We are hard at work filming a super secret project with some amazing friends and our awesome live audience, the J&M Secret Six as they've dubbed themselves! We are about to start Day 2 of the filming and after talking all day yesterday on Day 1 & then being up til around 1am last night, my voice is almost gone! It will be tea & honey for this girl all day! I like whispering too!!
But before we hop off to do that, we just had a few quick Friday announcements!
**Us with the #jmsecretsix yesterday as we were about to get started! Follow along on Instagram
The biggest announcement that we have is the WINNER of our Clic Conference giveaway!! Drumroll please.....a HUGE congrats to our winner, Miss Sarah Pascutti!!! Sarah just shoot us an email to email@example.com & we'll get you all set up!!
And don't forget for all of you North & South Carolina photographers, we have just ONE mentoring session left for March 25th when we're down that way! If you're ready to sit down & come up with a real next action plan on how to make those big HAIRY audacious goals happen in 2015, then THIS is for you! Just click on the link to grab our last spot!
And finally, we are SO excited about 2015 because it has us speaking at all of these awesome new conferences including the amazing BLINK Conference in Texas next November! This conference is put on by our friends Ike & Tash (we just LOVE those guys!) and it has already been such a HUGE success in just their last few years of putting it on! And this year's lineup is incredible...I can't wait to hear all of these awesome speakers! So we are super excited to get to go experience it in person!
The conference nearly sold out in just the first few days of registration being open & now there are just 15 spots left! So you don't want to miss this! And they even have a payment plan option available where you can lock in your seat right now for just $295!! So if you want to join us there, click on over HERE to check it all out! We can't wait to see you there!
I first met the wonderful Kristin Wall a few years back at the Pursuit 31 Conference & I have since had the honor of watching her love & support everyone around her! From the people at the conference to her neighbors at home who were affected by a wildfire to young girls all over the country who are growing closer in their walk with God and the creative hearts they were called to be...Kristin just loves people! That's why she helped start a ministry called Delight with the mission of mentoring, encouraging and ministering in a real, relevant, and personal way to young girls who are passionate about their faith and the creative arts.
I have been so blown away by their mission for this group (they are even building a home called the Delight House where they can host retreats for these girls) and for the community that has sprung up around it. All of the Delight girls we have had the honor of meeting have been the sweetest, most servant hearted people! We just love them!
And now they need our help! They have a goal of raising $10,000 to get their non-profit status and they are already MORE THAN HALFWAY there!! They are SOOO close!! So we are just asking that if this speaks to your heart & you want to help that you head on over HERE and make a small donation, even $10 would be amazing! I know these girls would appreciate it SO much! And so would we!! :)
We are SO excited to be joining some of our all time favorites to speak at the Clic Conference in Chapel Hill next March!! We have heard nothing but INCREDIBLE things about this conference the past few years from all of our friends who have gone & we can't wait to not only teach there, but also to listen to all of the other amazing speakers who will be there & learn as much as we can from these incredible business owners & creatives!
And the REALLY good news is that we have a FREE seat to give away to one lucky winner (a $750 value!!), so that you can come & learn from them too!
There are 3 ways for you to get entered (and you can & should do all 3 to TRIPLE your chances of winning!):
Also, if you know for sure you want to come to Clic (and you SHOULD!) & don't want to risk it selling out, you can go ahead & sign up using the code "JMCH15" to lock in your seat for $50 off AND lock in the Early Bird price! FINALLY, as an extra piece of exciting news, we have decided to stay an extra day in Chapel Hill following the conference on March 25th and we have two mentoring session spots open for anyone either at the conference or in the NC area who wants to get some more intensive one on one help with jump starting your business in 2015!! There are only TWO SPOTS available though so be sure to grab em while you can!
One of my other favorite things about Thanksgiving weekend that has become a tradition over the past few years of my Dad coming up to visit, is that we spend those few days putting up the tree and all of the holiday decorations right away so that they are up for the longest amount of time leading up to Christmas. Truth be told, I would just leave the decorations up year round if I could, because there is nothing like sitting on our couch in the living room with twinkle lights everywhere. It just makes me HAPPY! But I'll just have to settle for the day after Thanksgiving until as long as I can push it in January!
This year, we added quite a bit to our usual decorations so I thought I would give you guys a little tour of everything! First up are our new cable knit stockings we got this year with our names embroidered on them (they're from RH baby & child). I LOVE them! They came in about a month ago and I have been dying to put them up ever since! We're SO lucky to have this amazing huge stone fireplace that is original 1880s in our house (it even has a kettle hook!), and it's just the kind of fireplace that deserves really fun stockings! :)
Going in closer to the mantle, we have a bunch of sparkly trees & the ones on the end light up which is fun! (gold spiral trees are from Pier 1, green sparkly trees are from Crate & Barrel, light up trees are from Home Goods).
Moving just to the right of the mantle, we have our "What's Next" chalkboard set up that we took with us on every stop of our tour all across the country a couple of years ago. I LOVE having this board in our house after so many amazing dreams were written on it...I feel like it has really good vibes! :) On that we hung our new cable knit mitten garland (how cute are they?? Target!), mini trees & Let it Snow sign (all also from Target)
Right next to the chalkboard we have this cool old vintage desk we found when someone was giving it away years ago, and on that we have our Baby It's Cold Outside sign (Home Goods) and this beautiful big ornament (a gift!)
We'll head out the front door now & take a look outside. But only if Cooper can come with us! :) That sled you see in the background there was actually my dad's when he was little. He had it cleaned up & a bow put on it for our front porch!
Justin & my dad trekked up into the woods to bring back some fresh greenery for me to decorate with! Bottom left is a vintage crate with firewood in it stuffed with evergreen. And on the right are our lanterns with berries & green in them (it's crazy but those lanterns were brand new just a couple years ago...this is what the salt air does to everything metal around here!)
All of our windows have light up wreaths on them....we have this down to a science now & can put all them up in about 15 minutes!
Our front door has this big red berry wreath (I think this was Restoration Hardware about 5 years ago) and this year I added the "M"!
Ok, now we'll head back inside to the kitchen! We have this very cool old wood table in there (that we found super cheap on Craigslist) and this year I really knew I wanted to do something with it. I knew it was all going to center around a wood box filled with greenery and gold ornaments, so I just started pulling stuff we have around the house and from the workshops and I'm so happy with how it turned out!
Gold berry wreath (from Target this year), mercury mason jars (Pottery Barn a few years back), Gold bow wreath (I have no idea! We've had it for years but I think it might be Pier One)
I really liked this part of the project! I took the mercury mason jars & wrapped them with one band of burlap ribbon (leftover from a workshop) and then tied on a piece of pine with twine. Then there is actually water & a floating candle inside. Dasher, Dancer, Prancer sign is from TJ Maxx!
Gold glitter ornaments are from Target!
Now this might be my favorite part of the whole thing! I had these gold candles left over from our Charleston workshop (got them at Joann Fabric) and I really wanted some birch wood candle stick holders to go with them. So Justin, being the amazing & resourceful guy that he is, broke out his saw and a specialty drill bit and made them for me!! Husband of the year award right there friends! :)
The little trees in burlap are from the Target dollar bin ($3). They were the find of the year!
Next up, our tree!! We have a light blue, silver, gold and dark gray theme going on our tree and I just love it! There is nothing like sitting by this tree at night and watching movies and drinking cocoa! But most of all, I love our hodge podge of ornaments that all have special meaning, like this little golden guy.
And finally, the view from outside!! Thanks for coming over to visit for a while! :)
I hope you all had a Thanksgiving that was full of family & fun & amazing food! We got to spend the whole weekend with family & it was wonderful! We started off by spending Thanksgiving out in Rhode Island for our annual turkey dinner at Justin's Aunt Ginny's house. This group is such a riot and we always have the best time with them! We eat tons of food and tell stories and just laugh & laugh & laugh!
This year we brought our camera and got some behind the scenes of all the fun!
A proper New England Thanksgiving definitely calls for sailboats!
These red & yellow berries were hand picked by Justin's mom that morning & it's a new england tradition that they are supposed to be good luck!
Let the food begin!!
After dinner we talked everyone in to doing some impromptu portraits on the couch. These are the "Ders" (short for sisters): Justin's mom Nancy, Aunt Pam & Aunt Ginny left to right. And I just LOVE how they love each other & everyone around them! I secretly want to become an honorary Der!
And the Ders + Grammy! She is 88 this year and just as sassy & fashionable as ever!! I ADORE her!
On the right there are Justin's parents, Nancy & Dan. They met right after high school graduation "down the shore" in New Jersey when they were 18 & they have been together ever since (40 years next year!) And they are just as in love today as those two high school kids they were when they first met. They are such an amazing example of marriage for Justin & I and I am thankful for them every day!
LOL! Grammy's cat, Nicholas. We remain convinced that he has plots for world domination. Or at least to star in a Bond movie.
The whole crew this year!!
The next day, my dad & Helen made the long trek up from West Virginia (about 12 hours!) to come spend the weekend with us. For those of you who don't know, my dad is an 8th generation logger. And he is working on a really COOL Christmas present for Justin & I. It's a piece of furniture (a flip top desk) that will be made with actual wood that he cut down. This one right here is the prototype for it, just to make sure we like the design. And then he is going to find a tree with distinctive markings on it so that it is cut into the grain of the wood and will show up in the real desk. So that we can always point to it & say that it was made from the wood of a tree that my dad logged. How amazing is that?!
After that, we loaded up the car and headed out to Mystic for the day, where there was a LOT going on: the Aquarium, the tree lighting & the lighted boat parade!! First up, we went to the aquarium & spent some time playing with the beluga whales. These things are AMAZING!! Somewhere along the line, they learned how to pose for pictures & photo bomb! Seriously! They were doing it with everyone and it was SO funny to watch!
Doooooooo youuuuuuuuu speaaaaaaak WHAAAAALE??
My dad & Helen!
But THIS was my favorite part!!! With all the little kids, they would swim right up to the glass and then open their mouth real wide all of the sudden like they were making funny faces at them. And the kids would just laugh so hard. And then I swear to you it looked like the whales were laughing too! Amazing!
Funny story. When Justin & I had first started dating we went to the aquarium and visited the penguin tank. The lady there was talking about them & she was explaining how this particular breed of penguin tends to stay together for life. About a month later I got a card with penguins on it from J that said "Will you be my penguin?" And it's still something we say to each other to this day.
LOL, that was probably way too mushy gushy to share here on the blog, huh? Sorry if I made anyone throw up a little! :)
We got to watch the sea lion show which was pretty incredible....and made me wonder if I could teach Cooper to do any of those tricks!
Petting the sting rays!!
The Titanic exhibit was pretty awesome! My dad LOVES all things history, so he was in heaven. And here are Justin & I posing with an iceberg! :) You jump, I jump Jack.
Iceberg, right ahead!!
And finally, some of our favorite new fishy friends we made that day!