simple pleasures.

The "little" things in life:  {the unexhaustive version}

magazines. warm coffee + creamer. eyedrops. honey roasted peanuts. glee. foodgawker.com. mashed potatoes. netflix instant queue. real housewives. cute flats. muffins. curled ribbons. big sunglasses. jim rome show. fine tip sharpies. spider solitare. camera obscura. dark nail polish. lauren conrad braids. google reader. fresh-out-of-the-dryer clothes. dlisted.com. buttered toast + brown sugar. scarves. slippers. dangling earrings. long necklaces. fiestaware. plaid shirts. chapstick. sparkly rings. karma's meow. mascara. minty gum. black + white pictures. colorful bowls. online shopping. blogging. cookbook photos. sales at tj maxx. a big bouquet of flowers. mason jars. celebrity fashion at award shows. writing down ideas from magazines. browsing the library. pink + orange. browsing facebook {especially looking at wedding/baby pictures}. writing my new last name. eating apples while driving home. the current. sunset blush wine. calendars. bulletin boards. chad's laugh. ice cubes in my water. getting a random text message. cardigans. victoria's secret tees. blush on my cheeks. long fingernails. watching tv in bed. scrubby face wash. buying fresh produce. writing chad a love note on the white board.

P.S. If you have ever felt the need to contact me via email--now you can! Any questions or ideas or tips... Please write to me at: projectsimplelife@gmail.com

original blog post idea from miss marta.


happy ears.

 Hi Monday! With the weather getting colder and the leaves changing color, my music preference changes too. My daily drive is quite long, so here's what I am choosing to listen to this week.

Listen to my Autumn Playlist: right here.
In case you are interested--

01. Harvest Moon: Neil Young
02. Grapevine Fires: Death Cab For Cutie
03. Cinder and Smoke: Iron & Wine
04. Long Time Traveler: The Wailin' Jennys
05. re: Stacks: Bon Iver
06. Kaleidoscope Heart: Sara Bareilles
07. Now at Last: Feist
08. Different Names For The Same Thing: Death Cab For Cutie
09. Autumn Leaves: Nat King Cole
10. Brand New Shoes: She & Him
11. Two Weeks: Grizzly Bear
12. Train Song: Feist + Ben Gibbard

P.S. Want to win some beautiful postcards? Enter Jess's giveaway! Seriously...


fallin', yes I am fallin'

Apple Trees. Corn Fields. Colorful Trees. Bright Blue Skies.

I am officially ready for fall. Earlier this week, I was thinking about what Sheena said about summer. Now I'm ready to welcome beautiful autumn and all the comes with it.

The first apple pie. {Am baking it this week!}
The apple picking at Bushel & Peck-see above photo. {isn't that the cutest name?}
The new wardrobe I have to get out of storage. {must buy new work pants}
The pumpkin spice latte.
The butternut squash soup...I guess I just can't wait for the first fall in my own kitchen.

I'm also thinking about this post I wrote last fall: Autumn Leaves by Nat King Cole.

P.S. Happy news to report--my sister, Laura, is having another baby! We'll welcome him/her in late April or early May next year!


I never knew.

Something about this photo grabbed my attention today.

I never knew:

:how much Chad would love and honor his role of being my husband. He does not cease to amaze and surprise me with how much of a partner he is being, especially since I started school. Example: yesterday morning, I got out of the shower and he had a breakfast of eggs + toast waiting for me. He is taking care of the dishes, cleaning, and housekeeping while giving me a chance to study guilt & worry-free.

:how much different learning at a university level would be. I was having a conversation with my dad {a college professor} about this very subject and he told me that the teachers expect more from the students since we're all adults. It's a no-slacking zone for me and I have to come up with the patience and motivation to study every night. I am reading more about children's book illustrators, the Age of Enlightenment, the Information Revolution and the six categories of nutrients...than I ever thought I would. Some of the students that I have class with are on another level. True Story: when discussing society's views of children from the 14th century to the 20th century, one student made a comment that included the word "antequated". {I know that might not seem like a big word to you, but it completely blew me away.} I even wrote it down in my notes so that I would remember to share the story with you. :)

:just how quickly autumn is approaching. {I like the word "autumn" so much more than "fall", don't you? It's such a melodic word.} Note: It's exactly 7 days away from today. It's becoming evident to me that I need to start dressing for the season because my outfit today is a long-sleeve tee under a t-shirt, sans jacket. With the temperature in the mid-50s, my hands were little icicles when walking the two blocks from my car to my first class.

I think I'm really going to enjoy the drive from Eau Claire to Stout for the next month or so. The interstate is surrounding by colorful changing leaves. It's like a get a whole new view day after day.

I can't wait to eat like you should in autumn: cozy, filling meals. I've already been browsing joy the baker and food gawker bookmarking some meals & desserts I want to try. This year, I'm giong to attempt to make my first apple pie ever. From scratch. {Experienced pie-makers: any tricks of the trade you've discovered? Would love some advice for this pie-making beginner.} I'm not going to attempt the fall leaves pie a`la Martha--I just want it to turn out tasty.

I'm also eager to make my first homemade chicken noodle soup. I watched the America's Test Kitchen episode featuring their version, and now it's saved in my recipe folder. I have to wait until I have a free Saturday afternoon though, since it's going to take a while, but all the good things in life do, don't they?

:just how much I'm looking forward to next week. It's the beginning of all the major television shows. After a summer of Real Housewives and Project Runway, I'm ready for the new season. The ones I'm most excited for? How I Met Your Mother {see my love for it's brilliance here}. House. Glee! 30 Rock. The Office. Dexter. Hopefully my DVR can handle the workout...

:that you could get back issues of magazines at my local library. And...there's no limit to the number of issues you can check out. So, that's why there are now 2 Marthas, 3 InStyles, 3 Oprahs, and 1 People sitting on my kitchen counter. I made sure to get some Thanksgiving and Christmas issues--it's not to early to start take notes and save recipe ideas. Hey, I've gotta fill my time somehow when Chad is gone this weekend. It's turning out to be eerily similar to this weekend. Oh well. :)


the many faces of a 16-month-old.

Wanna spend 3 minutes looking at some serious cuteness?

Well, good thing I was able to spend 4 whole days this past week/weekend seeing my nephew so that I could capture a little for your viewing pleasure.The last time I posted about UJ, he was only this big. Look at him now...

He is so the active little monkey right now. His life is all about being fascinated by light switches, dancing in the car seat, adding new words like "ba" (ball) "Mo?" (more) and "up", trying to understand life's little mysteries like how to snap a car seat latch and what makes a fan spin. He is the best nephew in our lives--not to mention completely adorable. :)

speaking of school....

Fall is here
Hear the yell
Back to school
Ring the bell
Brand new shoes
Walking blues
Climb the fence
Books and pens
I can tell that we're going to be friends
--The White Stripes

Feel like watching the music video for "We're Going to Be Friends" by The White Stripes? I've got it right here.

woodblock school bus print
notebook paper-style zipper cases
vintage crayons with cardboard canister
be patient print

P.S. Up next I'll be sharing my first-day-of-school wishlist.


off on an adventure.

Originally, this was going to the title of a post sharing my weekend plans. I even had the above picture all picked out. And yes, there will be a post about my weekend on my out-of-town adventure coming up soon. But when I was thinking about the off on an adventure title, another idea starting to take form.

An idea all about this:

Stout. The beginning of my new adventure. On Friday, I had to go there for orientation, getting my books, finding my classrooms, etc. Alone. Without knowing anyone. It was unchartered territory for me. It still is unchartered territory for me since I haven't really started school yet, but at least now, I know where the library is. I got a tip on where to park without getting a parking ticket. I have a stack of books waiting to be opened, waiting for me to copy down important phrases.

I am the kind of person that doesn't handle the unknown very well. When I was driving to school I thought about all the things that could go wrong--not finding the orientation place, not being able to figure out where I need to go.

But then, I spent 3 hours there. I found the orientation meeting. I found the place to get my ID picture taken. I got my school books. I walked out of school at the end of the day feeling like I had accomplished something. And yes, I do still have a long way to go before I'm done there. But I feel like I'm ready for the beginning. So much is waiting for me at my new place. My place to learn and my place to find how to be the best teacher I can.  I am ready to learn.

Here I go...


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