I'm with you.

today, I'm pretending that our life is a movie,
& that this song plays as the credits begin to roll.

xo, kelsey


sunday best

you may remember back in my 2011 review post that I mentioned the "sunday best" photo series we started to do last spring.
it was short lived, as we were camera-less & the phone camera wasn't really cutting it.
also, I skip church a lot for events in the summer & let's not kid ourselves...
work attire at an outdoor event venue in the south is way more sweaty than cute.

we both really like to look nice for church, & always have.
for me, it was an insistence on my hair being sponge curled on saturday night,
& I have it on good authority from my mother in law that Jared liked to dress up for church even as a little tike...
like, crocodile tears if he didn't get to wear his little clip-on bow tie.
some things don't change - although he has upgraded from the clip-on ;)

there's a few reasons that this post is embarrassing.
one - neither of us were altogether excited about what we wore to church today, but we remembered to take pictures, so I'm following through.
two - auto ISO = blown the heck out photo. whateeeever. apologies, & if you're wondering, my skirt is teal.
three - welcome to our dining room? awkward. but it was POURING outside today. options were limited. 
four - if this sticks, I'm quite positive I'll look back at our "first" & go all red like, ughhh, what were we thinking.

but here we are.
in our sunday best.
& on the rare rainy sunday that is the perfect weather for movies & soup & cuddling,
it really was one of the best yet.

xo, kelsey


dirty laundry

ha! you thought this would be some juicy gossip.
nope. it is literal dirty laundry.
& also my companion for the next 5 hours, along with ingrid's new album.
if you're unimpressed with the amount of clothing, fear not - there's more. it's just inside the hampers.

it's cleaning day for me as the husby works a lovely 9 hour day at the caffeine factory.
(which is code for that coffee place that you go to/drive by every day.)
the past three weekends have been spent out of town or filled to the brim with church activities,
& our cleaning lady quit after an hour when she realized how much laundry we make in a week.
(... which is a lie. there was no cleaning lady.)
what I'm trying to say is... lots of clothing to wash. lots.

it's a three day weekend!!!
sleep in past 10 a.m. - CHECK.
& blah blah blahhhh about the other stuff on my self mandated to-do list.

have a wonderful weekend!
I'm off to hang out with some permanent press & dry-clean only tags.

xo, kelsey


beautiful momma

this is my momma on her honeymoon in 1982.
love those shoes, that skirt, the coral lipstick that shows up so much better in the actual photo.
funny how this outfit would fit right in with all the fashion bloggers these days.
(& yeah. my mom stayed classy in the 80's. so so proud.)

I've been thinking about style a lot lately.
for a couple of reasons:
1. because it's a hard thing for me to care about
2. because this is the time of year where it's super easy to wear black every day,
& I'm trying my darnedest not to give in.

anyways, while looking for old pictures of the baby sisters
for their recent birthdays, I ended up deep in the archives of my parents' photo albums.
such good-ness was discovered.
& some good things came from that good-ness.
one being a sinking feeling of guilt for not printing photos & making albums
for my 23 yr. old child to look through.
the other being some fashion motivation.
I have good genes. & good jeans.
so there's no excuse to put on the black turtleneck tomorrow morning.
no sirree bob.

xo, kelsey


once upon a myspace

 so. last week, I rediscovered my myspace.
I think I rediscover it approximately once a year,
& truly, never have any clue how I end up on there.
(there is a funny counter that I had going of how many days jared & I had been dating...
today is  Day 2,090 in case you were wondering.)
but this time, I ended up reading through old uhhh... notes? entries?
I don't even know what myspace called them, but I wrote them.
when no one else wrote them or read them... I was writing.
online journaling has been an addiction for me since 2003. there, I said it.

at some point, I decided to share some of my writing from junior year with myspace.
you know... junior year of high school...
when I was reading sarah dessen fiction & emulating jewel's "a night without armor."
very dramatic days, these were.

anyways, some of it waaaasssss... kinda good.
& I'd completely forgotten I'd written it,
but haven't even broached the idea of opening the notebook in which the original was penned.

so here. I'm baring my 16 year old soul.
be nice. we can totally make fun of it later.

-     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -

Conversation of Souls
she closed her eyes for a minute.
she took a breath
that let him know she was near.
and she sat down next to him.
and as she sat, she said,

"happiness is overrated."

he looked back at her and smiled.
this wasn't unusual.
she had always been bad at silent wars.

he sat back in his chair.
and as he sat, he said,

"you're just saying that
because happiness has never felt so good."

"no, no.
that's not it at all."
she tried to convince someone.
him? maybe.
herself? yeah.

he stood up and stretched.
and as he stretched, he said,
"stop denying yourself
the chance to feel loved."

"stop telling me what to do."
she said, suddenly.

"why can't you 
just let yourself have this one thing?"
he questioned.
"why can't you just let yourself
be happy with me?"

she stood up and instinctively grabbed his hand.
and as she felt her hand go numb,
she whispered,
"we both know i'm trying."

he grabbed her other hand.
they stood like that for a minute.
he pulled her closer.
she backed away.
he tried to kiss her.
she had more to say.

"i swear to god i want this
more than you do.
i swear this is all i want.
to be happy.
& for you to be happy too.
but what's there that hasn't always been?
and why can't i feel this the way that you can?
i swear to god i'm trying.
we both know i am."

with a stiff breath, she let him hold her.
and for a minute she felt his heart.
and she knew it was beating a little faster,
than hers.

"stop trying.
and start living."
he said.

she backed away
and she let his hands find her hips.
and for once, she let him hang on.

-september 16th, 2005

but still kinda fun to read. don't lie.
okay, that's all for tonight.

xo, kel *dun dun dunnnn* sey


the other birthday girl

how in the world are you eighteen?
lady, you are brilliant & wise, & those blue eyes of yours
have been causing double takes since 1994.
I can't wait to see where you go from here...
the grand adventures are just beginning.
in the meantime, let's go buy lotto tickets tomorrow, yeh?
happy birthday, valentine baby.
you are totally the best valentine anyone in our family ever got.
I love you, sunshine!

xo, kelsey

sweetheart, sweet tart

happy day, valentine.
I am so in love with you,
& I am totally, perfectly, & most ardently yours.
xo, your girl


birthday girl

the happiest of birthdays to my beautiful baby sister.
I'm in total denial that you could possibly be 15 years old,
but that's mostly because you somehow managed to stay pretty through 12-15?
& I'll just never understand that.
girl, you rock your wild curls & your new longboard.
(please don't break your leg. or head. or nails.)
welcome to BOYS & almost-driving & a whole new world of make-up.
you are precious to me.
i love you, lovely!

xo, kelsey


if this was a pie

husby, holding a bowl of ice-cream, responds to a saucy comment from yours truly:

"if this was a pie...
& there was no clean-up afterwards...
... & you said it was okay...

... I would totally smash it in your face."

good one, babe.


something deep

the most beautiful prose in the whole wide world.
if you ask me.

-     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -     -

It doesn't interest me what you do for a living
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dreams
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life's betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your
fingers and toes
without cautioning us to
be careful
be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand on the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after a night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the center of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.

The Invitation
Oriah Mountain Dreamer


waffles, abe, & the puppy bowl

some snapshots of our weekend in richmond,
spent celebrating andrew's birthday over waffles, red velvet cupcakes & at museums...
because he's the smart history buff friend that every person needs in their life. 
mostly, I'm just happy that we have friends with beautiful smiles, cute kitties
& the same longing desire to watch the puppy bowl on super bowl sunday.

(bonus: in the second to last photo,
jared managed to catch my omg-I-don't-know-what-any-of-this-means-but everyone-else-seems-concerned face while watching the super bowl.
it's a really attractive face, & definitely not one that reflects the fact that I can't even remember who
was in the super bowl already. besides gisele bundchen. she was there, right?)

xo, kelsey


meow you're talking.

this is really big news.
I just spent an entire 3 nights in the same apartment as this cat,
& did not once get hives, an itchy throat, swollen eyeballs or wheezy (fo-sheezy).
not once did Jared look at me & ask, "hey, Igor, have you seen my wife?"
& the tissues remained untouched.
read: BIG DEAL.
now I have to start thinking up kitty names. 

anywho. this is raja, the most spoiled/loved cat in at least richmond.
she's kinda skanky & has this way of batting her eyes that make even 
the most hardened of not-a-cat-person heart's swoon as she lays across your lap.

& yes, our cool richmond friends have a loft & brick walls & chandeliers. 
they're pretty fancy, & we're all like, what? you can get paninis from somewhere other than panera?

laundry rotation time.
while I didn't have an allergic reaction after a weekend with raja,
23 years of I'm-allergic-to-cats experience just dumped our suitcase contents into the washer.
baby steps.

xo, kelsey


so I married a model

I know that bragging is completely shameful,
but I mean. hello, good lookin'.

I want so badly to go through & post my favorite photos from our shoot with Korie Lynn Photography
this past November, but first they're all completely beautiful. how in the world do you narrow down beautiful?

(speaking of narrowing down beautiful,
our besties' wedding, photographed by Korie, was featured over on Elizabeth Anne Designs today.
go see!)

other bestie is texting me & telling me I need to go pack for our journey to richmond this weekend.
I'm completely fighting productivity right now, but I suppose she's right.
I'm watching a show I hate & still wearing my work clothes, tights & all.

you heard that right, february.

xo, kelsey


if you were standing in our kitchen tonight

you would have heard this conversation:

k - anything interesting in the mail?
j - um. triple A sent us a sticker.
k - why did they send us a sticker?
j - because they're trying to win me over, & they know my weakness is stickers.
k - but we're already members of triple A.
j - well, then, I guess I won this round.
k - because you...
j - have a sticker. that's right, little wife.

xo, little wife (?)