Nordstrom Anniversary Sale !!

First, this is super late. I know. BUT at least I'm posting about it. If you haven't already stocked up and ordered all your wants, needs, desires.. I'll be shocked. 

If you have no idea what the Nordstrom Anniversary sale is..  well .. welcome! 

First, you need a Nordstrom credit card to access the sales today through July 20th. If you don't have a Nordstrom credit card have no fear because the sales will open to everyone on July 21st!!

I spent hours going through everything so that you don't have to :)

Below are my favorites and everything that is in my shopping cart .. Happy shopping!! 

 

My Music Playlist

I'm sure you're already aware of what my family is going through at this time. But if you have no idea what I'm talking about then read my mom's blog here.

I wrote this on my Instagram last week..

This past year has been the biggest roller coaster of emotions & events, intense week long counseling sessions, the biggest thing in my life kept private, and one strong family.

Because of the pain of having to be kept quiet, I've never struggled with friendships or loneliness more.

There is a lot of uncertainty. I feel like my life the past year has been kind of like standing on sinking sand. I never knew when things would sink or stay put.

It kept going on with things I know to be certain in this season. Something I didn't add in that post was how much worship music has carried me in the darkest of places. It has pretty much been my quiet time every day for the past year. When I didn't have the words to even make sense of what had happened, I turned on my worship music really loud and would just sit there listening.

Every single time I listened to the music, it would lift my spirits and make me feel like I can take on the day. Whatever was thrown at me, I felt like I was going to be okay because I knew God was in control. 

After the news about my family was made public, I had an overwhelming amount of people reach out telling me they are going through the same thing. While it broke my heart, it also made me realize how many people are hurting right now and are so desperate for hope.

Because of how much worship music helped me and continues to help me daily I thought I would make a playlist for you all! It is full of my favorite worship songs! Click here --> HopeHouser Worship Music

I hope you are so encourgaed by listening. Let me know if you have any songs you would add to my list! 

earphones (for 15% off use this discount code: HOPE)

My Love of Hosting

If I could add more love languages, I would. If there could be more than five, I would add hospitality. And for me that would be hosting parties. Which probably already falls into another love language but I think it should be separate.

I LOVE hosting. It is so woven into my DNA. I'm that crazy person who will throw a party for the heck of it even when there really isn't time in my schedule. 

I think I love hospitality so much because I grew up with parties being hosted at my parents house all the time. My moms loves it too. I personally think she threw some of the best parties I've ever attended. 

One small dilemma I run into when hosting parties.. They can be SO expensive! I have a feeling some of you party planners run into this as well?? It's like you want to throw the most beautiful and fun party but how do you do this when on a budget? 

SO here are THREE ways I have learned how to host on a budget..

ONE) Clip greenery from the side of the road / your backyard / neighbors yard ( ;) ).  I really can't take credit for this one because I have learned how to perfect the off roading greenery clipping from my Nonnie. She has always done this and her greenery arrangements are so beautiful. Now, I do buy some flowers from the store but you don't need many! Just some to throw into a vase here and there. I've attached some pictures below so you can visualize this! 

IMG_5326.JPG

 

TWO) There is no shame in hosting with food from various different places. I'm just freeing you of having to have a homemade meal prepared for everyone. Ask a few people to bring some side dishes. Get a chick-fil-a nugget tray. Grab a veggie tray from your local grocery store. Chop up some avocados, add in a can of salsa for yummy guacamole. Make an easy cheese platter. It doesn't have to all be made by you for it to be special. I will usually designate a few people to bring some items and then I will fill in the gaps. It's fun to have lots of options and yummy too! 

 

THREE) Save your decor! I have a box full of past party decor that I always pull out to reuse. For example, you have leftover party straws & napkins? Save them for the next party and throw them in with another pattern. I got gold balloons for the last party I threw and I'm going to save them and get creative on how I can use them again even though they have deflated. You never know what you might be able to use again. Also, keep checking the dollar store or dollar section at Target. They have hidden gems every now & again.

 

So there you have it party planners! What tricks do you have up your sleeve when it comes to hosting on a budget? Comment below all your fun ideas! 

gold balloons , napkins , straws , cheese platter , lazy susan serving tray ,  white platter , candles ,  wooden bead garland 

Before & After / Kitchen

When we bought our house I knew the biggest transformation would be the kitchen. I was super excited about designing it and seeing it actually come to life! 

We ended up having to take everything down to the beams and subfloor because of water damage. But that's life when you're trying to tackle a fixer upper. The kitchen was for sure the longest lasting project! The laundry room took the place of a fridge. So the previous owners used a mini fridge. We quickly decided that wouldn't work so we ended up moving the laundry room upstairs where the linen closet was.

Linen closet < normal size fridge ;) 

before kitchen collage .jpg

The bottom right picture was a wall separating the den from the kitchen. It made everything seem a lot smaller so we knocked down that wall. It really helped open up the downstairs and made it seem so much bigger. Crazy how one wall can make all the difference. 

When knocking down the wall we found out that all the upstairs plumbing was running through that wall. So we had 2 options: 

1. Put a wall back up to hide all things plumbing

2. Hide everything with 2 wood beams

We chose the beams & now I'm kind of thankful we ran into that problem! I LOVE the beams. It was a great problem to have. 

The picture with the wood shelves & the fridge is where the old laundry room was. We knocked down those walls and made the kitchen all one room. We also took the door off of the pantry to make it appear like open shelves for display purposes. The closet with the chalkboard paint on it is now where we store pantry items. We got shelving from ikea and it works great! 

Kitchen table benches or (similar)

Kitchen red rug or (similar

Rug under kitchen table or (similar

Bowl near kitchen window with succulent in it

Bowl on wood shelves

Pitcher on kitchen table

Glass containers 

Kitchen table  

& sign

Dish towels & more towels

JORD WATCH

I'm so excited to share with you one of my new favorite staple pieces. My JORD watch!

I get so many compliments on it so I thought I would just share all about it here!

JORD watches are made out of natural wood and that for sure helps the look of them. I love the rustic tone of my watch! Click here for the link to the one I have.

The packaging is really what makes receiving a JORD watch a full experience.

Inside the package came this BEAUTIFUL wooden box which held everything inside. In the pictures bellow you will see what JORD packages in each personalized box.

-A cleaning kit to keep the wood looking fresh and in shape!

-Humidity control towelette!

-& bonus... you cause repurpose your wooden box as a jewelry holder!

Guess what?! JORD has given me a unique link for all of you to sign up for a AWESOME giveaway! Enter the giveaway here! ! It’s only through Sunday so you don’t want to miss out :) 

 

link to the men's shop : https://www.woodwatches.com/shop/men/#hopehouser

link to the women's shop : https://www.woodwatches.com/shop/women/#hopehouser

link to my watch: https://www.woodwatches.com/series/frankie/dark-sandalwood-and-smoke/#hopehouser

photo cred: @halliejacobs

 

Wedding Pics part 2

The rest of our wedding pictures I promised! Part 1 of pictures is here.

Our flower girls were my niece & cousin! 

Our flower girls were my niece & cousin! 

Each guest had a candle on their seat as they arrived to the ceremony. Find out why below.. 

Each guest had a candle on their seat as they arrived to the ceremony. Find out why below.. 

My favorite part of the ceremony was actually my moms idea! My parents read a prayer that my grandparents prayed over them on their wedding day! While my parents read the prayer, our bridal party lit all of our guests candles. Think Christmas Eve candle service ;) It really was so special and I've never seen it done at a wedding before! 

My favorite part of the ceremony was actually my moms idea! My parents read a prayer that my grandparents prayed over them on their wedding day! While my parents read the prayer, our bridal party lit all of our guests candles. Think Christmas Eve candle service ;) It really was so special and I've never seen it done at a wedding before! 

Chick-fil-A mini's were passed around during cocktail hour (cause who doesn't love them??).  On our desert table we had, macaroons, salted caramel brownies, cake pops, & of course cake!

Chick-fil-A mini's were passed around during cocktail hour (cause who doesn't love them??).  On our desert table we had, macaroons, salted caramel brownies, cake pops, & of course cake!

We had a formal wedding with corn hole! It was so fun to see people in long gowns playing corn hole ;) 

We had a formal wedding with corn hole! It was so fun to see people in long gowns playing corn hole ;) 

Our band was incredible!! We danced while they sang (& even rapped) all night 

Our band was incredible!! We danced while they sang (& even rapped) all night 

A romantic sparkler send off to end the night :) 

A romantic sparkler send off to end the night :) 

1 Year of Being Mrs. Houser

Wow. So many thoughts when I try to write this post.

First, I LOVE marriage. It really has been my greatest joy to be married to Michael. He is the most patient guy on this planet. I’m so certain of it. My family all jokes that he is our family counselor because of his crazy awesome patience and love for my family.

I didn’t write this post for y’all to learn all things marriage so here are the pictures from the best day of my life. 

BUT one last thing.. I remember so clearly several things Pastor Perry Noble said when he was officiating the wedding. The one line I remind of myself of daily is, “there will be WOW days and there will be VOW days”. So much truth to that statement. 

I'm going to spread our wedding pics out throughout this week. Today's pictures are some of us getting ready, our bridal party pics, & our first look. ENJOY. 

He's so handsome & so full of joy.

He's so handsome & so full of joy.

We got ready in the most gorgeous bridal suite! It was actually the place I got my dress! They let us rent it out & we have such a fun morning dancing to music, drinking mimosas, & eating catered food from my favorite brunch spot. 

We got ready in the most gorgeous bridal suite! It was actually the place I got my dress! They let us rent it out & we have such a fun morning dancing to music, drinking mimosas, & eating catered food from my favorite brunch spot. 

I wore my Nonnie's pearl bracelet & earrings. They were the most perfect "something borrowed". My garter was made from the lace in my mom's wedding dress!

I wore my Nonnie's pearl bracelet & earrings. They were the most perfect "something borrowed". My garter was made from the lace in my mom's wedding dress!

It was the coldest day of the year (very sunny though!!) so we rented out a trolley to cart the bridal party around all day. It was so fun! 

It was the coldest day of the year (very sunny though!!) so we rented out a trolley to cart the bridal party around all day. It was so fun! 

Our first look took place on the top of a parking garage. It was SO beautiful (& SO windy). 

Our first look took place on the top of a parking garage. It was SO beautiful (& SO windy). 

#HouseOfHouser 1st Christmas

It's M & I's first Christmas in our home together. We were so giddy setting everything up.. considering keeping it up for a whileeee. February, what?! ;) 

My mom goes all out for Christmas every year. She has several big tree's throughout her house.. 5 to be exact. I got my love of decorating from her. Our little home would be super overwhelmed if I did all of that. But I did want each room to have a touch of Christmas. 

Here are some pictures of our decor we put up. These were taken with my iphone so not the best quality!  

Excuse our plants.. we're not the best with our landscaping. If you have any suggestions, leave a comment below :) 

Excuse our plants.. we're not the best with our landscaping. If you have any suggestions, leave a comment below :) 

We have a magnolia tree in our front yard. So I decided to bring in some leaves for more fresh greenery!

We have a magnolia tree in our front yard. So I decided to bring in some leaves for more fresh greenery!

I wanted my whole house to smell like Christmas! Who doesn't? So I went to our local tree farm and asked for any scraps of branches. I had to cut them down and make it look full by adding, cutting, adding some more. But now my whole house smells SO wonderful! Worth the sap all over my hands :) 

I wanted my whole house to smell like Christmas! Who doesn't? So I went to our local tree farm and asked for any scraps of branches. I had to cut them down and make it look full by adding, cutting, adding some more. But now my whole house smells SO wonderful! Worth the sap all over my hands :) 

What are some of your favorite ways to decorate for Christmas? I would love to hear fun traditions, or cute ways to highlight the most wonderful time of the year!! 

Proposal Anniversary

It's been 1 year since Michael proposed. Already?! Crazy.

In honor of it being the proposal anniversary I wanted to share some pictures and our video. I'm so thankful we have these moments captured so we can forever remember them! Because let's be honest.. I don't remember hardly anything from that night. I was so happy. I do remember thinking, "this is something I've waited my whole life dreaming about." So surreal. 

We were only engaged for 4 months. I'm all about the short engagements. If it is possible, then why not?!

No one prepared for me for how tough the engagement season would be. For the longest time I questioned if this meant we weren't right for each other because, "this is supposed to be the best season of our lives." Or so we thought. 

I've talked to enough couples to know now that we were not alone. Now that I look back and process why it was so stinkin' hard I've come to a couple conclusions...

  • We kept hearing, "this is going to be the greatest season. You have so much to look forward to". So we put our engagement season on a pedestal and expected exactly what others said. The greatest season of our life. So you can imagine when we would get in little "growth opportunities" (fights) we would conclude that we are alone. 
  • Premarital counseling was SO good but also hard! We were faced with lots of questions we really hadn't thought about or planned for. (Which guess what? thats OKAY!)
  • We felt more committed than just our dating relationship but we had no ability to fully and completely express the depth of our love to each other.. if you know what I mean. Basically marriage without sex. 
  • There were so many emotions that came with planning the wedding. That alone can cause a girl to act crazy.

Combine all of that crazy mess and yes, the engagement season was hard. But I look back now and I'm so thankful it was. We learned so much about each other in those 4 months that really has benefited and strengthened our marriage. Michael didn't fully learn how to love me the way I needed his love until we were engaged. 

I would love to hear your advice with those months leading up to your wedding - comment below :) 

Pictures: Brian Schindler   Video: Joshua Swope