Thursday, January 30, 2014

Once: A Musical

My sister and I went to see Once last week at the Durham Performing Arts Center and let's just say... it was breathtaking, mesmerizing, incredible, and goose-bump-inducing! This was the musical Emily and I wanted to go see during our New York City trip back in October. But unfortunately, we did not get to the theater early enough to get the affordable tickets.

As soon as I saw a DPAC commercial for the Off-Broadway tour of Once, I knew I had to go see it! Luckily, since there are three large Universities in the area DPAC offers an amazing deal for student tickets! Yes, the seats are in the back row but hey, getting Broadway tickets for under $30? Well that is perfect on my college budget! So my sister and I ended up getting two tickets for a Thursday night show!

Needless to say, I LOVE musicals and Once is the epitome of just that. Y'all.... the music, oh the music was just incredible! I loved that the focus of the entire show was the music. There was only one set and the company was the orchestra. Going to Ireland has always been a dream of mine but study abroad trips never worked out. But this musical took me there for the two hours of the show! The Irish accents, music, and pub setting was perfect, it even made Taylor and I just about forget that we were in the back row!
Have I said how amazing the music was yet? Well just in case you need a little incentive to look up where you can go see Once, I added two of my favorite songs to this post! They still give me goosebumps when I watch them.

And it just so happens that the main girl in Once, Cristin Milioti, is Ted's wife in How I Met Your Mother!! 

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Monday, January 27, 2014

Pantene Beautiful Lengths

If you follow me on instagram | @morgannalexandra, you might have noticed I am missing 10 inches of my mane. The other weekend I decided to donate 10 inches of my hair to Pantene Beautiful Lengths and I am so excited to share a few of the pictures!

"The role of Pantene is to help women grow long, strong, beautiful hair and provide the funds to turn this hair into free, real-hair wigs for women with cancer. So far, Pantene has donated 24,000 free real-hair wigs to the American Cancer Society’s wig banks, which distribute wigs to cancer patients across the country," states the Pantene website.
Friends, I have almost ALWAYS had long hair. This was something I have been considering for a while but it was so hard to pull the trigger (or snip the scissors ha!). The more I thought about it and prayed over it I realized how ridiculous it was that I was attached to my hair... it's just that, HAIR!

Since I rarely get hair cuts (they are just so expensive!), I do not have a regular place or stylist. So I picked out a random salon with a random stylist and placed my trust in her hands! I'll be honest, I was quite nervous when she was surprised at how thick my hair was and started sawing through my ponytail!

It is such an amazing feeling to be able to hold your ponytail and know that it's going to be made into a wig and given to some woman, man or child who is going through chemotherapy or radiation. I am thankful I have the ability to grow my hair out in order to donate it to someone who misses their own.

It's the little things in life that bring happiness. It's paying for someones coffee or food, leaving a note on a friend's windshield, or even donating your hair to a stranger that shows people you love them!

Andddd of course I had to send tons of pictures and SnapChats to my friends and family!!

Happy Monday!
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Friday, January 17, 2014

Be Still and Know

I am so excited to show y'all something I have been working on! I love paper products and I love pretty calligraphy/handwriting on that paper. I am in the process of making prints about what matters most, re-branding into Morgan Alexandra, buying a web domain (yayy no more .blogspot soon!) and opening an etsy shop!! It seemed suiting that the first print I made would go to my mom. A crisp white sheet of card stock with the words"be still" flowing across in calligraphy ink. "Be still" is the beginning of a verse that is oh SO powerful.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10

I LOVE this verse and it calls us to do just be STILL. How often are we really truly STILL in our lives? Still meaning no social media, no TV, and no worrisome thoughts. Just being still with the bible and our journals to let it all go. I can honestly say, I am not still as often as I need to be. I am notorious for constantly going over situations or plans in my head. Being honest here friends... my prayers sometimes end with me becoming distracted and thinking about something that happened that day or something I should have done differently. Anyone else with me?
This second part of this verse really resonates in my life right now. "Be still, AND KNOW that I am God." He is there for us friends! We can't take on the world by ourselves, we need him. We need to trust him. (On a side note, isn't my mom the cutest!!) 

I have not been posting on this lovely little blog as consistently as I would like. I have been struggling with comparing myself to other bloggers. But I am set apart, I am one of a kind, and I have decided to focus wholeheartedly on my 2014 goal setting process and am really trying to BE STILL and know that HE is God and that he has the perfect path for me and the new found love blog!

Just being real sweet friends! If you are interested in custom prints please comment or send me an email :) I hope everyone has a relaxing-blessed-fun weekend!
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Friday, January 10, 2014

Five on Friday

Goodness friends I haven't linked up for Five on Friday in such a long time! I'd say it's about time to join the lovely ladies again. Linking up with ChristinaDarciApril, and Natasha for my favorites from this week!

{one} Simplifying my life is something I am focusing on this year! Cleaning out my closet was LONG overdo. My process for this was anything I haven't worn in the last month or two months gets donated. I have challenged myself to not buy any new pieces of clothing, my own version of the contentment challenge.
{two} This gorgeous calendar caught my eye in Anthro a few weeks ago. I LOVED the image of the derby on the front and once I saw all the beautiful images it contained I just had to have it. The 2014 Travel America Calendar from Rifle Paper Co. highlights iconic images around our beautiful nation and i jsut so happens that I have only been to the first five places listed... coincidence? Maybe but I cant wait to travel to the other 7!
{three} I am in the beginning stages of my PowerSheets journey and they are nestled in my beautiful Simplified Life Binder, that I talk about here. This process has been a very revealing, brutally honest process. I am working through Lara Casey's Goal Setting Series and.... it's tough. God keeps revealing to me "Fear not for I am with you," Isaiah 41:10. It is so hard to give over control but goodness, I have to just trust that His plans are A MILLION times better than any plans I could every dream up!
{four} A perfect reminder as I begin many new adventures! Print by Mandy Cave Watercolor.
{five} STILL reeling over this experience of a lifetime! If any of y'all follow along you know I love two animals very, very dearly... Newfoundland dogs and manatees. During my Christmas break I had the privilege of swimming with the gentle wild manatees in Crystal River! See all my pictures here :) Warning they are so cute your heart will melt!
Happy Weekend from my manatee friends and I!
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Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Simplified Life Binder

I am such a planner girl. I like my little check boxes, my daily to-do lists, and goal lists. But sometimes the to-do and goal lists tend to blend together. I want my goals to be set apart from my daily tasks of getting cereal or paying a bill. Goals should be something I look forward to, something I build up to not just another check on my to-do lists. I've determined that setting good goals is a really tough, really revealing process. You really have to dig down deep and truly ask yourself how you are doing and what fires up your heart!

In order to make this happen, I asked for a few lovely paper products for Christmas. The first was the Simplified Life Binder Starter Kit by Emily Ley and the second was my very own set of PowerSheets by Lara Casey.
The Simplified Life Binder Starter Kit comes with a binder of your choice, a set of colorful dividers with empowering sayings on them, a tabs notebook, as well as three sheet sets: Spending, To Do, and Grocery List. They are so bright and cheerful! Emily Ley offers many other free printables that can be easily dressed up with pretty tape.
Inside my pretty striped binder is a set of 2014 PowerSheets
These are so inspiring! If you want a kick in the tail to get truthful about what fires you up I would highly recommend working through the PowerSheets. You have to make sure you are completely honest with yourself in order to accomplish whatever goals you have!
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Saturday, January 04, 2014

Simplify: Email

Everyday when I check my email, I sort through SO many subscriptions! When I realized how much time in my day is spent deleting subscription emails, I knew I had to do something to manage my time better. I stumbled across while reading Victoria Straders's post on Happily Ever Strader about controlling subscription emails.

Unroll me is a service that can simplify your inbox! I had no idea how many subscriptions I was signed up for until I saw the running total pop-up. 104, I had 104 subscriptions! Phew, what a waste of time sorting through those daily deal emails.

Now when I check my email it will not be filled with subscription after subscription but with the important emails I actually need to spend my time reading!
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Friday, January 03, 2014

January Goals

2014, goodness gracious I can not believe it is 2014! This year holds many big changes for my life and as a girl who is not to fond of change that is quite scary. I learned many things in 2013 and one of the most important things I learned was to not try to plan out my future. I know only one person knows the future and I know I am safe in His arms. Before I get into my January goals (2014 goals are in the making), I want to look back on my December Goals.

December Goals:
Design the family Christmas Card this is one of my favorite things! I love paper and sending handwritten mail to family and friends
Practice my calligraphy  calligraphy is very challenging but I am working on practicing for a little while each day
Get a present for an Angel Tree child  my roommate Emily and I got a sweet angel a beautiful Belle princess dress
Build a gingerbread house {or barn}  attended the Southern Weddings gingerbread barn building competition with my roommates see our creation here
Wrap Christmas presents beautifully {no rushing!} as usual ran out of time... maybe next year!
Join Lara for Present December I intend on keeping this going!
Practice Adobe Creative Cloud Programs I am learning my way around Indesign, Photoshop, Lightroom, Muse, and Illustrator
Buy or make 5 darling ornaments to give away  I loved doing this! see the lovely ornament I made here
Slowwwdown, spend meaningful time in the Word I still need to set aside time daily in the word. Wanting to start my day with a candle burning, coffee or tea in hand, journal writing, and bible reading!
Begin to work on my new website design I am SO excited about this! A domain has been purchased and I will start sharing sneak peaks soon
Start working through Lara Casey's PowerSheets  I began my PowerSheet journey on December 29, 2013 and PHEW it is kicking my tail into shape! I am so excited about digging deep in this journey and facing my fears head on.
Buy a stranger Starbucks  This was so much fun! I loved the sneakiness of surprising the family in the minivan behind me that their drinks were taken care of by a stranger!
Craft...something! & post a how to  I made and ornament! See how you can too here
Drive around neighborhoods to see Christmas lights  My family did one better! We drove around James Island Holiday Festival of Lights in Charleston, South Carolina. It was absolutely incredible... I highly recommend this light show and the fireworks on New Years Eve!
Coffee or Cupcake dates with friends over finals week  This goal was a favorite of mine. I loved the sweet time I had with two of my best friends to take a second, slow down and be present in each others lives. You can read about it here

Phew, What a month! Now that January is here and a bright, shiny New Year is in front of us, it makes goals that much more exciting. While my 2014 goals are in production, I will leave you with my goals for January!

January Goals
continue working on my personal goals for 2014
be completely transparent and honest while working through my set of PowerSheets
begin working on some lovely paper products
keep practicing Adobe programs
work on my new website, YAY!
DAILY quiet time in The Word and my journal
dance around my room to music daily
go on more friend dates
volunteer and serve at a local charity
continue to BE PRESENT

Happy January friends, I would love to hear some of your goals! May this month be the beginning of a great year :)
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Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Wedding Wednesdays: Mix and Match Bridesmaid Dresses

What better way to bring in the New Year than with gold sparkly dresses?! I love the trend of letting your gals pick the bridesmaid dresses of their choice. Having the dresses be the same material or within the same color family helps unite the different styles. Dresses with different necklines let bridesmaids pick styles which best suit their personal body type or style!

Photography by Braedon Flynn Photography // via Style Me Pretty
Photography by Megan Thiele // via Southern Weddings
Photography by Emily Blake  // via Style Me Pretty
 Photography by Sean Money and Elizabeth Fay // via The Lovely Find
Photography by Mandy Busby Creative // via Style Me Pretty
Photography by Dan + Natalie Watson of Waston-Studios // via Style Me Pretty

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