Thursday, July 09, 2015

[Svitlana & Eddie] July 3rd, 2015

Happy ONE WEEK anniversary to these newlyweds!!

I've learned to just not worry about the weather these days... the forecast called for rain, but look at these pics- it was beautiful out! 
Svitlana and Eddie are so wonderful together and SO in love! Such a joy just to be around the coming together of these two precious families, it's one of my favorite things about this "job!" Love it!! Enjoy your first peek at your photos! 

Check out these amazing wedding vendors:
Photography~ TeriRoyPhotography
Venue ~ The Veridian
Catering~ Simply Delicious
Wedding Cake~ AmyCakes
Canoli's~ Bruno's
Flowers~ Linda's
Dress~ Ella Weiss
Tux's~ Karl's Formalwear 
Those amazing drop earrings~ Genovese 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

VeriTeri Travels ~ Eureka Springs, AR

Living in Springfield, MO for our whole adult lives, you'd think we would've had plenty of knowledge about all the interesting places in and around our own state of MO and Arkansas. But actually, we have missed some real gems of the Ozarks, and decided last weekend to go find one a make a visit.
Top on our list:  Eureka Springs, AR.

(all pictures taken with my sweet, new iPhone 6 plus, baby! … and totally unedited :)

Friday afternoon, we ate lunch at home and headed down Hwy 65, cut over to Berryville, and boom, we are there in about 1 1/2 hours. We found the Historic loop right away, and drove straight up the hill, wound around, and ended up in the parking lot of the beautiful 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa.

We were able to get a room for about $199 which included the wonderful breakfast buffet for the next morning. Not too bad, but we had no idea how tiny our room would be. We loved the exposed brick wall, jacuzzi tub, and the door leading out to the second floor balcony, but the location right by the stairs would mean inevitable people noise, and my hubby is quite the light sleeper. This is where I want to express how awesome the front desk staff is at the 1886 Crescent Hotel. Greg very politely asked if there was anything they could do, & possibly switch us to another room. They were eager to oblige and actually upgraded us to a wonderful luxury room on the third floor, room 322. This room was wonderful!! The view was amazing, the king bed super comfy, and it even had a closet. (It's truly and old building!) So, THANK YOU for coming through for us on that, Crescent, and on a Friday night, even!

(Pictured above, our first room. Tiny, but very nice! Below, is room 322... Loved it!) 

The hotel lobby is filled with antiques, pictures, period furnishings, and a front desk like no other. My favorite - actual brass keys. Not a swipe card?! Yessss. 

The view from the back of the hotel is amazing and you can see over Eureka Springs for mile and miles. The catholic church bells just below the hotel were chiming, and I couldn't wait to get out and explore the area on foot.

Something we actually didn't realize, not being huge TV viewers, and definitely not avid ghost story lovers, but this hotel is apparently one of "the most haunted hotels" in the whole United States. Seriously. That's what they say! Nightly ghost tours are available, and it's quite popular. As in $21+ per person popular.  If this is your thing, you can get tickets at or by calling 800.342.9766. So, even though we didn't take the tour ourselves, I thought about participating myself by tapping on the wall to freak them out a bit. Not telling you whether I did that or not...

Hungry for a really good steak, we headed out and found The Grand Taverne restaurant in the lobby of the Grand Central Hotel. Of course, we both ordered the exact same entree…a delicious filet, Oscar style. Mmmmm, so good. (We are also trying hard not to morph into looking like the same person, after being married 25 years :)
Another great place to eat is Devitos. The parmesan encrusted trout was amazing here. We also hear that if you want authentic Italian, you're gonna want to try Ermilio's. It's on our list for the next visit!

Eureka Springs is an eclectic, artsy, historic little town, set in the hills of Arkansas. You will see all kinds of people there, all kinds of boutique shops, all kinds of styles, all kinds of options for dining and lodging. You can opt to stay at a bed and breakfast, or go for the classic hotel, like we did. As we walked around town, I picked up lots of cards, and asked lots of questions for our future visits. We chatted with the manager of All Seasons Luxury Properties  and she offered lots of interesting places that I'd love to check out next time.

Well, you can't post a blog about Eureka Springs without talking about ART. We meandered through all kinds of different art galleries. I even bought a photography book (of course I did!) by the amazing Edward C Robison III, "Ozark Landscapes, An Augmented Reality Project" It's filled with absolutely breathtaking photos, coupled with the uber cool technology where you download an app to your phone, hold it up to the photo, and watch a time lapse or a 3D version of the image. Love it!

My favorite art shop/gallery was definitely Mitchell's Folly Antiques. Room after room filled with old maps, botanical prints, old furniture pieces, and all kinds of interesting finds! Filter through some dusty corners, but go prepared to search for treasure! 

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Mar 18 ~ Real & Personal

I have been working on this post for a long time now. You know, I want to reiterate, that I write these posts mainly because I just want some type of permeant record of the stuff that happens in our life. I have a stack of old journals in my home. I have filled those composition notebooks with prayers, frustrations, verses, concerns, praise, loves, hurts, and just about anything I can think of. Nothing is off limits to write on those private pages. I also hope no living soul ever reads them, either! :) But what I write here is ok to share. I want my kids to see this, I want my grandkids to see it too. So, if the internet still exists in 100 years, they will know a little of who I am, and  more specifically, Who, drives my heart and life. Most days that record is pretty normal and mundane, dull. But there are crazy times like what I am about to share, that just need to remembered.

The past several weeks have held a very important reminder for me, that God is in control, and we are not. And in the midst of chaos, if you train your heart to find it, there can be incredible, over the top blessing.

On Monday Feb. 9th, around 5:30pm, we get the call, our oldest daughter's voice on the other end, "I've been in an accident, and … and it's really bad…" Then another voice, this time unfamiliar,  came on the phone and explained what happened, and where they were, and continued to just scare us to death. Fortunately, "really bad" has equalled a totaled car, a broken clavicle, missed school, and surgery to fix said clavicle, and now healing... Yes, there are stresses that come with this whole thing, but we are very, very grateful. And even though this was not in our plans, God has been totally in control.

Our son… he is growing in his walk with the Lord by leaps and bounds right now. He has chosen a college to attend (shall I hint at it? M-I-Z… _ _ _ !!  ),  and he is finding out that he can put his expectations completely in God.  I know that he has prayed with friends, led them in the study of the Word, and heard him say to another,  "I'll be praying for you, text me anytime you need to…" I have seen him step out in courage this past year, and try things I would've never thought he would do.
All blessings to this Mommas heart.

Our youngest girl… this one has blossomed into such beauty, and continues to find her place, and loves on others so deeply. She worships with me in the kitchen, and I have seen her tuck her Bible under her arm knowing that she may use it to encourage a friend. She also has learned to trust God, by first trusting her Daddy. Sometimes decisions we make as parents don't make much sense, but ultimately there is such blessing through obedience. I stand back and shake my head in wonder at how God does this.

Parenting of teenagers is hard, I will not sugar coat that one bit. There are impossible schedules, homework, demands, pressures to perform, cars, braces, friendship issues, insecurities, attitudes to be addressed, and decisions to make. But I want to write this for the world to see it - parenting teenagers can be filled with blessing beyond what you ever dreamed. How so?

I love my guy. and I love that he always prefers to spend time with me and/or the kids, than run off and pursue his own hobbies. We have been dating since we graduated from Highschool, and even though we have had some serious valleys, we are dating still. Our relationship is priority to both of us. As we follow Christ and grow in our Spiritual walk, we grow more and more together in oneness. It's not cheesy, folks, it's real.

So, wives, love your husbands, be reverent and honor his leadership. PRAY for your husbands, and submit to him. Yes, I actually wrote that horrible word… submit. I'll just state that it was pretty humbling for Christ to come to the earth and wrap His Godly frame and contain it in human flesh. It was submission to the will of his Father in Heaven. I think if Christ is our example, then us wives can take His own advice and Word to heart, and submit to our husbands. It is not a doormat type of submission, though. Too many people don't get this. The world has placed such a negative connotation on the word, but it is really more about harnessing our God-given strength and using it appropriately and wisely.

 Husbands and Fathers - I have just one thing to say, please lead. We may not act like it most days, but us wives want you to step up and take the spiritual helm of the family. If you don't, we may try to step in and do it ourselves, which we think is better than nothing, right? Maybe not, but that's our wifely logic. Seriously, you don't have do be totally perfect in any of it. Just instigate praying, or reading Bible stories with the littles. Because one day, those littles are 17, and they need your wisdom more than ever. That little girl who trusted you to throw her up in the sky, or drag her around on the back of a sled, now needs to trust you with her college decisions, or her choice for a relationship. She needs to trust your opinion on this big stuff, because she has always trusted you before. Spend time with them, do things that you love and do them together. Lead your family. We want you to.

This family, specifically me and my hubby, has most definitely not aced avery marriage and parenting test, and we have so much more to learn and so much more growing to do. But this is my public statement of gratefulness, to God first of all, but to my faithful husband, and then to our precious kids.
Blessed. I am so incredibly thankful and blessed.

Now back to your regularly scheduled programming…. and that workout and consistency thing! 

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Feb 8 ~ Middleton Place

So today I didn't quite get in that mile! UGH. I promised honesty, right? I will post a picture instead…

I loved our visit to Middleton Place, right outside of Charleston, SC. We simply must go back in the Springtime, when the flowers are in bloom. Even still, this particular day in December held a beauty all it's own with the heavy skies, and dreariness. Winter, yes, but still and beautiful.

Tomorrow I will get back that mile. I am making progress, I am feeling stronger, and I don't have the pain in my elbows anymore!  Plus, my sweet husband bought me some cool workout clothes and I can't wait to put them to good use. Hey, anything for motivation, right? 

Sunday, February 01, 2015

FEB 2 - Stats

Blogging every day is hard. And apparently, so is walking a mile every day. Last Saturday, I missed it. So that's 2 days I've missed for the year! I'm still going though! 

I will share these stats though...  in JANUARY, I walked or ran 35 miles, burned over 6000 calories, and logged 39 activities. I'd say that is a HUGE improvement over my Jan 2014... I'm proud of my progress and I feel strong! (Shout out to the Runkeeper app! Find me there, and we can be friends :) 

Last week was a crazy week, but it was so good. I worked out at the Dan Kinney Center a lot (and we finally joined, too! I feel so legit.), I edited pictures, made orders, paid bills, made new friends, My daughter sang the National Anthem at a HS basketball game and she nailed it! My other daughter bought me a new instrument... A mountain dulcimer! And today I booked another wedding! 

I truly am learning that this journey is about progress, not perfection. I will have to really kick in my good eating habits, & then MAYBE I will see results. 

So keep checking in... I'll just have to share more pics to keep you interested, but I WILL be here! 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Jan 22 - Salad

I really cannot stand honey oak stained wood, so I apologize for the background of the pic. But I really loved my awesome salad tonight! So much so, that I felt it was blogworthy.
Greek Salad topped with chicken… Mmmm. Emma made a yummy salad dressing from scratch the other day, and I have been craving it ever since. 

 This salad was huge, and I was stuffed. I posted a photo of my food, which I never do, because there is quite a little victory in this. 
Today I had a great photo session with Carter, and we jumped in and out of the car all over downtown Springfield! As always, my reward for the drive home, is to swing through Ocean Zen and get sushi!! Don't judge. 

But not tonight. It's this consistency thing. I needed to just drive on home, where I have a wonderful fridge full of good stuff to make for myself. I am so blessed to even be able to say that!
So, tonight, I am thankful for this salad, for saying No to sushi, and fir awesome photo sessions. 

And YES, I have kept up my ONE MILE A DAY, usually doing at least that mile and/or a class! Feeling strong!

Jan 26 - REST

I simply cannot believe it. On Saturday - I TOTALLY FORGOT. That one mile simply slipped my mind!  I have made all this effort to get outside or hit the treadmill, I've walked in the freezing, cold rain, wind, after busy busy days, only to let it slip my mind?

 I feel like a failure.

I can explain… It was Saturday, we slept in, I studied my Bible, I made breakfast, I painted our bathroom ceiling all day, I ran to the grocery store, I made dinner, I had friends over… and then the day was over. Over, without that mile.

 OH WELL.  Life goes on, and we just pick it up again, right?

And you know what? I really, really needed that day to recover. I had hit the pavement hard all week, trying to build up my stamina, and my chins were killing me! Bootcamp also had made every muscle in my upper body scream all morning, so maybe I did just need the rest. I feel great now, and will probably be even better for it.

Lesson learned? There is a God watching over me, and protecting me, and He knows when I've had too much. My day was filled with productivity, and blessing, and I am completely grateful for that! NOT a failure. Absolutely NOT.

And just for your viewing pleasure, I thought I'd include a shot from our recent trip to Charleston, SC over Christmas - this is Middleton Place. Must. Go. Back. Soon!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Jan 17 - Good

Well, it seems as though I'm better at keeping my walking going every day, than I am at blogging every day. Yesterday was boot camp +1 mile on the track. Today is 1 mile outside… And I just don't have time for more today! 

But "here's the deal," (Greg-Ism) ... All it takes, is just a little at a time. JUST 1 MILE A DAY. 
I can't tell you how much better I feel already, and we are only 18 days into this year!

Today was so good... 1 mile walk in 40 degrees! Coffee with a dear friend! Booking a new Bride! Dessert making! And pulling off a great surprise party for Nathan's 18th birthday! 

And now it's time to post this so I can go to bed! Wouldn't you be tired, too?