Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Great Moving Adventure of 2012

And so begins the great moving adventure of 2012...

We went out and purchased some packing supplies yesterday, and began packing. Ugh. I'm trying to keep a positive attitude through it all, but I mostly just feel like throwing everything away and starting fresh. I know I'm just saying that now... but seriously. I REALLY don't like having a lot of unused stuff around, so thankfully we don't have a lot of junk around here.

this guy was picking up some tools while we were buying our packing supplies :)

We do have a lot of paper, though. M's got a ton of important papers we need to keep for a while, so that makes it feel like there's more stuff. Me? I angrily shred my important papers up and throw them away ASAP (at least that was I did during wild days). Not saying it's the best system or anything, I just take out any stored up frustration and anger on old legal documents, bills, etc. I tear them up to pieces and throw them out with a final "Good Riddance!"(please don't follow suit, I enjoy living dangerously).

Yesterday afternoon we started packing up knick knacks and things on our shelves (and when I say "we" I mostly mean M did the packing). Although, I did start packing up my vintage Pyrex dish collection. I thought they might only take up one box, maybe two... Har har! My collection took up three whole boxes. By the time I was done, I had resigned from packing duty. Actually, it was time to make dinner by the time I was finished, but I do wish resignation from packing was a viable option.

M started off doing most of the packing because I had been having a really awful stomach ache. It started as soon as I finished eating my lunch earlier that day. I realized that I had had the same ache the night before and a couple days before that after eating a slice of very cheesy pizza. After thinking about what each of those meals had in common--that I could possibly eliminate from my diet, so that the pain wouldn't come back--I came to the horrific conclusion: DAIRY PRODUCTS, AKA: CHEESE, AKA: ALL THE FOODS I LOVE.


But seriously, dairy??? Noooooo!! I love cheese, and I've never had an imitation cheese that didn't taste like (and look like) plastic! Now, I have no idea if I'm actually lactose intolerant or maybe just going through some weird stomach bug (no, i'm not prego), but I decided to eliminate dairy from my diet for the next few days to see if the stomach ache stays away. ::sniff::sniff::

I'll just be sobbing in a corner... gnawing on some soy cheese, if anyone needs me...

I'll let you guys know how it all goes. In the meantime, does anyone have any really great dairy-free products that actually taste good?? I'd welcome any suggestions!

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Weekends and Apartment Hunting

What an absolute adventure this weekend has been!

Our weekend started on Thursday afternoon with a trip to Old Town Orange. We walked around, window shopped a little, and Michael got a haircut at a really great barbershop. The men in there were older, and looked like they had been cutting hair since they were my age. It was really neat. They told us about all the cool cars they used to own, and how much they paid for them when they were brand new (one guy paid $1900 for his brand new Chevy!!). Michael really enjoyed it since he had never gotten his hair cut at an actual barbershop.

photo by michael :)

Bright and early Friday afternoon we took off to continue our apartment search. You never realize how exhausting sitting in the car, driving around, writing down phone numbers can be, until you do it. My back was aching, Michael's legs were really bothering him, too. We were pretty exhausted, all around. 

As the day carried on, I was starting to feel a little discouraged. Most of the landlords we spoke to didn't really seem all that eager to rent their apartment. A lot of them were really rude and didn't want to take time out of their day to show us the apartment.

stopping for lunch and a churro

The apartments we did see were also not very nice. One apartment we were able to get inside of, looked pretty well taken care of outside. Once we got inside, it wasn't so bad--just on the older side--but the floors sloped down toward the center of the apartment. It was so strange! They made a V that ran down the length of the apartment. If we had tried to put furniture in there, it all would have wobbled. :/

The day did get better, though. We went over to Michael's uncle and aunt's home (near where we were apartment hunting) to babysit his son. Michael's uncle and aunt were going out on a little date and we were happy to babysit for them. Their son is such a crack up and he's a lot of fun to be around.

teaching michael to play the piano

Needless to say, by the end of the day on Friday, it was so nice to fall into our warm bed and sleep.

a drive-by night sky

Saturday started off a little slower. We knew we wanted to see some more apartments that day, so while I drank some coffee, Michael got some phone numbers and addresses and started calling managers and landlords. Nothing. Zip. No one was answering their phones.

We found some places online that looked really promising. We found one place that had French doors and a cute patio, but no one would pick up. We decided to drive down to the west side and see who would call us back. Eventually, a couple managers called us back. One said he would be available shortly to show us his place. We were pretty excited to see his apartment since it's only one level and it has only 4 units, total. A nice change from the the 30 unit building we currently live in.

When we got there, there were two other people to see his unit. I was so disappointed. As soon as I walked in, I loved the place. It was older, but had so much charm and character. Wood floors throughout, a shared garage, tons of storage, original tile in the kitchen. I loved it! The landlord told us he had just put the "For Rent" sign out the day before, and he suddenly had tons of people calling him, wanting to see the place. I felt like crying.

We had been searching of and on for a month, not really seeing anything that we liked a whole lot. Here was this place, that was old, charming, cute, and even had a front AND a back door. But I had to remind myself, Michael and I had been praying a lot about finding an apartment. I had to remember that God was in this, and we would find a place. Our whole reason for leaving our current apartment is so that Michael doesn't have to drive in an hour and a half of traffic to and from work. It's exhausting physically and mentally for him, and it's just not worth it, for us.

I wanted this apartment so much. The landlord was really friendly and wanted to know more about Michael and me. We told him we were married just under a year ago, and why we were moving to this area. He really seemed to enjoy learning about us. When we told him we loved his unit and were willing to put a deposit down that day. He said, "Ok, if you have the money, it's yours."

AHHH!! I wanted to scream! I was so exhausted from looking. I had been suffering from headaches and getting car sick every day from swinging my head around and quickly looking down to write down phone numbers, while in a moving car. I was so happy!! Michael was too, soon he would be home after work in under 30 mins.

in our new living room!

I am so thankful. I love the our new home, and I can't wait to move in! I will be sharing some more pictures of our new home, soon, so be sure to stop by!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

On Moving and Dreaming

i love this picture of molly, our cat.

those are wild parrots, right outside our apartment.

I know, it's a little difficult to see the little guys, but my entire upper body was hanging out our apartment window to get this shot. They were pretty far away. :( Thankfully, Michael took off the screen from our window so that I didn't have it in my shot. On a side note: why is it whenever I'm hanging out of a window with a valuable piece of equipment in my hands, my arms turn to jello. It's like, suddenly the camera is a thousand pounds and I no longer have any muscle strength. 

Even though I'm excited to move, the wide variety of birds we see at our apartment, is something I will definitely miss. I mean, wild parrots? I never expected that when we moved here. I also never expected to hear owls at night! Every night we hear some sort of owl screech right by our apartment building. I've never actually seen one, but it never fails to scream out when we're lying in bed. In the winter instead of screeching we hear it hooting. :)

It was such an unexpected treat to hear owls outside our windows, when we first moved in. I remember the first night I heard the owl screech, I FREAKED out. I ran and woke Michael up to tell him I thought I heard someone screaming outside. Even though I'd heard owls before, the last thing I expected was to hear an owl in our part of LA! I'll definitely miss that when we move closer to the beach (in case you haven't heard, I'm not the beach's biggest fan). 

watching michael fish.

But, it'll be an adventure, and I'm all for adventure. I have loved moving since I was a kid. Every time my parents discussed a possible move I was always all for it. That may have to do with the fact that I never really had close friends growing up (my brother did, which is why he was always against moving). In fact, right before I met Michael I was planning on saving my money to just get up and move out of California. I wasn't sure where I'd go, but I just wanted to move on. 

Now, that I'm married and supposedly "settled", ALL I want to do is travel. I know moving around is hard. I don't have any delusions about it being easy and romantic all the time, but I love the adventure. And when I have my best friend around 24/7, I'm eager to experience new places and things with him. It doesn't matter where our physical "home" is, as long as he's there, that's my home. It's like that song, "home is wherever I'm with you."

Heck, if I could I would live in a cute little trailer. I'd fix it up so that it was cozy and comfortable. Then we'd drive it across the country, stopping wherever we wanted. We'd meet new and interesting people, see beautiful things, eat amazing food, see God's amazing work, and push through the hard times together. One day that'll happen. Even if it's when we're a little wrinkly and we have kids with kids of their own. :)

What are your dreams??

Monday, May 21, 2012

Weekends and How I Sorta Like the Beach

This weekend was a lot of fun. Michael was out of town last weekend at a men's retreat, so we decided to spend time having fun together. We spend most weeknights at home watching our favorite TV shows and eating home cooked meals. So on Michael's days off, we make it a point to get out and go somewhere.

On Saturday we spent time cleaning up our bedroom, getting rid of things that  we don't need anymore. I'm a total believer in not keeping things around that aren't being used, you don't love, or don't have sentimental value. I just can't stand clutter!

Clutter literally keeps me up at night. If I go to bed aware of a drawer or shelf that has a bunch of unused items sitting in/on it, I'll obsess over it! I've been like that since I was a kid. I remember my parents putting me to bed, and being aware of an area of my room that was messy. I would quietly sneak out of bed, turn the lights on and start cleaning up my room. It wasn't until I was done that I could finally fall asleep! I'm weird, I know. :P

After cleaning up our bedroom and dropping a carload of stuff off at the Salvation Army, we went to hang out with my mom. She had been painting her living room the whole morning and wanted us to come over and have a look. She had originally picked out a grayish shade of blue for the walls, but when she went to buy the paint, the salesman convinced her it would make her living room look too dark. He offered her a brighter shade of blue. When she got home and painted the first wall, she was shocked. It was almost like an electric blue! Here's a picture of me, pretending to be at the beach in front of the painted wall:

i also clipped some succulents from my mom's garden and brought some home. so cute, huh??

It's just so bright for a living room!

Afterward, Michael and I went on a date to get some dessert at a cafe. I had a little cinnamon roll and a latte. Michael had a piece of cheese cake the size of his head and a latte.

He cracks me up so much. He claims to not love chocolate very much, but if you go out to a bakery or anywhere that serves dessert, he goes wild for anything super chocolatey. It's so funny to see his eyes get huge when he spots a double chocolate lava cupcake or something. I don't' even like chocolate very much, but that guy LOOOVEES it!

michael couldn't believe the size of the cake, either!

I love going on dates with him. We laugh just about the whole time. He'll make funny faces and I'll just laugh and tell him he's embarrassing me, and he just gets louder and crazier. I know that once we start having kids date nights will be a rare treat, so I really try to soak up the time we have now. It's so important that we connect and have a chance to remember why we fell in love, all over again.

Sunday we spent the day at the beach. Unfortunately, it was no picnic. We were invited to go surf fishing with an old friend of Michael's that he's known since high school. I was all for meeting one of his old friends and spending time in the sun, but when we got down to the beach it was MISERABLE.

I've never been the type of person who dreams of living in a house right the beach (I guess I'm not your stereotypical California girl). I'm the type of person who dreams of living on a farm in the mountains. But, I'm really trying to like it since we might be moving closer to the beach to be closer to Michael's job. Most days, the beach is great! I love sitting in the sand when it's a hot sunny day, and dipping my feet in the water, and watching all the little crabs and starfish in the tide pools. What I DON'T like about the beach, are those days when the wind doesn't STOP blowing! Grrrr!! I can't stand it!

Sand getting in my eyes, hair, ears, mouth... Blech! Not to mention, whenever there's a breeze anywhere near my ears, they start to hurt so much! Someone recently told me it has to do with the liquid in our ears. Whatever it is, my ears start hurting so much when I'm chilly or there's a chilly breeze. So sitting on the beach while a cold wind was blowing nonstop, was definitely not my cup of tea. I ended up only fishing for about 10 mins, before I decided to lay in the sand and tan my legs while everyone else fished.

I look like I'm having a blast, don't I?

In the end, spending time with Michael's friends was worth it, and I'm glad we got to go. Hope you all had a great weekend! What did you do?

Friday, May 18, 2012

Let's Be Real

It's about to get real up in here (I don't think I've actually ever said that phrase out loud in real life)...

this is my "let's be real" face. :P photo by the Mr.

Since I started this blog I've been thinking and debating what I should "make it about". I mean, what do I want to write about? My cooking? My photography? Newlywed life? Government spending? (Ok, so that last one is something I'd NEVER like to write about.)

I mean, I love photography. It's my passion and my main "job" right now. My main focus (besides God and my marriage, duh! ;) ) is growing my photography business. I don't have regular clients at the moment, so right now it's me trying to learn more and more every day and just getting work so that I can grow my talents and my business.

But I also have a passion for cooking, and learning how to be a wife, and loving God in a real and honest way. Those things are all part of my life and who I am. Not to mention all the struggles and daily joys that just come from living life!

So, that's it.

That's what my blog will be about. ME. Rhiannon. Yes, that sounds a little narcissistic, but isn't anyone who writes about themselves just a teeny narcissistic? It's cool, though. We're all in this together. Not to mention, I find it very encouraging and comforting when I read blogs by other women, young wives, Christians, anyone who has suffered and triumphed, really. I'm a big believer in sharing our stories, and speaking the truth, out of love. THAT'S what I want to do here. And I hope I can encourage and give hope to others in the process.

So, I hope you stick around. I've got some good stuff coming up and I would hate for you to miss it!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Happy Mother's Day!!

happy mother's day to all the moms--new and old--and all the mom's at heart. you don't need to have given birth to be a mother at heart. :) 
happy mother's day to my own mom, i love you!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Some Instagram Photos

I doubt there are many people left who haven't heard of It's a smart phone app that makes editing photos super easy, and then lets you share them with friends (think twitter, but with pictures and a caption). It used to only be available on the iPhone, but recently they added Adroid users. So, if you haven't yet, and you like photography, think about checking it out (it's free)!! If you don't have a smartphone but still want to look at Instagram photos on your computer, you can find me here (if you already have the app I'm thelavenderfield).
It's really amazing how this app has transformed photography. I wish I could find the article I read the other day (I can't remember where I saw it, now), but I read about a man who had never owned a DSLR camera in his life (the type of camera most professional photographers use), yet he had thousands of followers on Instagram and his photos are professional quality. He had simply gained a following and recognition through Instagram. Not to mention, there are a number of exceptional photo editing apps available for download, to improve your photos before you even post them on Instagram (here's their blog, so that you can check out other people's photos). 
Here are a few of my favorite photos from my own feed, for you guys to enjoy... :)

Have a great weekend, everybody! See you next week with a new recipe and an update on what's been going on around here. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Lovely Grace

Here are the rest of the photos from Grace's senior session. These are such fun photos and Grace has such a fun and sweet personality, taking pictures of her was a blast!
This lovely lady has already been accepted to a great college, and I'm sure she's got some great things ahead of her. 

I've got another post lined up that I'm hoping to either have up tomorrow or by Saturday morning. I've got some more photos for you, and an update on what Michael and I have been up to, lately. 

Come back soon!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Utah in the Spring

We had absolutely gorgeous weather while at the cabin, as you can see in my last post.

I just want to keep this post short and simple, and let the photos do all the talking. :)

I have a bunch more posts lined up featuring a lot more of my photography (along with the rest of Grace's senior session)!!

Also, check out my Where to Find Me page to talk about booking your session with me!