Monday, January 30, 2012

{ art i heart: city prints by albie design }

I just love these charming city art prints by Albie Design. I’m reminded of a few of my favorite places in the world…San Francisco, Paris, and London (just released) as well as others I hope to visit someday (Chicago’s next on my list). Check back often…limited editions of new cities are added regularly.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

{ geeky goodness: katie daisy iphone covers }


I am a huge fan of Katie Daisy's artwork. In fact, I just ordered this lovely print for Bella's room re-do that's currently in the works. So I was absolutely thrilled to see that Uncommon recently introduced Katie's iPhone 4/4s cover designs, which you can customize. A little bit of sunshine and cheer to perk up those dreary winter days. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

{ flower power }


Happy Monday, friends. What did you all do this weekend? We had a quiet couple of days, which provided me the opportunity to dig into some of the de-cluttering projects on my to-do list. Phew…it felt good to knock some of those out! I was also brave and ventured into the backyard, which is very brown and very sad looking these days. Sprucing it up is going to be a BIG project! Just as I was starting to feel overwhelmed by all of the work that needs to be done, I spotted this single, pink bloom peeking out. I ran inside, grabbed the clippers and popped it into a vase. It was just what I needed to remind me of the beautiful possibilities ahead…

Have a lovely week!

Friday, January 20, 2012

{ weekend style }

weekend wear

Happy Friday!

I think the last time we all chatted my sweet Bella was a chubby-cheeked nine year old, fresh from the 3rd grade. Well, now she's a busy tween with big dreams of publishing her own book, like NOW! And since I don't have an "in" with any publishers, helping her start her own blog was the next best thing.  I must say, I'm impressed with her skills. She's a natural...whipping out a couple posts a day and already obsessing over her stats - Oy! does this relate to my post, you ask. Well, in one of her posts this week, Bella shared her favorite things to wear on a casual day { baseball t-shirt, shorts and converse tennis } and asked her "readers" to share their favorite things to wear. I thought it was a brilliant idea and decided to borrow it. Now that I go into an office most days and must dress up like a big girl, I really appreciate casual weekend days. These wish list picks are my go-to style.

1. hester reading glasses - kate spade
2. belted trench coat in red - target
3. striped shawl collar top - anthropologie
4. cropped skinny jeans - old navy
5. opal applique clutch - mar y sol
6. block letter initial necklace
7. play hooky bracelet - kate spade
7. navy toms

What do you love to wear on casual days?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

{ thursday thoughts... }

wise words from one of my faves

Monday, January 16, 2012

{ instalove: oranges from our garden }

I'm grateful that our orange tree is full of these beauties...
can't wait to make freshly-squeezed juice.

shot 01.16.12 using my iPhone/instagram

Friday, January 13, 2012

{ making me smile... }

cotton candy skies - no filter, shot on my iPhone

bella's observation that the sky looked like cotton candy on our evening walk with Buddy

handmade ryan gosling - can't help but giggle

a three-day weekend

plans to make this yummy salad over the weekend

these cute rain boots...on sale! (should I go bright or navy?)

a fresh look for our living room thanks to a few quick furniture moves

What's making you smile today?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

{ thursday thoughts }

spotted here

Monday, January 9, 2012

instalove: urban chickens

Over the weekend, we stayed with friends who recently started raising chickens in their backyard. I was the first one up Sunday morning and had the pleasure of letting the chickens out of their coop. They are a rowdy bunch--each one with its own little personality. Have you considered raising "city chickens?" I'm so tempted after hanging out with this bunch!

captured with instagram (@suzhopkins)

Friday, January 6, 2012

a new journey: my 3 words

I love this photo: Ohio #2 by Alicia Bock

As I wrapped up 2011, I thought a lot about what I hoped to do and accomplish in 2012. Alas, I was not feeling inspired to draft yet another set of New Year’s resolutions. The intent of this ritual is always good but hasn’t proven to be very effective (at least not for me). And then I stumbled upon this post which talks about selecting three words which become your theme for the year--words that will help define and guide your goals and experiences. I was instantly inspired! On the surface it seemed like a quick and simple exercise, but I found it surprisingly challenging to narrow down my hopes, goals, and dreams for the year into three little words. There are some really good words out there that didn’t make the cut!

So here goes, my three words for 2012... simplify. enrich. smile.

Simplify is about clearing the clutter from my life and I’m not just talking about the piles of paperwork and laundry staring at me. My hope is that I can slow down the pace of our busy life a bit and focus on the things that are truly important to me and my family. I will carve out time for spontaneous weekend adventures and exploring new discoveries instead of using any free-time to catch up on chores. I will set financial goals and be thoughtful about purchases, minimizing those oh-so-tempting impulse buys
(sorry, Target). Instead of acquiring more things or “stuff” we really don’t need, I will focus on creating experiences my family and I can share together because when we look back at the end of the year that's what we tend to remember and appreciate. I will go through our garage, files, and closets and purge, give away, and recycle the things we don’t use or need. I will create clean and serene living surroundings and repurpose some of the spaces in our home so they are better used and enjoyed (I already have some makeover projects brewing).

Enrich is about making the most of my experiences, relationships, and opportunities this year. I will make time to connect with friends and family and nurture those relationships. I will create meaningful memories for my daughter. I will spend more time outdoors and tend to my garden to create a space where my family and I can entertain friends and family. I will take more time to shop for groceries and experiment with new recipes (Yes, you heard it here...I'm going to cook!) I will pursue my passions like photography, pretty things, and writing. I will seek out opportunities to combine these passions with my professional pursuits. I will visit and take in a new city. I will schedule time for daily exercise that I enjoy. I will try to curb my night owl ways and get more sleep.

Smile is about gratitude and choosing joy. I will remain mindful of the blessings in my life and give them the time and attention they deserve. I will celebrate successes—big and small and worry less about the endless “to dos” that don’t get finished. I will talk more about the positives and less about the negatives. Each day, my family and I will reflect upon one thing that made us smile and share it with each other.

I’m excited to start the journey I’ve mapped out and look forward to sharing it here on S.HOPtalk. I've missed blogging and my readers SO much. I'm a bit rusty...thank you for your patience as I find my blogging voice again (and try to remember how to format a post).

Cheers to an amazing 2012! Do you have 3 words…I’d love for you to share them.

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