Hot Tea and Happiness.



When I saw this little graphic is made me happy. Who doesn’t love catching up over a cup of hot tea?

Happiness is…

a quiet night of cuddling up on the couch and watching TV.

knowing that the political commercials, ads, mailers, etc. will cease to exist after yesterday.

a sweet little “meow” when I wake up in the morning and someone’s waiting on me to open my eyes. {ok, sometimes this airs on the side of annoyance. sometimes.}

a phone call with my brother that begins with “Talk to me, goose…” and ends with “…get green label. It’s not a cheap crap kind of weekend.” We’re special.

knowing that the baby shower honoree’s are actually excited about the shower we are throwing this weekend. Can’t. Wait.

a new workout inspiration. Thank you Missy and Nikki. I began Couch to 5k {again} tonight.

a new episode of Nashville tonight. Obsessed. But, again, we all know this.

walking into my apartment and smelling dinner that I put in the crockpot this morning. Chicken tacos get in my belly!

Starbursts. Thank you, Amy, for bringing them into work. I know they were for the bucket of candy for the kids… but… I just can’t help myself.

knowing that this weekend I’ll get to see so many old friends and family.

What happiness is not…

the sole of my riding boots breaking today. I almost cried. Super glue?


What is happiness to you??

Happy hump day, kittens!





Be grateful.

I know – it’s been a minute since I’ve actually been good at blogging.

Shit Life happens.

But Thankful Thursday is floating around in blog world today and I thought it was a good time to make an appearance. 😉

One of my sweet, sweet friends is dealing with something pretty huge right now. And I’m trying desperately to be there for her as much as I can – but it’s made me take a step back and look at life a little differently.

Life is fleeting.

So today {and everyday} I’m deeply thankful for the people in my life. For my family, my friends, for the core people that I have. Yes, I’ve mentioned it a time or hundred on here before but I don’t think you can ever be too thankful for those people.

You can never enjoy those little moments, too much.

I have been blessed with some of those most extraordinary people, however, I think sometimes we get so caught up in “life” that we forget to say “thank you” or “i love you” or to just bask in the simple, silly moments.

Like I said, life is fleeting – be thankful for those you have.

God knows, I am. 

I’m linking up with Mustache Mama for a Coffee Date and Thankful Thursday. And sadly, I just finished my first cup of coffee – I think I’ll have to refill after lunch. Y’all, I’m seriously addicted to hazelnut coffee… this morning I have caramel vanilla creamer in it… YUMMMMM! What are you thankful for? What kind of coffee are you enjoying this morning?

Have a good one, loves.

Happy Hour. {I apologize…}

I’m not very good at sticking to a blogging schedule – perhaps that’s my failure in the blogging world… I set out to write about this one day, that the next… but then sometimes life happens or I find a really good book and sometimes, I just don’t feel like being on the computer more than I have to…

And before I know it, I’ve failed to write about what I planned to…

Eh, ya win some… ya lose some, right?

{But MAJOR kudos to Ellie who is actually good at sticking to our schedule… ;)}

Things that make my heart go boom, boom {so maybe… I was just listening to Luke Bryan}…

1. Going off the grid. This weekend I stayed off social media. And honestly, it felt pretty damn good. No, I won’t make this a habit… I enjoy it far too much – however, a little reprieve from it… was refreshing. Not being concerned about what the rest of the world was doing… was nice. I think I little “me” time is very needed sometimes.

2. Staying up until the wee hours reading a good book. Anyone that knows me knows I have a bit of an A.D.D problem with books. I LOVE to read… but finding a really, really good book is very hard for me. I’ve started several that never get finished, if it doesn’t grab me from page one… by page twenty I’ve started daydreaming which leaves me confused and wondering what the heck just happened. Currently, I have a stack of five books that I just couldn’t get into enough to make me power through them. Five… that’s a little ridiculous, huh? However, enter Nicholas Sparks – that man can write a book and I’ll stay up until the next morning to finish it. It never fails. Last week I started and finished The Best of Me in 2 days. It was an amazing story of unrequited love… but damn was it heart wrenching. If you love a good love story… read it. But be prepared to bawl your little eyes out.

3. Catching up with old friends. 

4. Kickass comments. I posted the beginning of a love story over on Holly’s blog last week {if you haven’t read it… maybe you should!}… and the comments were soo sweet and encouraging. I love writing and telling a good story and y’all’s sweet words were awesome!!

5. Polyvore. I’ve been creating fall style boards for work all week – well, last week… and I’ve been using Polyvore. It’s a really cool site once you figure out how to use it best. It’s also slightly aggravating… but I love putting looks together, so… I’m not complaining. {too much, anyways;)}

So there we have it, kittens. Things that are making me happy currently.

Did you link up? You should. I apologize again for sucking. It’ll probably happen again next week… so don’t expect too much out of me. 😉

Happy Monday Tuesday, loves!

Redneck Sunday. {and the rest of my weekend.}

Oh, I could do a 3 day weekend every weekend. Who’s with me??

And if you aren’t with me you should go to your doctor and get your head checked. 😉

I came down the country to spend my long weekend with the family. And it was so nice. Friday evening we ordered pizzas and just hung out – followed by beers around the fire with the other Shull boy. Saturday Mom, Leah and I went shopping for a little girls day. Scored a pair of running shoes I’ve been needing and Leah got to pick a couple of new dresses out because there were great sales everywhere! That evening was one of our best friends’ birthdays so Laura made dinner and we hung out and shot the shit all evening. Sunday, {which was my amazing parents’ 34th wedding anniversary – yea, 34… can you believe that?? They are what I want to be one day.}  Bubba and I spent it drinking in our little pool. We got pretty sun burnt, killed far too much beer, but had a blast just hanging out all day. Mom referred to us as rednecks… but whatever, I think she was just jealous – yea, they’re pretty lucky they were blessed with our classy asses for kids. 😉 Needless to say,  it was a refreshing weekend.

I’ll give the floor to instagram and let you see my weekend for yourself…

Dad and Leah reading. // Emmy being lazy. // Mom vacuuming under the couch while we all watch – fine, Friday night fun. 😉

Leah getting her workout on. // Saturday morning on the porch. // My new running shoes. // Austin sporting a very pretty apron.

New straightener Hollie gave me. // The results of my AMAZING new straightener. // Redneck paradise – just add beer and two very crispy siblings. // My “new to me” bag {luckily my cousin, Laura and I have the same taste in bags so we can just trade. #winning}. // The munchkin wearing Bubba’s ear thingys.

Side note – this straightener, seriously – so good. Hollie was SOOO sweet in giving it me, completely unexpectedly, my hair is uber curly and messy {as y’all know} and usually straighteners fry it, make it look super flat, or just don’t do anything good for my hair at all. Not the case with this one, at all. Her Styler products – I am now converted.

And that was my weekend. How was yours???

Happy Tuesday, Kittens!

p.s. Have you “liked” the blog on FB?! I’m thinking there will be a fun giveaway once I hit so many likes! So… what are you waiting for?! And do you follow me on Instagram {jacmaries} if you don’t… do it now. 😉

Perspective and good friends.

The state of Ohio was hit with a massive storm (last) Friday evening. We had winds of 85 mph and it came and went within an instant… and destroyed most things in it’s path. I had no sooner gotten home from second shooting a wedding, 2 hours away, on one of the hottest days of the year… when all of the sudden the sky became black and what could only be described as hurricane winds ripped through the city. I watched our porch furniture go flying, my screen door almost ripped off it’s hinges, trees and limbs were swirling around. The vacant parking lot across the street looked like it hadn’t been touched in years, it was covered by tree branches. And this massive wind… it took most of Ohio’s power with it. Friday night we took it in stride, had fun with it, drank on the porch, in the dark, grilled pizza for dinner… we were all assuming it’d be back on by morning. However, once my phone died and it was time to go to sleep {or attempt to} I think I began to have a mild panic attack.

I’m used to and quite love the quiet in the country. It’s peaceful. But in the city… it’s eerie. It’s creepy, and honestly… it’s downright terrifying. I could hear sirens echoing for miles, people talking, tires squealing… not to mention it was stifling hot and humid. The stillness didn’t settle well with me.

In that moment, all I wanted to do was call my Dad, cry, and have him come pick me up.

I’m a child sometimes. A 29 year old, child. I didn’t feel well, I was beyond exhausted because I had been up since 4am, and I was just in a pissed off mood. And sometimes, it’s all I can do to talk myself down from just throwing a temper tantrum. So, I pouted for a bit {not so secretly} and tried to make do the best I could… at least for the night. After a very, very restless sleep… a new day began.

I was positive we’d have electric by this point… we didn’t. And my phone being off was killing me – how sad, right? Needless to say – I was in an even more pissed off mood than I was when I went to bed that night. How we were supposed to survive in this heat wave, with zero power? Clintonville was like a ghost town. The bar and grocery store were open. That’s it. We spent the morning in search of food and battery powered fans {which we didn’t find}. However, our dear, sweet friends Amy and Alex offered a source of relief. They opened up their house to Missy {my roommate} and I. And our pets. So we packed up enough for the night and made a makeshift bedroom in their basement. We thanked them with Jack Daniels, pizza, and a night of card games. Again – I was assuming the power would be back on by Sunday – again, I was wrong. It is now estimated to remain off until July 7th. JULY 7TH!!!! Instant bad mood. This threw off my weekend, my week, my days. What were we gonna do for 7 days? I contemplated going home, and that wouldn’t have been a problem – but driving back and forth from the grove to downtown everyday would be hefty on the gas tank.

Amy then offered her home to us for the duration – words couldn’t express how thankful I am. She and Alex opened their door and let us practically move in. It’s moments like these when you become truly grateful for the people you have been blessed with.

Being without power and invading someone else’s world for 5 days puts things into perspective. It makes you grateful for the little things – for good friends, a roof over your head, food on the table. The rest is just stuff. Stuff that you don’t really need. It forced everyone outside of their comfort zones – outside of their normal routines. And yes, many of us bitched and moaned about it {that’s just human nature} but we all survived it. And like my mom said has said many times “it could always be worse”.

Happy Monday, loves. I’m hoping this one is far more normal than last week.



It’s okay to be thankful…

I love this blog link up “Hey it’s okay and Thankful for…” wrapped up into one post. Join Neely at A Complete Waste of Makeup, Amber at Brunch with Amber, and Tracy at Then I Got to Thinking for this fun Thursday mashup.

Its Ok Thursdays

It’s okay…

to skip the gym two days in row. Everyone needs a break, right?

to write a cheat sheet of photog tips to remember while second shooting a wedding tomorrow.

to loathe the 99 degree weather AND the 20 degree weather. I like a nice 70 degree day, I don’t think that’s too much to ask for.

to kindly ask Tric if he could clean up all the fur he seems to be shedding. #damnlonghairedcats

to enjoy some J.D. in my rootbeer this week. It’s been my only real indulgence. I think it’ll be ok.

to not put away my clothes today even though they’re all nicely clean and folded.

to suck at blogging every once in awhile.

to eat a chocolate covered oreo AFTER you’ve already decided to skip the gym.

I’m thankful for…

my amazing family and friends.

Starbucks iced tea and red bull.

my job.

old friends becoming new again.

lazy summer days.

the opportunity to be creative everyday.

my gym membership – I love getting back to working out again.

What are you thankful for today??

Wednesday Thoughts. {why I love my friends.}

This is why I love my friends. They’re the best. Seriously, y’all should be jealous. 😉

Happy hump day, people!

p.s. I leave for NC tomorrow and I’m SOOOOOOOOOO excited to be reunited with one of my favorite places. Don’t fret, I have some fabulous ladies guest posting on here so stay tuned 😉


Reading: I’m currently reading Love the One You’re With by Emily Giffin. It’s a cute chic lit book. It doesn’t have me quite as hooked as the two trilogies I read before this did {Hush, Hush and Fifty Shades in Grey} but it’s still decent. I have Clockwork Angel to start – but wasn’t quite ready to get into a few weeks ago. I’m hoping it’s as amazing as I’ve heard. Have any of you read either of these?? Thoughts??

Watching: Right this second? Friends… I feel like this show in constantly playing as background noise to my life. It’s always on TV and whenever I just want something mindless to watch… that’s the show. I like to see it as the Andy Griffith Show for our generation. {What? That wasn’t a show you grew up listening to and watching because of your dad? Hm, well, I did. ;)}

Anticipating: Vacation with my Momma next week. We leave early Thursday morning for Asheville, NC for a long, girls weekend with my Mom’s best friend from high school and her daughter, Courtney {we look like we could be sisters – it’s awesome.} We are going to do some hiking in the mountains, shopping, eating, and I’m sure lots of delicious cocktails will be had. I. can. not. wait. And one of my dearest friends is moving home this weekend, I can’t wait to hug her little blonde head off. #huffylove Anddd one of the cutest little curly haired, blonde, 3 year olds is coming to spend the summer in Ohio… and I can’t wait to see her sassy little butt next week!!

Listening to: Jana Kramer. She got her start on One Tree Hill… so obvi, I started loving her. And her first single was called *Whiskey*… which may be the most perfect song ever {the burn and sting, the high and heat, and the left me wanting more feeling when he kissed me…shoulda just called him whiskey} the lyrics are dead on. However, her album dropped Tuesday… UMMM…LOVE! Seriously, check her out…. yes, she’s country… but so, so worth it. And she’s hot… so she has that going for her too.

Eating: We had mini sessions all evening in the Short North so Amy and I went to Press Grill for dinner. And lucky for us it was $1.00 taco night – They’re tacos taste homemade which I loveee. It’s one of my favorite little places down there. Delicious food, home cooked feel, reasonable drinks…can’t beat it.

Working on: Getting my blogging bum back in gear. I’ve slacked a lot lately… I apologize. Anddd learning the nitty gritty of photography. Luckily, I have the best teacher in the world. I couldn’t imagine learning from anyone else, Amy’s ridiculously talented. And, figuring out that 29 isn’t as ugly and scary as it seemed initially. Birthday’s don’t usually bother me… {clearly, they are usually the best thing ever in my world} but, this year I was bitten by the bitter bug. I’ll warm up to it… eventually. Working on it, guys. Working on it….

Wishing: That I’d worked out today. Or this week. Or like I had planned for the last X amount of months… Ugh, where do the hours go? Yea, full. of. excuses. And, that there was a real beach in Central Ohio… c’mon… how nice would that be??? I realize I probably wish this once a week… but I’m thinking that with enough wishing…maybe it’ll come true. Maybe.

I was inspired by this girl and this girl to do this fun blog post. Check there’s out. Write your own. Leave the link in my comments so I can check it out too!

Happy Thursday, kittens.

{Semi} Wordless Wednesday {My Life}

1. Sangria for Missy’s birthday. 2. My favorite fruit combination. Anything that’s strawberry/banana is good in my book. Especially the fruits themselves! 3. After our Relive the Moment shoot {more on that later} Amy and I decided to splurge on ice cream for dinner. Such a good decision. I had Oreo Cream Filling… best. thing. ever. 4. Red bull = my life blood. {this is no joke}. 5. Zucchini casserole. Holy cheesy, zucchiniy deliciousness. I’ll post the recipe I concocted soon. 6. Our new tea cups {filled with sleepy time tea – such a good idea!}… doesn’t it remind you of Chip from Beauty and the Beast? No? I’m the only adult without a child who watches Disney? … cool.

Moving on…

1. I LOVEEEEE wearing shorts and cowboy boots {y’all probably gathered that from the title of my blog, huh? #captainobvious} – maybe one of my favorite combinations. I mean, I’d wear boots with just about anything.  2. Ever have a morning where washing your hair sounds like nothing but pure, time consuming torture? That was me. However, I did manage to throw on a cute vintage Amrie Boutique headband. 😉 3. Please tell me this is not the best picture of me ever… I’m oozing sexy with my hands full of ice cream. You know you love it… Thank you, Amy for capturing me in my true essence. #not 😉

1. Last night we had an impromptu girls night. {Seriously LOVE these two.} It was Missy’s birthday and Amy was sick – I kept telling her all day that she just needed some whiskey; it’ll cure what ails ya… at least that’s what my Grandpa used to say. 2. Gallery Hop at the studio Saturday night – it was the unveiling of the Faces of Autism project and it went fabulously. 3. Dinner at Bucca Di Beppo for Missy’s bday last night – DELICIOUS!

I’m linking up with Flip Flops & Pearls for {Semi} Wordless Wednesdays.


PhotobucketHappy Hump Day, pumpkins – I’m trying to get back into the swing of things over here. Baby steps… I do have a favor – I’m going on vacation to Ashville, NC next week {if you’ve ever been or live around there, give me some tips on the area!} – I’d love some guest  bloggers – I have two spots available?! If you’re interested {I’D LOVE YOU FOREVER} and you can either comment below or shoot me an email. {jacks519(at)gmail(dot)com}

Good for the soul. {Girl’s Night}

There’s just something about a girl’s night out that is good for the soul. Amy, Missy, and I went out on Tuesday night for some patio time at a new pub, Kildare’s, and to see The Lucky One. The drinks and dinner were delicious. The nice waitress persuaded me into trying a “dirty hoe” beer compilation. It was Hoegaarden’s and Strawberry Lambic… and aaaamazing. We then went and saw The Lucky One with Zac Efron… which was a very cute movie – we got shhh’d for giggling too much during the love scenes {yes, we’re children – 28, 29, and 33 year old children}.

It was a much needed evening with two of my favorites. I think we may be hitting up the Tyler Hilton show next week for another girl’s night.

Do you have girl’s nights with your close friends??

Happy Thursday, loves!