rosy in real life: Week 4

Welcome friends to another week of rosy in the real life! 
How are you, truly?

I've been sitting on this blog post and several others for days.  The good news is that I've been busy as can be editing the most beautiful photo sessions and so the blog has had to take a back seat.  I'm hoping to share another gorgeous session with you soon!  Just a random fact for you: I always ask permission before posting someone's session photos.  In my opinion, your family and your photos are yours once my camera goes "click".  To share or not to share?  That's up to the client. I will say I don't think anyone has ever asked me NOT to share though.  

So how about a look at what's been keeping my hope afloat, my spirits high, my inspiration cup full? 
Last weekend we woke up to cold weather and went for a drive and a hike.  It was glorious! I'll share pictures and our location in another post soon for all you locals. 
This season I am learning (or perhaps relearning?) what true soul care/self care looks and feels like.  Between my job, home, and other friends and family, there are so many people needing me on a daily basis.  I'm learning to slow down, breathe deep, take a bath or put on a face mask, light a candle.....just do something that fills me back up so I can pour out again.  

Also, have you read Imperfect Courage?  
Such a good book! So much wisdom shared. 
Outfit goals. 
Do you do this?  Screenshot outfits,

or recipes you want to try?  

I adore screen shots.  


I saw the ad for this and wondered if I would love it as much as the old-fashioned version from the 90's.  Probably not, but it might be cute. :) 

Outfit inspiration again! 
Thanks Target! 
I am actually really liking all things Old Navy lately.
We had a fun Tailgate Party at the girls' school with food, games, music, and face-painting!

This. 

Two of my favorite musicians in one pic!! 
I can't even imagine how amazing THIS moment would have been!

Betsy was the queen of her kindergarten class one day! She came out so proudly wearing her crown. Cute, cute, cute!

There are a million photos I wish I could share with you from school, but can't.  Instead, look at this awesome shadow the monkey bars made on the playground! I thought it looked like a giant flower belonged at the top. 
See? I told you I liked screen shots.  Another thing besides outfits, art, and food I like to save ideas for are books.  I actually read a ton.  I don't share book recs as often as you'd think because people have so many opinions when it comes to posting a recommendation! 

For example: the photo I just posted of Leon Bridges and John Mayer.  Maybe there's something about their personal life or story that isn't stellar that I don't even know about but someone sees them on my blog and gets offended.  See how tricky this social media world is? It's bananas.  

As for those two musicians, they just make really good music.  I've been listening to John Mayer since college which is at least 17 years!!



I find so much wisdom in this timely advice Shauna shared, another favorite of mine! 
It reminds me of another quote I like that says "learn to rest, not quit."  

We are trying to teach our girls that right now. It's ok to take a break from ___________ and it doesn't have to mean forever.  
You know I'm forever trying again and again and again to take care of this body God has gifted me with here on earth.  Sometimes it looks like making yourself get out all the things and preparing salads and then being cheered up because they just look so darn pretty and you know your body will feel great after eating them! 
A surprising thing about myself is that as I get older I get more organized, cleaner, and pickier about the state of my car.  With that said, I love the car wash. 

Anna's face paint from Tailgate Night! 
Art found on the porch. 

Saying goodnight to the sun after a wonderful photo session.
I really enjoy little bursts of creativity, like using my stamps and washi tape to whip up these thank-you notes!

This is just 100% truth. 

Do you see the face? 
I do! 
I've started noticing little faces in lots of places, as well as hearts.  Makes for a fun day to notice things like this! 
So at the coffee shop one day I noticed how the reflection of the people at the table made it look like they were sitting in the back of this jeep.  Made me laugh. 
See the heart?! 
Also, tea latte's for the win!
This song is hauntingly beautiful. 
And This is Us started back up! 
Do you watch?
New art journal started! 
I've written about this before recently but I really do feel in my bones that art and creativity is a practice.  Now for me, I love these things, they come pretty naturally to me, and I have an almost constant desire to delve into both art and photography, and really all things creative. 

For you, it might be something else! Maybe you really DO love running, biking, organizing, planning, cooking, etc.  I don't know what your thing is, but whatever it is, practice it! 

I made this art journal by gluing some pretty tissue paper to the front and back covers and then adding some quotes from a magazine.  I can't wait to fill up the pages! 
I mean, can you even?! 
This was our sky as we headed to school one day this week and literally made me slow down going down the driveway thinking I didn't care if we were a minute later than normal, this deserved our attention! 
And this! 
And this too! 
If we don't stop and notice this, then what is there to even see in the world? 
I sure don't know. 
For the record, we weren't late to school either.  :) 

Well friends, I'm sitting here on a rare day off from school since only the certified staff has to go and this year I'm simply a paraprofessional.  I've got my coffee in hand, a list a mile long of things I need to accomplish today, and am listening to the roar of the bikes swirling around NWA. 

It's Bikes, Blues, and BBQ here in town which is a MAJOR deal.  I forget how many thousands of people come in just for this event but it's a lot! 

I'm trying to remind myself to keep some margin in my day for something fun yet right now the idea of getting some things organized and clean sounds pretty fun to me.  Who am I?! :) 

Tell me what's rosy to you lately? 
Are you reading anything good? 
How are you ushering in fall? 
Any blog topics you want me to dive into? 

I'm sending you warmth, love, hope, and a belly laugh. 



How do you do it all?

I was asked this question recently and it just made me laugh but then made me want to hurry and explain, I don't do it all.  The sweet person asking meant how do I paint, keep up my photography, the house, work, etc.?  I totally get where the question is coming from.  And I admit, I am doing a LOT on a daily basis, but everyone is.  

I truly think everyone is taking on more life in their days than we realize from a five-minute conversation or quick glance at social media.  We are just more complicated, creative, fascinating human beings than that. I think we could all agree on some level that our lives are complicated.  May I also remind us that although social media feels quite like a bff at times, I've also learned that a lot of the deeply personal/hard things just don't feel right to me to share in such a public space. Freaks this introvert out.  You can always remember more is going on behind this screen than you'll know by reading my blog, unless you know me in real life.  

So, back to the question of how am I doing it all.  A few things to keep in mind:
My job this year is an instructional assistant (a.k.a. a "paraprofessional") and this was on purpose.  I have a degree in early childhood education and used to be an elementary teacher.  It's still something I feel so strongly about and now that both girls are in school I wanted to slowly get used to the working world.  My job is perfect for that! I truly love it and like going in to work each day.  But, as an assistant I'm not doing near the work a teacher is.  You have to remember that when you see me "doing it all." :)  Next year if I get a full-time teaching job my other priorities may shift some because the work load will be much larger. 

The painting and photography fill me up.  Period.  A lot of my life is about giving.  Really almost all of it.  In fact, I'm currently feeling like I need a breather somewhere and somehow in my weeks because someone is always needing me, talking to me, or the house chores are staring me in the face. The little needs are pretty non-stop.  The painting and photography though?  And anything creative?  Breathers.  A total break for me.  It isn't hustle. 
It's heart and healing that keep me coming back to those.  

I've also had to take a look at my priorities in this new work season for things like exercise and figure out where my goals were really coming from in other seasons.  Basically, it was always from a weight-loss viewpoint and a whole lot of hustle. Not in this season.  Brett reminds me to exercise and eat well to "feel good, not to look good because you already do."  He is my biggest health cheerleader and accountability partner.  He reminds me of the real, true reason to exercise.  With that said, I am trying (always trying) to maintain somewhat of a healthy diet and exercise 3 times a week.  That's less time than I aimed for in other seasons, but (and my biggest takeaway) WE CAN'T DO IT ALL. 

We cannot do it all.  I've said it a million times here and I'll keep saying it. 
I simply don't believe that hustle and hard work make for a life where we're doing it all: having the perfect marriage, friendships, body, house, job, etc. 

I'm just not here for it. 
We are all hopelessly flawed.  We are all trying our best, we hurt and hope.  We all must pick and choose what will get our attention and despite the cute IG hashtag, it can't be #allthethings. 

My short answer for you? 
I don't do it all. :) 

I DO keep painting and I DO keep loving it and I DO have quite the stack in my art room.
Painting sale coming this weekend on IG! 

Rachel and family: a farm photo session!

 Hi friends! 
Enjoy a look at a recent farm photo shoot I had the honor of capturing. 
This family was so much fun! I think I laughed almost the entire time. 













This sweet little one fell in the creek towards the end of the shoot so we just went with it.

I can't say it enough.  It is such an honor to step behind the lens and capture your beautiful stories. 
Want to schedule your own photo shoot? Or give a session to someone as a gift?

 Email me at sunshinebysara@hotmail.com or message me on FB or IG for more details!

rosy in the real life: Week 3

Howdy friends! Welcome to another edition of rosy in the real life and *Friday*!
Can we all just agree that Friday is a good feeling?  
We have a pretty packed weekend coming up with all good things.  Still, instead of just checking things off my to-do list and moving from box to box you know how I like to just pause for a moment to look at the little moments that have made me smile.  In other words, let's take a look at the rosy that's been showing up in my real life lately.  I feel like these blog posts should always come with a disclaimer that not all of my life is rosy! Surely you all know that.  I know most of you have been around long enough to know that focusing on the good is what keeps my mind cheerful and my body getting out of bed every morning. 

For starters, our grass and trees are SO green for September! 
Usually by August everything is a hot, dried up mess.  Not this year! 
We're still cutting the grass like it's spring. 
I'm hoping for a beautiful fall and maybe even a good snow this year?! Please oh please! !
Cute Christmas tree Anna Ruth made.  We almost always have something artsy or creative out on our dining room table.  Play-dough, markers and paper, watercolors, drawing books, paint, etc...
I hardly remember taking this! Isn't that funny?! Now that I stare at it though I remember the sky being amazing on one of our drives.  We were on a country road so I slowed down to an almost stop and hurried and took this with my phone.  Those light rays get me every single time.  Anna Ruth says they remind her of angels. 
So cool! We never know what we'll find on our front porch! 
I love my town. 


Seen around Fayetteville during a fun night out with my twin sis and my parents! We went to an event called Savor the Flavor where we got to taste all kinds of delicious food down Dickson Street. 
Photo shoot prep.
Even though the flowers didn't make it into the shoot, lol.  
I have the most gorgeous, dreamy shoot to share with you soon. 
And another shoot scheduled Saturday!

Friends, have you scheduled your photo session yet? 
How about letting me come photograph your beautiful normal in your home?
Or have a favorite spot in NWA you'd like me to photograph you in?
Or how about coming out to our farm!
Email me (sunshinebysara@hotmail.com) for details.
Farm sessions or in-home sessions also make *awesome* Christmas gifts!
My heart always feels so pulled in a million directions when I glance into the craft room and see this. And if we're being honest, I'm usually glancing in to see how many piles of laundry are waiting for me on the floor to be washed.  I think I will forever be a person with more passions than I have time for.  Sigh...It makes for a very interesting, fun way to live because there is never a moment to be bored!  It also makes for a frustrating way to live because there are pesky ideas and projects that won't leave my thoughts alone, even though a lot of days I just don't have time to get to them.  

Can anyone relate? 

I have been painting still.  Sometimes just on the weekends, sometimes a few minutes here and there in the mornings.  However it happens, still painting. 

My parents gave me some birthday money. 
Can you tell where I spent it?!
Hobby Lobby, a.k.a. "my happy place", of course! 
I walked past these colorful Christmas trees and it literally took my breath away! 
I even purchased a few and have them displayed in my craft room. I don't think I'll ever take them down. They are just so pretty.  That's saying a lot considering I'm usually quite the Scrooge about all the Christmas displays everywhere this early in the fall. I am just barely wrapping my head around pumpkins and the possibility of fires and am most certainly not thinking of Christmas. 

But still, these trees delighted me and haven't stopped since. 
The bag says "Choose joy" and is my new work bag. 
We still have the most beautiful zinnias to cut for bouquets.  I will miss this in winter. 
Leaving my sister's house and saw this. 
Breath-taking.
Aren't these shadows from the leaves just magical?  I spotted this on an early, foggy morning while in the midst of another busy transition switching from mama to working mama.  

This. 
Spoke right to me. 
I can compare myself so often to others when really, it comes down to this. 
Was I faithful with what God gave me? 

Still exercising! 
I have a post coming about my 35-year old health goals.  
The short version is I'm currently trying to exercise 3 times a week.  
This day (and every day!) I felt especially proud for knocking it out. 
Exercise puts those feel good endorphins in my mind and body.
I finished painting the playhouse, finally! 

The inside was just plain wood and I painted it white. 

And that's a wrap for this week! 
How are things where you are? 

I am fighting for joy in a few areas of life and stopping to pay attention to these small, seemingly meaningless moments in my day, matter.  They absolutely matter! 
I hope you stop to smell the roses this week too. 


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