Tuesday, December 30, 2008


mr. arganbright and i both have dreams.
not like, driving down the interstate and your brakes go out (one of his recurring dreams) or clenching your teeth so hard they start crumbling and breaking and you can't stop (one of mine).

but: goals...aspirations...desires...callings.
sometimes we feel so trapped in life. we don't know how to move toward our dreams. we're just shuffling along, trying to keep up with the flow.

at thanksgiving we spent some time with family members who've served in military service. two of them have actually been deployed in the past 5 years or so. one is just beginning his service. one spent twenty years in full-time service for the marines and another served in vietnam. they talked about the benefits they receive and the sacrifices they've made.
the conversation really got into our heads. we started seriously researching whether this would be an option for our family. it would help us reach some of our goals financially. it would provide mr. arganbright the opportunity to continue his education and maybe get a job he's really gifted for.
after a few weeks of examining all of our options, we decided to go for it and mr. arganbright joined the national guard.

we've received a variety of responses to this decision. many insulting, some supportive... i think most people just don't know much about it, so they ask questions or make statements that seem rude, when it's really just ignorance. his integrity as a husband and a father has been questioned by some. i think that hurts me more than it hurts him. he answers calmly, respects their opinions. i want to cry and defend him till i'm breathless. i may be a little naive, but we aren't walking into this with our eyes closed. we truly believe this is the best opportunity we have to achieve our dreams. will it be hard when seth is gone for four months of training? yes. is it scary to think about the possibility of deployment? yes. will we have to move? no. will he be gone a lot? about 30 hours a month and two weeks in the summer. will he make much money? not much, but the $20,000 signing bonus will help, and the money he'll receive for school will be nice, and the $400/month we'll save on insurance is great. from the beginning, i have had a sense of peace about this decision. this is something we are doing together. as a family. for our family.

mr. arganbright wouldn't tell you this, but i will:
when he went to take his entrance exam, he wanted to do well because your score determines what kind of opportunities you will be eligible for throughout your career. just to make it in, you have to get a 50. if you want a better job, you need a 75. seth was hoping to get a 110 because you can get specialized training and a really good job.
he scored 134 out of 136. amazing. his recruiters had never even seen a score that high.
that simple number helps brings me peace and confidence that we are doing the right thing.


with all the new toys piper got for christmas,
i needed a day to organize everything she has.
that day was yesterday.
now i want to paint something cute on the stark white walls.

some of you are probably thinking "that's organized?!"

enjoying her new slide from "nonny" and "dad-dad"

Monday, December 29, 2008


a christmas darling i received from my bestest e.
i can't wait to put my lovelies in there!


this year, i suggested that mr. arganbright not buy me any presents for christmas because i found this little lady (on SALE) on black friday and immediately brought her home to live happily ever after.

well, we all know men don't listen...but in this case i'm lucky he didn't!
he made me open this on christmas eve (he's like these guys, can't keep a suprise for nothin'):

then, on christmas day i received this!

and these from my parents!

and this from my sister!

what fantastic gifts! i think santa's been reading my blog!!!

Saturday, December 27, 2008


i am one lucky girl.

a wonderful family.

a dreamy husband.

a beautiful daughter.

and a tiny bit of love, growing inside.

what a happy new year to come.

Monday, December 15, 2008


today's like, half over, but it's already been one of the most frustrating kid-watching days ever. two days a week i watch two other kids, e and e. mondays from 8-5 and thursdays from 12-5.
for some reason, today piper and the big e have either been picking at each other (ex: hitting, stealing toys, screaming, crying, etc.) or getting into mischief (ex: drawing on chairs, crumbling lunch into bitty pieces, emptying cabinets) all. day. long.
meanwhile, little e likes to be held a lot, so it can be very difficult to wrangle two toddlers while holding a baby. i've definitely lost my cool a couple times (see chair-drawing incident).
big e and little e were both ready for a nap (finally) so after they went down i was changing piper's diaper and as she was fighting me (again) i was thinking about how sweet and lovely she was as a baby and how feisty she is now and i said, "i don't know what happened to you."
as soon as the words left my mouth, i had this flash of shad helmstetter's voice saying how powerful our words are. how, essentially, each of us has a computer within and all of our lives, people are typing words into that computer. positive or negative, they shape us into the person we will become and how we perceive ourselves.
i realized, i am already shaping piper into the woman she will become. i only have five years with her to myself before she will go off to school and have others constantly typing into her little computer. the thought scared me and i wondered how many times i've already "typed" negativity, insecurity, or shame into her.
i need to be in control of my words, even when i'm angry, frustrated, and exhausted. i want to speak words of inspiration, admiration, and affirmation in truth and in love to piper.

this is my reminder.


last week mr. arganbright cleared out this strange space in our hallway. i turned it into a makeshift shoe closet! complete with bare-bulb lighting, nasty green carpet, and a mirror!!!

this little area is above the stairs leading to the basement

flats on the rack, boots on the shelf, sneaks & heels on the floor

pluuus, two bins full of sandals & flip-flops

judge all you want, at least now they're organized.

Friday, December 12, 2008


hanging out in the bathroom.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


another to do list:
-find something to eat for breakfast DONE
-finally mail jeans i sold on ebay like a month ago DONE-whew!
-organize something DONE-see above post
-make the bulletin DONE
-watch e and e from noon-5 (that's not a tv show, they're children) DONE
-plan a date with mr. arganbright DONE-ish
-get some groceries DONE-yum!
-clean something DONE-vaccumed
-print and fold bulletins DONE
-go on date with mr. arganbright DONE-thai!
-work from 8-noon DONE
at work:
-buy gift for secret santa DONE
-return boots and maybe pants DONE and DONE
-try not to get annoyed at crazy christmas shoppers not-DONE
-find ugly christmas sweaters at goodwill DONE
-make appetizer (any ideas?!) DIDN'T-but there was plenty!
-caroling/ugly christmas sweater party @ 5:30 DONE-fun!
-go out to the farm & chop down a tree!
-biggest loser finale on tuesday, don't forget! awesomely DONE
(i don't actually watch the whole season, but every year i love to watch the last couple of episodes. a.may.zing)
-finish christmas shopping (mom a, dad a, jon, DONE, mimi, jessie, toni, grandpa willie)
-ask desiree about coat

Monday, December 08, 2008


yesterday, mr. arganbright and i threw together a
welcome winter party. we invited some of our dearest dears: the joes, miss k & mr. t, and sarah b.

after caravanning out to the wild country of adel, we bundled up and took a walk through the snowy woods pulling piper on a sled!

later, we warmed by the fire, made soup and other goodies, enjoyed good grape and grain, played games, and laughed a lot. it was the perfect welcome to winter.


another von maur clearance room miracle

heel no!
snakeskin? studs? sexy?
yes, yes, yes!


at the art festival this past summer, i was introduced to miss k and mr. t. since then, mr. arganbright and i have gotten to know them better and they've become great friends. they are talented, intelligent, witty, artists and visionaries. plus, they live in this gorgeous place in sherman hill!
mr. arganbright and i with miss k, mr. t, and the friends who introduced us, the joes
anyway, point of post:
katie gave us this a.may.zing. housewarming gift yesterday

isn't it fantastic? if you want one, you should contact her via thinkdig or curds & whey.

Monday, December 01, 2008


last week i was checking out joel dewberry's website and noticed it had a "fresh ideas" link.
it featured different projects using his fabric. at the bottom it said,
submit any of your "fresh ideas" to info@joeldewberry.com.
i sent a quick e-mail with some of these pictures

i just received this...

I really enjoyed seeing your recent creations. The chairs have such beautiful shapes and your fabric choices seem to complement them very nicely. I am delighted to hear you will be featured on design*sponge. It is a wonderful blog and Grace is such a genuine and talented style seeker.
I would love to add these images to my "fresh ideas" page! I will post them on my next web site upload.
Thank you.

Joel Dewberry Textile Designer

from joel himself! what a darling!
i am honored and excited.