30 Things for My 30s


For the past few years, I’ve been creating yearly lists for my birthday. As 31 approaches, however, I’ve decided to create a list that encompasses more than just one year. I usually transfer items from year to year anyway, so this just seems to make good sense. ;)

That said, I’ve written 30 things for my 30s…a list of *30 things I hope to do and accomplish during my 30s (how many times can I use 30 in one sentence? Hah!).

*NOTE: You’ll notice that I don’t have exactly 30 things on this list yet. I wanted to leave a few spots open for new possibilities that might come my way. It’s a list in-progress, and God’s been teaching me to embrace the unknown parts of my story with hope, trust, and excitement. Can’t wait to see what He leads me to add in the seasons ahead. :)

  1. Continue to grow my faith and deepen my relationship with God. Pray continually; listen; make space for God to move.
  2. Read through the entire Bible.
  3. Travel: Nashville, Austin, Seattle, Portland — Europe!! 
  4. Print an Instagram photo album each year that captures and celebrates both the large and small moments of life. (I just printed one that covers the last few years, and I’ll share a post about it soon.)
  5. Print a hard copy of my eBook.
  6. Dream up a new idea for a book or women’s devotional.
  7. Find a book agent, and publish a book thanks to help of said agent.
  8. Redesign my website and start an e-newsletter.
  9. Buy a house.
  10. Marry my best friend.
  11. Start a family.
  12. Set up my own art/writing studio space.
  13. Redefine what art making means to me and the role it plays in my life. (I haven’t made a collage in years, and I miss painting and art journaling. I’d love to explore new textures, colors, and patterns — like neons, metallics, hand lettering, and doodles.)
  14. Explore new freelance writing possibilities, and pitch to a few dream publications.
  15. Get a vintage-inspired bright pink or blue bicycle with a basket, and live in a bike-friendly neighborhood.
  16. Learn how to create videos for my blog/website.
  17. Find a fitness routine that truly works for me and stick to it.
  18. Continue to cut processed foods and sugar from my diet; eat foods that make me feel good and energized. Join a CSA.
  19. Host a holiday dinner for my family.
  20. Take art and/or writing classes. Never stop learning and growing.
  21. Host a coffee with creatives event in Cleveland. Be a supporter of the local arts!
  22. Dip my toes into the waters of DIY-ing and spray paint my living room side tables.
  23. Continue to explore the Akron/Cleveland art and food scene.
  24. Practice my hand lettering. (Try brush script! Play with color!)
  25. Add to my Fiestaware collection.
  26. Find new ways to mentor/encourage others to live and tell inspired stories (I’d love to mentor college students!).
  27. TBD
  28. TBD
  29. TBD
  30. TBD

And that concludes my list so far. I’ll continue to add to and update it as needed. It will be exciting to see how God shapes this list in the seasons ahead, and the adventures that arise as a result.

Do you have a list of your own? I’d love to know what’s on it!

Hello, Spring (A Let’s Catch Up a Bit Post)


Things have been a bit quiet around here lately (no posts in two weeks!). Whoops.

But my heart hasn’t been quiet — I’ve been working and praying through some new dreams and ideas.


I’ve been feeling super excited about a new venture/idea/dream God has placed on my heart. I want to take the whole idea of #AnInspiredLife to the next level. I want to help you live * AND TELL * inspired stories! I’m in the brainstorming, dreaming, praying phase of what this could look like…but thinking about possibly working with people on an individual basis to help them discover the heart of their story and then how to tell and share it creatively. Thinking this could translate to working with you to write your mission statement, web site copy, etc.

Over the last few years, I’ve realized how much I love celebrating others’ stories and how inspired I am by what God is doing through each of our stories. I’m also a big geek when it comes to branding and creatively telling our stories, so I’ve realized doing more with the writing side of branding might be a perfect fit for me.

So, YAY!

Spring is such a good time to explore new hopes and dreams, yes??

More on all of this very soon.

In the meantime…

A few random, hopeful, springy things: I bought some blueberry coffee (undecided on whether or not I like it); I’ve been filling the house with fresh flowers (makes my heart SO HAPPY); I’ve been reminding myself to be brave (we could all use a reminder sometimes, eh?); and I’ve been searching for the perfect neon yellow polish.

It’s the little things sometimes, huh? Okay, many times. :)

What’s new with you?

After The Goals Have Been Set…


A few days ago, I posted my 2014 vision statement and goals. I just love the goal and vision-setting process, but after the goals are done, where to begin, right?

I highly, highly recommend purchasing a set of Lara Casey’s PowerSheets. Last night, I started working through her action-planning sheets for each of my five goals. I will soon be filling out weekly and monthly tending sheets, as well. (The perfectionist in me wants to rush through this process, because, goodness, we are already a week into January, and I need to get planning for this month!) But one thing I’ve learned from Lara is that great things happen little by little.

Small steps. Small changes. Faith as small as a mustard seed.

Last night, as I was working, I started to feel I was rushing, quickly writing things down, in order to make it to the tending sheets, but then I closed my binder and just decided I was going to take the rest of this week and weekend to prayerfully make my way through the rest of my action-planning and brainstorming. I don’t want a meaningless to-list full of meaningless action items. I want a list that brings God glory and truly makes a difference in my life and others’ lives.

So, I guess the answer to this post’s question of where to begin after you’ve set your goals is actually pretty simple:

Prayerful planning that leads to small steps and small changes…And faith as small as a mustard seed that God will move in BIG WAYS.

P.S. I’m getting excited to prep for the book club I’m kicking off next month.

If you need a little extra inspiration to live fully and pursue the vision you’ve set for your year, I encourage you to sign up to be a part of it.

Goal Setting With Lara Casey (Continued)


It’s hard to believe that today is the LAST DAY of 2013! In so many ways, it feels like this year flew by. Anyone else feel that way?!

Before the end-of-the-year celebrations begin, I’m taking a few quiet minutes this morning to check in on Lara’s Goal Setting series and post a progress update of my own.

I’m still working on prayerfully writing my 2014 vision, but I have written out what I’ll be saying YES and NO to in 2014 (as well as my list of what fires me up). (I know, I’ve gone a little bit out of order with my steps, but for some reason, I still haven’t arrived at the vision statement I know is right for my year. I’ll share that as soon as it’s ready.)

Here’s my list of what fires me up:

Coffee; creative collaborations; dreaming big dreams and encouraging others to dream big; art; new ideas; hearing Him speak through His Word; creating beautiful things; reading; photography; typography and hand lettering; capturing moments and memories; big laughter; dark chocolate; fresh flowers; farmers markets; creative couples who are making a difference for Jesus; sparkle; feeling inspired and inspiring others; prayer walks; grace; beautiful love stories; collage art; art journals; coffee shops; bookstores; libraries; dusty antique shops that hold treasures just waiting to be discovered; polka dots; charm; whimsy; hope; being brave; bright colors; living life fully and creatively

And here’s what I’ll be saying YES to in 2014:

Holy yoga; reading good books; eating and cooking with healthy, fresh foods; focused prayer/quiet time; seeing the possibilities in each day; exercising regularly; lots of creative collaborations; new adventures (and writing about/photographing them); learning more about hand lettering and typography; engaging in my city’s art community; dating intentionally; art journals/making more art on a regular basis; coffee dates; celebrating my life and story (and helping others do the same!)

What about you? What fires you up? And how will you make more space for those things in your life next year? What will you say YES to in 2014 in order to live the life you were made to live?

::image via Lara Casey::

A Few Thoughts on a Snowy Saturday + February Goals


Hi, friends, and happy snowy, wintry Saturday! ;)


I’ve spent my morning cozy inside, baking cinnamon rolls and working through my current YouVersion plans. This morning, I was really moved by this verse: For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. I want to be filling my heart with His word and His truth, so the overflow is fruitful. When I was journaling this morning, I realized that means I need to store up His truth and allow that to impact and influence all I do (whether it’s writing and creating or just my daily interactions with the people God’s placed in my life). Really good, encouraging, convicting stuff. I just can’t skimp on my time with Him. This is something I am definitely learning and growing in.

Are you doing the She Reads Truth Soul Detox plan? If so, would love to know what you’re taking away from it.

I’m also gearing up for today’s Blog Brunch about Pinterest. Yay! Do you participate in the Blog Brunch Twitter events? I always find so much encouragement and inspiration and great resources during the brunches.

This morning, I also found out about My Pretty Pennies’ monthly goals link-up, and you know what a dreamer/goal setter/list maker I am, so this is right up my alley. I’m looking forward to setting monthly goals that support the completion of my 29 Things list and that help me live this year with my One Little Word in mind — taking risks and learning and going further.


So, here we go with February’s goals:

1. Keep at my organization projects. Next up: finish going through clothing and donate unwanted items. And: set up a more efficient desk/work space.

2. Create my own weekly or monthly meal plan/shopping list to help with my goal to eat fewer processed foods and more fresh in-season foods. If you have any great recipe resources, do let me know. I’m looking for quick, simple, healthy, and delicious! ;)

3. Take two Influence Network classes (focusing on personal branding and eBook creation).

4. Finish the next chapter of my eBook (and post my first behind-the-scenes update right here on the blog).

5. Get back into art journaling. Create at least one page in my book this month.


What about you? Do you set monthly goals? If you’d like to participate in the link-up, check out Ginna’s post, here.

What do you want your life to look like?

I was SO inspired by this post from Jessi of Naptime Diaries that I knew I wanted to create a similar list. And what better time than right before the beginning of a new year? ;)

Before I share my list, I think it’s important and inspiring to share what Jessi had to say about hers — because the same is true for mine.

She said her list was not created because she wants to be BETTER or because she wants to change her life, but because she wants the Lord to change her, and she prays her list will be some of the fruits of that change. 

So, here goes. Here are the prayers I am praying, the fruits I hope to see in my own life, because of His goodness + faithfulness to work in my heart and change me a little bit more each and every day.


And the fine print, so to speak… ;)

1. I’m going to keep praying boldly about this and not doubting the hope He’s placed on my heart. I’m going to keep believing and trusting and learning and serving until He orchestrates this in His perfect time.

2. AMEN. I’m learning how to love better all the time. And luckily, I’ve got the best teacher in Him. ;)

3. Love this creative heart He’s blessed me with, and I want to use it to the fullest.

4. I want this blog to be a blessing. I want it to inspire hope and joy and bring encouragement to hearts that need it. And I want it to become a place where prayers and stories are shared freely, where we come together and spur each other on.

5.  Lord, help my unbelief. Grow my faith and my hope bigger + bigger.

6. The heart and soul of this blog. It’s what I hope for myself — and what I hope for my readers.

* * *

What about you? What are some of the hopes + dreams you have on your heart? What fruits do you want to see in your life?

eBook Update

{ art by Promise Tangeman }

So far, my eBook journey has been both inspiring and challenging (but in all the best ways). It truly is such an incredible feeling to be pursuing this dream of mine.

I wanted to pop in with a little update, as I have a few exciting details to share.

1. I’m narrowing down the title, and I’ll have that to share here soon!


2. I’m planning for a spring release-date!  I’m looking forward to spending the cold & snowy winter months being cozy inside and writing + designing my little heart out!

Are you currently pursuing any God-sized dreams? I’d love to hear about them!

Weekending: Dreaming & Doing

Spent the day getting photos taken for this little blog of mine and the e-book I’m currently working on. It was an amazingly inspiring day filled with photography goodness. But I’m definitely all tuckered out now. ;)

It’s a good feeling when we start going after our dreams, isn’t it?

Happy weekend to you! I hope you do something that makes your heart happy.



I’m writing a book!

…an e-book, that is. ;)

I’m super excited about this project and plan to share many more details here on the blog closer to its launch.

Here’s what I can share right now: I’m in the beginning phases of e-book creation, and you can expect to see it for sale right here on the blog sometime this fall. I’m creating a book that will be packed with what I’m most passionate about: inspiration — and beautiful words, artwork, and photography. (Stay tuned for a more detailed post about the content you’ll find in my ebook, as we get closer to the launch date.)

Thanks for sharing in this exciting journey with me!


Giving Thanks: 6.4.12

This week, my heart is thankful for:

Tiny steps forward toward new goals, dreams, and aspirations
Prayer walks, feeling God’s presence surround
An inspiring craft show experience, shared with my sister
An encouraging sermon at church on Sunday and the idea that God WANTS to and WILL speak TO us and THROUGH us
One Thousand Gifts app to help me continue to grow in gratitude, faith, and trust
Craft show finds that delight me
Being behind the lens of my camera—seeing the beauty and the inspiration in my life
Writing bravely about my faith, my art, my heart
Art journaling on my porch

What about you? What are you thankful for this week? :)