Monday, December 31, 2012

2012


2012. I'm pretty sure it was the best year of my entire life. And it was all documented right here for you to see...  falling in love with the best guy ever, getting saved, getting engaged, Daniel got his dream job, we got married, we got a dog... needless to say, 2012 was awesome.

Looking back, I thought it would be fun to round up the most popular (clicked by you) posts of 2012. I know I have my favorites, but you can always see those here. Enjoy!
  1. Curl Your Hair Without Heat
  2. The Trich Post
  3. The Saucy Girl
  4. 3 Words.
  5. THE WEDDING
  6. Different.
  7. Engagement Photos: Part 1
  8. Our Engagement Story
  9. Hi. My Name is Annelise. I have Tricholtillomania.
  10. The Topsy Tail Twist
2013... we'll see you tomorrow! Happy New Year's Eve!

Friday, December 28, 2012

My Style.

Earrings & Necklace: c/o Ella James for Fred Meyer // Jacket: Thrifted F21 // Top: F21

My style... my clothes... the photos you see.

It's not forced.
Or put on for 12-minutes for photos and then taken right back off.
It's part of my everyday.

Each outfit you see is what I was wearing that day,
whether I'm at the office or running errands on the weekends.
That's why you often see me in black pants, not jeans—because the photos were done on a lunch break.
It's probably obvious that my office attire is pretty casual, and that's one of the biggest perks about my job (I work for a non-profit hospital's foundation office).

This is me.
This is what I wear.
This is my style.

Comfort > Fashion.
Sale > Full price.
Easy-going = My style.

What kind of style would you say I have? What kind of style do you prefer?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Hey Bluebird.

Necklace: c/o Blue Bird Bride (20% off code: BLOG20) // Pashmina: old // Sweater: F21 // Boots: Runway Fashion Exchange // Earrings: Premier Design

I love the Boise River.
Normally, the trees are full with green leaves, but during the winter, the banks become frosty and leaf-strewn.
It's rustic. It's scenic. And it's 3-minutes from my office.
Perfect for lunchtime photos and a quick, beautiful break from the workday.

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See the pink necklace above?
Win $20 to that shop—Blue Bird Bride!
Want to shop ahead of time?
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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Holly Jolly Christmas

Scarf: c/o Kintage

Yesterday was lovely. We spent time with both of our families and enjoyed the best eggs Benedict and Sour Skittles we've ever had. Despite our promise to each other of "no presents," Daniel is the proud owner of an awesome new (and huge) candle, and I'm cruising around in some new neon orange & gray Nike's.

In our last photo, we had taken a similar one the year before. I love looking back on the years before and seeing how we've changed.

One Christmas tradition we started this year is to keep one of our 5x7 holiday cards that we mail out. I plan on making 5x7's and saving one for our album each year so that we can look back and laugh at all the past memories. One of my favorite holiday books is our family Santa photo album. We have 26-years of Santa photos. It's a treat, I tell you.

And though we didn't have a white Christmas here in Boise, it's sure snowing today. But I'll be safe & cozy since I'll be at work instead of hustling in and out of stores to snag the good deals... though we all know I'd rather be curled up by the fireplace with a big cup of cocoa.

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

MERRY CHRISTMAS.


Merry Christmas!
Love ♥ The Rowe's & our ugly Christmas sweaters

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Time Is Here.

Sweater: Francesca's // Earrings: Premier Design // Headband: gift

Merry Christmas Eve!

Christmas Eve is one of my favorite days of the entire year. Since my parents are separated, we usually go to my Dad's and have Cincinnati Chili and margaritas on Christmas Eve. It's usually a party (with the 5 of us who attend—my dad, his girlfriend, me, Daniel & my brother), and we always cap off the evening with the full house singing "White Christmas" along with Bing and the rest of the crew at the end of the movie White Christmas. This year however, my dad is in Seattle, spending the last couple days with my 90-year-old grandpa, Far Far, who was just diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer, and who wasn't given much time in the prognosis. Far Far, we love you, and we wish we could make the trip over. We're praying for you and Grandma.

Tomorrow, we'll be celebrating with my mom and family in the morning, and Daniel's family in the evening. I'm looking forward to sitting by the fireside, cups of hot cocoa, and laughs with family. Oh—and hugs. Lots and lots of hugs.

My favorite Christmas soundtrack is A Charlie Brown Christmas. Today, I'm singing "Christmas Time is Here," over and over in my head. I love the soft melodies and soothing rhythm of that album. Somehow, it helps bring a peace over any trouble that's in my way... after all, it is Christmas Time.

"Christmas time is here
Happiness and cheer
Fun for all that children call
Their favorite time of the year


Snowflakes in the air
Carols everywhere
Olden times and ancient rhymes
Of love and dreams to share


Sleigh bells in the air
Beauty everywhere
Yuletide by the fireside
And joyful memories there


Christmas time is here
We'll be drawing near
Oh, that we could always see
Such spirit through the year
Oh, that we could always see
Such spirit through the year..."

-Christmas Time is Here from A Charlie Brown Christmas

Friday, December 21, 2012

In My Bag


I've been carrying around the same neon green purse from Francesca's that Daniel gave me for my Birthday in August since... well... August. I would think that with my love of accessories that I would swap out purses with every outfit... but for me? That's just not the case. I'm a one purse kind of woman.

I love functional, pocket-filled, little purses. Like this one—it's small. It has an adjustable strap. It's a purse that Daniel actually likes... and let's not forget, if I wear it as a crossbody, it doubles as a crossing guard sash because it's super bright. Win win.

But for some people, like my sister (hey Marns!) who carries a suitcase with her wherever she goes, she often wonders what I can possibly fit into something so small. So today, Katie and I are joining forces to bring you a "What's In My Bag" linkup.


Contents:
  • A Vera Bradley wallet. I actually switch out my wallets often. This is one of my favorites. I'm a huge VB fan. In fact, most of my past (and most loved) purses are VB's.
  • Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb rollerball. Not my main perfume, but awesome for the days when I forget to spritz on my signature fragrance.
  • A nail file. I'm meticulous about having straight & square nails.
  • A pen. That one is from my church.
  • Eye drops. My Idaho allergies give me dry, dry eyes.
  • A zip drive for photo storage.
  • A Mentos gum container, which is currently holding pieces of Trident Spearmint gum.
  • Mac lipstick in Modesty--the color I wore for our wedding.
  • Yes To Carrots Lip Butter in Sweet Fig (Mint is my favorite).
  • Yes To Carrots Color Balm in Peachy Keen.
  • Palladio (from Sally Beauty Supply) lip gloss in Champagne.
  • Keys! 
Depending on the day, you might also find an assortment of coupons, mascara, or a pair of glasses. If I'm skipping the purse altogether for the day, I always grab the wallet and my Yes To Carrots Lip Butter. My favorite thing about those Vera Bradley wallets is that they have a wrist strap (which tucks neatly away inside), and they fit all your cards, cash, and checks, as well as my cell phone and my chapstick. Most days, it's all I really need.

Did you think I'd be the kind of person to carry a tiny purse? Or did you expect me to tote around a Mary Poppins satchel?

Before you jet to go enjoy your weekend, first make sure to say hi to Katie, and second, come link up and tell us what's in your bag! I can't wait to see (and maybe even get some last-minute Christmas gift ideas)!


Thursday, December 20, 2012

An Update.


The last time I posted about my trichotillomania, I mentioned that it had gotten a lot better.
I wasn't pulling as often, and my urges weren't as crazy.
I got a lot of comments and emails congratulating me on being cured, on making it through, on beating it.

But here's the thing... I didn't do any of that.
My trich isn't gone. I'm not convinced it will ever be 100% gone.
Even at the time I wrote that post, I mentioned that it was something I still struggled with.
It's just not as bad as it used to be.

My pulling is heightened and seems to be triggered around times of high-stress and change.
Lately, as you can imagine, there's been lots of stress (good and bad), and a lot of change.
To tell you I made it through the wedding without pulling a single eyebrow would be a lie.
But I was able to control the pulling, and didn't do anything that created any noticeable changes.

Until this last weekend.

Without getting into everything (or anything, for that matter), that's stressing me out...
it can just be said that I was having a hard day and that evening I found myself in front of the television.
That's always when I pull the most.
I ended up pulling out a good chunk of eyebrow hairs, creating a big, ugly gap in my left eyebrow.
It's not anything that you'd walk right up to me and scoff at—I've had years of practice of covering these things up—but it's something that I notice.
I went to the bathroom to see the damage I had done, and immediately began crying. Sobbing.
I was really upset.

I had just gotten an email the day before from a mother who said I was someone her 9-year-old daughter looked up to.
They were encouraged by the progress I had made. 
And then the very next day, I did that.
I was incredibly frustrated, embarrassed, and discouraged.
How am I supposed to be a "role model" when I mess up so badly?

After a couple of moments of desperation on the floor of the bathroom,
I went and found Daniel.
He knew I was upset.
He cuddled and rocked me in bed until I fell asleep.

Daniel helps to cease my pulling more than he could ever know.
By holding my hands, keeping me distracted, and tapping my hands away when I reach for my eyebrows, he is preventing these pulling meltdowns.
I'm so thankful for him and his support.
I wouldn't be able to do it without him.
Or the prayer that I mentioned before.
Prayer has truly made a huge difference. It helps the healing.

Since that last pulling episode this past weekend,
I've realized how conscious I need to be about my pulling.
While I don't struggle with it like I used to, I'm still vulnerable.
I'm still fragile.
But I won't let trich break me.

I am bigger than it.
I am better than it.
I am stronger than it.

And I'm telling you all this not to look for a shower of sympathy.
I'm telling you because some of you have asked for an update.
And I wanted to be as honest as possible: trichotillomania is still something that I deal with.
I'm also telling you because I know that some of you also have trich, or something that you struggle with day after day.
And even though it may get you down once in a while, you are strong, beautiful, and you are a fighter.
If—for even one moment—you feel yourself falter, let it remind you that you are human—you make mistakes—but you won't be defined by those mistakes.

If you're struggling with something—anything—reach out for help.
A hand to hold, an ear to listen, a shoulder to cry on, a friend—because it can make all the difference.

--Thank you, Daniel. YOU are my best friend, my shoulder, and the one I couldn't do any of this without. I love you.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Holiday Hair-spiration


I have two brand new holiday hair tutorials posted over at Yes To Carrots: a low side ponytail and a fun holiday updo. Go check them out... click HERE!

PS>> Love the red bow in the updo? Snag one here!

December Giveaway

Instead of one big post, today you get two posts!
A giveaway and a holiday hair post.

I'm making some changes in February and I'll be putting the big group giveaway on hold for a bit.
So, if you want in on the group-giveaway-action, make sure to check out my advertising info for January.

And now, thanks to my amazing sponsors, here's your December Giveaway!

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8 prizes & 8 winners!
Good luck!





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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Thoughts.


Lately, my spirit feels broken.
Despite all the love and all our recent happenings in my own life, I can't tell you how alone I feel sometimes.
So, I'm going to write.

This is the kind of post that can be applied to Sandy Hook, a personal situation, a mental battle, or just something that's getting you down.
And today, it applies to me.

I'm the kind of person who dwells.
I don't like to admit it.
I always think back to
what could I have done differently?
could I have reacted better?
why did I do that?

I know I can't change the past,
but I can change how I act in the future.
And I know I can't change what others say, do and feel,
but I can change how I respond to their actions.
Pray, love, give & pray.

Pray for hope, pray for change, pray for healing.
Love others, even more than you would love yourself.
Give—whether it's hugs, donations, or a helping hand.
And then pray for it all again.

I've had so many thoughts and realizations lately, about things that I need to change.
Things that others need to change.
Things to make this world a better place...

Never ever leave your loved one without saying goodbye. You never know if that's the last time you may see them.
Always be respectful.
Never go to bed angry—with anyone.
When praying, always give thanks for what you have before asking for more.
Never take for granted the little things.
Always say, "I love you."

No, those 6-things aren't going to change the world.
But if we—if I—do my best to follow those simple things, who knows how many others I can affect, and how wide that little ripple effect can reach.
I need to stop dwelling and start living.

When you feel alone,
when you feel broken,
when you are desperate, longing, scared, sad,
and when you feel like the rope is unraveling faster than you can climb it,
pray, love, give and pray.

The change starts now,
before this little rope of mine unravels any further.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Polka Dot

Top: c/o Kintage // Necklace: Premier Design // Jeans: Silver // Bow: c/o Aidie's Hideaway

This light pink, sheer, gold polka-dot top.
I have worn this top more often recently than any other item in my closet. 
I wore it for a wedding party, the day after our wedding, to a work luncheon, and out for errands.
I'm in love.

It also just-so-happened to match my wedding nails. 
And you thought "Wedding Week" was over. Ha!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

THE HONEYMOON


For our honeymoon, Daniel and I went to McCall, Idaho. Just a short three months ago, we had gotten engaged there on a warm summer's day. During our honeymoon, the quaint town was deserted since it wasn't snowing (except for one day), and the ski mountain wasn't open yet. It was like we had McCall entirely to ourselves.

We ended up running into my dad and his girlfriend at our hotel's restaurant and game room one night. They have a cabin in McCall and came over for a drink before dinner. They ended up joining us for a game of shuffleboard. What a fun surprise to get to run into my family!

We ate amazing food at all of McCall's best restaurants, did lots of Christmas shopping at local specialty shops, enjoyed one day of snow, relaxed in the spa at Shore Lodge, saw a little fox by the golf course, drove up to see the ski mountain one afternoon, and played lots and lots of Scrabble by the hotel's amazing fireplace.

It was relaxing, romantic, and the perfect week to finish of the best week of my life. I feel like I'm still on the honeymoon. I haven't fully gotten back into everything yet... no answering emails, not mentally all there at my job, and I just want to cuddle and spend time with Daniel all the time. Just a note for all those brides thinking of getting married around the holidays... it is busy. Enjoy every little minute of it. Soak it all in... and truly appreciate everything you have. I wouldn't trade a single moment of the entire week for anything.


Wedding Week posts:
THE GUESTBOOKTHE HAIRTHE FLOWERSTHE DRESSTHE WEDDINGTHE HONEYMOON

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