Archive for May, 2013

May 31, 2013

Four Years!

2013.jpgStillwater, 2013 <3.

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He knows me better than anyone in the world & still loves me imperfections and all.
I couldn’t ask for a better partner to share life’s experiences with everyday.
He keeps my feet on the ground, but lifts me up at the same time.
Putting a smile on my face is something he does daily (: He always brings the sun out, even on my darkest day.
We’re truly the perfect balance of eachothers strengths & weaknesses.

Brett you’re my glimpse of heaven <3.

2009kiss.jpgBridesmaid & Groomsman, 2008 <3.
(Cooks Wedding)

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Do you ever visit “how he asked” – I’m addicted!

Reading different “love stories” is so entertaining & romantic.
I’m always intrigued by the stories where they almost didn’t meet.
What if I didn’t go out that night? What if I hadn’t missed that flight? What if I didn’t … it’s just so exciting!

In honor, of our 4 year wedding anniversary … I’d like to share our story (short version, promise!)

Let’s do this “how he asked” style:

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How We Met:

In April 2005, I ventured to Stillwater, OK to visit some friends at Oklahoma State University (Go Pokes!). I had just finished my associates’ degree and wanted to transfer to OSU that August to start my business degree. After a long day of scoping out the campus and trying to find a cheap place to live, we decided to grab dinner at Hideaway Pizza. My friend wanted to see her boyfriend, who was having dinner there with his fraternity. Can you guess who was there … Brett <3.

He was sitting across from me at the table, and he wasn’t really talkative … which I kinda liked? I know that sounds weird, but it was refreshing after hearing all the other guys talk about themselves. After dinner we headed back over to the frat house, where Brett and I finally started to talk. I feel in love with his crystal blue eyes and laid back personality. He never tried to be something he wasn’t, just an honest, genuine guy … he hasn’t changed a bit by the way (;

We pretty much became inseparable after that. I moved to Stillwater in July and still to this day we both say those couple years in college were the best. We played golf, attended concerts, took group vacations, went to all the OSU sporting events, tailgated, took many weekend road-trips with friends, had many lake days, spent many late nights on the strip (Stillwater’s main street), stayed up late watching movies and talking about our dreams. We were young, broke, carefree and in love.

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college.jpgCollege Days, 2006 <3.

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How He Asked:

On August 14, 2008 – Brett picked me up from a LONG day at work. He wanted to take me to PF Changs (my fav!) to help me de-stress. I told him I was exhausted, and just wanted to go home … I had no idea he was proposing, I still feel bad about that. He was in shock, I NEVER pass on PF Changs. On the way home, I received a phone call from a lady on Craig’s list about a sofa set I was inquiring about. So I asked Brett to go with me, and we could pick something up for dinner. Well, the sofa was a bust, but Brett tried again by recommending Shoguns for dinner. By this time my mind was on the “crazy sofa lady” (long story), and not work, so I said yes. We meet the sweetest couple that evening – they were telling us about their engagement story/wedding details. My spirits were lifted and I remember thinking how lucky I was to have a boyfriend like Brett. Someone who could always make me smile no matter what kind of day I was having.

Little known fact about me … I love me some fortune cookies. Anytime, I’m at a restaurant that gives out fortune cookies, you better believe I’ll get yours too! Brett having this in mind gave our waiter 2 fortune cookies holding a very special message inside them while I was getting us drinks. The dinner was coming to an end and the waiter brought our bill/fortune cookies. I opened my fortune and it said “Will you marry me?” … I thought it was a joke! Then I looked over and Brett was on one knee. I cried and started hugging Brett and the couple at our table. It was so perfect, and such a sweet surprise! He picked out the ring and everything! It melted my heart how he took one of my silly quirks (fortune cookie monster) and made it so special.

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fun.jpgRehearsal Dinner, 2009 <3.

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On May 31, 2009 I married my college sweetheart <3.
Even though we are older with big kid jobs/bills, and don’t get carefree college days anymore,
we still have each other and a love that grows stronger by the day.

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1D3_2784.CR2Mr & Mrs <3.

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love letter

to my

soul mate

in captures


20082008 <3.

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honeymoon.jpgHoneymoon, 2009 <3.

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shepherds2010 <3.

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tower.jpgNYC Trip <3.

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funnyface.jpgLake Days, 2011 <3.

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picture21Cancun, 2011 <3.

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St Louis3St Louis, Cardinals Baseball Game, 2010 <3.

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fair12.jpgState Fair, 2012 <3.

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107 (5)Las Vegas Trip <3.

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BG… many OSU football games <3.

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us.jpgFirst camping trip of 2013 <3.

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Looking forward to spending my life’s journey with you <3.

love you forever,

May 29, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend

.. spotted a deer’s watering hole (:


Brett & I attended a neighborhood BBQ on Memorial Day, and with every new introduction I keep trying to pull hobbies, careers & things we had in common. This is habit for me when trying to find topics to discuss … but then God nudged my heart & the commonalities I needed where so simple, yet the most important. We’re all at this cook-out to interact with others, to enjoy the beautiful day & take in God’s surroundings. We have this moment we’re living in common … when I started to focus on what’s happening, instead of trying to make things happen, my interaction started unfolding naturally <3.


… a dainty flower with freckles (:


I image this ladybug lives under one of those mushrooms – she was just out doing some yard work (;


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The one truth we all have in common, not matter our burdens or joys, is life keeps playing.
It can’t be paused or rewound … and it’s too precious to want to fast forward.
Do you ever find yourself forcing moments, and not just letting them come to life?


May 24, 2013

This & That

… cutest cottage detail <3.


… love <3.

… tiny pretties <3.

… summertime bonfire ingredient #1

Thank you for reading!


May 23, 2013

Live Your Moments

My heart feels heavy <3.

I’m still processing the tornado tragedy that hit Moore, OK.
It’s unimaginable to see images of a town in my state turned completely upside down in a day.
This tragic catastrophe makes my troubles look soooo small and opens my eyes to the things I take for granted hourly.

Live your moments, even the little ones.
Smile at yourself in the mirror after brushing your teeth … yes, we brush our teeth every day,
but those children woke up and got ready for the day & never get to do it again.
Give someone a compliment, laugh, follow the golden rule, discover simplicity, eat dessert, mail a card to a friend, enjoy your cup of coffee, encourage others, tell your loved ones you love them, forgive, have a freestyle dance party when you hear your favorite song, squash jealously, always have others best interest at heart, pray, soak up the sun, be genuine, stop & take pictures, be happy & squeeze life … LIVE!

Moore, Oklahoma you’re in our thoughts & prayers <3.

God bless,


May 20, 2013

Lazy Menu Monday (;


Something about a lazy 2 days off puts everything back on track.
Brett & I had a no pressure weekend of just enjoying each other’s company.
We slept in, watched movies, ate yummy ice cream, enjoyed a low-key date night, had ourselves a little cooking party & didn’t even stress about cleaning the dishes directly afterwards.

Since our original plans were cancelled, it was nice to just relax and be us… I miss getting to spend every weekend together, but new schedules help me appreciate our time more than ever <3.

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Brett getting the ingredients (:

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{Calabacitas con Elote}

Chili Rubbed Flank Steak:
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 tablespoon mild chili powder
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 pound flank steak

Calabacitas con Elote:
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ medium yellow onion, small dice
½ red bell pepper, small dice
2 medium green Italian zucchini, small dice
1 cup frozen organic corn
2 garlic cloves,minced or pressed
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
2 cups cooked brown rice


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… Chili Rubbed Flank Steak …

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees

2. In a small bowl, combine garlic, chili powder, oil, cumin, oregano, and salt & pepper.
Rub all sides of the meat with the seasoning and set aside.

3. Heat a large, nonstick sauté pan over medium/high heat.
Add in oil and once hot, add the steak.
Sear steak until golden brown and then turn to sear the other side …
cooking time will depend on the thickness of your meat.

… Calabacitas con Elote …

1. Heat a large, nonstick sauté pan over medium high heat.
Add in oil and once hot add in onion. Sauté the onion 2-3 minutes or until soft and translucent.

2. Add in red pepper, zucchini, corn, garlic, oregano, and salt & pepper.
Sauté for 3-4 minutes or until veggies are cooked through; finish with chopped cilantro.


Serve warm steak & calabacitas con elote over brown rice <3.


May 19, 2013

Dad, Happy Birthday!!!

Capturing moments has always been a part of my life. My dad is an amazing photographer who taught me to see beauty in the small details of life. Seeing his face light up when he freezes that perfect moment in time, brings a smile to my heart. Photography has brought my dad so much joy, he loves reminiscing past trips, special occasions & little treasures that made him happy.

 I haven’t always appreciated his photography taste. When I was young, I didn’t understand why he took pictures of flowers, bugs or a bottle of hot sauce at a hole in the wall diner. I was in the mindset; it was a waste of film to not take pictures of people? Fast forward 10 years and I see the brilliance of capturing simplicity. I’m thankful to my dad for instilling in me to slow down, and value the splendors of the world <3.

I truly believe photography has been like therapy for my dad … he’s always been able to escape in God’s creation. I admire him so much for always finding joy in his “Tender Mercies.”

Happy Birthday to my best bud – you’re my hero dad & the foundation of Capturing Simplicity <3.


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2011 Thanksgiving <3.


2008 trip to the city – fun day!




2010 Lake Camping Trip


my wedding day (:


Dad with his grand puppies (:


2010 State Fair <3.


2012 dirty santa xmas party!


2011 steak dinner (:


He’s awesome!


Dad & his sweetheart <3.


adore them <3.


Hope you have a fabulous birthday dad!!! You’re so loved <3.



May 15, 2013

1st Garden.

The first fruit from our little garden <3.


Two days after spending a 80 degree afternoon planting our garden, Brett was hustling to cover it from freezing rain ): We picked these little treasures before the cold front … weather is so unpredictable sometimes <3.

Hopefully, everything bounces back & we’ll be picking many more treats in the future!

Also, are we the only people with squirrel problems? Not only are they digging holes in our yard,
now their picking our gardens produce ):

pests + cold weather = bad for the green thumb.

I’d love to hear about your first garden!


May 13, 2013

Menu Monday.



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¼ onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 lemon, zested – save juice for soup
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pound lean ground turkey

Italian Wedding Meatball Soup:
1 tablespoon olive oil
¾ onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled & diced
1 cup baby spinach
kosher salt
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning or oregano
4 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups H2O
½ lemon, juiced –  zest used in meatballs
½ cup pasta
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper

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1. For meatballs: In a large bowl combine onion, oregano, zest,
garlic, dijon, and salt & pepper and mix well. Add in the turkey
and mix until just combined. Form into 16 meatballs and set aside.

2. Heat a large soup pot over medium heat and add in olive oil.
Add the onion, carrots, and spinach with a sprinkle
of salt. Sweat the vegetables for 2 minutes or until the onions
are translucent and tender.

3. To the pot, add in the tomato paste, Italian seasoning,
broth, water, lemon juice, pasta, salt & pepper. Stir to combine
and then bring to a boil.

4. Carefully drop in the meatballs and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until the
meatballs are thoroughly cooked.


5. Serve warm

Be well,

… another fabulous recipe from Fresh 20 <3.

May 10, 2013

This & That


Another roundup of captures that inspire me <3.


an adorable birth announcement – so happy for my dear friend <3.


love the color of moss <3.


the circle of life <3.


Do something that makes you happy this weekend <3.


May 8, 2013

Sun-Fun Day!


A couple Sunday’s ago, we had the most gorgeous weather. Brett & I worked in the garden & got our first kiss of sun for the summer <3. We took a different route for the boys walk, so my camera was capturing tons of little details I was discovering for the first time.


I wanted to stay outside and play all day, but errands had to get done. The moment we hopped in the truck, we instantly rolled down the windows, turned on the radio & started singing along. A quick stop for refreshing watermelon slush’s made running errands feel like a summer outing.


What are some things you do to make chores more enjoyable?

Keep smiling,

PS. Thank you very much for the sweet comments/e-mails I received about yesterday’s post. My sister-in-law sent me a great blog yesterday & the first post I clicked on happened to be this:

It brought me so much comfort – hope it does the same for you <3.