Saturday, February 26, 2011


Memory is a funny thing, isn't it? My memory is very strongly linked to my senses -- especially smell. Whenever I smell certain things, I am immediately transported back to a certain moment. This doesn't happen every day, but when it does it is powerful.
For instance, today, I was using some of my favourite lotion from Bath & Body Works, and I was instantly somewhere else. It was August. I was at EFY. It was summer. I was wearing my ugly polo. It was awesome.
That made me think about some of my other favourite scents that take me somewhere else. For instance, when I smell my favourite Victoria's Secret lotion (Pure Seduction), it is February 2008. I am shopping with Justin. It is Valentine's weekend. 
And another smell that takes me back is the smell of an older American Eagle lotion that I got as a Christmas present from a friend of mine back in 2007. When I smell that one (because I happened to have a tiny bottle left), it is New Year's Eve. I am in the Marshall's basement in Duffield, getting ready for the dance. My heart is all a-flutter and I have a zillon butterflies in my stomach. 
Memory is a funny thing, isn't it?

Spring Look: Save

I have been searching, and searching for a dress with a slightly lower price point to make an inexpensive spring look, like my splurge earlier this week. But, alas I couldn't. So instead of florals, I went with polka dots. We all know how much I love, love polka dots and really you can never go wrong with polka dots.

What do you think? Would you wear it? 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Spring Look: Splurge

When it is cold and snowy and definitely not spring outside, I like to distract myself with some browsing of the spring trends, hoping it will somehow make my heart happy. I came across this dress yesterday, and can't stop thinking about it. Beautiful right? Well, minus the price tag. So, I've created this look here. This is my 'Spring is here, and I have an unlimited budget!' look. If only!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

''Turn and face the strange c-c-changes''

If someone had asked me five years ago to eat a spinach salad, followed by some green beans, sweet potatoes, and finish it off with a glass of skim milk, I would have turned up my nose in disgust. But, apparently, I like those things now. I made some delicious sweet potato fries last night, and can't wait to have more. A week without spinach is torture for me, and I love fresh green beans. So, when I was using some skim milk for my Mac n' Cheese tonight, I decided to try it again, because I might like the taste. And guess what? I did. I actually liked it. I feel like I don't recognize myself anymore!
Has this happened to anyone else? Have your tastes changed over the years?

Saturday, February 12, 2011


Justin has been a missionary for 500 days. For 500 days my guy has been 'serving his guts out'. For 500 days he has been Elder Marshall. For 500 days our only communication has been letters, e-mails, occasional packages. For 500 days I have had mood swing upon mood swing about how I feel about the whole mission thing. For 500 days I have missed my guy.
500 days ago, I was sure I couldn't survive this long. I was sure that I couldn't live on letters and e-mails. I was sure that my heart would never heal. I was sure that I couldn't love Justin anymore than I did.
It turns out I was completely wrong. I have survived. I have lived on letters and e-mails. My heart has healed (mostly). I do love Justin more than I did when he left.

500 days gone, gone, gone. Only... 230+ to go!

ps. I will catch up on the 30 Day Photo Challenge tomorrow. 

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Sixteen

Day Sixteen: A picture of someone who inspires me
Of course I chose the lovely Audrey Hepburn. I am so inspired by her life, her fashion, her talent, her compassion. She is just completely amazing. Do yourself a favour and pick up a copy of her biography, written by her son Sean Hepburn Ferrer (I will even lend mine out if you promise to return it!).

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Fifteen

Day Fifteen: A picture of something I want to do before I die
There are so many things that I want to accomplish in my life! So many things. Like graduating from university, getting married, raise a family, travel (a lot!), read all the classics, own a home, live abroad.. the list goes on and on. But, these are things that won't take me too far out of my comfort zone. Those things are ones that will happen because I want them to, and they will be more of a product of the stage of life I am (does that make sense?). The thing I chose to post a picture of tonight is one of my biggest, and possibly scariest goals. Publishing a novel. I love to write, but am often scared of really putting myself out there on paper. I have always wanted to write a book though, and since I was probably five years old, it has been my dream to have a book published, to see my name on the cover of a book, with my heart and soul inside on the pages. I know that I will have to work really hard to do this (although, apparently anyone can write a book -- if Snooki can do it, I can), but I would have quite the beef with myself if I didn't even try. So, that's a really long way to say that before I die, I want to write (and publish) a novel.

Book Club: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

Did anyone else join me in reading January's pick? I hope so. But, if not, that's okay.
But seriously, this book is amazing. I absolutely loved it. From the characters themselves, to their discussions of literature -- I was in heaven. I want to be a member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society too. Don't you?
If you didn't have a chance to read it, please put it on your list! I highly recommend it!

ps. I hope everyone is enjoying this month's pick. I am!

Monday, February 07, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Fourteen

Day Fourteen: A picture of someone I could not imagine my life without

Yep. It's him. Justin Marshall. Prepare for a little mini mush-fest. Three and a half years ago, I met Justin and ever since, he has been my best friend. I can't even remember what it was like not having him in my life. Even now when he is far away in Southern California, he is still a huge part of my life. I really hope I never have to find out what it is like to not have Justin Marshall in my life.
(ps. there are really like fifteen or twenty people that make the list, but I needed a gush a little about my guy).

Sunday, February 06, 2011


Laura just posted these questions, and as I was responding to them (sorry for the lengthy reply L. Beth), I felt I should post them on her too, so that I can remember them.

1. That a really hard question. I have actually had some really good dates. One of my favourites though would be going to IKEA. Justin and I would go early for breakfast (but actually always forgot the time it opened for breakfast, so we would end up walking around for about 30 minutes, or going to Superstore) and then walk around, looking at each room (just like '500 Days of Summer' and picking out what we'd like in our future home. Actually, we did that whenever there were appliances or furniture around. It was a lot fun!
2. Two years ago, Justin came down for Valentine's and we went to the 'Sweethearts' dance (but only for about ten minutes). He brought me two flowers - one red gerber daisy (my favourite) and a pink carnation (his favourite). The next day, (the 14th), we babysat for one of the Stake Presidency, and then went to the Stake Conference adult meeting, where Elder Perry spoke to us. And afterwards we went to Dairy Queen for blizzards and went home to watch a movie with my parents. I know it sounds like a boring weekend, but it was really one of my best. Just being with someone you love makes everything better.
3. The one that is coming to mind right now is my first date with Justin. We went on a photo scavenger hunt at West Ed. It was so much fun. It really gave us a chance to get to know each other more, and will always be a special memory for me.

I realize I have been pretty lucky in the dating department, and I know that many more good dates are in my future. Just eight more months now!

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Thirteen

Day Thirteen: A picture of my favourite band or artist

I have such a love and deep appreciation for music, and there are so many bands and artists that have inspired me in my life. It kind of changes every day as to who my 'favourite' is, but for the most part, Jack Johnson is my favourite musician (along with other greats like The Beatles and Brand New (pre-'Daisy')). He soothes my soul, inspires my mind and speaks to my heart. 

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Heart to heart

I found this cute tutorial the other day and decided to try it out today. It was so easy, and I am pretty happy with the end result. I just made two small garlands (the other is hanging over the fireplace). I want to make more, but need to get some new paper that is patterned on both sides (you'd think with the amount that I have, I would be able to find some. Nope!). I plan to make some for my room this week. What do you think?

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Twelve

Day Twelve: A picture of something I love

I love many things. One of those things, besides loving my man himself (Justin, the cutie on the left), is I love hearing from people in his ward and finding pictures of him on facebook. It just warms my heart to know that there are other people out there who see how amazing he is and appreciate him (almost) as much as I do. 

Friday, February 04, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Eleven

Day Eleven: A picture of something I hate

Being broke. Skint. No moolah.  I hate spending all of my money on tuition and textbooks. 

Thursday, February 03, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Ten

Day Ten: A picture of a person you do the most messed up things with

Again, I can't chose just one person for this. It has to be three. The girls. Not that we do "messed up" stuff. These are however the girls that I will do the silly things with. Like dressing up, Phase 10 parties, dance parties, yoga parties. Apparently, we like to party. I love these girls. They keep me sane. Or maybe my lack of sanity is relative to theirs, so it makes me feel sane?

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Nine

Day Nine: A picture of a person that has helped me through the most

I couldn't narrow this down to just one person. I have such a wonderful support system in my life. I am so lucky. These four people (along with others, like Justin) have been beside me through everything, and whether I have appreciated their help or not, they are there. I love my family -- my mom, my dad, my brother and my sister. Without them I would be a pretty lonely gal. I love you all!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011


This last Christmas, we had a gift exchange with my sister and brother-in-law before they went to visit his family in Ontario. I was at first a little disappointed that they wouldn't be spending Christmas Eve or day with us, but happy to have a present a few days early. Their present to me was really awesome, as I mentioned before, but there was a present that they gave the whole family that was definitely better. They gave dad a present, which was a frame. I thought it was a wedding picture, because I knew that Marni was planning to give them one to put on the wall, but then I noticed that dad was looking at it more closely, like he was trying to figure something out. He then read what was written inside the frame: (I don't remember the exact wording now, Marni you can correct me) "We wanted to put a picture in this frame, but it's still being developed and won't be ready until August 2011". I knew even before he finished reading it, what it meant. I turned to my brother and nearly screamed "Do you know what this means?!". By then we were all in tears. One of my biggest dreams was coming true -- I am going to be an auntie! Even now, as I am writing this five weeks after the fact, I am tearing up.
I always told my sister that she had to have kids before me, because I wanted to be an aunt before I was a mom. In fact, I had been pestering her a bit in the months and weeks previous, trying to convince her that having a little Marni or James around would be lots of fun. I offered discounts on great books for the baby, lots of presents, and my services as the number one babysitter. I had just begun to convince myself that it wasn't about me, and that I could wait until the time was right for them. I am so, so glad that I don't have to wait much longer now though!
In six months, there will be a new little baby in our family. My first niece or nephew, the first grandchild.   It's still so weird to think that my sister is having a baby, but I am seriously beyond excited. And now even more excited that I can actually share the news!
And, the other day I bought my very first gift for the baby. It was really hard to restrain it to one, but of course the pile will continue to grow!

Even though I think the little one is a girl, I picked a gender-neutral colour so as not to jinx it. Finally I will have someone to mould in my image, since I couldn't have younger siblings. 

30 Day Photo Challenge: Day Eight

Day Eight: A picture that makes me laugh

When this picture was taken nearly seven years ago, I didn't laugh. But now, looking back I can't help but laugh. While we were visiting the mountains in Colorado one summer, my dear brother thought it would be incredibly funny to put a few large rocks and a pylon in front of my port-a-potty door so that I couldn't get out. I now see the humour (but David, this does not give you permission to do this again).