Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Better Late Than Never

This was written a few weeks ago, probably the last week in January, so it doesn't exactly reflect how I feel at the moment (although some things still hold true). I don't want to say too much, but exciting news is coming, hopefully sooner rather than later.

The title above isn't about how behind I am on this blog (or episodes of Pretty Little Liars)--because both are true. Instead, it's about how, finally--more than a month after graduating from college--the Post Grad Blues have set in.

The fact that I'm a college graduate and am no longer in school has sunk in, and I'm starting to realize that I have no idea what I'm going to do with my life.

A little melodramatic? Yes, but it's how I feel right now.

When I walked across that stage and received my empty diploma cover (I'm still waiting on that all-important piece of paper to arrive), I knew that I'd start working full-time again at my internship-turned-hourly-job and that I'd be leaving for a two-week trip to Israel in about three weeks. Besides a highly-anticipated visit from Boyfriend over New Year's, those were my plans.

Now that Israel has come and gone, I realize that I have no plans, and that's really hard to swallow.

As a person who fully operates on having something to look forward to, I'm in a little bit of a black hole right now. It's only the promise I have that big things are coming sooner rather than later that's keeping me going.

Don't get me wrong, I have a great life--wonderful people who love and support me, more than I need to get by, opportunities, a good job in my field, etc., etc.-- I'm just trying to not fall into the black hole of day-to-day monotony and what if.

This whole having no plans thing is tough and a big change, but I've dealt with big change before and everything turned out pretty well, didn't it?

Right now, I'm trying to keep my eye on the prize, even if I'm still figuring out exactly what that prize is, and exploring all of my options. I have to admit that it's a little exciting and fully terrifying.

Be gone, Post Grad Blues. I have my whole life ahead of me. I just have to make it through this funk.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Opinion: Israeli soldiers provide ‘eye-opening’ experience

I've wanted to blog about this very important and eye-opening aspect of my Israel trip since I arrived home, and now is as good a time as any. Check out my latest article for USA Today College!

Opinion: Israeli soldiers provide ‘eye-opening’ experience

More about my time in Israel coming soon, but here and here are good places to start.

Monday, February 27, 2012

100 Must-Reads (aka a post by a total English nerd)

Bold the books you’ve read in their entirety.
Italicize the ones you've started and haven't finished, or those you have only read an excerpt from.
1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen...My favorite!
2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling...I completed the first four books. Does that count?
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare...I've read several complete plays/works by Shakespeare, but I can't say I've read every single one. Half credit, I guess.
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald...Another favorite!
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
34 Emma – Jane Austen
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
41 Animal Farm – George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel
52 Dune – Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley...I'm sorry, but I hate this.
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville...Once again, ew.
71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses – James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal – Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession – AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchel
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web – EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad...Probably my least favorite piece of literary work to date.
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

Monday, February 20, 2012

Israel Arrival - Welcome Home!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012- 5:06 am Israel time

We have an hour and 54 minutes until we land in Tel Aviv.

I only managed to sleep about 3.5 hours or so, so I know I'll be a total zombie later. Our trusty rabbi/guide/Seth Rogen look-a-like Josh lovingly told us that we'll have the chance to sleep again in about, oh, 24 hours. Awesome. Seems like I'm not alone in my exhausted stupor, though. Everyone else around me slept for basically the same amount of time.

Because the sound on my screen never started working (turns out it wasn't just me, but the entire last row of the plane), watching a movie/TV was never an option. Instead, I played a little Tetris and Solitaire, listened to my iPod, and tried my best to stay comfortable.

Now that I've gotten all of that out, can I just say that I'M ABOUT TO BE IN ISRAEL. What?!

Right now, according to the flight path tracker, we're 930 miles from Jerusalem and are currently flying over Greece. Earlier (when I couldn't sleep), I watched us fly over Germany, Italy, Croatia, and Hungary, and I may or may not have been mentally planning my next dream vacation. But I'm literally living a dream right now, aren't I?

I've been thinking a lot about the amazing gift that Birthright truly is. More on that later, though. It's breakfast time.

Just 1 hour and 41 minutes until we're on the ground in Israel.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday, January 10, 2012- 6:56 am Israel time

We're flying into Tel Aviv over the coastline at sunrise. Is this real life?
---------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday, January 10, 2012- 10:18 pm Israel time

Today was literally the longest day of my life. From arriving at Newark airport yesterday at 9 am to writing this in my bed at a Kibbutz hotel in Jerusalem, I've only slept for about 4 hours, all of which was on the plane. My entire group is just as exhausted.

But, we're here! We're in Israel!!!

After breakfast on the plane this morning, I decided to freshen up (put my contacts in, oil-blot, brush my teeth, etc.), and I'm so glad I did because at 7 am, we deboarded the plane, got our luggage, exchanged our money, received our Israeli cell phones, and loaded up the bus for a day full of touring. We definitely hit the ground running!

At that point, it hadn't set in that I was in Israel, and it still hasn't. I can't believe I'm Israel! Israel!

My first thoughts walking out of the airport were how beautiful the weather was and "look at the palm trees." We were quickly introduced to our tour guide Karmit, a quirky 29-year-old Israeli native, our medic/armed guard Giddi, a 21-year-old who just completed his Israeli military service, and our bus driver Rafi.

We were then told we were on our way to Jaffa, the ancient port city that is the original part of modern-day Tel Aviv. Prior to the founding of Tel Aviv in 1909, the inhabitants of Jaffa had dreams of a massive, urban, fast-paced city, and they configured the sand dunes nearby to create Tel Aviv, which is now considered to be the "New York of Israel."

You know that shot of the beautiful coastline leading towards the city that pops up when you search "Israel" on Google? That's where I was today.

To begin the tour, we wound our way through the ancient streets of Jaffa, which remind me so much of an older, cleaner, and safer version of Tangier, Morocco. We heard facts about Napoleon's occupation of the area, how the area once functioned as one of the busiest sea ports in that part of the world, how Jaffa is where the biblical story of Jonah and the whale took place, and more about what we'd see throughout the day. Oh, have you ever heard of a Jaffa Cake? Me neither, but apparently they're big in the U.K. and come from Jaffa.

At one point, we walked down to the Jaffa port and sat on the dock looking back at the city with the waves of the Mediterranean Sea crashing all around us. The scene literally took my breath away. As we sat, Karmit asked us to share our expectations and hopes for the next 10 days and any personal thoughts about our connections to Judaism, Israel, this trip, the Jewish community and culture, and more.

I was surprised to learn that several people on the trip had been to Israel before, some of them more than once. I'm also surprised that I'm not overwhelmed to be in Israel, at least not because I'm Jewish and I'm visiting the homeland of my people, at least not yet. I'm so excited to be here, and I'm so lucky to be on this trip/opportunity of a lifetime, but I haven't had "that moment" yet. I'm hoping it will come soon. I think it will, probably in a way and at a time that I least expect it. I do have to say, though, sitting on the dock, surrounded by the ocean, basking in the sun, feasting my eyes upon old Jaffa in front of me was pretty incredible and so, so beautiful.

After that, we drove into Tel Aviv and had some free time for lunch and to walk around. Some of the other people and I warily approached a small, open-air restaurant and blankly stared at the menu, which was all written in Hebrew, of course. The owner must have sensed our timidity because he extended a fork across the counter with something I recognized and love- falafel!

He kindly let us each try one and, through a game of charades with friendly smiles, pointing, and lots of head nods and shakes, I ordered a falafel laffa. Once we all had our food, we wandered down to the beach (decked out in sweatpants, sweatshirts, and tennis shoes) and enjoyed our lunch on stunning Jerusalem Beach. Talk about amazing, and talk about being thankful for the kindness of a complete stranger despite the largest language barrier I've ever had to endure.

We spent a little time walking around down by the water before getting back on the bus to head to another part of Tel Aviv. Here, we wound through a maze of old and new, ruins and renovations, and years of history within a breathing, living, and growing city. Here is also where total exhaustion (and crabbiness) set in. At this point, it was around 3 pm, and were exhausted, cranky, sweaty, and jet-lagged. I wanted nothing more than a shower and a bed.

Sensing our lack of steam, Karmit lead us in a few insane games (much to our resent) and tried to build our spirits before we went into the Israeli Independence House. This building is one of the most important in Israel and is where the state gained its independence in 1948. Once inside, we watched a short documentary about the mission of the Jewish people following WWII to have a state of their own. I wish I could say that I loved every second of the film, but I don't remember more than the first minute or two. I passed out in my chair, and so did everyone else.

After the film, we went into the main room of the building, which is actually a bomb shelter, to learn more about the history of the monumental event. We even got to listen to a powerful recording of David ben Gurion reciting the Hatikva (the Israeli national anthem) from that day in 1948.

Funny story: Another Birthright group was listening to the lecture with us and, as I glanced over them, I realized they were all AEPis, and then I started spotting a few Mizzou shirts and hats. I rushed over to them after the presentation and actually ran into a few guys that are good friends with some of my sorority sisters. It's crazy how you can see a familiar face halfway across the world, and it really demonstrates the fact that Israel is and always has been and will be the homeland for the Jewish people.

Finally, it was time to head to the hotel. I passed out on the bus, so I don't know how long the drive was. Tonight and tomorrow night, we're staying at the Ma'ale Hachamisha hotel in Jerusalem. The hotel is huge and beautiful, the rooms are decent, and dinner was delicious.

After dinner, we had a short reflection session, a pep talk from one of the URJ Kesher leaders, and received a few notes about the days to come. We ended the evening together in a circle by blessing this trip together and most of our first times to Israel with the Shehecheyanu and the Sh'ma. It was such a beautiful way to celebrate and end our first day in Israel.

To follow along from the beginning of my trip, start here. And congratulations (and thank you!) for making it to the end of this ridiculously long post. :)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

February Birchbox

My February Birchbox arrived yesterday (which, by the way, makes last month's box my January box...just in case you were wondering), and I have to say it's AWESOME! I literally squealed with excitement when I opened up my box and saw what was inside. Good job, Birchbox! Way to rock.

To find out a little more about Birchbox (and treat yourself to the gift that keeps on giving), go here.

And now, on to the goodies!

The theme of this month's box was Spotlight.
First Impressions:
  • beautyblender the original beautyblender: I don't usually use liquid foundation, so I'm not sure how much I'll actually use this sponge. Still, I've heard amazing things about beautyblender products from other people, so I know I'll give it a try at some point. I mean, who doesn't want to look airbrushed?
  • Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint: Thanks to my January Birchbox, I'm already a fan of Jouer, so I'm excited to try this tinted moisturizer. Dewy, glowing skin, here I come!
  • Orofluido Beauty Elixir: I was literally JUST talking about how I want to find a great deep conditioning/moisturizing hair treatment, so I'm hopeful that this product will be just what I'm looking for.
  • Violent Lips Temporary Lip Tattoos: I was a little intimidated to see these in my box just because I have no idea where I'll wear them. Still, they're super fun and a little out of the box, so I'll probably give them a try at some point.
  • Lifestyle Extra Nail File: In addition to this being super cute, super neon, and super Valentine's-y, I never seem to have a nail file when I need one, so this little baby is going in my bag right away.
  • Birchbox Digital Download Green River Ordinance: I've never heard of this band, but I'm always up for expanding my music library, especially when it's for free!
Also, after falling in love with my sample of Jouer's Moisturizing Lip Gloss in Birchbox Pink from my January box, I went online to order a full-size one only to learn that they were sold out and there was a waiting list. Birchbox finally got more in, so I cashed in my points and snatched up two of the mid-size tubes as a Valentine's Day treat for myself.

What did you get in your Birchbox this month?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Amaretto Pound Cake

Now that Boyfriend has received his Valentine's surprise, I can post about it! I'm not skilled in the kitchen...at all...so I'm super excited that this cake turned out cute and tasty!

Amy Wisniewski's Amaretto Pound Cake

Time/Servings
Total Time: 25 minutes, plus 1 hour 40 minutes baking and cooling time (I added on a little baking time to adjust for the different size pan. When it was almost done baking, I checked it every two minutes or so until it was done perfectly.)

Makes: 1 (9-inch) loaf pan (After some very technical calculating, I discovered the volume of 1 9-inch loaf pan is the same as a standard store-bought disposable heart pan, so I followed the measurements called for in the original recipe, just in a heart-shaped pan.)

Ingredients
For the cake:
  • 2 cups cake or all-purpose flour, plus more for coating the pan
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for coating the pan
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup Homemade Amaretto (I used good, old-fashioned, store-bought amaretto...from a plastic bottle. Keepin' it classy.)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the glaze:
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon Homemade Amaretto
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Instructions
For the cake:
  1. Heat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and arrange a rack in the middle. Coat a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan with butter. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper, coat the parchment with butter, then coat the entire pan with flour, tapping out the excess. (Because I used a disposable pan, I just sprayed it with non-stick spray and disregarded the parchment paper and coating the pan with butter and flour.)
  2. Combine the measured flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl, and whisk to break up any lumps; set aside.
  3. Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle with a rubber spatula. Return the mixer to medium speed and add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl and paddle.
  4. Return the mixer to low speed and add half of the reserved flour mixture, beating until just incorporated. Add the amaretto and vanilla and mix until just incorporated. Add the rest of the flour mixture and, again, mix until just incorporated. Remove the bowl from the mixer and, using a rubber spatula, mix in any loose flour. (Do not overmix.) Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  5. Bake until the cake is puffed and golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the pan and let cool completely on the wire rack, about 30 to 40 minutes. While the cake cools, make the glaze. (Because I mailed the cake in the heart pan that it baked in, I left the cake in the pan during the cooling process.)
For the glaze:
  1. Combine the sugar and amaretto in a small bowl, stirring until smooth and incorporated. Drizzle over the cooled cake and sprinkle with almonds. (For a fun, festive touch, I added Valentine's sprinkles.)
The finished product (after it traveled over 600 miles, so be kind):

Best part is, Boyfriend said it's good! He might be lying, but only because he loves me. :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Better Together

Happy Valentine's Day! Hope your day is full of love, happiness, and lots of sweetness!

a sweet valentine from my sweet valentine :)


Check back tomorrow for more Valentine's Day fun! And, if you haven't seen it already, check out Google's homepage today. So cute!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

What I Did in Israel

Now that I've been to Israel, I can cross a few things off of my bucket list (and here).

2. Go to Israel
32. Enjoy a sunrise
79. Climb a mountain
92. Float in the Dead Sea

And my list of 21 things I want to do before I turn 22:

3. Have an adventure
8. Travel somewhere amazing
11. Volunteer for a worthy cause
20. Go camping (or something as equally out of my comfort zone)
21. Limit checking my social networking sites (Facebook, Twitter, Blog, etc.) to 3 times a day tops

More about Israel on the way, but here's a good place to start.

Monday, February 6, 2012

February Daybook

FOR TODAY

Outside my window...
is a chilly evening. It's back to feeling like winter in these here Texas parts.

I am thinking...
about a lot, like usual, but I'm starting to have some much-wanted (and much-needed) insight into things.

I am thankful...
for family members that will help me out even though they're mad at me.

In the kitchen...
has been a busy place as I've been trying to figure out the perfect Valentine's Day treat. :)

I am wearing...
navy, green, and white plaid pajama pants and my navy RAMS t-shirt.

I am creating...
my first--hopefully first of many--freelance writing project.

I am going...
to Kansas City in April to see one of my best friends get married. Just booked my tickets!

I am wondering...
when things will get moving.

I am reading...
The History of Love, but I haven't gotten very far.

I am hoping...
that my siblings and I actually get to spend the day together this weekend.

I am looking forward to...
the weekend, and it's only Monday.

I am learning...
to be patient and to just go with the flow.

Around the house...
is a little cleaner than before. I finally worked on my room this weekend.

I am pondering...
the same stuff I've been pondering for a while now. Come on, Everything, get going!

A favorite quote for today...
"You know you are in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams."

One of my favorite things...
is planning special surprises. :)

A few plans for the rest of the week:
work, work, and more work, and hopefully spend the day with the siblings this weekend :)

A peek into my day...
Does it count if it's a peek into my day a week ago? BEAUTIFUL anniversary flowers from Boyfriend!

As always, join in the Daybook fun here.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Bucket List

71. Watch the snow fall with someone special
72. Be married to the same person for over 50 years
73. Visit the Sistine Chapel
74. Visit the Parthenon
75. Tour the White House
76. Visit Monte Carlo
77. Have my children grow up with Harry Potter
78. Visit St. Basil's Cathedral
79. Climb a mountain
80. Kiss under mistletoe
81. Go an entire day totally "unplugged"
82. Take engagement pictures in the fall
83. Participate in and complete the 3-day Walk for the Cure
84. Keep my fingernails painted everyday for a year
85. Perfectly tie-dye a a t-shirt
86. Be a freelance writer
87. Find my perfect shade of bold-red lipstick
88. Wake up in the morning and be able to see perfectly
89. Stand on the Great Wall of China
90. Catch the bouquet at a wedding
91. Treat myself to a massage/facial
92. Float in the Dead Sea
93. Take a photo at the Columbia, MO Magic Tree every year I'm in town
94. Live in a tiny apartment with my significant other
95. Buy a piece of art or photograph print in every foreign country I visit
96. Go on a date to Les Bourgeois Winery
97. Have a timeline of our love story at our wedding
98. Have photographs of our marriage proposal
99. Have a collection of corks from special occasions
100. Make a quilt with my Mizzou/Phi Mu/UNT t-shirts
101. Go paintballing
102. Be published in a book

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Speaking of...

...my best friend's wedding (from earlier today), head on over to Kelly Hornberger's beautiful photography blog, and take a look at her stunning photos from Whitney and Josh's wedding day. Then, leave a comment on Kelly's blog post to help Whitney and Josh win a canvas print of one of their photos.

Thanks so much!

My Best Friend's Wedding

More two months ago (eek I'm super behind), my best friend/pledge baby married the man of her dreams. Seriously, I don't know if I know a couple who is more perfect for one another than they are-- and they should be this perfect since they've been together for almost 9 years!

The weekend was a blast-- reuniting with my best friends, blubbering through a totally incoherent toast at the rehearsal dinner in downtown Houston, enjoying a low-key-and-totally-awesome bachelorette party/girls' night in (complete with delicious food, fun decorations, a ridiculous light-up diamond ring, and lots and lots of lingerie), getting to know the couple's extended families at a sunflower and bluebonnet-bedazzled bridal luncheon (that I had so much fun planning with Whitney's mom), and, of course, getting ready for the wedding, taking pictures, keeping the bride out of her groom's sight before the ceremony, standing next to Whitney as her and Josh tied the knot, dancing the night away (with a mashed potato bar and a pretty intense cake smashing session by the new Mr. and Mrs.), wishing we could linger a little longer, and continuing the party with my fellow bridesmaids and groomsmen afterwards-- yeah it was awesome.
my toast at the rehearsal dinner
reunited and it feels so good!
bachelorette party
bridal luncheon--check out my centerpieces!
wish/advice jars for the newlyweds
bridesmaids
totally texas-fied welcome bags
beyond amazing bridesmaids gifts!
garter time!
pinning my badge inside of her dress :)
we're just really pretty...
such a beautiful bride!
the newlyweds!
smashing the cake
wonderful friends
"mmm i want to linger..."
Just another example of how my pledge baby is really a million years older than me. At least she asked to use my pin as her something borrowed. :)

Love you so much, Whitney and Josh! Thanks for bringing everyone together for your beautiful wedding weekend.
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