Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Day 6 - 30 Day Blog Challenge

Day 6 - A picture of something that makes you happy

Two days in a row... Woot, woot!! Ok, not sure what that was. I'm sleepy.
Hmmm... something that makes me happy? Lots of things make me happy. I'm a pretty happy person. Happy, happy, joy, joy. Yes, I just quoted Ren & Stimpy... I told you I am sleepy. Too sleepy to pinpoint just one happiness-inducing picture. So here are several:

Beauty is Free Stuff 3

My friend Lauren is having an awesome Chick Flick giveaway!! Go enter at to win:

- The Princess Bride (my 2nd favorite movie EVER!!)
- Mamma Mia (I think I actually saw this in the theater with Lauren)
- The Holiday (Love this one!! Makes me want to move to England)
- Julie & Julia (This is the movie that really pushed me to start a blog)


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Day 5 - 30 Day Blog Challenge

Day 5 - Your siblings

See... I told you I'd post this tonight! Aren't you proud!?

So this may be a long one. In case you didn't read my Day 1 challenge, I have 11 siblings total... Here goes:

This is my half-sister, Leslie, with her husband, Wendall, and two sons, Tyler & Clayton. Leslie is my Dad's only child from his 1st marriage. She's 7 years older than me. She grew up in AL, while I moved to SC with my Mom when she & Dad divorced (I was 4). So we weren't all that close when we were younger. Now that I'm back in AL though and we're both adults, we've gotten closer.
My Mom was Dad's 2nd wife. With her, he had me & my little sister, Anna. She's 3 years younger than me.

Yes, we're weird... : )  We grew up together in SC. She lives in AL too now. Here's a pic of the three of us:

Leslie & Anna's personalities are really similar, so they've always been pretty close. I don't think we really look much alike... Do you?

Dad and my step-mom, Dot, have 3 boys together. The oldest is Joseph. He's 10 years younger than me.

The middle boy is Jackson. He's 13 years younger than me. I think the two of us got our Dad's disposition. We're both laid-back...

And Dad's youngest is Jonathan. He is 15 years younger than me.

And that's all of Dad's kids... My step-dad, Joey, has two children by his 1st wife. Jessica is 2 years younger than me.

My step-brother Chris is 4 years younger than me. He got married this year, so I got to add his wife, Lisa, to my long list of siblings. : )

My youngest brother is Daniel. He belongs to Mom & Joey. He is 18 years younger than me... Mom had him my Senior year of high school. Since I was about to move off for college, she asked me to cut his cord so we'd have a special bond. I think it actually worked... I don't get to see him that often, but he's always been pretty fond of me. : )  This is him with Chris and Jessie at Chris's college graduation:

Last, but certainly not least, is Matt's half-sister, my sister-in-law, Lindy. She is 5 years older than me. This is Lindy and her son, Jonathan:

And that's it! Now you know all 11 of my siblings. I actually have a few cousins that are more like my sisters, but I'll save that for another post. : )

Beauty is Timeless

The other night, Matt and I went to dinner with one of Matt’s coworkers and his wife. Sometime during the night, the wife commented on how young Matt and I were. I responded, somewhat defensively, “I’ll be 30 in April.” She laughed and said, “Wow, you’re just a baby.” But then later on in the conversation, she mentioned that she was only 37... So a 7 year age gap makes me a baby??

But then I started thinking about it... There’s a guy in my office who just turned 23. And I’m fairly certain when I learned that, I told him, “Wow, you’re just a baby!” And what’s the difference in our ages, you math wizards? That’s right... between 6 and 7 years. Apparently I’m a hypocrite. Can any of you relate?

On another note, I plan on FOR REAL starting back with my 30-Day Challenge tonight. Matt’s out of town, so I should have plenty of time... Hope you’re having a great day! : )

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Beauty is Free Stuff 2

Hi guys! Let's just pretend it hasn't been almost a month since my last post... K, thanks! : )

I just wanted to let you guys know about an amazing giveaway my friend Lauren shared with me. Click on this link for more details:

I'll try to get back to my 30-Day Challenge tonight. Between church and bronchitis though, it may be tomorrow night. Hope you all are well!! : )

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Beauty is Winning Free Stuff

Hi Guys! I've slacked a little on my 30-day Challenge... Sorry! But, I'll make up for it with announcing who won my giveaway. Well, I was kind of bummed that only two people entered it, but hey... It gave them a 50/50 chance of winning! ; ) I made a little video of me drawing the winner. Sorry there's no sound. My hubbie was in the next room watching football, so it was a little loud. : )

So the winner is...

Congratulations!! I'll get your goodies in the mail on Monday! : )

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Day 4 - 30 Day Blog Challenge

Day 4 - Your parents

I actually have 3 sets of wonderful parents. My Mom & Step-dad, Joey, My Daddy & Step-mom, Dot, and My In-laws, David & Sylvia.

I grew up with Mom & Joey in South Carolina. Here they are:

Everyone says I look just like Mom... unless I'm standing beside Daddy. Then I look just like him. The only pic I could find of him & Dot has my sisters and me in it as well. Dot's on the far left... Dad's in the back. (Not really sure why I pointed that out since he's the only man in the picture) : P

I have the best in-laws in the world! David and Sylvia:

And there they are... not really sure what all I'm expected to post about them. They're my parents. I love them. They did a bang-up job with me, obviously. ; )  And since none of them, or my siblings, read my blog, I can honestly say that I'm their favorite child! : D

And since we're talking about parents, I'll end this post with one of my favorite sayings:

Yes I am a princess... My Father is the King of Kings!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Day 3 - 30 Day Blog Challenge

Day 3 - Your first love

Well, I had lots of crushes growing up, but I'm going to say my first true love was my husband, Matthew.

Isn't he handsome!? : )  We actually started out as just friends, but romance just kind of blossomed. I love him very much and am so Blessed to have him! Here's a couple of my favorite "Matt" moments:

1. A few months after we started dating, Matt had to leave to attend training in Missouri for two months. I went with his parents to visit him there for his birthday, and one day we rode a train to St. Louis. Well, I was reading one of the Harry Potter books at the time, but reading while riding makes me car sick. So Matt offered to read it aloud to me... and he used voices for the different characters. It was adorable! : )

2. One state holiday, I had to work and Matt didn't, so he surprised me by making me lunch. Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. He even sprinkled shredded cheese on the soup. I was very impressed... Even more so when I took a bite of the soup. It was a little thicker than normal.

"Wow, did you use milk instead of water?"


"Did you use milk or water in this?"

"What do you mean? I just heated it up."

"Ummm... this is condensed soup. You're supposed to add water to it."

"Oh. Sorry."

So we had grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch. : )

Guess that's it for Day 3. Sweet dreams everybody! Don't forget to register for the giveaway! : )

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Day 2 - 30 Day Blog Challenge

Day 2- Meaning behind your blog name

I had wanted to start a blog for a while, but I couldn't decide what kind of theme to have. There are so many things I love... literature, art, cooking, music, film.

I've always tried to be a happy, upbeat person. I tend to look a little deeper at things than others. Try to see something positive in a world full of negative. So why not start a blog about that? And so began The Beholder of Beauty. I see beauty in so many things... So ultimately I can write about anything! : )

Wow, that was an easy one! I guess I'll add some pictures just to give this post some substance... ; )  Here are some pictures I've taken to try and capture some form of beauty:

Beauty is Free Stuff

What?! I went to bed with 9 followers and woke up with 11! You know what that means... Giveaway time!! Nothing fancy. Just some cute stuff I picked up. : )  A little over $20 value.

So, the lucky winner will be receiving the following:

Two Adorable Nail Files

A Cute Journal

A Little Tub of Wildflower Seeds

A 3-Pack of Pretty Little Notebooks

An Absolutely Adorable Piggy Notebook

Some Festive Fall Post-Its

And A Pretty Little Magnetic Frame

Hope you like it! : ) All you have to do to enter is comment on this post. I'll draw the winner a week from now, Saturday, Nov. 13.

AND... You can get extra entries by posting a link to the giveaway on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, and/or MySpace. Just list those on the comments you leave. One extra entry for each of those. Here's the link if you want to copy/paste it:

Alrighty, good luck! : )

Day 1 - 30 Day Blog Challenge

Aren't you proud of me?? I remembered! : )  Let's do this...
Day 1-Introduce, recent picture, 15 interesting facts

Hi there! My name is April. I'm 29 and live in the awesome state of Alabama. I've been married for 5 years to the most wonderful man on Earth... Matthew. I love to read, sing, paint... watch movies... lots of things. Here is a recent pic:

Interesting facts about me:

1. In the 6th grade, I decided I wanted to grow my bangs out. 18 years later, I decided I'd like them back. 2 weeks after that, I decided I didn't want bangs after all... Figures.

2. When I'm alone, I randomly break into song. Pretty loudly. Then after several minutes of singing my heart out, I begin to worry that someone has heard me.

3. My favorite movie is Labyrinth. Yes... with David Bowie and Muppet goblins. Laugh all you want... it is awesome.

4. One of my life goals is to write a novel and have it published. I've actually started one, but it's been a while since I've worked on it. : ( You can read the first few chapters on another of my blogs.

5. Ummm... wow, am I really only on #5? I must not be a very interesting person. Let's see. Oh, I'm 6 feet tall. That's kind of interesting, right?

6. When I was little, I wanted to be a ballerina. But, according to my Mom, when she'd ask me if I wanted to take dance lessons, I'd say, "I don't take dance lessons... I teach them." Ha, ha ; )

7. I'm ridiculously afraid of spiders. Seriously... keep them away from me.

8. I love to give presents (much to my husband's dismay). You may have figured that out already though since I'm doing a giveaway for reaching a whopping 10 followers.

9. My dream job is to be a cast member on Saturday Night Live.

10. I want to design stationery and open an Etsy shop.

11. I can't whistle. : (  When people whistle around me, I sometimes ask them if they're making fun of me.

12. I've never done any illegal drugs... I am what you may call a "goodie-two-shoes."

13. Including steps, halves, and in-laws, I have 11 brothers and sisters.

14. The first play I was ever in was a mystery dinner theater called Murder in the Air. I was a sophomore in high school, and I played Arabella Langastino... a snooty opera singer who was having an affair with the rich victim. It was so much fun... if not a little mature for high school.

FINALLY... I've been struggling for tidbits about myself for hours.

15. I love children. I work in the nursery at my church and teach 3-year-old Sunday School. I want to have at least 4 of my own.

And, so concludes Day 1. I hope you enjoyed a little deeper glance into my life. : )

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Beauty is Randomness...

Wow, it's been a while, huh... There have been several times when I planned on posting but just got sidetracked. :(  But I just need to make a habit of it. I've heard doing something for like 21 days consecutively creates a habit, so I've decided to overshoot that and do The 30-Day Blog Challenge a lot of my friends are doing. That way I'll get in the groove of posting consistently, and you'll get to learn random things about me... Aren't you totally excited!?! ; )

So, speaking of random things, I think I'll just do a little recap of the past month and start the challenge tomorrow.

Let's see... a couple of weeks ago, Matt and I went to my cousin Summer's annual Halloween party. We dressed up like Sue Sylvester and Mr. Schuester from Glee.

Matt had a brown jerry curl wig on... Hilarious!! : )  I actually won Best All Around costume, which really surprised me since most of the people there didn't know who I was. But I won a cake, so I didn't ask questions. ; )

Let's see... I just finished The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Loved it!!! It kept my attention from the very first page, and the timing was perfect. I wasn't all that crazy about the end, but it was a great segway to the next book, Catching Fire, which I've already started reading.

Hmmm... one more act of randomness. There's a ladies' group at my church called the M & M's (Mary's & Martha's). We meet once a month and do different activities, like crafts and charitable projects. Last month, we had a lady come and help us paint a picture of an angel. I was very excited, since A) I love to paint, and B) I love angels. The room was a little crowded though, and I couldn't really see her example painting, so I decided to just do my own thing. This is what I came up with:

The one everyone else painted was really cute, so I may try it on my own one day...

Well, I guess that's it for my randomness. Oh yeah, I'm so excited about having 9 followers now! : ) Just one more and I'll do that giveaway. I've already gotten some cute stuff for it!

And here are the topics for my 30-Day Blog Challenge:

Day 1-Introduce, recent picture, 15 interesting facts

Day 2-Meaning behind your blog name

Day 3-Your first love

Day 4-Your parents

Day 5-Your siblings

Day 6-A picture of something that makes you happy

Day 7-Favorite movies

Day 8-A place you've traveled to

Day 9-A picture of your friends

Day 10-Something you're afraid of

Day 11-Favorite tv shows

Day 12-What you believe

Day 13-Goals

Day 14-A picture you love

Day 15-Bible verse

Day 16-Dream house

Day 17-Something you're looking forward to

Day 18-Something you regret

Day 19-Something you miss

Day 20-Nicknames

Day 21-Picture of yourself

Day 22-Favorite city

Day 23-Favorite vacation

Day 24-Something you've learned

Day 25-Put your iPod on shuffle, first 10 songs

Day 26-Picture of your family

Day 27-Pets

Day 28-Something that stresses you out

Day 29-3 Wishes

Day 30-a picture

Aren't you soooo excited to learn all that stuff about me?! I thought so... : P
Well, until tomorrow... Have a great night!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Beauty is Becoming an Outdoors Woman

Howdy y'all! This past weekend, my cousin Summer and I went to the wonderful BOW (Becoming an Outdoors Woman). It was my 3rd time and her 2nd. So much fun!! It's a 3-day, 4-class workshop that focuses on getting ladies outdoors to enjoy God's beauty and splendor. Classes range from outdoor photography to pistol shooting to bird watching and everything in between. There's something for everyone!

Summer and I took the same classes, so we had lots of good girl time. First class was "Frontier Skills." Our teacher was a 6'7" frontier man who goes by the name Hugging Bear. Such a sweetie! The class was great too. The first thing we did was learn to start a fire with a flint stone and some hay-like stuff I can't remember the name of. You scratched some shards off the flint stone onto the hay and charcoal-soaked cotton balls, then rolled that into a ball and blew on it until it burst into flame. And since Alabama is under a fire-warning from lack of rain, we then chunked our fire into a bucket of water. : )

Using a pocketknife to put some flint shavings on my hay stuff and charcoal cotton

Me trying to ignite my fire. Can you see the smoke?

My fire being thrown into the water bucket
Next we moved on to hatchet and knife throwing. I wasn't too shabby... but I am 1/16th Cherokee ; )  Ha, ha. Here's a little video of me throwing a knife. Sorry it's sideways. I didn't realize you had to hold my phone a certain way for it to come out straight.

Next we learned to load and shoot a musket rifle. We didn't use a full load of powder, so the kick wasn't too bad. Here's another little sideways video.

The 2nd day held two classes. First was Get Your Bearings. We learned how to correctly read a compass with a map. I suck with directions, so I was excited about this class. After learning about the maps and compasses, we split into two teams and were given a direction and approximate distance to find our first flag. That flag held the needed info for the next flag. There were around 5 flags in all. Then at the final flag, we were supposed to set up an emergency camp using items we were given. We had a hammock and a plastic tarp to set up shelter. Then we had to start a fire with a flint stone and some cotton balls. Already utilizing our Frontier Skills!! : )  Our team finished the fastest, so we celebrated by eating some "emergency" tootsie pops from our supplies.

Our 2nd Saturday class was Geocaching. Loved it!! I had no idea how big Geocaching is. For those who haven't heard of it, it's basically a huge web-based scavenger hunt. You can sign up free at Members hide "caches" in random places, then give you coordinates and/or clues to find them. And they're all over the world! When you find a cache, you sign an enclosed log, then keep track of it on the website. Some of them have little prizes included, with a "take something, leave something" policy. I've already signed up but had to order the handheld GPS I wanted, so I haven't started yet. I'm very excited about it though! It's such a neat idea. You can look some up to do on your way out of town... it's a great way to see places while on vacation that you wouldn't normally see.

 In our class, after learning about Geocaching, we split up into two teams again and set out to find a few caches the instructors had set up for us. Here's a picture of our team.

Our last class was Nature's Creative Decor. It was a nice break from all the walking we had done Friday and Saturday. We just sat inside and made different nature-y crafts. I painted a gord bowl, made a sunflower pen, and made a goofy-looking dreamcatcher. We finished early and played cards until lunch time. : )

All-in-all, another great BOW trip. They are held twice a year... usually the 1st weekends in March and October at the 4-H Center in Shelby County, Alabama. Here's a link if you're interested in signing up for the next one. I highly encourage it, but know that they fill up super fast, so you'll need to be on your toes!

Oh, and P.S. for those of you sweethearts that actually read all of that, I'm so excited to have 6 followers now! : ) I know that's chump-change for most of you, but I'm still happy. So happy in fact, that I plan on doing a give-away when I hit 10! Keep an eye out... hopefully it'll happen soon.