nook & sea is moving! (literally)

Beach-Duplex-House-1960-Succulents-Planter-Landscaping-Fake-Grass-Turf-NeighborhoodHi friends, exciting news! After only a short time of apartment-hunting (really, just TWO days), the Lord has blessed us with some insanely cool new digs. In just a few weeks, we will be moving into a 1960’s duplex and I couldn’t be more excited to start this new chapter of life (and not to mention, get back into decorating and sharing it all with you)!

Thanks for your patience while we pack up (and haul everything down three flights of stairs….. *yikes*)!

The adventure begins!






holy canoli.


So, apparently, if you don’t pay your hosting provider (orrrrrrr renew your domain) every year, your blog can get suspended. And maybe forever. When the bank sent me a new debit card a few months back, I totally forgot to update it in the system (oops) which is why no one’s been able to access the site (and why I’ve been having mini panic attacks for the last few hours). The good news? With your help (THANK YOU FOR YOUR EMAILS!) I was able to catch it 5 days before all hell broke loose. Thank. The. Lord. Lessons in checking personal email more often, activated.

Now for some beach pictures to celebrate.


As you may know, each January we try to sneak away to the Florida Keys to ring in the New Year. This time was no different (except we got to sit in first class for no apparent reason and it was AWESOME. Just ask for “extra leg room” and see what happens. True story).




The trip was fantastic. The company and weather warm and (very) entertaining. The sights too unreal to be real. It was the first time I was in another state for my birthday, and there probably couldn’t have been a better place to turn 28. One bread crumb led to another, and we found ourselves surprised with a private retreat, ridiculously fun night, much key lime pie, and 24 hours to explore everything Key West. The night ended with pizza on the beach in moonlight that was so bright, we had shadows.

Florida-Keys-2015-Vacation-Ocean-Beach-Bay-Tropical-Islamorada-3- Sunset-Key-Key-West-CottagesAfter our trip, I caught a cold (typical), but am back in action and feeling like my normal self! 2015 is sure to be a big one – lots of change headed our way, but God has been faithful in His guidance of it all so far.

How has your New Year been? Good to be back.






f r i d a y

It’s here! We did it! The end of the week! Things have been uncharacteristically smooth-sailing at the office for this time of year, and I’m feeling refreshed being able to come up for a little air before more craziness ensues. I’ve been able to pick up some freelance copywriting work on the side and am really enjoying the challenge of doing something new and exciting! Brickyard Buffalo has some tempting deals lately… check out my top picks this week {and hurry, sales end in just a few days}!



top || print || necklace




my goals for december



It’s finally Friday, and I could not be more happy! The autumn chill is starting to creep in, but I refuse to stash away my Rainbows just yet. This time of year, we should still see some warm sunny days now through January {gotta love where we live}!! This week, I was inspired by my sweet friend Veronika at By The Shore to come up with a quick list of goals for next month. Why does January get all the credit for having resolutions? Get your game face on – I say we start early! Some things on my mind and heart for the end of 2014 and beyond…

Listen + Engage

Be present in the company of others, commit to growing relationships and engage in meaningful conversations!

Make a New Playlist

Discover new artists and re-discover the ones I’ve forgotten {can anyone say… KC + JoJo?}

Create a Personal Mission Statement

Craft a vision for who I want to be, and more importantly, who I can be for God’s kingdom here on earth

Set Aside Time to be Creative

Paint, try new DIY projects around the house, start an Etsy shop… whatever! 

Change up the Scenery

Spend a whole day exploring somewhere new, work from a cozy coffee shop or take my laptop to the beach

What are some of your upcoming goals? I’d love to hear them!





Q&A with Jenna Johns Photography


If you haven’t spotted them already, you may have seen a fresh new wave of Nook & Sea blog photos come through {and thank goodness, I was way overdue}! My lovely new sister-friend, Jenna Johns, is one talented woman. And when she offered to snap a few photos during lunch one weekday afternoon, I jumped {excitedly} at the opportunity. Her work is beautiful and I was honored to be the subject of the hour ; ) So to throw a little spotlight her way, here’s a little Q&A sesh with Jenna herself. Visit her website, sign up for her blog, follow this beauty on Instagram and be sure to say hello!


Q: How did you get started in photography, and & She Wore White?

A: I started playing with the camera as a little gal, always sneaking pictures of my family on the disposable cameras. As I got older, I realized how much I loved capturing the raw moments in life and holding onto them forever. & She Wore White was created through my undying love for weddings and marriage. I love being a part of a couples’ most exciting day together, so documenting that journey is always such an honor to me.


Q: What’s in the name?

A: My favorite part of photography is the story that is told. Everything from a nervous glance from a bride to be, to the first kiss as husband and wife, or the twinkle in the eye of a soon-to-be freshman in college, it’s all so captivating. Since my photography is mainly geared towards weddings and engagements, I love to finish the story with his outfit description (He wore tan, & She Wore White). It’s just my little way of ending the story as it’s always told… with the bride wearing white.

Q: What are some of your favorite moments? Are you always behind the lens?

A: The most impactful moment I’ve ever experienced was at my first wedding. The bride had just finished putting on her gown, looking so stunning and lovely, and she looked out the window. there was so much excitement and curiosity at the future in her eyes, and at that moment I knew I wanted to see that look forever. As much as I love being behind the lends, I often dip into other interests of mine such as music, design and writing.

Q: Name your gear.

A: Canon Mark II, 85mm Samyang lens, 50mm Canon lens.


Did I mention she also did my good friend Amanda’s birth announcements for her sweet baby girl? I know… they’re both gorgeous! ; )

Q: How do you describe your style, both professionally and in your work?

A: My style in life and in my work fall into the same category. It’s always changing because I’m always learning. I love simplicity and I love having fun, so I try to bring that out in my work. I like to grab moments that are as raw and real as possible, so it usually includes asking a question to spark a thought, or doing something goofy to make someone laugh. I love those real facial expressions that make you remember a moment.


Q: You’re a true storyteller by nature. Where does your inspiration lie?

A: Oh goodness, my inspiration lies everywhere. In the ocean, in the forest, in my own stories from childhood. I spent a lot of time as a kid watching people while waiting to be picked up from school, so I would make up stories in my head about their day and sometimes write about them. I hope that imagination never dies.

Q: Your perfect day would be…

A: Waking up to a foggy sky and sitting on the beach with a coffee mug, Bible and journal. Then I’d spend the day on the beach and in the ocean with pals until the sunset, maybe throw in a photo shoot at the golden hour. Then we’d go get sushi and end the day in the backyard talking and laughing about life with the sweet sounds of Sara Bareilles on the record player. Let’s make that happen, you’re all invited.


Q: All time favorite food?

A: Oh man. I’d say my Grandma’s artichokes. She’s a legend!

Q: Can one person change the world?

A: I love this question. As a believer, I know that I am just a part of the body of Christ, and we all have significant roles and goals set before us. I believe one person can have a major impact on a great number of people, but it all comes down to loving each other like Jesus does. Mother Theresa loved on people and cared for them, so it influenced everyone to do the same. I think it’s a collective effort, but we just have to realized our own identity in Christ and live in that.


Q: Any last words?

A: Nook & Sea is one of my favorite blogs to browse and learn from, and the creator behind it has such a beautiful soul : ) I’m so grateful to be a part of it!

Read more about Jenna here.





roasted beet salad


The first time I tried “living” butter lettuce, I was hooked. We were preparing lunch for my aunt’s bridal shower, all of us women stuffed into the kitchen that spring morning chopping, rinsing, cooking. Assigned to salad duty for the afternoon, Mr. Butter Lettuce and I became fast friends. Soft, delicate leaves, the rich color, and its smooth texture was a far cry from the lettuce I was used to. Plus, it’s harvested with it’s roots intact to keep it fresh all the way to your door {in other words: heavenly}!

I was so happy when Haylie’s recipe called for butter lettuce {and may have done a happy dance inside}. The Roasted Beet Salad was another opportunity to reunite with those lovely greens, and once again, be in the kitchen surrounded by family and the aromas of another great meal.

While the book’s recipe calls for both hazelnuts and hazelnut oil, I opted for whole pecans {candied in brown sugar}, olive oil, and red wine vinegar in place of sherry vinegar.


4 roasted beets {small will work fine}

3 cups butter lettuce {I used one head}

1/4 cup cracked hazelnuts {or candied pecans}

1-2 tbsp goat cheese

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp hazelnut oil {or another drizzle of olive oil}

1 tsp sherry vinegar {or red wine vinegar}

1/2 tsp honey

sea salt + black pepper


I bought my beets pre-packaged, but would have preferred to bake them myself as they are much prettier {next time}! To roast, scrub whole beets clean and remove any top greens. Place on an aluminum foil baking sheet with a small rub of olive oil and salt. Cover tightly with another sheet of foil for about an hour {50-60 minutes} at 400 degrees. Test doneness by inserting a fork into the flesh; if it slides out easily, they’re done, if not, stick them in again and continue to roast until tender. Allow them to cool a bit before removing the skin {be warned: you may want to use gloves as they stain like crazy}. Slice up, and you’re ready to go! Layer beets over the butter lettuce on a large plate, add in the nuts, and goat cheese crumbles.




Using a lidded mason jar, combine the olive oil, hazelnut oil {if you use it}, vinegar, honey, sea salt and pepper and shake in the jar to mix. Create as much dressing as you like, or serve on the side. Ta da!


This salad is best served on a platter. Allow guests to pick up whole leaves with their hands, including as many toppings as they want, and cut it on their own plates.

It’s fun, unique and a beautiful take on salad! I hope you get to share this with the important people in your life!








green bean cherry tomato salad


People, my copy of Real Girl’s Kitchen came today, and I am ready to get my cookin’ on! This particular recipe is exclusive to the RGK show on Ora TV {watch the video here}, and is amazingly tasty and easy to prep. The hubs and I made this for dinner after a long day of work and added a little grilled chicken for protein {which is perfect since I always find myself hungry just right before bedtime}! Until I get that well-lit dream kitchen with the cutest girly tools ever {like this, or this, or this}, you’ll have to pardon my lack of step-by-step photos on this one : )

Here’s how ya do it:

1. Blanche a full bag of green beans after snipping off the ends {I used organic} by cooking them for 2 mins in boiling water, then plopping them into an ice bath to prevent them from cooking further. Take them out of the ice bath after a few minutes, rinse them in a colander, and return them to a mixing bowl.

2. Grill up about 1 lb. of chicken breast, and dice once cooked completely. Add into the bowl with the green beans.

3. Quarter your cherry tomatoes, chop some dill {however much you want} and add those in as well.

4. Prep a simple dressing on the side: 1 TSP whole grain mustard, a splash of red wine vinegar and a splash of olive oil. Mix well and pour over your salad. You  may want to make extra and leave it on the table for guests to add on.

5. Add a dash of salt and pepper to taste, and use tongs or a spoon to toss the salad until ready!

This dish is the perfect size for two {we tend to share anyways}, and even saved half for lunch the next day.

Can’t wait to show you what I try next!

Thanks for reading!