Friday, December 12, 2014

Things I love: Becca's Gift Guide

I absolutely LOVE this time of year: the gatherings with friends and family, decorating our little town home, and celebrating true Hope entering the world!  Here's a list of some of my favorite things to give during the holidays:

1. The Greatest Gift:  This is by far the best advent devotional I've read!  I am loving getting to read the story of Jesus' lineage and just be reminded of how creative God really is!  

2. Noonday Jewelry: ladies if you haven't heard of this company, check them out!  This company is only a few years old, and was birthed out of an adoption mom's quest to fundraise for her African adoption.  She brought back jewelry from Africa to sell as a fundraiser, and the pieces were such a hit that she founded a whole company based upon employing women in third world countries to make gorgeous pieces.  They also give a portion of their proceeds from trunk shows to fund adoptions.

3. Tom's Shoes: Most of you have heard of this shoe company that gives a pair of shoes to a child in a third world country for each pair of shoes you = win!  These wedge booties are the most comfortable shoe I own!

4. ValMarie papers:  This small company is run by a stay at home mom/designer. She crafts wedding invitations and these beautiful gratitude journals.

5. MayBooks:  If you love designs, and love notebooks, you will LOVE this company.  They design fun notebooks and stationary...

6. Deco Raleigh: Just visited this downtown Raleigh store for the first time and it is full of really fun local goods: jewelry, signage, mugs, beer glasses, etc.  You won't leave that store empty-handed, I can guarantee it!  I really love this Raleigh sign that they have:

7. Videri Chocolate:  I mean seriously, anything that's chocolate with sea salt is a winner in my book! This cute little downtown Raleigh chocolate shop is such a charm!  They also host small parties in their space - would be perfect for a wedding or baby shower!
More important than all these gifts though, is the sweet time with the ones you love this holiday! Soak it up!


Wednesday, December 10, 2014


Happy Wednesday Blog world! We are starting our work week over here on the heels of a whirlwind trip to Wilmington - we left yesterday at 4:00 pm and returned this morning at 1:00 am for a Wilmington Weddings Holiday party. We are working on expanding our network in Wilmington and these vendor blenders are a fun way to do it!

Lately I have been feeling a bit stressed and overwhelmed with personal and business situations and I tend to get stuck in fear and worry about what the future holds or what path to take next. I was really looking forward to this Christmas holiday as we really didn't have one last year as we were in the throes of constructing our cottage, trimming out the Bradford, and oh yeah...having that Baby that is about to be one (that's a whole other post!) Then right when I was getting into my Christmas groove the Transmission in our Honda (The only Family car we have) went out (again!) Yes, this will be the second transmission we donate to this beast! It really got me down, stressed, worried, and anxious - which affects my mood and consequently the moods of all those around me. I know it's not right, I know I shouldn't wallow in self pity, I know I have SO many good things in my life - and all I can see is a transmission and all the dollars I don't have to put toward it!

I'm not gonna lie - some tears have been shed over the situation - we aren't in the best financial shape - we are on the road to recovery from this last 2 years where every extra dime we had went into building and/or surviving - timing could not have been worse! But that's just not true. It dawned on me that in the middle of this "tragedy" I live next to my sister - we mostly go to the same destinations and we mostly do it together - I have time and an emergency exit plan in place  - I can shop around for the best option for my pocketbook. Silver lining? maybe - jealous of their 2 working vehicles? sometimes. But really just grateful to be in a situation where it's really not dire and I have family that thankfully has a working car that can accommodate our brood and is willing to let me tag along or borrow from time to time.

It occurred to me that lots of my fear and anxiety and stress over this year is bred out of a spirit of ingratitude and self-pity - and both of those feelings are just not warranted in my situation. I have SOOO much to be grateful for and so little to really fret over - like healthy kids, a husband that supports me, a sister who would do anything for me and mine, parents that pray for me, and a God that forgives me for my ungrateful heart.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this and spend time today thinking about what in your life you are grateful for.

~ Courtney

Friday, December 5, 2014

November Wilmington Weddings meeting

During our off season, we are able to catch up as a team on many things... and one of my favorite parts is getting to spend time with/network with other wedding professionals.  Since we have had a flux of clients planning weddings in Wilmington lately, we decided to start getting to know the wedding world in Wilmington.  We love it there - such a laid back and BEAUTIFUL place to get married!

We hosted and coordinated the November Wilmington Weddings vendor networking meeting and had a blast getting to know more friends in the coastal town.

Loved the ruby and seamist colored linens from L&L Rentals
Yummy fall-themed desserts were made by our good friend Anna at One Belle Bakery!
Tasty drinks were made by Nicole of On the Rocks bartending.  You should totally book her for a holiday party, folks!

DJ Brian Hood is so fun!

Brooke with Southern Bee Designs taught us all how to design our own calligraphy Thank you notes

The fabulous Kelly from Anchored in Love photography (pictured left) shared her skills with us that night.

Venue host for the night was Terraces at Sir Tyler - great space!

Of course we LOVED the fall-themed florals created by Robin at Verzaal's florist!
Courtney and yours truly!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Alter Ego #1

After the massive closet clean out of last week - I was left with not a lot of options that still fit me/were in style/ I didn't look ridiculous in. I really had to get creative with the outfit today...

I got this skirt at goodwill last year for our upcycle challenge. I actually did not like my outfit for that challenge and was always stumped on what to wear for the top with the skirt. Today was no exception. As I was rummaging through my closet I saw this dress that I love - the only issue is that it is a tad too short for me, but I loved the top. My genius idea was to wear the skirt over the dress. It looked really good and it was comfy! I wasn't worried about my shirt coming untucked. I added some black tights and boots, a little bling for a necklace and voila - a great outfit to go meet some caterers and have lunch out.

Happy Thursday everyone :)