Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Snowed In... (my view of the outside)

In one month, we had a week of sunshine and 70's, laying out in the yard. Two weeks of blizzards, and this week it is back in the 70's. This Oklahoma weather is so unpredictable, but I am always happy for the quick change when life starts to feel stale.
The two weeks of snow that we had, I got so much done around the house. And even though my motherly instincts told me to stay inside in my warm, cozy house with a cup a tea, the adventurer in me needed a bit of a break from staring at four walls.

Here are a few photos from our days in the snow.

I always appreciate Petey (our Honda Element) on snow days. When everyone else is stuck in snow drifts on the side of the road, we're cruising by. He has also saved quite a few stranded motorists in his day, pulling them to safety.

We've put over 50,000 miles on him, exploring a few states and heading on lots of little road trips over the last 3 years that we've had him.

Here are a few photos I snapped on my phone on the day that Michael built an igloo. My husband is a builder of everything. I threw the ball with H and kept him entertained so he wouldn't remember how cold his paws were. In the end, I could barely crawl inside because of my huge belly. We stayed out there in the freezing cold, proud of our igloo until it was almost dark. Only after Michael asked (half-jokingly) "Do you want to sleep out here, tonight?" I really did marry adventure when I said "I do." And no, I didn't sleep in the igloo in the freezing cold, 8 months pregnant.


This break away from the internet has been just what I needed. I've been taking pictures, working on the nursery, sending off packages, and working on stock products for the shop. My computer is actually broken at the moment, and I've been in no rush to figure out how to fix it. The moment to breathe without distraction has been wonderful, and I am going to keep up with only getting online for a couple hours a week here and there.
I can't imagine how busy our new lives will be, come April. But it is a kind of busy that I can not wait to experience.

A few questions I've been asked, lately:

What camera/lenses do you use?
I have probably been asked this question 10,000 times in my life :) Not only that, but it is the very first question on my FAQ page. You can find my response, there.

What's your skincare routine?
Not much of one at all, actually! I wash my face at night with a natural soap. Actually I wash everything with it. Michael even washes his hair with it. We buy it in bulk when we visit Austin a couple times a year. This time we came back with 28 bars :) There are tons, and tons of different companies out there that make natural soap. Here is our favorite.
Other than that, nothing. I eat really well, and that's normally the very first thing I tell people to do if they want to have good skin. You are what you eat. Here is a list of 20 good foods for good skin. Those are all huge staples in my diet, and the best skin care routine you can come up with.
I use natural exfoliating sponges, and I think that helps a lot, as well.

Do you use a tripod?
Yes, and yes. I hardly ever used to use it, but now I wonder how I ever lived without one. Especially for photos around the house.

Your toe nails are always so white! What do you use on them?
HA! I got a little laugh out of that one. Thank you! I used to never have naked toes, but over the last 2 years I have just given up on all polish. I really love short, healthy, clean nails. I think it is the best look of all. I just buff them with a regular nail buffer, and that's it. It gives them a smooth surface and shine, with no chipping or maintenance. Not to mention reaching my toes isn't as easy, anymore :)

Because you are so down to earth, would you ever consider not wearing makeup because it is so bad for your skin?
I honestly hate make up. My least favorite part of my day is putting it on. I agree that it is terrible for your skin, so I just try to keep it minimal with a loose powder that I dust on. You will never catch me wearing foundation, or anything heavy on my face.
With that being said, I think all little girls are a piece of their Mothers. Growing up, I would sit on my Mom's bed and watch her paint on all of her beautiful Lancome makeup. I feel like I have adapted a lot of my Mom's theory on style, and how we look. To me, I think it's important (but not the most important thing) to look as beautiful on the outside as we do on the inside. I don't use my makeup as a mask, and just like to accent with it. As much as I'd love to give it up, I just think I look much more polished and put together with it on. But on the weekends nothing touches my face :) Those are free days.

Where did you get the birds in the nursery? I purchased them at a local boutique. I get asked a lot of questions about where I buy things, and to be honest, I will probably be no help. I hardly ever shop online, and try to just stay around here in my favorite little local stores. And a lot of the things in our house have been here for years.

What color is the green paint on your walls? It's Ryegrass by Behr. It's the color in our kitchen, and dining room. I love it! It's more yellow during the day, and takes on an olive hint at night. I've used just about every brand of paint, and Behr hasn't been my favorite as far as quality goes, but I love the color. When we move, I think I will try to match this swatch to another brand I like, just to keep the color around.

Where did your sister get the bird pendant?
I couldn't tell you, I'm sorry. I would ask her but she bought it years ago, so I know it's long gone. I have had a bird obsession since I was a little girl, so the little bird trinkets in our house could be years and years old.
Creepy side note: When I was young, I had a fascination with dead things. Birds in particular. I found a dead one at the zoo, and my Mom let me bring it home in a cup to observe and play with for the day before I had to throw it away. Who knew that I would turn out so normal, with only a slight obsession with birds. All early signs pointed to serial killer :)

Will you be selling your prints?
I would love to. I have always wanted to, but feel overwhelmed when it comes to decisions about it. I will hopefully find a company soon that I can get my prints done through.


Anonymous said...

Gorgeous, glowing photos. I live in Rhode Island (we're still under quite a bit of snow ourselves) and before we got married, I'd visit my husband in Kansas where he was stationed with the Army. I loved that part of the country, how flat and open everything is. Your photos brought back a lot of sweet memories of the Midwest.

Just wanted to leave a note because I happened upon your blog last week and I am enamored. I know you must hear it often, but I've been finding so much inspiration in your photos and words-- your blog has truly pulled me out of a winter funk/depression that has kept me from my creativity and sucked the life out of me. Your blog's beauty has helped me re-find my passion, so I wanted to thank you for that. It's almost as though I see my surroundings differently now, like I'm always looking through the lens. Thank you for sharing your world with us!


Anonymous said...

your photos are gorgeous, as usual. i love the long purple scarf you're wearing!

Marfio said...

Hello Miss Aura (or should I say Mrs Aura?). Michael is like a big kid who is very good at construction - the comment about sleeping in the igloo really made my day!

I know you have just answered a tonne of questions, but here's another one for you - will you be keeping Petey when your baby bird arrives?

Hope you're enjoying whatever weather Oklahoma is bringing your way at the minute - we are warm but grey here. M xx

ashley noelle said...

Is it just me or does that old stone house spell "OU"? You can't escape college football anywhere in OK, can you!?

Kassie said...

Hello. My name is Kassie and I am an Oklahoman myself. I just wanted to write you a little note to tell you that I think that you are an absolutely amazing photographer and that your blog is such an inspiration to me and my desire for adventure in life. Thank you.

Gaby said...

Your photos actually make me miss the snow, and I never thought I'd say that when i left Canada to move to Australia :) Oh, and your igloo is awesome. x

yours truly, melissa said...

Can't believe you are 8 months along... And that's so funny that your husband asked if you wanted to sleep out there! Do you think he would've done it if you'd said "sure!"

Chloe said...

Beautiful post as usual... But seeing this snow really makes me grateful to live in Southern California! My husband and I went to the Grand Canyon in December last year and the snow/cold killed us! It was bad, haha!

Oh and thanks for answering those questions :) you are so sweet.

Anonymous said...

Oh snow! I'm swooning! Pretty pretty pretty pictures of pretty pretty pretty snow! What a perfect way to start my day! :) I am wanting to sell some prints of my work, but like you I also get overwhelmed by everything involved with it. Thanks for all the snowy goodness!!! :)

Holly said...

i always love your posts. through your photos and kind words, i can tell that you live a peaceful life.

if you get the chance swing by my blog, i'm having a little giveaway and would love any feedback you have.
thanks again!

Andrea said...

loving all of these photos.. such a great place to come & see the light from your world!

FYI I have a bird necklace in silver that is identical to your gold one, and I got it from Fossil(2 years ago)...maybe that will help the peeps' search!

Nelly said...

I think these have to be my favorite snow pictures of all time!

Monica Robinson said...

Stunning, just stunning :)

liz. said...

Have you been to Austin Soap People? My mom buys her patchouli soap there and her oil that she keeps in her car. On hot days it makes it smell like a hippie. I usually do SO.A.P. from the farmers market.

Anonymous said...

PS: next time you want to buy the bar soap, check Amazon.com! You can find bulks of 12 for $20 ;)

Anonymous said...

If you never heard of it please check it out, you will love it! "Saffron Marigold"

Unknown said...

lol, thanks for answering some of these qs, specially the camera part. You are probably sick and tired of hearing it.

I agree about us becoming our mothers as we grow older. Healthy skin and focusing on being good inside out is key to a happy life. People always ask about my skin as well, as if though I have a magic medicine for why it looks good to them. Its mostly genetics and healthy living.

Unknown said...

Wow - lovely photos. You look beautiful, as does the Oklahoma weather! I have been hoping for snow here in Portland, OR, but it's been a really mild winter. Enjoy the snow!!

Aaron said...

putting on makeup is my least favorite part of the day too!

sometimes i get so jealous that boys can just roll out of bed, and put on clothes without anyone thinking they look terrible. double standard!

i secretly envy girls that wear no makeup with pride, and look gorgeous doing it!!

Victoria said...

Where do you find such a beautiful purple scarf? I love that color right now, and wish I had something in that same hue for my belly photos I'm doing next week. Beautiful!

siniann said...

Lovely winter pics again! I grow up too looking how my mom made the makeup, I used to sit on their bed looking and wanting to try the same. We look much like each other now. I like it :) I like to put makeup, but I can be without too. I feel more confident with the makeup because of the reddish skin I have.

~3iNnA~ said...

I also have Element (Honda) our is green and we love it all these years.

Learning said...

I love the photos! Thanks for sharing them. I really appreciate your view on life. It's quite a good example you set on keeping chemicals away from our bodies ;).


Jessica said...

Lovely! I love the igloo photos! Hilarious :)! I can only imagine trying to get in there with a pregnant belly. I was an assistant at a local salon while I was pregnant with Layla and I could barely fit behind the shampoo sinks to wash the clients' hair! Arrgh! hehe. And I kept knocking things off counters with it haha! Good times :) You look beautiful as always and I understand the need for a media break especially during this precious time before your little one arrives. I know you and Michael have to be giddy with anticipation!
Lots of love and blessings to you girl!

Kelly @ turned UP to ELEVEN! said...

What a massive snow. I'm jealous. We don't get that kind of craziness here in Alabama and as an East Coast girl I long for a good snowday, or week!

Petey is amazing - our friend has an Element and I had never been inside one but longed to after seeing all the fun you and Michael have in yours in the summers etc - one ride in our friend's Element and my Mike and I were almost sold! If we only had the budget for a new vehicle I think we'd get an Element and a 4 door Jeep! OH what fun that would be!!! I love how roomy it is and when you're in the back you feel like your in stadium seats! SO fun!

I hope you'll be able to sit back and relax and enjoy every blessing and moment once your little girl arrives. Take all the time you need but be sure to stop in and let us know how the family is doing! I always love your updates, they are well worth the wait!

Lastly, I would totally sleep in a snow igloo!

The serial killer comment made me snort really loud, thank you for the chuckle today! oxox

shawnacy said...

i ADORE your blog.
your artist's eye is spot on, and coming here is like a warm fireplace on a chilly day.
also: had to reblog the 20 foods for great skin thing, because it's so true.
and lastly, thank you so much for opening up your heart here. it's a beautiful one. :)

Shelley Weber said...

Not to be an ad... but, if you haven't already looked into it, I just wanted to mention that I have had great results with Nations Photo Lab ROES. It was suggested to me by a friend/prof photographer. You can download their program for free and test it out... it is worth looking into anyway.
I'll jump on the bandwagon with the compliments and say that I love your photos and look forward to seeing your new posts. You have amazing style and sense of aesthetics, it's inspiring. Good luck with the new addition to your life!

Kendra said...

Very lovely. In my part of the world we call that igloo a quinzhee and are tons of fun to sleep in (when not with child of course). When you're in there long enough your breath turns in the inside layer to ice which acts as an insulator and keeps you toasty warm.

P.S. I also love the knits- scarf, gloves and headband :)

grace2be said...


i live in canada but never tire of seeing pretty snow shots~ it's so peaceful looking.

love your mitts and ear warmer. super cute.

Kim said...

I love you pics of you and your hubby, such a beautiful little family!

Unknown said...

AURA. Stop it! You are far to lovely. I'm not sure if I've commented this in the past before but: thanks for being a healthy and beautiful soon-to-be-mama! I hate the ladies who don't take care of themselves in the best way possible while pregnant... its so sad. So thank you! You're lovely!
&Elements for the win! Eric and my brother both have one. Great for babies --not too much sun in the back to blind their faces and much easier (than the two door civic I have) to get babies in and out!

Also, I had made a *three little birds* "painting" for my little one while pregnant :)

Hope all is well <3

Anonymous said...

i awarded you the stylish blogger award! i've loved your blog ever since i found in a few months ago. i have the award for you over at my blog!

ag. said...

The snow is so gorgeous, you've captured it so beautifully! And you guys are so adorable!

Victoria said...

Your posts always make me smile.
I want to be you when I grow up. =)

LO' said...

Nice pictures :)

Anonymous said...

My name is Aura too! In 31 years I've never met another Aura! Your blog is gorgeous and I'm so glad I ran across it today.

Kyla said...

What beautiful photos! Would you mind telling me where you got your wonderful headband?