February 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Little Touches.

Yesterday I spent the second half of my day unpacking boxes and trying to get organized. It can be so silly sometimes how much better we feel when we're not surrounded by clutter. Although we have a ways to go, I'm loving the way this house is turning out and sometimes I still can't believe this is our space to live in for now. I just love it so....

Home is with You // Little Touches
Home is with You // Little Touches
Home is with You // Little Touches
Home is with You // Little Touches
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February 26, 2013

Eating Healthy on a Budget: Where to Shop

Eating Healthy on a Budget: Where to Shop // Home is with You
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My next installment in the Eating Healthy on a Budget Series is going to be my recommendations on where to shop. Some of these specific food examples may not apply to your area (although I've lived in multiple areas in the past few years), but I'm sure you can take these suggestions and make them work for you and your city.

Also, this is just how Dave and I do it, you might have a different routine that works better for you and you're still able to eat healthy without breaking the bank. If so, feel free to share in the comments!

Here are the places we shop and what we tend to buy there:

*Sam's Club (or Costco, etc.)- even if you're a family of two (or even still single!) buying in bulk is always a great idea. There are so many things that you can find that won't go badly right away or things that you know you eat faster than others. You can find some great deals at these places and it is definitely worth the cost of membership.
        -Eggs: we get 18 organic free range eggs for the price of a dozen at most stores.
        -Milk: we buy a three pack of almond milk for about $4.
        -Bread: two pack for about the price of one loaf.
        -Cheese: they have a great variety of cheeses at fabulous prices.
        -Fruits: a big bag of lemons or limes for $3 and specials you have to watch out for (the other day, Dave and I got bananas at 99c a bundle.)
        -Veggies (that don't need to be organic, I'll go into this in another post): a bag of avocados for $3
        -Fish: they have a 6 pack of canned albacore tuna that we love. As far as frozen fish, know what you're buying first (again, I'll go into this), but they have the best prices around.
        -Other: a big box of crackers (make sure they're whole wheat), larger tubs of hummus, oats, cereal, sauces, honey, big bags of coffee, spinach, etc.

*Super Target- I know a lot of people don't think of Target when they think of grocery shopping, but as far as the healthy alternatives, they seem to have the largest selection at the best prices. That is, as long as you can stay away from the clothes and all the other fun stuff you can find there.
        -Morningstar products: ch'kn nuggets, veggie burgers, etc. NEVER buy these full price, they will always go on sale and then stock up if you need to.
        -Annie's products: organic mac and cheese, organic spaghetti o's, etc. Same goes for Annie's, these will go on sale for $1 a piece...just wait.
        -Chobani greek yogurt: these can also be found for $1 a piece.
        -Frozen fruit and vegetables: Target has the big bags at great prices, again, wait for a sale and stock up.
        -Soups: they have multiple options for low-sodium and organic soups (read your ingredients though!), and you know what I'm going to say at this point...wait for that sale!

*Farmer's Market or local organic grocer- this is the perfect place to find all the extra items, if you have the time and money.
        -Fresh from the farm vegetables.
        -Homemade breads.

February 25, 2013

A new sound coming from my dining room...

Dave had his first practice with a bass player here in North Carolina and I have to say I was really excited about the sound coming from my dining room last night. Robert plays the upright bass and it adds such a rich, gorgeous sound to Dave's music. I can't wait for these two to play live so I can get a good video! Luckily for us, we don't have a table yet so the open dining room made a perfect place for these two to set up...

Dave Owens // Home is with You Dave Owens // Home is with You Dave Owens // Home is with You Dave Owens // Home is with You

If you're on Facebook, Dave is SO close to hitting the 1,200 mark...won't you join him on there? Things like social media can be a big deal for someone looking to hire an artist these days, so it really means so much to us when you all share his pages!

February 22, 2013

Introducing Karen Norton: Author

Happy Friday loves! Thank you all so much for the comments on yesterday's post, I love when you all share your experiences and tips with me. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, but first I want to share with you someone very special to me. I introduced Mrs. Norton for the first time here when we talked about her children's books, Patty Sue Stories.

Today, you can read our little chat on her book about the school I attended from preschool-highschool: A School Like No Other. You can read a little about the book (and more about the lovely author) here.


February 21, 2013

Catching up with life...


Currently I'm feeling a little overwhelmed. After over two months of being on the road, and putting a lot of things on hold, I'm having a hard time knowing where to start with...anything. There is so much I feel behind on: building my new business, getting this site organized, unpacking, advertising, reading other lovely posts, and (some days) life in general.

The old me would have taken this overwhelming feeling and plopped myself on the couch for a show to "regroup" or skimmed Facebook until I felt ready to tackle everything in front of me. Not now. One of my goals for awhile now has been to work on staying focused and calm and working on one thing at a time. It's a process and I know I'm not there yet, but I'm trying and that's the important thing. Right?

How do you all go about getting through a to-do list that's miles long?
Do you tend to get overwhelmed and give up? Or are you hardcore and plow through?
Any tips for someone like me?

February 20, 2013

Won't you join us? // Sponsor Home is with You

Won't you join us? // Sponsor Home is with You

I would LOVE to have you join us for March! This month is going to be a good one, I can tell already. We have a new (rented) home, we're working on getting settled, and I'm going to start doing photo sessions here in North Carolina.

I really enjoy getting to help you all advertise and I hope you'll grab a spot and let me do just that for you! Here is the sponsor page and if you have any questions, you can always email me.

February 19, 2013

Winter Wonderland // Cozy Sweater

After enjoying Friday afternoon in the warm sunshine (with no coats) on the patio of a coffee shop in downtown Winston-Salem, we woke up Saturday to some of the biggest snowflakes falling down I have ever seen. I honestly thought Dave was messing with me (since I'm blind without my contacts and couldn't see for myself) when he told me it was snowing that morning.

I took the opportunity to throw on the coziest sweater I own, thanks to ClothLess, and ran outside to take some pictures. The snow was coming down so hard, I could barely keep my eyes open! Immediately following these pictures, we headed to Knoxville to grab all of our things from my in-laws garage. It was a GORGEOUS (and a bit scary) drive through the mountains as the snow was falling down.

Home is with You // Winter Wonderland
Home is with You // Winter Wonderland
Home is with You // Winter Wonderland
Sweater: c/o ClothLess // Leggings and Boots: Target // Photos thanks to my wonderful husband, Dave Owens

February 15, 2013

Oh happy day...


Dear hotel,
It's been real, but today is our LAST day/night staying here and you won't be missed. I'm way too excited about renting our first home and getting it decorated and all of our things out of my in-laws garage. After over two months of being on the road, having a place of our own is very welcomed.

Dear readers,
Thank you so much for still reading during this crazy time and me only having access to the internet part of the time. I'm so thankful for all of you and all the love you share on this little site of mine. Once we move, I promise there are exciting things to come...like the next installment of the Eating Healthy on a Budget series!

Dear Libbie (pictured above),
I miss your cute, cuddly butt keeping me company while I work from home all day. I think I need one of you to call my own...time to start working on convincing Dave.

Dear Safe Haven,
With every commercial I get more and more excited to see you! I couldn't put the book down and I am so antsy to see how you brought the story to life. Don't let me down!

Dear husband,
I can't wait to make our new place feel like home and to be able to cook our own food again! The past two months have been quite the adventure, and though I know there are more adventures to come, it will be nice to have somewhere to come home to.


linking up with The Sweet Season

February 14, 2013

Dear Valentine...

photo credit: Eureka Photography

Dearest Valentine,

There is no one I'd rather walk through this life with than you. No matter how hard life gets, I know you're right there to catch me when I stumble. I'm forever thankful for that.

I'm so blessed by your patience, it's appreciated more than you know! Also, thanks for being you...I cherish your big, goofy, passionate, hopeless romantic heart.

I can't wait to see what the future has in store for us, but whatever life brings I'm happy to be facing it with you.

Forever Yours,

Be Mine.


Won't you? Hehe. I thought it would be fun to make you all an old school Valentine today. :) How are you all spending the day? A romantic night out? A homemade dinner at home? Or swearing off all things love related and going out with girlfriends?

Pretty sure I spent every Valentine's Day before I met Dave single and my best friend Jen was always my Valentine, but I wouldn't have had it any other day. We always went to dinner and made it fun, I was never one to swear off Valentine's Day completely. It's such a fun day full of love, hearts, chocolate, and good food...whether you're single or taken. Just have fun with it!

Dave and I planned to spend the evening cooking a nice dinner at home and then going to see Safe Haven, but since we're still in the hotel until Saturday, we're postponing our full Valentine's style celebration. But don't worry, there will still be pink, red, hearts, and lots of love over here...

So, Happy Valentine's Day loves! XOXO ~Mal

February 13, 2013

From Where I Stand // Today


From where I stand...

...I still can't believe the wild ride the last two months have been.

...the gloomy days need to stop. 
I love a good foggy/rainy/cloudy day every once in awhile, 
but this is getting out of hand.

...if you're in (or near) North Carolina, I really hope to hear from you!
Whether you want pictures, or just to meet up.

...it looks like we might be getting the first place we looked at and fell in love with!

...this quote helps with the difficult moments. 

What are things like from where you stand?
(please link back so your friends can join in as well!)

February 12, 2013



This week we're stuck. Holed up in a hotel room as we continue the search for a place to live. We found the place of our dreams this past weekend, but the owners/landlords are currently out of the country and communication has been difficult.

So, we're stuck. We can't rent a place until this weekend either way, but we are praying we find the right place in the next few days so we can move in immediately. Things have been crazy since the first day we got to North Carolina, and now that I'm back it seems it never stopped. We're trying not to let the bumpy ride affect how we feel about this move, but it can be hard.

We're staying in high spirits though and have high hopes that we'll find a perfect place to rent by this weekend. We can't wait to settle in and be able to cook our own food again and catch up on our favorite shows. It's the little things in life.

February 8, 2013

Bittersweet departure.


Tonight I head back to North Carolina to be with Dave, and while I am (of course) beyond excited to see him, I'm a little bit sad about leaving my family. I've had such an amazing time getting to be here for so long and spending so much quality time with everyone, it's hard to leave.

And while I do wish we lived closer, I know that now is our time to have our adventures and follow our dreams before we settle down for good and start having kiddos. I can't wait for that time in our lives, but I'm aware how important it is to cherish every moment.

I love this wild ride and pray that the music and photography take us more places than we can imagine. We have wanderlusting hearts and want to travel the country (and others) so badly. I know He has a plan and that is the most reassuring thing of all.

February 6, 2013

Twenty Seven.


Cheers to a year of new beginnings. To fresh starts and adventures. To fullfilling our dreams. To love.


Cheers to hope and healing. To having fun and taking chances. To living in the moment. To happyness.


Cheers to my twenty-seventh year and all that it will bring...


Cheers to announcing the official name of my photography business...


...I've been sitting on this for what seems like forever now, but my Birthday seemed like the perfect day to announce it! The best present I could ever receive would be for you all to spread the word about Dreaming Willow Photography. If you'd like to follow along (I hope you will!) and share with friends, you can find the Facebook page here. Website coming soon!

I'll be spending my Twenty-Seventh Birthday here in Wichita with my family, and though I miss having my husband here to celebrate with me, I know I'm right where I'm supposed to be. Thank you all so much for all the love you share with me every single day. It means the world.


February 5, 2013

High Low Sweater // ClothLess

When the high low trend in skirts first started, I wasn't quite sure what to make of it. They kind of seemed (at the time) like the mullet of the pretty skirt world and I never saw myself trying out that particular trend. But, as more options came out for the high low fashion, the more I decided I might want to give it a try...

...enter ClothLess. I found this high low sweater on Storenvy and it was love at first sight. It's comfy and soft, but still looks cute and put together. Perfect for the days I've spent writing in a Starbucks or Panera lately!

Sweater: c/o ClothLess // Leggings: Victoria's Secret // Boots and Tank: Target // Owl necklace: gift from my Mama // Ring: Shabby Apple (won in a giveaway!)

February 4, 2013

First Look // Wichita Couple Photo Session

This weekend I had the lovely opportunity to do a photo session with my (step) sis and brother-in-law. I was so happy to get the opportunity to take pictures for them! They were married a month after us and (like Dave and I) were in need of updated pictures. I was so happy to be able to take them out this weekend on a warm (for January) day.

Now I can't wait to get back to my computer and edit them all! Here is a first look and I'll be posting a few more on facebook today...


I mean, model much? Such a gorgeous couple. Happy to call them my family. :)

February 1, 2013

Friday Favorites.

Friday Favorites // Home is with You
Happy Friday loves! It's now Dave and I's Birthday month! Hollaaaaa.
Today I just wanted to share a few of the things that are making me smile...

*The new mug pictured above. Another early birthday gem from my Dad (on clearence at Target!) and it makes me happy every morning (along with the coffee in it).

*Late last night I found an old "secret" stash of notes from friends and I couldn't stop laughing. We were special.

*I can't wait to try some of these DIY projects I've pinned onto my "Homemade for the Home" board when we find a new place!

*I'm so excited about adding new/different items headed to the Home is with You shop soon, including this pretty infinity scarf.

*This truth.

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