Kevin read and I re-read the Hunger Games series on our Honeymoon. Sometimes we would read all afternoon and realize that we had missed lunch.

I decided to brush up on my archery skills.
It might surprise you that I am a regular Katniss. Real or not real?
Real. (Note long dark braid, and bow and arrow.)
Okay not real.
I wish.

I just finished Mockinjay and thought it was a brilliant end to the series.
Did you read it?
Did you love it?
Do you have Katniss archery skills?

(I told Kevin I want an archery set for Christmas. He thought I was joking....)



Sometimes I think about everything that is wrong,
but these remind me that most of the time
everything is right enough.

images via


Bridesmaid Gifts

Since I have four of my own sisters, and Kevin has two, I decided to ask them to be my bridesmaids instead of friends, since my sisters and now sisters-in-law are my best friends anyway. My sister Melissa truly believes that gift wrapping is as important as the gift itself, so I decided to make the bridesmaid gifts beautiful while still keeping them inexpensive.

I started with these simple white jewelery boxes. Since they are white I figured they would match with almost everything. They cost .83 cents each at xpedx.

Then I found these Laura Ashley cards at Roberts. 10 for $1.

The necklaces I opted for as the gift were $9.00 each at Forever21. They are pink pearls, and five strands of varying lengths. I bought them so all of the bridesmaids would look unified, since I decided I wanted them to buy their own dresses in different shades of gray. They were able to cut off different strands of their necklaces so some were long and some were short. I love how their different styles all turned out.

I made pink and white tissue flowers using this tutorial for the toppers. Then I placed the card under the necklace, and with the see-through top of the box it looked dramatically different. You could also put wallpaper or gift wrap on the bottom of the box.

Cute gifts are not only so much more fun to get, they are so much more fun to give.
Photos of the bridesmaids coming soon!


Bahamas Part 2

Honeymoons are funny. You dream about them your whole life but for the first few days or so we both felt like we were kids on vacation only without our parents. It took us a couple days to realize we could do whatever we wanted. This turned into late-night pizza runs, intense Bocce ball and Egyptian War tournaments, and delicious Bahamian Oombay punch for breakfast, lunch and dinner (think carbonated pineapple). We drank Bahama Mamas from coconuts, and Kevin learned how to windsurf with a bunch of Italians. I am ashamed to admit that we stayed in one day to watch a Father of the Bride marathon as well.

One more day to enter this giveaway.
Oh and friends? I like you a lot. Thanks for all your words of love and support.


Bahamas Part 1

Best week of my life. We stayed at the Viva Wyndham resort near Freeport Bahamas. We ate delicious food until we were sick, went snorkeling and saw tropical fish every day, biked to Port Lucaya (4 miles each way in the heat) twice, kayaked, windsurfed, read, slept, and loved every minute of it.

A big thanks to everyone who guest posted. Click here to enter to win my sister's signed album.
Wedding pictures soon.



Mandy is almost home from her honeymoon, which is a good thing for us, because I'm anxious for wedding pictures. As one of Mandy's sisters, I can promise you that she looked like a total babe on her wedding day, although that probably isn't a big surprise to any of you.

I was lucky to spend winter 2007 in icy cold London. I missed my sisters like crazy, I thought about my boyfriend (now husband) constantly and I was completely broke. Pathetic? Just a little bit. I spent a lot of time on my bed eating Galaxy bars and even more time getting lost on the Tube. It didn't take me long to find out that if there is one awesome thing in London* it's the shopping. And time after time I found myself in a cozy British paper store.

The thing is, British paper stores are nothing like American paper stores. They are chock full of cheeky greeting cards, draped with exquisite wrapping paper, literally dripping with ribbons. I really lost myself in those stores. My London friends laughed every time I came home, because I always returned with a card, or a roll of tiny marbled paper tucked into a little shopping bag.

I came home with a lot more paper than money and I needed something to do with it. I begged myself into a packed bookbinding class at BYU, and learned how to sew, glue, and bend paper to make books. I haven't stopped bookbinding since, and my paper supply is running low. Guess I need another trip across the pond . Who's with me?

*It turns out, there are many many awesome things about London.



Every guest post on this blog is a reminder that Mandy and Kev are still in the Bahamas.

On their honeymoon.

I won't deny my jealousy.

14 years ago, (when my little sister mandy was still a little girl,) I was given my first album. Matchbox Twenty's Yourself or Someone Like You. It was the soundtrack to my seventh grade year. Hearing the song "Push" still takes me back to junior high.

11 years ago, I bought the NickelCreek album on my way to the airport to leave for Europe. I couldn't get that thing out of my Discman. When I went back to Europe again this past year, I instinctively thought of them.

5 years ago my husband and I got married, then we went to California to celebrate. While we were there we bought the Jack Johnson "In Between Dreams" album. It was the soundtrack to our first weekend as a married couple.

I am still astounded at the power of music. It is what lead my husband and I to pack our bags and move to Nashville, TN. We lived in the basement of a friend of a friend until we could find a house of our own. We put all of our savings into making a record. And 3 years and 2 kids later we finally finished.

The record is only four songs. We chose to make an EP instead of a full length album because we wanted to give those songs our everything. Whether we sell all of the copies we made or not, those four songs capture us right now. And it was worth all the time and effort. It is a soundtrack to the movie of our lives together so far, and is the probably the best kind of journal we can keep.

We would love to give one of Mandy's readers a signed copy of the album.

Leave a comment to enter the giveaway. (Perhaps sharing one of your favorite records.)

Also, please check us out at drewandlacey.com or on itunes.

Happy Honeymoon Sister!


Nate and Katie - Hearblack

after returning from europe it's been a busy week of beach-time and card-making for us.

here's to mandy and kevin! - a few of our favorite videos on dating, marriage, and being married

stay married, forever -- Charlie Winston, I Love Your Smile

nate & katie


Kara - Life in Technicolor

hello, this is kara lynn from life in technicolor. and i was so thrilled when i got the opportunity to be a guest writer on mandy’s blog, love you long time while she would be off and away.

i, on the other hand, have recently have been dreaming up the idea of the perfect bath. yes, yes, a bath. in a bath tub. i am convinced that one of the most soulful ways to relax, and really learn to adsorb a moment, is to lie in a warm tub, with dimmed lighting, and rich aromas to infuse the senses.

centuries ago roman's surely understood that bathing was not just a necessary and regular routine, but a daily indulgence. a relaxing bath was the optimal answer to the daily stresses in life. producing either calming or invigorating results. from the ancient baths of rome to the sacred turkish bath houses in ornate extravagant domes, a bath aimed for pleasure is nothing short of an oasis for purifying the body and also purging of the soul. we as humans crave this sensations of being immersed in water--possibly because more than half of our body is comprised of it.

though many people still prefer hurried showers to bathing because of the innate sense of urgency we let live in us, experiencing restlessness and boredom in bathing is an even greater reason to value the importance in basking alone. solitary. with your thoughts. internalized. still. uninterrupted. indulging and reveling in the most similar state to the one we first grew and developed in.

living in the 21st century usually causes us to feel as if we need to double task ourselves. always getting something done. faster. swifter. quicker--the most efficiently. but that often causes us to rush over the twinkling moments which then slip inside the crack. what is the point then.

so here i am. bringing you the bath which if taken regularly will surely enliven you more with those few minutes in solitude. in your own personal mini-spa.


this can be simple. no elaborate rose petals or romantic music {though music. like the classical type is often inspiring, i prefer chopin's nocturnes, beethoven's preludes and rachmaninoff's rhapsody on a theme of paganini}.

i like to stock up in the spring and fall with a new type of dead sea bath salts. i prefer the EO bath salts, often found in the health food store. try lavender for relaxation, eucalyptus for sore and achy muscles. perfect.

another fun addition besides the regular bubble bath purchased {if bubble bath is your thing i suggest avon's large bottles. they are kind to the skin and leave no irritation} is using essential oils. i use young living, look for 100% pure essential oils. you only need a few drops and it's better for your skin and hair than bubble bath.

through the years i realized i needed to invest in a pillow if i was supposed to get any sort of comfort out of this. these below are from bed, bath, and beyond.

finally to set the mood. i like to dim the lights. instead of making it a complete black out. so i have cheap candles i use, and love. then sit. this is usually the hardest part for some is to sit for very long. but by letting the mind and muscles go; winding your mind through open meadows. then your spirit will sooth with the watery nothingness, and rises to a steamy heaven on earth.

here are some bathtub photos just to swoon at. enjoy:

photos via google images, contemporist, and duravit.

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Jalene - As She Thinketh

cute mandy here asked me if i would guest blog for her while she was on her honeymoon.

gosh. getting married fun. in fact, i got married about 2 and a half months ago. and it was way fun. i hope mandy and kevin have as much fun as lincoln and i did.

do you want to see a picture of the fun?

being the friends guru that i am, i conceived this idea months before the wedding to perform "the routine" with lincoln as a surprise dance for our guests. it was hit. you'll have to check out the video when we get it.

anyway, back to this guest posting business. i've been thinking a lot, "what should i guest blog about? what possibly do i have to offer to mandy and kevin?"

then i decided. being a veteran at this marriage thing (remember 2.5 months?), i should blog about marriage advice. advice? maybe just some things we have learned in our 60 and some odd days of doing this thing.

ready? ok, go.

1. save your best chicken for your spouse.
you're thinking, "what is this crazy person talking about?" i took this class in college called "marriage as an interpersonal process" and learned so many good things. it was taught by a marriage and family counselor. he would teach his clients (and students) about how the mormon pioneers would pay their tithe in livestock. they were encouraged to "save their best chicken" to pay the tithe instead of giving the bishop's store house an "almost dead chicken." he used this same principle with spousal relationships. don't give your "best chicken" or "best self" to your job, school. etc. but come home and give your "best chicken" to your spouse, instead of an "almost dead" one.

i'm still working on this.

2. follow the 2 minute rule.
another thing i learned in that class is called the 2 minute rule. when you come home you have two minutes to find your spouse and greet them. whatever the two of you are doing or have to do. drop it. find them. kiss them. hug them. and ask them how their day was. this helps you keep your priorities straight.

3. laugh. a lot.
the world will probably never know just how goofy lincoln and i are together. it's ridiculous. but goofy is fun. and it makes you laugh. it's okay to laugh and play and joke around like little kids. you probably already do this. so keep it up!

4. one good turn... gets most of the covers.
every reception i went to as a child with my parents, my dad would lean over and say to the bride and groom in the receiving line, "i have some marriage advice for you... one good turn... gets most of the covers." well, he was definitely right! it's a constant pull over here at our house.

i'm sure i could go on and on, but i won't.

best wishes mandy and kevin!!!!!!!

i hope you had the most wonderful day!

*you can visit my blog over here.
*and my photography blog here.
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Erin - Pugh's News

Hello there lovely readers of Love you long time! This is Erin from Pughs' News. Isn't it exciting that Mandy and Kev are married now and off on their honeymoon? I'm so happy for them! Congratulations to the beautiful bride and groom! I hope they have a wonderful tropical holiday.

I'm off on a travel adventure of my own. As I write this, I'm madly packing my family's suitcases. Tomorrow we fly to London, and I am oh-so-excited. A whole month in England! Hurrah! I've always had a serious case of wanderlust, ever since I was a little girl.

image via j'adore

When I was about 8 or 9 years old, I wrote a letter to C.S. Lewis, begging him to tell me how I could get to Narnia. I never mailed the letter, and I always sort of regretted it. But now look what I've found! A sign-post that will lead me to all sorts of wonderful places. Just imagine...

Tea with Mr Tumnus.
Shopping for school supplies in Diagon Alley.
Following the yellow brick road.
Visiting Frodo and Sam in the Shire.
Studying and scheming in the Gryffindor Tower with Harry, Ron and Hermione.

How amazing would that be? I'm sure the signs I can't quite read say things like Green Gables. The Secret Garden. Zuckerman's Farm. Wonka's Chocolate Factory. How would I ever choose where to go first?

What wonderful world from children's literature would you like to visit? Let's plan to go there together.
E xo

PS: Come visit me at Pughs' News. I love to make new friends...



tomorrow I am getting married.

I am so happy it hurts.

(get ready for some amazing guest posts this week.)


Mandy (almost) Voisin


for kevin

my name: she who is worthy of great love
i prayed every night,
since i was a small girl with a peter rabbit nightgown,
and a life full of sisters and books

my barbies marched along to the wedding song,
and i thought about how i would feel
when i knew who it was
that would hold my heart for the rest of time.

i pictured him just like you.
tall and smart and funny and kind.
and i didn't know he would study brains
or love sour patch kids and the office.

but i am so glad that you turned out to be that person
i prayed for since i was a small lady,
unaware of my own future but really wanting it

to be with you all along.


sister shower

my sisters threw me the best shower/party I have ever had in my life.
Lots of:
Cafe Rio
Smart Cookie sugar cookies
Paper crane chandeliers
Scrabble tiles
Honeymoon basket
Fresh flowers
Father of the Bride

I them.
So so much.