MERRY & BRIGHT // Christmas phone wallpaper

Hi friends!
I made Christmas Wallpaper for you all.
Downloading instructions below the image.

Instructions for downloading this wallpaper:

From computer to phone:

Right click on the picture > Select "open in image in new tab" > Go to the tab and right click again, hit "save image as...", then save the image to your downloads > Go to your email! Attach the file from your downloads! > Pick up your phone and go to your email! > Save the attachment to your camera roll! > Go to camera roll and set this as your wallpaper or lock screen! Or both! Wha-la!

From phone (the simpler way):
*instructions for iPhones/iPods

Tap on the image to make it pop up in its own screen > Tap image again and hit "Save Image" > Go to your camera roll, select image > Set as your wallpaper or lock screen! Or both! Wha-la!


Christmas Originals on Etsy

Purchase these prints HERE!!

Hey friends! I'm selling just a few original watercolors before Christmas! If you'd check them out and give my shop a favorite, I'd be much obliged ;)

Merry Christmas!



give thanks in all things

"We ought to give thanks for all fortune: if it is good, because it is good; if bad, because it works in us patience, humility, contempt of this world and the hope of our eternal country."

• C.S. Lewis  

A lot has happened since last Thanksgiving. Life is much different now than it was a year ago. Forever reminding myself to give thanks in all things.

Happy Thanksgiving, friends.


THIS TIME LAST YEAR / pages I don't turn to anymore

(written October 31, 2016)


It was the last day of being home before we left for Virginia the next morning. My hair was longer. There was one less piercing in my ear. My skin wasn't as tough. I didn't cry as easily. My journal was empty. My suitcase was full. I didn't know what was to come. I didn't know what the next 5 months would hold, and what they would take away.

But today, a year later, I woke up in my own bed. The suitcases are in the attic and my clothes are in my closet. There's pages of my journal I don't turn to anymore. I went to college. Q and I celebrated 1 year + 5 months of dating.

Things are different this time, this year.

And I am grateful.


this is life

It's like this I guess:
Life is weird and busy and crazy and sometimes horrible and wonderful. And it's easy to get swamped with the things I have to do every day and just try to "get through it". But then I was like whoa. This is life.
It can seem like one long cycle of waking up at 6am, driving the same roads, filling my gas tank, classes, the afternoon tired phase, trying to eat something, work, homework, and on and on it goes.
But like I said, "Whoa. This is life."
All those little monotonous things. There will be different seasons, when different things fill the days. But for now this is where I am and I don't know about you, but I don't want to constantly live with the mentality of "just getting through". Sometimes it's the best we can do. But I guess my point is, as much as possible, I want to savor the things that are happening now that may never happen again. The age I am. The place I'm in. The people around me.
Because this is life.
{post originally from my instagram}


i'm still here

Hi guys. Miss me?
Life has been so busy. I got a job, I started college. Those two things alone would be enough to keep my days 100% full.

Let me fill you in...


First off, after getting back from Virginia, I graduated high school.

It took a lot of work to make everything happen (getting things set up, rehearsal, etc. etc.) But the day was amazing and I couldn't be more thankful to my fam who made it happen and made me feel so loved. Also, to my mom who saw me through everyday of homeschooling and just life in general, even when there were more downs than ups.


On May 31st Q and I celebrated 1 year of dating! We're now going on a year and 4 months, 11 of which have been long distance. Now we're both in college, close to each other, and are able to see each other nearly every day. It still amazes me. He's the best and I'm so glad God chose him for me.


In June, I started a job. This is when adulting started to hit me hard. It made me appreciate my "free" time so much more. I'm still trying to find a balance with work/school/life/family. You know how it goes.


In July, I went to the church retreat that I met Quinton at. I was given some responsibilities there that really pushed me out of my comfort zone, and into being more honest with people, and with myself. In many ways I'm still trying to process all this, but I really think that's what refreshed me to strive towards healing and hope.

In August Q +  me + mom + my sisters drove 6 hours to Arkansas to see Twenty One Pilots. I can't really sum up this experience in a blog post. Just, if you can, go. I've never felt more hopeful or inspired as I did there. This was something I'll never forget.

In August I also started college. It's been a good experience. I'm in a two-year program to get my Associate's Degree in Graphic Arts. I'm still adjusting to this new way of life. But I'm thankful for it. (No matter the lack of sleep ;))


So that's it for now. More later.
Thanks for sticking around.




from a summer sunday afternoon, exploring.


that kind of love

it’s as if God, knowing exactly and infinitely what i needed earth-side, took all of that and put it into a person. all the ways i needed built up, all the things that needed to be chipped away. someone who would encourage me in the ways i needed encouraged. someone who would challenge me in the ways i needed challenged. someone to face new things with. someone to be by my side and someone’s side for me to be by. someone to put into clarity all the things that had happened, and to ease all the things that would happen. someone that would love me in a way i never could’ve imagined, the kind of love that doesn’t even think of giving up when things get hard. the kind of love that weathers well. the kind that loves when you don’t find yourself lovable. the kind of love that looks at me and sees in me what i can’t see in myself and makes me believe it’s there. the kind of love that says “i will do anything for you”. the kind that sees you for who you are and loves you still. the kind that understands, and tries to when it doesn’t. the kind of love that makes everything better. the kind of love that makes you love more.
and that’s my Q.
originally from my tumblr


"art is not what i create. what i create is chaos."

a photo set i had a little fun with recently.


TRAVEL DIARY - Homeward Bound

“That weird feeling you get when you are leaving a place, knowing it will probably be the last time you ever see it again. The last time that point in your life will ever be in the present. The scenery, the landscapes, and the people you will miss. Right as you drive away, a sudden panic of regret overcomes you. You are almost convinced you might be making a mistake, maybe you want to stay. Then you remember the reason you are leaving in the first place and how much more you have ahead of you. A chapter in your life has ended, but a new chapter is beginning.”
-Lynette Simeone

When we started our trip to Virginia I thought I'd take up vlogging some of our adventures. And here it is. The last one. The end. When we were homeward bound.

Here's the links to all the previous Travel Diary vlogs...

Getting there
The weekend
Thanksgiving in Florida
Virginia Beach
Washington D.C.
Skiing in Colorado


TRAVEL DIARY - Spring Break in Colorado

During our stay in Virginia I flew to Kansas to go on a spring trip with Q + his family + friends. We drove to Colorado to go skiing, staying by a little mountain town. Colorado is absolutely beautiful. Fell pretty hard for those views. It was my first time skiing (so you can imagine how that went -- I stuck mostly to the bunny slope ;)). Check out the new installment of Travel Diary at the bottom to get a glimpse into the trip. 



days that feel like home

I found this post in my drafts. I remember somewhat of what was going through my head when I started this post. Virginia had started to feel like home. And we were about to leave. I loved it, and I hated it. Hard to leave, hard to stay. Either way. I didn't know if Kansas would feel like home again. I was scared it wouldn't anymore. 

Now we've been home for about two months. And it does feel like home. That time we lived by the lake, half way across the country, for nearly half a year seems surreal, distant, like one long dream.

I've graduated high school, enrolled in college, Q and I are about to celebrate our one year dating anniversary. I've put my journals all back where they belong, I've potted succulents, I've gone back to drinking coffee in my big bed in the mornings.

These days feel like home.


TRAVEL DIARY - Washington D.C.

We took a little trip to D.C. during our stay in Virginia. A quick weekend of navigating metros, busy streets, and catching a couple sights, and some good food. Watch the newest Travel Diary installment below to check it all out.

the washington monument

shake shack in union station

the jefferson memorial

the holocaust museum

d.c. metro


art questions | painting supplies

Hey guys! Over the last year or so, I've been asked pretty frequently what kind of paints I use. I thought it would be best to put together one, central post to steer people towards. Also, there's been a couple other art-related questions that I'll answer too!

Have you always been artistic?
I've always been interested in art, yes. When I was little I would "write" books, spending hours illustrating each page with crayons and colored pencils. Little by little my style of art has shaped into what it looks like today!

How did you learn to paint?
I'm not quite sure when I picked out painting as my favorite art medium. I took what I had been doodling on scraps of paper and over-embellished to-do lists and translated it to brushes and paints. Since then, practice, practice, practice.

How did you learn to paint fancy quotes?
I've always loved experimenting with my handwriting. Anything I can write in a "fancy", "scripty" way, I will. Again, just practice, practice, practice!

What kinds of paints do you use?
All the paints I use are easy to find and affordable. Nothing too fancy. I'll place the links of where to purchase them in their descriptions. Here we goooooo...

These are my favorite kinds of paints. I find them to be the most flexible and forgiving of the paints I have.

This was my first watercolor set. Reeve's brand that I picked up from Hobby Lobby once upon a time. Though I hardly use these anymore, they are a good place to start.

My favorite, most used, watercolor set! The colors are beautiful and smooth. Daler-Rowney brand. Check them out here.

My larger watercolor palette. I don't find these to be as smooth as the ones above, but if you don't want to mix as many colors, this is a good set. Artist's loft. Check them out here

These are liquid watercolors that have a little dropper for dispensing. These are great for painting quotes. Dr. Ph. Martin's brand. Check them out here.

For these watercolors you can add water to adjust the opacity. I haven't had much practice with these, but so far I like them! Staedtler brand. Check them out here.

Okay, so acrylics are probably my least favorite paints to use. I could definitely experiment with them more, but for my type of paintings I don't use them often.

These are the acrylics I use on rare occasions. I would like to practice using them some more. Daler-Rowney brand. Check them out here

Alongside watercolors, these are my favorite. I actually accidentally stumbled upon gouache, thinking I was buying acrylics. I LOVE these. They have more of a "matte" look than acrylics and the texture is easy to work with.

I have had multiple sets of these gouache paints and I repurchase them every time I run out. Reeve's brand. Check them out here.



what home feels like

We've been back in Kansas for about a week and a half now.

When we reunite with people there are two types of one question: one that wants the easy answer, then one with more understanding. The latter adds "or do you miss it?" to "Is it good to be back?"

You know, it is good. Strange. And good. And confusing. And good. It's not a contest between the two places. They both hold events and people that we'll always remember.

How does it feel to be home?

To sum it up in a sentence:

Like everything is the same but me.