Polka Dots, Zig Zags and Daisies

The sun was out yesterday. 
You know, after it was snowing/raining and before there were tornadoes and then it snowed again.

Minnesota, whatchyou doin’?
Calm this crazy weather down, will ya?

{Zig-Zag tights! The best!}

{Daisy Baubles! Also the best!}
But when the weather gets crazy, the outfits get crazy! 
Mixing polka dots with zig-zags and daisies.
That I like! Those are good things. 
🙂

Country Girl Natalie

It’s so funny. Today my friend sent over this picture, and said, “If you go fishing, this is how I envision you’ll look.” I just had to laugh and say, “I was playing country girl yesterday and I wore a very similar outfit.” See:

We were experiencing the remnants of Hurricane Isaac, so it was rain & fog on and off all day. This outfit took me from the office to the farm perfectly well! 

I’m telling you: A farm bathed in fog, wrapped in love, warmed with the happiness of old friends…it was wonderful. It was just what I needed: a tour of the lush vegetable garden, a good romp with the new little baby cow, and collecting eggs in a red pail. We enjoyed a dinner composed of everything fresh from the farm, served in cast iron, with linen napkins and monogrammed silver. In the quiet after dinner, we started to catch up on life. Old friends need to do that, you know? To sit, and stare at the last of the beeswax candles burning down into the silver candlesticks, and to say to each other, “So, how are you?” in a voice that begs the real answer.
The night ended with a round of hugs from some of the best hug-givers I know, and the most precious gift of a beautiful, beautiful cake plate. I will cherish it. 

See how the dress has little gold polka-dots? So cute.
Just because I happen to like fashion doesn’t mean I don’t LOVE a good “country girl” day. Oh yes, I love a good Country Girl Day. And I absolutely adore this certain family who occasionally takes me in as one of their own, lets me play country girl, feeds me, encourages me, and sends me on my way, bearing the most beautiful gifts and a heart full of inspiration and happiness.
Thank you.

A Casual Outfit and a Story

This is a basic, everyday outfit. It’s my “go-to” sort of outfit when I have to rush out the door in a hurry. Jeans, cute tee/tank, cardi, and fun scarf. 

Cute studded sandals, good jeans from Anthro, cute polka dot tank top, J.Crew cardi with nice buttons, and funky scarf. So easy, and all thrifted/tag sale-d except the sandals, which are F21.

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Yesterday I was able to spend a leisurely evening with one of my best friends and her two little boys. I sure got a pretty good fill of little-boy hugs! Her oldest boy would just look at me adoringly, this little boy on the eve of his 3rd birthday. His eyes shone as he sat next to me, put his hand on my shoulder, then patted me on the knee. “I am so glad to be here with you,” he said and gave me another big hug.
Later, this sweet friend of mine and I sat on my living room floor, two bottle caps popped on the floor at random trajectories, two Apple-Ginger hard ciders propped on handmade coasters. I felt so happy in the cozy cocoon of my small apartment, made entirely Natalie-like over the past handful of years. Sharing it with a best friend and her two darling boys (asleep at this point) made my heart feel so full, you know? So full of love, of questions, and of the future..but mostly, it felt filled with the presence of the holy spirit in this quiet evening of sister-hood. Utterly blessed and grateful. We chatted in that tumbling-rambling way that happens when two best friends haven’t seen each other for months. One topic was topsy-turvy onto another topic, as we animatedly shared life in a way that can’t be replicated online. It was so wonderful to experience that blessing of friendship from God. It feels so rare these days.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Dig in to life! Send roots deep down, invest in friendships, and really connect in real life. 
Goodness if it isn’t soul-filling! 
xo!

Rain & A Tulip

It has been raining. Raining, raining, raining. Did I mention it’s been raining? So I only have one good photo of this outfit! Rain has a way of dampening the spirit–either in a really wonderful, introspective way, or a really un-wonderful, demotivating way. Tonight, I’m feeling a bit demotivated. Sunshine? 
Suuuuuuuuunshine?
Ooo! The week is halfway over! Go us 🙂
xo

Mint Jeans & Teenage Years

It’s only Tuesday? I feel like it’s been an awesome, busy week so far. Good effort everyone. I call an early weekend, ok? Aaaaaaaaand cue the movie marathon and ice cream sundaes. 
Ok, so maybe it doesn’t actually work that way. Drat. 
Today was rainy, rainy, rainy. Rainy. (photos from a few days ago) And the Lord was gracious enough to bless me with a rather cheerful attitude for the day. Don’t you love that? Love it.
Sometimes, I try to reclaim my teenage years, and I use sky blue eyeliner. Can you see it? So much fun, and I love the way it catches the light.
Until next time! Chins up, my dears!
xo,

Good Friday/Holy Saturday

This is what I wore on Good Friday. Yes, including a veil. Because our Savior died. 

Now I know you’re probably thinking, “Yeah, but um, Natalie, He rose again, remember?”

And of course! But we can’t lose sight of the fact that HE DIED. He was sinless, blameless, spotless: the perfect lamb of God. This is the pivotal point in Christianity. “The most important weekend in the history of the world,” as my pastor said. He didn’t just die in vain. It wasn’t an accident–it wasn’t an oversight on God’s part Oops, man, how could I have looked away when Judas kissed Jesus? Darn, my plan A is ruined…


No. It was prophesied from the very beginning. This IS the plan.While we were yet sinners–still dirty and clothed in unrighteousness and our own selfish desires, God sent his only son to be nailed to a cross. 
We cannot forget the power and gravity of the fact that our Savior was betrayed, unjustly accused, beaten, mocked, flogged, spat upon, nailed to a cross, and left to hang until he died. 
And die, he did. 
For me.
For my sins.
In my place.
For you, for your sins, in your place.

ugh, someone move my hair out of my eyes
So yes, I wear a veil. A green polka-dotted velvet-bow one, of course, hehe.
And it might look a little strange, a little Catholic, a little old-fashioned and out of place, but
it reminds me. It helps me feel the mourning. The weight of my sins upon Jesus on that day. It feels right to cover my head, and bow before him.
I reflect on the cost of my salvation and freedom in Christ–a gift free to me, but Jesus paid the price. God paid it, by sending “his one and only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16
I know He died for me, and I know I will live with Him. Do you?
Tomorrow, then, we shall rejoice!
xo

Birthday Girl

                          
{happy, happy}
{beautiful, lovely birthday snow!}
                         
Last week I was the birthday girl–the spoiled rich, totally blessed, very happy birthday girl. 
Oh my goodness, it was lovely.
One must put all the happiness one can into each moment.

~Edith Wharton

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
~Philippians 4:8

I’m a firm believer in the importance of birthday, regardless of age. 
I’m a firm believer in special party dresses. 
I’m a firm believer in polka-dot hose.
I’m a firm believer in the beauty of a lovely snowstorm. 
I’m a firm believer in the deliciousness of living a happy life, and finding blessings in all of the small things. 
I’m a firm believer in a great pair of high heels.
I’m a very firm believer in birthday morning coffee cakes on gorgeous platters.
(that got a ton of compliments, Dorothy! Thank you!)
And I believe in pretty pink candles in ‘Death by Chocolate’ with amazing local ice cream after a fancy dinner with friends.
And I’m an incredibly lucky girl because my friends are believers in birthday flowers! Gah! Gorgeous pink gerbera daisies and lilies! And a pop-up birthday bouquet card! And bright pink and orange carnations (my birthday flower)! With leopard ribbon! And they believe in birthday balloons, too 😉
And every good birthday needs a good birthday song:
Rachel Platten’s “1000 Ships” sums up my birthday perfectly. And besides, it’s happy, jump-around catchy.
p.s. the dress fits my fingertip rule.

Have a beautiful week!


Thanksgiving Outfit

This outfit is so much fun! I just love all of the elements, and can’t wait to wear it again. Also–what do you all think of my new red lipstick? Love it or hate it?
Style Secrets
Hairclip: Goody
Necklace: Von Maur
Shirt: Thrifted
Skirt: Vintage
Hose: J.Crew
Heels: Target


Polka Dot Slush

Since it was a pretty yucky day today, I was so excited when I looked out my window and saw this polka-dot slush!! How cool is that!! I put on my wellies and ran out the door to take a pic. It wasn’t just one little area, either; it was my whole driveway! God, you are so clever!