Friday, May 27, 2016

Taco 'Bout Book Club

If you know me IRL you probably know all about book club. However, for those of you that are new around here -I'm in a monthly book club where my closest friends and I get together to discuss whatever book we've selected to read that month. Of course, we also enjoy a fabulous pot-luck style dinner and wine (lots and lots of wine)...it's something I look forward to every month.

There are 13 girls in book club -which is perfect because each of us will host one month out of the year! Last night I hosted book club at my house and it was so much fun!

Of course, I love a good theme (remember my Asian theme last year? The candy sushi is still one of my favorite creations!) anyway, this year I went with a taco bar! Such an easy pot-luck idea and delicious to boot!

I couldn't resist snapping a few photos of the decor (all found on clearance at Target after Cinco De Mayo!)










I kept all the decorations contained in the breakfast nook. No need to decorate the entire house!

For the dinner, I provided the meat (this crock pot recipe...sooo good!) and my guests brought the toppings. It doesn't get much easier than that!

This month we read The Year We Turned Forty: A Novel by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke. It's about three best friends who travel back in time to the year they turned forty -a year that altered the course of their lives. On a mission to correct bad choices and do better, will their efforts lead to happier lives or create new problems? In the end, they have to decide to stay or go back to present day...

Everyone LOVED this book (myself included)! It was a quick read -perfect for those summer days by the pool!

I hope you all have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend! I will be at the Artesian Arts Festival! :-)

Happy Friday!
-Brittney

Friday, May 6, 2016

Small Things










Now that it's been five and a half years two months since my last blog post, I figured I should probably give a quick update. On one hand, I look back on the last two months and think to myself, "I have nothing to report ...wake, work, eat, sleep, repeat."  Isn't that what we're all doing these days? Just surviving...barely. The daily grind has a way of taking over, we become stagnant and consumed by mindless tasks and responsibilities. Forgetting to savor the small things...

Like lime snow cones infused with salt, reminding you that summer is almost here.

The smell of chicken kabobs on the grill, marinated in your mother's special sauce. Anticipating that first bite of charred pineapple, guaranteed to melt in your mouth.

A wind blown-sunshiny-day exploring the Oklahoma countryside.

Learning to make your favorite (caprese) salad, using fresh herbs -there's nothing better than fresh herbs.

Beautiful roses delivered to your doorstep, just because.

A serendipitous shopping trip, which resulted in bringing home that item you've been pining for for months (at a discount no less).

The perfect date night: front row parking, dining over the sunset on Lake Hefner and dancing the night away under a shower of confetti and the familiarity of old tunes.

So many wonderful small things.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

baby shower, backyard plans and so forth.







These photos were taken at a sip & see/ diaper shower I co-hosted a few weeks ago. It was simple & lovely. The menu included chicken salad over your choice of croissant or cracker, french bread with a delicious garlic-butter spread, chips, grapes, thumbprint cookies & white cake with raspberry filling. Minimalistic & understated. Since the birth of Pinterest we (ladies) have killed ourselves trying to keep up. We spend hours crafting elaborate birthday parties, baby showers & bridal showers... while I can appreciate a beautiful tissue paper flower & a perfectly placed garland, it's not always necessary. Anyway it was a lovely evening filled with yummy food & baby cuddles, what more could we need?


Spring came early this year & while I am a little sad we didn't get any snow, I am excited by the prospect of spending more time outside. I moved into my house nearly three years ago (this summer will mark 3 years) & in that time I have successfully avoided anything having to do with my backyard. It has so much potential to be a beautiful oasis (see the house tour from when I moved in here) but the hot tub is broken, the landscaping is overwhelming & the deck is in rough shape. I can't tell you how intimidated I am by the jungle behind my house...I can't even look out my window without stressing out over the daunting workload that awaits me back there!

This is what it looks like now:


I've spent a lot of time thinking about my priorities in the backyard & have decided to remove the hot tub. It's old & not worth fixing. I've hired someone to remove the tub & repair the deck. He's scheduled to start today! I am so excited!

After the deck is repaired & stained, I am going to move the table & chairs to the lower deck (where the hot tub sits now). I plan on getting a fire pit like this one to put in front of the bench & maybe a few potted plants to bring in some color (as well as new bench cushions & an umbrella for my table).

I cannot wait to have this space completed! I'm dreaming of cookouts, cozy nights by the fire & coffee on the patio. Pure bliss.



Sweet potato chicken soup with thyme -my new favorite. So fresh for spring but warm and comforting after a long day at work. (It's chicken noodle soup but instead of noodles, use sweet potatoes -toss in thyme at the end. Delish!)

What else...

I'm on snapchat (late to the party, I know) find me:  @orrbritt

I somehow managed to snag Kyle Jenner's lip kit & I was surprised at how much I liked it! See how it looks here.

A few of my favorite things on the internet:

For Us -this is so wrong.

How theSkimm's first employee got her amazing job. Love Kaylin -I've worked with her as a skimm'bassador and she is awesome!

Did you know you can get a free MAC lipstick? You're welcome.

Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2016 accessories.

SoulCycle instructor auditions. I wan't to try this workout so bad! Please come to Oklahoma!

Color Story.  My new favorite iPhone photo editing app that allows you to design and save your own filters.  *btw I used it on the photos in this post -excluding the photo of my backyard. 

I pay my own wages for housework.  -I swear this was written about my life because I couldn't agree more!

"You can’t always fix the shit that’s stressing you out, but you can always scrub down the stove. You can make something better, more beautiful, more correct."

Yes!!

"It’s 2016, and my home has nothing to do with a husband. When I wash dishes in my apartment, I don’t feel frigid or desperate or condemned. Rather, I feel calm, productive, and capable. I feel like I’m putting things right, and carving out a quiet space for my mind to rest while my hands are busy."

Yess!

Okay if you made it to the end of this post you're my best friend.

Have a wonderful day!
-Brittney

Friday, February 26, 2016

Calligraphy Class + Blue Eye Brown Eye




If you follow me on Instagram you probably saw my post about taking a (beginner) calligraphy class last weekend. I've always had a fascination with beautiful handwriting. My mother has beautiful penmanship, very elegant -I remember admiring it as a little girl & I hoped that when I grew up I would inherit my mother's skill. Unfortunately, that didn't happen! While my handwriting isn't terrible...I wouldn't describe it as elegant either.

So for more than a year I've had my eye on this calligraphy class. It is held at my favorite stationary store, Chrips and Cheers. If you're ever in OKC you must go in there -it's right across the street from McNellie's Pub! They have the BEST selection of cards and the most beautiful stationary. I could spend hours browsing!

Anyway, the class is taught by expert calligrapher Lauren Essl of Brown Eye Blue Eye (check out her website, so cute!). Lauren travels the country teaching workshops and does custom design and calligraphy work as well.

When I first looked into taking the class, the cost scared me off. I wasn't sure I was ready to invest a lot of money on a "hobby" ...so I didn't sign up.

Rewind to four months ago, it was #shoplocal Saturday (the day after Black Friday) I was shopping for Christmas cards (at Chirps & Cheers) and I mentioned that I was interested in taking the class if it was ever offered again. As luck would have it, they told me they were offering the class in February and I could sign up! (the class sells out pretty fast so I was excited to be the first on the list -they hadn't opened enrollment yet!) 

Of course, after telling my mom she decided to sign up as well!

We had the most wonderful time! Lauren is such a good teacher -very patient and well spoken. We spent most of the class learning the basics (how to hold your pen, how to dip your pen, ink flow and pressure, lower case letters and connecting letters). Also, we went home with lot's of swag -including a calligraphy pen, nibs, tracing paper, ink, washi tape, etc.

I highly recommend the beginner class to anyone with a real interest in calligraphy. However, I must warn you -this is one of those skills that comes with practice. Remember learning to write as a little kid? Think about how much your handwriting has improved since then! Calligraphy is the same concept -right now I'm a little kid learning to write...it's awkward holding the pen, there are smudges and accidents...but soon it will come naturally! (so don't assume that after you take the class you will be ready to address hundreds of wedding envelopes or open an etsy shop! ha!)

Has anyone else ventured out into the art of calligraphy? I'd love to hear feedback about helpful tips & tricks!

Before we go, here are a few of my favorite things on the internet from the past few weeks:

-This Instagram post is so funny and so true!

-Adele pranked the Jamba Juice employees...love her!

-To the men I love, about men who scare me. #preach

-JetBlue came up with a brilliant marketing idea...loved watching this

-Another awesome Instagram account

-This pink bedroom is adorable, something I would have LOVED as a child!

One more thing -  I wrote this post a while ago but forgot to share it on Facebook! Oops!

Happy Friday Friends!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Chickasaw Country Take Over!

Hello Internet!

I am just popping in to share a quick announcement! 



I am soo excited to be "taking over" the Chickasaw Country social media accounts tomorrow (for the day)! I'm going on a quick day-trip to some of the best places in Chickasaw Country and will be documenting my experiences over on their twitter account! If you want to follow along, "like" Chickasaw Country on Facebook & find em' on twitter @Chickasaw! Or look for me on the #BestofCC hashtag! 

There will be food. Shopping. Outdoorsy stuff...I can't wait! Yippee!

TGIF! (almost!) 
-Brittney


Friday, February 5, 2016

Fleeting Moments

In line to check-in at the doctor's office when a mother and daughter enter the waiting room. The little girl was full of energy, twirling her skirt & skipping around the room. Her mother looked on with tired eyes, letting her daughter run free. Moments later I felt a little tug on my coat, I glanced down to see the little girl's arms reaching up to me as she softly spoke "momma! momma!" wanting to be held but too distracted to notice that she was reaching for a stranger. Before I could respond the child's mother scooped her up and muttered "that's not your momma!" as she placed a gentle kiss on her cheek.  A fleeting, innocent moment that made me smile.

-I wrote this a few weeks ago but never shared it. I don't keep a diary (or journal), however, occasionally I'll write a blog post or letter for "my eyes only." On bad days, the best remedy (for me) is to write it down. Whether it be a letter airing my grievances or a stern note to the offender...it helps to get it out. Of course, I always hit delete. The same is true for happy moments. I love re-living them on paper. Lately, I've been wrestling with the idea of closing my blog. I don't have much time for it anymore and I'm not sure anyone (but my mom -hi mom!) is reading it...however, I can't bring myself to do it. It's a time capsule of the last five years -the story of my twenties. One day I'll look back and re-read these fleeting moments and smile.

I hope you all had a wonderful week! Right now my life is centered around the fit challenge & I've got one week left! I'm 10 pounds down and feeling better than ever!

Before we go, here are a few of my favorite things on the internet:

Can Young House Love Escape the Internet? -I used to read their blog religiously and watched in horror as is came crumbling down. I am so glad to hear they're doing well!
-NY Mag

57 small things to do for yourself this year. These are lovely.
-Food52

These beautiful paper flowers. Swoon
-thelovelyave

Habit Shift: Cloth Napkins. My late grandmother always used cloth napkins. She even had napkin rings with our names on them so we could reuse them. I haven't thought about Grammy's cloth napkins in years but reading this took me back to her. I miss her so.
-Reading My Tea Leaves

I Don't Owe Anyone My Body.  Every woman needs to read this.
-Buzzfeed

A Sweet Woman In Vancouver Held This Man’s Hand To Calm Him Down On The Train. Beautiful.
-Buzzfeed

Happy Friday!
-Brittney

Friday, January 15, 2016

Two Weeks In

Ahhh Friday. At last, we meet again...and a three-day weekend, no less! I wan't to live in a world where every weekend is a three-day weekend, is that too much to ask?

I'm two weeks into my fitness challenge and I think it's finally catching up with me. Getting up at 5:15 a.m. every day to go to the gym (which is kicking my butt!) has become increasingly difficult.



I am so sick of the meal plan, I crave red meat and cheese like you wouldn't believe. If you can't tell, I'm a little cranky. ...but I'm seeing results...results on the scale and small changes in my body. So that's what I'm holding onto. Five weeks to go, I can do it!


There's a little restaurant in town serving the meal plan and it has been such a lifesaver! I love getting to meet friends for lunch without cheating on the diet -not to mention those days when you just don't feel like cooking! Thank you Mojos!



Here's my favorite things on the internet this week: 

Shopping at 7-eleven got me through losing my father. 
-Buzzfeed

-You can now stream Broadway shows online like netflix. Yay!!!
-Brit + Company 

-Actor's response to autistic boy interrupting play. Loved every word.
-Reshareworthy

-This Lip Sync Battle , Who cares about Channing Tatum! His wife totally killed it!
-YouTube via. Lip Sync Battle

How to touch up your makeup at work. 
-Makeup.com

20 makeup mistakes you might be making (secrets from a makeup artist)
-The Everygirl