Monthly Archives: December 2012

Cheers!

College1

Very thankful for a wonderful 2012! 

Here’s a quick snapshot of what 2012 looked like for me: lots and lots of exploring my new-ish city {more here and here}, my parents 25th wedding anniversary, visits from Jordan and Kerry, celebrating my first official year in San Francisco and my blog’s 2nd birthday, two trips to Ohio University to visit college friends,  Paris in August/September {more here and here}, a wedding in Pittsburgh!, Ali moving to SF, the Giants winning the World Series, a five day juice cleanse, Friendsgiving festivities and an extended holiday trip home in December.

A few monthly snapshots here: January, JuneOctober, December. My monthly resolutions can be found here.

It’s hard to recap this year in just a few words, but I am so thankful for the exciting, scary, silly, crazy, interesting and…surprising journey the past 365 days have been. This quote sums it up well: “We are so often caught up in our destination that we forget to appreciate the journey, especially the goodness of the people we meet on the way. Appreciation is a wonderful feeling, don’t overlook it.”

Wishing you a very happy 2013 full of blessings, surprises, joy and goodness. Don’t overlook the wonderfulness that 2012 brought and the excitement 2013 has in store. Cheers!

Collage2

But I know who you are.

I recently discover JJ Heller‘s pre-released track Who You Are and have played on repeat several times over the last couple of weeks. The song is an excellent reminder that sometimes there life is really, really hard and really, really unfair. Sometimes there are no answers to the questions we have and sometimes bad things happen to good people. I look back on quite a few times in life where I felt completely stuck, shocked, hurt and had zero clue why this or that had happened to me. The words to the song reminded me to say a special prayer for those in that situation now asking that they find peace and comfort in trusting that God is bigger than our wildest, hardest problems. I’ve seen first-hard His transformative power and love wash my pain ad hurts and questions away.

You can listen to the song here.

All she wanted was a baby to hold
She’s still waiting at 41 years old
Her life feels like a tragedy
And it’s driving her down to her knees

She says, “I don’t know
I don’t know what you’re doing
But I know who you are.”

It was after midnight
When he answered the phone
The doctor said his daughter
Was never coming home
Sometimes life doesn’t make any sense
Full of war and pain and accidents

He’s praying, “I don’t know
I don’t know what you’re doing
But I know who you are.”

You have a father’s heart
And a love that’s wild
And you know what it’s like
Yeah, you know what it’s like
What it’s like to lose a child.

Sometimes I don’t know
I don’t know what you’re doing
I don’t know, I don’t know
Sometimes I don’t know
I don’t know what what you’re doing
But I know who you are.

Who You Are

Christmas Snapshots

Andi and Hope

I am so thankful for these three girls. Here’s a few photos we snapped on Christmas Eve – it’s sort of a tradition for us to take family photos after church all together. I especially like the photo at the bottom with our two pups, Max and Rugby, included! Hope you had a very merry Christmas! xx

Andi and Katie

Andi and Kerry

Teggart girls

Happiest of Holidays

564037_420064288045684_710853002_nJoy to the world! It’s pretty unbelievable how quickly the past few months have been and the weeks leading up to the holidays have been nothing less than rushed and on the go. Since arriving back in Ohio, I’ve been able to soak up quiet and relaxing moments. The words from this blog post are ringing in my head: Christmas cannot be bought. Christmas cannot be created. Christmas cannot be made by hand. Christmas can only be found —

Don’t forget the real reason we’re celebrating today – it’s much, much more than good food and presents. I hope you find Christmas by looking for it with open arms and hearts. Wishing you a Christmas day + week full of joy and celebration!

More Christmas posts here, here and here. xx!

 

Snapshots with Santi, Part 2

I’m thankful for all of my friends and one I’ve been feeling especially grateful for lately in Santi. He’s a friend that made my move to San Francisco so much easier and better. Even though he’s now across the country living in New York {I’m a little big jealous…}, I know I can call or email him at any time with any question, concern or just to chat. Aren’t those the best types of friends?

I previously shared photos that Santi snapped during work and found another set of photos from a different day. I look completely different now, as I chopped my hair and it’s bright red but these photos make me laugh. This awkward, impromptu  five minute photo shoot during work is one of those memories I just won’t forget. Check out Santi’s photography work on his blog!

Hope you have a wonderful Friday and holiday weekend! xo

Thursday Thankful List – What You're Thankful For

I’ve been blown away reading the things you are thankful for – thanks so much for sharing! I wanted to share another list of the wonderful things Polish My Crown readers are thankful for today. I flew back to Ohio late Sunday night and feeling so very thankful for slow mornings spent in the kitchen, my sisters’ spontaneous bursts of laughter, having adult conversations with my parents, the smell of our Christmas tree, that all my Christmas presents are wrapped!!! and that I’m taking the next week off work. I’m really looking forward to seeing my extended family and taking it easy celebrating Christmas over the next week.

Tomorrow is the last day to enter the holiday giveaway; so keep the thankful lists coming! All you have to do is tweet {@luckyandi} or comment on the original blog post.

Here’s what YOU are thankful for!
youtube cover songs
the color emerald
the perfect grapefruit
homemade holiday cards
scented candles
christmas spirit
amazing opportunities to pursue my dreams
athens, ohio
my significant other
my puppies
having a loving family miss me while at college
roommates
my beautiful and inspiring mother
leather-bound books
my family being in good health and spirits
the hard times {you learn from them!}
holding your head high
faith
the sparkle, charm and wit of kids
solitude
that i’m breathing
new canvases
oil paint
a creative mind
fresh starts
good books
relaxing mornings
the ability to work
a good cry
long calls with my parents
bittersweet “see-you-laters” to friends before the holidays
pre-break cleaning
soft mint candies.

merry and bright


I can’t believe it’s less than one week until Christmas! I flew back home on Sunday night and I’m very thankful for the extra time I can spend with my family before the holidays. Since Christmas is obviously on my mind, I thought I’d share a fun holiday-themed Words for Wednesday post today.

Do you have any favorite holiday traditions? I also enjoy our girls cookie day {Saturday this year!} where we bake cookies all day with my cousin Erin, aunts and grandma. I also love Christmas Eve with my family – church, fondue, family game night and a big sister sleepover. Hope your day {and entire holiday season} is merry and bright! xx





Leave the house.

Zach recently emailed me this amazing and inspiring TED Talk from explorer Ben Saunders. His ten minute talk shares explores the value in spending time outside – in exploring, stepping outside of our comfort zones. The real takeaway is why it’s important and wonderful to be a doer of life, rather than an observer. When’s the last time you simply took time to EXPLORE?

Without giving it away too much, here’s a few favorite lines from the TED Talk – I definitely recommend watching the whole thing! xx

What we get from this adventure is just sheer joy, and joy, after all, is the end of life. We don’t live to eat and make money. We eat and make money to be able to enjoy life. That is what life means, and that is what life is for.

And it seems to me, therefore, that the doing, you know, to try to experience, to engage, to endeavor, rather than to watch and to wonder, that’s where the real meat of life is to be found, the juice that we can suck out of our hours and days.

And yet, if I’ve learned anything in nearly 12 years now of dragging heavy things around cold places, it is that true, real inspiration and growth only comes from adversity and from challenge, from stepping away from what’s comfortable and familiar and stepping out into the unknown. In life, we all have tempests to ride and poles to walk to, and I think metaphorically speaking, at least, we could all benefit from getting outside the house a little more often, if only we could sum up the courage. I certainly would implore you to open the door just a little bit and take a look at what’s outside.

Don’t forget to enter my holiday giveaway to win lots of goodies from Aerie, Curly Girl Design, CLEAN&CLEAR and more! The giveaway closes on Friday.

brokenhearted

It just feels wrong to go on writing blog posts without addressing the devastating news from Friday morning. It’s been hard to think about anything else to be honest, and I hope that writing out my thoughts will help other people in some way, shape or form.

Like everyone else, I’m brokenhearted, shocked and feel sick to my stomach thinking that 26 innocent people who lost their lives at an elementary school last Friday. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about the incident all weekend and asking the “Why? How?” questions. Most of the victims were six or seven years old.

My heart breaks thinking of the hundreds of family members who are now without their child, mother, brother, sister, cousin, aunt, uncle, grandchild. My heart is broken for the students at Sandy Hook Elementary School whose innocence was stolen way too early, whose school life experience is shaken for the rest of their lives. My heart is broken for our entire country who has seen public shootings devastate the lives of so many people and families – Columbine, the Aurora movie theater, Virginia Tech, the list unfortunately goes on and on. My heart is broken for the people who have suddenly lost a loved one in the past, as this incident most likely re-triggered sad emotions and very hard memories.

There is so much evil in our world and mental illness is very real and scary and dangerous – and needs to be addressed and handled as such. I can’t help but ask why bad things happent to good, innocent people. And I just don’t have an answer.

When looking for answers, I’ve circled the promise in Psalm 34:18: The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Brokenhearted means “burdened with great sorrow, grief or disappointment.” And that’s how we often feel after a death, especially like the shocking, unthinkable shooting that happened last Friday; broken. Author Sheila Walsh wrote, “For all of us, there will be times when God seems far away and prayers bounce off the ceiling. It is at these moments- that we must choose. We can give in to despair, or we can keep going on in simple trust.” What we can do is trust. 

What we can do in these terrible, tragic and hard situations is hold onto hope that this season of grief will not last forever. We can rest in the promise that we are never, ever alone. We don’t just “get over” a death and fully completely heal from sadness, but we can trust that although we are broken, we are blessed. We can trust that beauty comes from ashes. What we can do is remember the joy those individuals no longer with us brought to our lives. What we can do is appreciate the moment we are in with the people we love because life is very very short. What we can do is hug our family members a little tighter and live each moment of life to the fullest.

I’m reminded of the song “This is Your Time” written by Michael W. Smith shortly after Columbine. The lyrics are a simple reminder that now – right now – is the time to live fully. Here’s some lyrics: This is your time, this is your dance. Live every moment, leave nothing to chance. Swim in the sea, drink of the deep, embrace the mystery of all you can be.

Please join me in praying that a peace that passes all understanding would encompass everyone affected by this tragedy.

Lots of love,
Andi

Thursday Thankful List – What You're Thankful For

Happy positive Thursday, queens! On Monday, I announced my holiday giveaway asking people to share three things they are thankful for. I was blown away at the number of responses and love reading all of the little and big things you are thankful for. I wanted to share what you – Polish My Crown readers – are thankful for. I love the quote below too: “It’s not happy people who are thankful – it’s thankful people that are happy.” SO true. Counting your blessings and sharing what you are thankful for only leads to a happier and better life.

It’s not too late to share what you’re thankful for! Here’s all the details.

coffee
the holiday season
the opportunity to get an education
the things that matter most
my cozy apartment
that this year was much better than last year
cats
rainy days
finding a job that I love
being able to travel home for the holidays
the amazing people in my life
hope
old friends
netflix
white whine
my dog!
a good book
airplanes
my great family
best friends and friendship that knows no distance
children in all their beauty and power
music that can say all the things you can’t seem to find the right words for
having a job
having a dishwasher and washer and dryer
hot showers
huffington post humor
winter break
colorful office supplies to make studying more fun
kale
organic cotton sheets
sunny days
coworkers
chai tea
christmas trees
faith and hope in God
warm blankets
glitter
waking up early enough to do work in bed