Thursday, October 4, 2012

Throwback Thursday: A Favorite Piece of Mine

An oldie but a goodie, performed in 2010 and entitled "Daughter and Sun"

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Benefits of Marrying Well

I had this past weekend entirely planned out. Saturday, the hubs was going to take me shopping since I didn't get to do as much as I would have liked while we were up north. Sunday, was intended to be a day for laundry.

While Saturday went entirely as planned (with the one exception of us bringing home far more than was originally expected,) Sunday had me thanking the Lord I married such a handy husband.

It started innocently enough. We slept in and enjoyed the late morning sunshine for a moment before I headed to start the laundry. I loaded up the washing machine for the first of what was to be many times that day (I get behind, it happens,) and walked back into my bedroom to tidy up a bit. I heard a gurgling coming from our bathroom and called Anthony over to look at the bubbling toilet with me.

As it goes with murphy's law, by the time Anthony got there, the bubbling had stopped and I was slightly miffed by the fact that I couldn't show him what was happening. As we were turning to leave, we heard an ominous gurgling coming from our bathtub.

And then this happened.

An outpour of dirty sewer water, began filling the tub. We stood there staring, not sure what to do in the moment, but obviously knowing something had to be done. I anxiously began contemplating if we knew any plumbers in the area who would come out on a Sunday morning. Calmly, Anthony looked at me and said, "Steph, we don't need a plumber. I can handle this."

Now, I know my husband has skills. He is a carpenter, he handles maintenance for several properties. But in moments like these, I really appreciate the knowledge he possesses. What would have been at least a $300 plumbing call became a $25 snake rental from Home Depot. Anthony climbed on our roof and snaked out the vent shafts. To illustrate my complete lack of knowledge,  I didn't even realize you could access plumbing through the roof. Within a couple of hours, he had everything back to normal and we could run water again, which meant I could finally get back to the laundry I so desperately needed to get done.

Our first adventure in homeownership was luckily a rather mild one, but has taught me not to underestimate my husband. Ah, the benefits of marrying well. :)

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

My Northeasternly Trip Recap

Warning: Picture Overload

If any of you follow me on Instagram, you know exactly what I did while I was up north. This is forth principal reason that I have an Insta-addiction and tend to post a picture every 30 minutes (exaggeration...maybe) hey, I gotta keep my peeps updated.

For those of you who don't (and should - @mrsstephkoz,) here's a little recap of my long weekend, filled with weddings, broadway shows, city sights, and.... well... bomb threats (You'll see).

We left the sunshine state last Thursday afternoon on our way to Hartford via a connecting flight in DC. For a cheapo depot set of tickets, our flights up were surprisingly comfortable. (The same cannot be said of our trip back, but we'll talk more about that later.)

Friday, after touring Yale all morning, we attended my cousin's rehearsal dinner. Rather than a formal dinner, they rented out a duckpin bowling alley and had a pizza truck situated outside. Let me tell you, it was genius!

Not only was everyone able to relax and enjoy themselves (which can not be undervalued in the wedding process,) but the pizza was insanely good, and the variety was amazing. I even tried mashed potato pizza for the first time. If you've never had it, you've gotta make it happen.

Saturday, we took an early train into the city and explored all day. We began the day in Central Park, and the weather could not have been any more cooperative. It was 75 and sunny all day with a slight breeze that made everything smell like fall, without the super chilly temperatures. Of all the times I 've been to New York, I've never had the opportunity to really explore Central Park. I've passed by it countless times on the way to dance classes or other engagements, but I've never gone in. It was well worth the wait, despite the number of people (and lets be honest, the number of people in the city is always a little overwhelming.)

After a couple of hours there, we made our way for lunch, than to the Gershwin theater for a matinee performance of Wicked. I only have two words. Absolutely Perfect! It was everything I was hoping for and more. I would absolutely recommend this show to anyone, from Broadway aficionados to first-timers. It was spectacular.

We closed the day out at Macys Herald Square. I could spend hours in there, but because we got there so late, we were a little rushed for time. Oh well, next time I'm in the city, I have a date with every floor of that building.

Sunday was the wedding. It was everything I expected and nothing less. The bride and groom looked amazing, the venue was to-die-for and the food was oh-so good. Unfortunately, I was pretty wrapped up in fun of the evening and didn't have the opportunity to take too many pictures, so I can only share a few.

First Dance - Sorry for the crappy quality, but look how happy she looks :)

Monday we did a few very touristy things (PEZ factory anybody?) before heading home that evening.

Like I mentioned before, the flights home were far from pleasant. Our first flight was a connecting flight to DC. A small regional plane, there was little you couldn't feel. This is the one and only flight I've ever taken that has left me nauseous at night's end.

From there, we arrived in DC, excited to be boarding a much larger 737 on the way home, and were greeted by an airport whose staff had been evacuated for a bomb threat. We were blissfully unaware of this fact until we were boarding an hour and a half late and arrived back in Orlando around 2:00 am, making for one tired couple Tuesday at work.

Overall, we had an incredible trip. I'm glad to be home and in my own bed, but can't wait to head back up there (hopefully sooner rather than later).

Happy Hump Day everyone!

Thursday, September 20, 2012


It’s Travel Day!

At 6:49 this evening, Anthony and I will be boarding a plane for the great state of Connecticut and will be spending the next four days up there. I am beyond thrilled.

But before I leave (and then return with an enormous picture dump) I wanted to share something that’s been on my heart lately.


I’ve talked about it a lot on this blog, but I think we all need a good reminder every now and then. I actively strive to be thankful each and every day. My biggest fear is that I will become the Christian equivalent of a “fair-weather friend,” only praising God when everything is going my way. Only singing his praises when his blessings are obvious.

But there are seasons for all of us where things aren’t that outwardly good. Accomplishing your goals becomes a struggle, the little things that have always seemed to fall into place just aren’t, and you just wish you could have more control of your life. The problem with that is, with us in control of our own lives, we are bound to make human mistakes. We are open to error and wrong judgement. We often choose the wrong path.

When we give our lives to God, when we surrender our will and allow His word to speak into our lives, to lead us where we are meant to go, we have no room for error. God doesn’t make mistakes.

That my friends, in and of itself, is something to be so entirely grateful for. That we have a savior to lean on, that Jesus gave his life to save ours, that we can choose to be led to salvation.

Live in that knowledge. Live in that beauty. Live in that beautiful, God given ability to surrender.

Happy Early Weekend!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Oh, How Pinteresting!

Happy Hump Day Everyone! I am more thrilled than usual for Wednesday to be here, because I am only one day away from my Connecticut/NYC trip. My cousin gets married this Sunday and I cannot wait to see how beautiful she is going to look.

In the meantime, I'm linking up with Michelle at The Vintage Apple for OHP today with some of my favorite pins from the past week.

By the way, if you haven't noticed, the url has changed just a little bit. When I first made the move to blogger was taken, but it's open now so here I am. If you want to find me, make sure you update this.

Head on over and link up yourself for OHP. I can't wait to see what everyone else is pinning.

Monday, September 17, 2012


Sometimes it comes out of nowhere, like a lightning bug in the summer sky. One minute, you’re alone with the night sky. An empty, vast nothingness, beautiful in its own right, but comfortable and typical. The next moment, you’re joined by a singular bright being, bringing something out of the ordinary to your perfect normal. Sometimes inspiration hits like that.

Sometimes inspiration comes in the form of a car accident. It hits you so hard that it hurts. It forces you to change direction, because refusal to do so would mean utter disaster. It breaks you and it leaves you confused, but it takes you down a new path that brings you more joy than you could have ever imagined.

Sometimes inspiration is like the wind. It’s subtle and its silent and it comforts you in its tranquility. You don’t recognize it at first, because you are too busy being comforted by the breeze to allow it lead you where it wants to take you. Your mind is too cluttered to hear the soft whisper as it blows through the trees.

Sometimes it’s like a dream. Beautiful and yet unattainable. At moments so real you can taste the change with every word you speak, and at moments so distant, it feels like the thought was never yours to begin with.

Inspiration comes in many forms. It lights up our world, it pushes us forward. It makes try things we never would otherwise. Like an artist and their muse, it allows us to make something beautiful of our lives. Something unique. Something altogether wonderful.

Whatever it may be, allow inspiration to strike you today. Allow it to impact your life. Allow yourself to do something amazing, simply because you can. 

Go for it. 

Friday, August 31, 2012

Life Planning

We all know lust is one of the seven deadly sins.

But, what if the object of your lust is a day planner? I ask this very important question because I am currently lusting over the Erin Condren Life Planners. They are beautiful and perfect and everything I need in my life.

One problem, the base price is $50.00, and when I add in the extras I clearly need, my total comes to $75.00 . Now, for as much as I use my current planner, I can almost justify this hefty price tag. My husband on the other hand, does not support such a decision. And, well, he's probably right (let's keep that under wraps, shall we?)

But, since we're already talking about them, let me give you a rundown of these heaven-sent organizers.

There's really nothing else like them in the market right now. Trust me, I've spent hours googling. So, what do I do? Most likely, I will be settling for the $11.95 planner at Wal-Mart, but now that I've seen these, it's going to be such a bittersweet purchase. (BTW, When did I get so old that planners were my exciting purchase?)

Has anybody bought one of these? Is it worth the large chunk its going to take out of my bank account?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

It's Up to You New York, New York!

I mentioned in my post yesterday that at the end of the month, Anthony and I will be heading up to Connecticut to celebrate my cousin’s wedding. I couldn’t be more excited to see all of my family up there and get Anthony north of the Carolina’s. There’s a special place in my heart for the northeastern part of our country, and I’m hoping this trip will help Anthony understand why.

The day before the wedding, we are taking a train into NYC and exploring. I can’t wait to show Anthony around, but I’m having some trouble deciding what the highlights should be. I’ve spent a good amount of time in the city growing up (mostly in dance studios to be truthful,) but, in the downtime I’ve had during all of those trips, I think I’ve gotten to see all of the important stuff…and some of the not so important.

The thing is, I’ve got essentially twelve hours to show Anthony the city. What do we do? Here’s what I’ve got so far.

  • We’ll be taking an early train into Grand Central (which is an experience in and of itself) and will be spending some time just exploring there.
  • We will definitely take some time to walk around Times Square.
  • I’d like to take him to Central Park at some point during the day.
  • We have tickets to a matinee performance of Wicked at 2:00 (he’ll be seeing his first Broadway show!)
  • After the show, I’d like to get some shopping in, most likely in SOHO, so he’ll get a little bit of that
  • We’ll probably do dinner at The Stage Deli. It’s a landmark and oh so good!

And that’s it.

I would love to show him the financial district and the stock exchange, and stop by the 9/11 memorial (I have yet to go down there), but I’m not sure we’ll have the time.

But here’s where you guys come in. What else do I need to make sure is on our agenda? Remember we have less than a day here, so I’ve gotta really cram everything in. I haven’t been to the city in about 5 years so, if there’s some new great place we’ve gotta see, let me know about that too.

Can’t wait to see your suggestions!