Thanks-Living // October

October turned out even better than I could have imagined. Most of September was spent secretly planning for the day I will marry my best friend. We knew the date we wanted and we started the planning process but I was still patiently waiting for Peter to finish his job in Texas so he could surprise me with a ring and I could announce to the world that I was the lucky lady that would become his wife. Thanks to his super duper sneaky skills he surprised me in Austin with the beautiful ring and I couldn’t be any happier. It kind of made the whole month of October the best month ever.

Some other things that I am thankful for are….

1. God’s grace and knowing that He makes every morning new.
With all the excitement lately I haven’t been making time like I should for His Word. A group of co-workers recently started a book club and asked me to join but I decided that if I don’t make time for reading my bible every day then I shouldn’t make time for reading a random book every day either. Then that made me think… I make time for SO many things. Family, Peter, friends, TV shows, Facebook, Instagram, this blog, yoga, etc. My heart is constantly pulled in so many directions but the one thing that should always win is my relationship with Christ and that relationship isn’t going to grow if I’m not spending time WITH Him every day.
In the next month ahead I am going to be more cautious of how I am spending my time and make sure that I’m making a constant effort to spend it with Him.

2. The women that I am so blessed to have in my life.
I feel so lucky to have 6 women that are going to stand with me on my special day next year but more than anything I am so thankful for their hearts. They all have a heart that loves the Lord and that makes me smile… the next year is going to be so much fun and I know that a lot of that will be because of the women I have around me.

3. The amazing music that I experienced in Austin.
It was awesome. That’s really all I can say about it… even with the hot sticky weather, pouring rain, slimy mud and aching feet it was so much fun!

4. Sweet baby boy
I can’t wait to meet the new member of the Eliya family this weekend! Becoming an aunt is so much fun!! I also feel so blessed to become apart of a family that I love so much… I know that is an amazing gift!

5. Life
This might sound cheesy but I am honestly just thankful for life. Thankful for the people I have in my life and all the wonderful things I have experienced so far. So many people take this life for granted and I know I have many times but I want to sit back and breathe. Taking it all in. Feel my heart beating in my chest and feel the air in my lungs. I am thankful.




topofthepagewithleslie

Friday night is made for laughing on a front porch.

Friday night was the best.
Adam and Jocie invited a group of friends over to their new home and I kinda loved it.
A night with friends that just make life a happier place is a perfect way to spend a Friday night if ya ask me. Munching on great food. Drinking cold beer. Laughing till my stomach aches. Making new memories with friends is one of my favorite parts of living life. Nights like Friday night are why you hope for a weekend. And why you wish weekends would slow down. 
Goodness, I love these people.

a book.

While I waited on the plane to Texas a couple weeks ago I spent some time looking at the magazines and books for the long flight. I got a little excited when I saw the one book I’ve been dying to read lately, Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Got Married by Gary Chapman. Without even thinking I grabbed the book and had to buy it. No, Peter and I were not engaged but we were having many conversations about our future together and I knew he would be my husband so I couldn’t wait to start reading the book.

One of the many things I loved about this book is the quote below.

“This is not a book on how to plan a wedding. 
This is a book on how to have a successful marriage.”

Duh, all of the wedding plans are fun but the most important planning for me is my preparation to become wife. I pray to become a godly wife that mirrors what the bible says a wife should be. I want to be a wife that will support her husband and love him even when I don’t always agree with him, because we all know that will happen. I want to be the happiness on that crappy bad day. I want to become a wife…. not just a bride. So, I dived into this book and thought about our relationship. Making mental notes and reminders about things I felt were important to talk about. I read for almost the entire flight and then I packed the book away excited to spend a wonderful weekend with my boyfriend having no idea that he was going to be my fiancé in just thirty something hours.


I’m not going to lie… it feels a little bit more exciting to read this book now and see my new ring on my finger. When I am reading it I’m underlining and highlighting and circling important things. When I am finished I’m going to give it to Peter so he can do the same then we can go through our concerns together. I’m so excited about the many changes ahead but most of all I’m thrilled about who I get to experience them with.

This book really is so wonderful for all seasons of life.
single, dating, engaged or married... it has some great information to help you prepare for marriage or settle into marriage so go pick it up and enjoy! 

It's the little things.

Sometimes life can become so hectic and busy that you have those weeks that just fly by. Before you know it 14 days have gone by and you know some special things have happened but it’s all a blur. When you look back at the memories some big things pop in your head but the little things are there too.

the goose bumps you get on your arms when you listen to a song that you’ve never heard before but somehow it feels like you could have written it // the tears that fill your eyes when you see the happiness on someone’s face when they come up from under the water after being baptized, that moment will always get me // while sitting at a bar with your favorite person on a Fall day, he leans over and whispers “leaves are falling outside” because he knows that’s your favorite thing about Fall


Personally, the little things are my favorite....

a gentleman and three ladies.

Live music is one of my most favorite things and a close second is a yummy bowl of Shrimp & Grits so thanks to  the new restaurant, Southern Culture, I enjoyed a lovely night with my gentleman and 2 of my favorite ladies on Saturday night! 

The food was yummy. The music by Hardin Draw was soooo good. The atmosphere was perfect and the setting was so beautiful. Soft lighting and 2 lovely fire places helped set the mood for wine, dinner and fun conversations. I love the people I get to do life with and I’m so thankful for nights that make me realize how blessed I really am. Even my wine glass was feeling the love!! ;) 






This week is going to be a hectic one but I know it will be a lot of fun too… trying to take some deep breaths while I prepare for it. Remembering that I will be surrounded by God’s grace and some wonderful people to keep me laughing and smiling always helps.  

I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him.
{Psalm 62:1)
I plan on reciting this in my head (and maybe out loud if needed) during this week ahead because I know He will settle my heart and calm my spirit. Alright Tuesday, here we go.

ACL Madness!

Austin is such an awesome city… the people that live there enjoy keeping it weird but I liked that too. There were a lot of hipsters and hippies. Amazing food. Spending time with a dear friend that lives far away ((so happy you came Jon)). The best bloody mary I’ve ever had and a yummy margarita too. Cute yoga studios. No such thing as mild salsa. Super scary birds that I am 100% sure wanted to eat me. A street of old houses that have been turned into awesome bars. Dirty, aching feet and a twisted ankle. One certain man dropping to his knee and making me the happiest woman in Austin. Spicy tacos from one of the many food trucks. Learning that food trucks really are the best invention ever. Life altering performance by Florence & the Machine. Only having to buy 1 souvenir T-Shirt because my future husband and I can wear the same size which made me have that ah-ha moment where I realized we are going to share drawers one day which also made me do a happy dance. Honestly, the list could go on and on… the many memories from Austin will always stay with me. It was a perfect weekend, sprained ankle and all.













I joked with Peter and said that since we got engaged during the ACL Music Festival weekend we should come back every year. When I say joke I mean I giggled after the comment but in my heart I was very serious. It only makes sense to celebrate with awesome music and amazing food every year, right?

It's Tuesday.

and after a very exciting weekend I haven't compiled all that excitement in a new blog post but I do know a few things.... 

I have a wonderful fiancé that I love very much! 
I have a mother, family and friends that are so excited for me!!
and that mother and a close group of girlfriends helped me celebrate last night! 


cheers to love because love is a great thing...
and I am so blessed to experience all kinds of love. 

Most importantly, the love of my Savior that will always support me and never let me down
the love of my family that He has graciously given me 
the love of my future husband and my future family
and the love of the amazing women that the Lord has placed in my life. 
All of this love is so important to me and I know I wouldn't be smiling in that picture without it!

after I can take a second to breathe I will share some fun from ACL because it was seriously amazing... I'm still tired from all the music, walking and amazing food! 
Until later, have a happy Tuesday and a high five to you.

just a little love note.



I've been patiently waiting for quite some time to share this post with all of you…
that picture above was the first picture Peter and I had taken of us. ever.

that was before I knew how funny this man was
before I was a redhead
before he was my boyfriend
before both the break ups… and before we got back together
before all of our many sushi dates
before we realized how different we are
and before we realized that makes us even better
before we got comfortable
before we understood what love was
before we changed our focus on Him and not on us
before we became a we at all

the past 4 years have been so important to make us who we are.
who we are separately. and who we are as one.
it helped us realize that God's timing is the best timing. 

I am more thankful for this man every single day…
Thankful that he is the other half to my favorite “we”.
…and so thankful that I am going to marry this man.

It’s official!! OH MY! He’s going to be my HUSBAND. 
It’s been a long time coming but I wouldn’t change a single thing.
I love you so much, future husband of mine, so so much!!!

more exciting news to come! xo

i can't wait.


I’ve always wanted to go to an awesome music festival and this weekend is going to be ahhhhhmazing because my little ears are going to be listening to some awesome bands at Austin City Limits…..



Forence + The Machine, The Black Keys
Civil Twilight, Band of Skulls
The Roots, Gotye, Jack White
and hopefully on Sunday we can squeeze in The Civil Wars….

It’s possible my heart might be even happier than my ears because I get to enjoy this awesome weekend with the lovely boyfriend. He’s been teasing me with this weekend trip for quite some time now and everything has worked out perfectly so I’m a happy lady….so blessed and so happy!!

Can’t believe I have two weekends in a row with my better half. First a mountain wedding weekend and now a Texas music weekend, oh my…. this will also be my first visit to the big state of Texas so I’m thrilled! 
Of course I will return with a lot of stories and photos to share, maybe even a video!

The rest of this week will include a lot of cleaning, 
packing and trying to calm myself down with some hot yoga before I fly out on Thursday. 
As usual, prayers for a safe flight are appreciated!

questions.... 
Have any of you been to ACL? Any recommendations for Austin, TX???

my best friends wedding.

I mentioned on Friday that my weekend would be full of a few things… fall weather, champagne, tears, boyfriend time, tears, pictures and did I mention tears…?

Jocie’s wedding weekend was so wonderful.
While we stood in the middle of the woods at an open air mountain chapel it was evident that God was with us. The entire weekend had His touch on everything. His sounds, His warm sun and His cool breeze, His changing leaves that painted the views and the love that was shared during the intimate ceremony. Because of all this my heart was full of happiness which of course made me eyes full of tears.














After the long weekend full of fun I was physically and emotionally drained so today has felt like a longer Monday than normal. With the very cold weather that has suddenly arrived I think a class of Hot Yoga was exactly what I needed. I feel refreshed and lighter after an hour of simply breathing and being me. Sometimes a long Monday is just what you need after a wonderfully hectic weekend and I know this weekend will be the same way……. more on that later though. I can’t wait to share!! :)
Hope you all had a fantastic weekend full of love and maybe some happy tears too…
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