it's beginning to look a lot like...autumn

Only now that it's basically December has it finally started looking like fall in Texas. I'm over it. I feel like we just skipped a season, but even though I love fall (or used to when we had it) I'm ready for winter! I know that it's a romanticized version of winter that I'm longing for, but I want a coat of freshly fallen snow, crisp air, carols playing, a scarf, warm mittens, a hot wintery beverage and a gently crackling fire.

The brutal reality of winter is bound to shatter these desires as soon as I step foot out of my car onto Midwestern soil. For now, however I choose to think of them fondly.

It was pretty nice to go to the outdoor Baylor Christmas festival last night and only have to think about dressing seasonally appropriate style-wise instead of temperature-wise, and not having to worry about freezing to death, however I miss having FOUR seasons.


We're finishing up Christmas purchases and starting to prepare for our journey home. I'm so excited!


boohoo flu

Well, the flu knocked me out the last couple of days, but Brandon earned a million and eight husband points for taking care of me, being sweet (only poking fun of me a little (and that only before I got really sick)), and making me DELICIOUS homemade chicken noodle soup. You're the best.

I realized that I think this is the very first time I've ever gotten SICK sick away from HOME home. Brandon said that must mean Texas really feels like home to me now. Seems like an odd way of proving my love for a place, but there you have it.


:type travel tuesday: {edinburgh, scotland}

So, I was super sick yesterday and actually thought it was Monday, so here is Tuesday's Type Travel a day late. Forgive me, not that anyone cares. :)

Edinburgh, Scotland

Nemo me impune lacessit is the Latin motto of the Order of the Thistle and of three Scottish regiments of the British Army.  It is often translated as No one attacks me with impunity, or as No one can harm me unpunished.

From Wikipedia


the importance of branding

My friend Emily showed me this sketch by Mitchell and Webb. It's hilarious and also demonstrates the importance of a logo and branding so well. :)


birthday weeeeeeeek

As I mentioned, birthday celebrations this year extended far beyond my actual birthDAY, and closer to Brandon's tradition of a "birthday week" which is 13 days (just shy of two weeks so that he can still (somehow) refer to it as one "week" and NOT two).

Some lovely friends made a cake for me and for Ryan, since our birthdays are annoyingly close together, stealing spotlight from both of us. Kidding. They then convinced me to follow the alleged Mexican birthday tradition of taking a bite out of the side of the cake (the veracity of which is yet to be validated). Here's documentation. In the first one I'm making a weird face trying to get Ryan to stop blowing out the candles and pose for a photo. Apparently, he doesn't pose.

Brandon semi-surprised me with a trip to an amazing french restaurant in Austin! We live sadly far away from any fine French cuisine and we miss it bitterly. He also invited some friends along to make the evening even better!

The restaurant, Péché, turned out to be a curious amalgam of French and Italian cuisine, the unifying principle of which seemed to be whatever is insanely delicious, novel, and difficult to pronounce. They specialize in pre-prohibition era cocktails which were beautifully complex, and just SO good. It's an absinthe bar, as well.

Besides the fact that our friends are wonderful, it was especially fun to go in a group because we got to sample so many drinks and entrees. Everything was exquisite!

I ordered a Silver Monk, composed of my very favorite liqueur, Chartreuse (Green), honey, lime, egg white & Angostura Bitters. WOW.

For dinner, Brandon and I split the mac daddy dinner (yep, that's a french term), Prime Cowboy Ribeye with Seared Foie Gras, Truffled Pommes Dauphines, and Black Truffle. Just. Wow.

Last but not least, for dessert I ordered Espresso Crème Brûlée with Amaretti Cookies, and Brandon had Flourless Chocolate Cake with Chèvre-Black Pepper Mousse, Candied Beet Chips (why?), Orange Bourbon Gastrique, and Chocolate Sauce.

If you're in Austin, go to Péché! Only your wallet will be sorry.

I like food, bye.


birthday weekend

Last weekend I turned 29. I guess this is the year I will try to make last forever, and in the interest of getting that started we have basically been celebrating my birthday for the last two weeks!

Thank you to everyone for all the wonderful calls, skypes, texts and Facebook messages, and especially to everyone who I got to celebrate with in-the-flesh (I know many of you wish that would've included you, and so do I!).

Brandon had a conference over my birthday weekend and I didn't have much for plans, so in a fit of impulsivity Meghan and I decided she better fly down here to keep me company for the weekend! We had an absolute blast, and it felt like she was here for no less than four days. It was really fun to have alone-time and a girl's weekend. Our weekend was complete with all the best things a girl's weekend has to offer, fun conversations, shopping, great food, a picnic, tree climbing, glamour shots, more shopping, movies, and more talking, then more food.

It was a surprise that Brandon came home from the conference early and got to be here ON my birthday as well!

We had a few SISTER-TWIN moments when we realized that we both have pretty much the SAME antique locket, and when we tried on matching dresses, which also matched our own hair colors.

Thank you for coming, Meg!



philosophy lesson

Some things may be acceptable as a philosophy of decorating but should not be translated into a philosophy of life...

Compliments of Kelly Wearstler for One King's Lane


surprise for brandon

Brandon's dad Chad, and Sheryl, surprised him with a visit the other weekend!!! We had a really fun time being sneaky, planning the whole thing behind his back, and trying to figure out just HOW to surprise him.

Brandon, not knowing they were coming that weekend, kept changing his friday afternoon study plans on me, so we had to improvise in the end. My favorite plan was "for if Brandon is reading at home." They brought disguises (fake mustaches, sideburns and wigs), and I was going to come home from errands and tell Brandon that there were two really creepy people outside going through the dumpsters, and that I was scared. When he looked out the window he would see them! I was curious how long it would take him to recognize them.

We ended up sneaking up behind him while he was reading in the library, and with an unsuspected rush of mercy, Chad decided it would be best not to be in costume in such a public place.

He had NO IDEA! Sucker. :)

It was so much fun hanging out with Chad and Sheryl! They took us out to "the posh restaurant" in Waco, which we had been dying to try. We went shopping and antiquing, did a lot of walking and eating. I love getting alone time with awesome people we usually see in groups.

Thank you so much for coming down!


:type travel tuesday: {no buying, or selling, or using. wales}

"To buy, to sell or make use of this bottle is ILLEGAL."

Whataya supposed to do with it then?! And why is it for sale at an antique store?

Hay on Wye, Wales.


all saints' celebration

In honor of All Saints' Day, I attended a Saints and sundries costume party with Baylor friends! Sadly, Brandon is in LA for a conference so he couldn't go. It was a wonderful evening of explaining our costumes, laughter, libations, and singing around the fire (praise music with the occasional "secular tune" mixed in, of course). (As always, click to enlarge the photos).

Can anyone tell I am Saint Lucy (or Santa Lucia)? I went Scandinavian with my costume since I'm part Swedish, and wore the crown of lights. St. Lucia's name is derived from Lux, Lucis meaning "Light," and she is the patron saint of the blind. She pointed others towards "the Way of light." I just found a round metal candle holder and added the holly. It will now serve as our advent wreath. Turns out metal candle holders are uncomfortable when worn on your head, and a bit scary if on fire.

Here are some of the other saintly party-goers. Sadly, I can't remember who everyone was portraying.

St. Hedwig of Silesia (?), and St. Elizabeth of Hungary

Some pirate-saints, and an "unknown saint." (Sorry, guys.)

Saint Zita, and St. Mary, St. John the Evangelist (as an eagle) and St. Michael the Archangel.

The host-is Moses, and Father Daniel (as himself)


recurring dreams

I have (at least) three recurring dreams, and in the last week I've had two of them.

1. Someone has come to visit me (who it is and where we are living changes) and I am kept from spending much, if any, quality time with them. For one reason or another I know they are there, and that I can't be with them. Heart breaking.

2. I am traveling and for one reason or another I can't take any (or very many) pictures. Sometimes this dream also involves my not being able to go very many places in the city I'm visiting (usually Paris), or being stuck in the hotel the whole time. Either my camera is broken, or stolen, or I just forget to take pictures. Panic.

3. The oldest and most persistent of my dreams involves my being a student. I am taking some class (that changes but it's usually science-y, and this time it was philosophy) and I forget that I'm in it. Suddenly, I'm sitting in the class when I realize that I haven't been to the class in ages, I haven't done any of the homework, and I'm not ready for the test we're about to have. Shudder.

I suppose each of these dreams sheds some light on one of my deepest fears or desires. I long to spend quality time with my family and friends, and I am often prevented from doing so by living far away.

I love traveling, and I love taking and having and looking at pictures. This one is a less meaningful longing, but it must run pretty deep to pop up in my subconscious so often.

I want to work hard and do a good job whether as a student or designer, but I tend to be forgetful.

I'm not sure if I'm feeling stressed lately, or why I've been experiencing my recurring dreams, but I thought they were an interesting thought experiment, at the very least.

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