[Practice Makes Perfect]



This floral arrangement may have been practice for the one I’ll be bringing to my boyfriend’s mom, who I will be meeting this weekend along with his dad, sister, and one of 3 brothers I haven’t met yet.

It might be a little weird, but I’m excited-nervous and practicing and planning helps calm me down. Plus now I get my own kickass flowers to bring to work and brighten up my windowless office. Really, it’s a win-win.


– S


[Playing Catch-up]


It’s been awhile since I last posted, and for that, I apologize.

Here’s the short version of what’s been going on:

  • I turned 25.
  • My mom came to visit.
  • I fell in love.


Here’s the long version:

You know when you say you love someone for the first time it feels weird coming out of your mouth even if you wholeheartedly believe it? Yeah, that happened. After Mr. Sullivan and I exchanged those words Valentine’s Day weekend (a touch cliche, but it felt right) for a week afterwards it felt a little strange. I have never, ever, ever, ever felt this way about someone and I think we might be in it for the long haul…but stay tuned to find out.

I turned 25, but my last couple birthdays have been kind of depressing. Last year it was the first one I spent away from my mom, dad, and sister so to say it was weird, is an understatement. It was so nice having my aunt, uncle, and cousin to celebrate with, but it wasn’t the same; I didn’t really have any friends and I was in this new, unfamiliar place far away from everything I’d ever known. (I’m sorry that was so dramatic.)

This year it was totally different; I have friends, and a wonderful boyfriend who went above and beyond what I was expecting. I had a lovely morning and got flowers delivered to me at work (bravo) and also received an orchid from Sara, who is the sweetest. My work day was easy and lots of people said ‘Happy Birthday.’ (Last year basically nobody at work knew who I was, and my birthday was on a Sunday.) As soon as I got home, which was early, I hopped in the shower and got ready for dinner. My handsome man picked me up curb side and even showed up with more gifts, which I was not expecting; flowers and dinner would have been more than enough. BUT, he got me a lovely Kiehl’s set of lotions, facial cleanser, and soaps, AND a very generous gift card to Aritzia. Then on top of all that, we went to Palisade, which is tres nice. I felt so special, loved and like I was the luckiest girl in the world.

Three days later, my mom came to visit me! There were some flying issues, but she managed to make it to Seattle only 12 hours late. I felt like we went non-stop for four days straight; we went to the Space Needle, Chihuly exhibit, took the monorail downtown and explored Pike Place Market, visited the Seattle Art Museum, had dinner with Mr. Sullivan (that’s right, Mama Liz met the boyfriend), spent an entire day at the Salish Lodge and Spa getting massages and mani-pedis, we had dinner next to Snoqualmie Falls, ate a late breakfast at Toulouse Petit, drove up to the casino and outlet mall in Tulalip, and then finally met up with my aunt and uncle for a late lunch Sunday afternoon. My mom spent a couple of days with my cousin and we reunited Wednesday night when I brought her home with me. She was able to venture around city center and visited the EMP museum Thursday. When I got home from work we went to see the Ballard locks and got dinner at Red Mill. Obviously it was a tearful goodbye, but she’s my mama and I’m gonna miss her…until the next time.

So that’s that. Hope it was worth the wait!


– S


[324] Kick Ass Bitches


I watched the Seahawks games with some pretty cool chicks today, and it got me thinking about the other amazing women I’ve had as role models, and mainly, my mom.

Today is her birthday so I guess she was on my mind anyway. I was a little bummed since I didn’t get to spend the day with her, but the fact that I’ll be home in 12.5 days makes it much more tolerable. I’ve gushed about my mom and the rest of my family enough times for y’all to get how much I love them, but I wanted to pay my mama a little extra attention on her birthday:



I think you know how much I love you and how much I rely on you whenever I’m in need, but in case there’s any questions, this should clear it up. I honestly couldn’t have asked for a better mother and friend. I know that I was bit of a bitch when I was in high school and I’m sorry for all that bullshit I put you through. Now that I look back on that time, I can’t remember anything we ever fought about; part of me is a little sad that that time may have been wasted, but the other part is glad that we were able to get over that phase and move on to a better relationship with each other. I appreciate everything that you do for me, especially all the ways that you make me feel loved from 3,000 miles away. You’re an amazingly strong, caring, smart, beautiful, thoughtful woman and having you in my life makes me a better person.

I love you.


– Stephanie


[300] o_o


I’m feeling particularly accomplished today; I’m finally into the 300s for my 365 project and the end is nearly in sight. I got a sort of promotion when it comes to my work load at work, which is exciting…I’m going to get to do more design stuff. And I received a really sweet compliment from one of the higher up site managers about how all the people on her team appreciate and enjoy working with me. *blush*

I also think a switch flipped on in my brain today. My friend sent me a link to this article about the differences between dating a girl vs a woman which obviously led me to read the opposite article about the differences between dating a boy vs a man. Obviously I’m a woman vs a girl, but it seems that I’ve been dating a lot of boys, and I’m kind of over it. Read the article and you’ll totally understand.

Another great thing that happened today…my mom and dad sent me a kitchen island as an apartment warming gift! I may have provided them with an extensive list of things, and nudged them toward this island, but they did buy it for me. Even from 3,000 miles away they both still find a way to make me feel beyond loved and cared for. They’re kind of the best.


– Stephanie


[263] I’ve Got Mail, and It’s the Wickedest and the Sweetest


I think I’ve said this on more than one occasion, but I am literally the happiest person ever right now. My uncle texted me while I was at my letterpress class to alert me to the fact that I had mail waiting for me when I got home. I knew that I was due a shipment of Palmer’s Cocoa Butter swivel sticks, which I have not been able to find ANYWHERE in Washington, but I was so not prepared for the other wonderful surprise waiting for me.

My family ceases to amaze me; they sent me a book full of pictures of our annual trip to pick apples and pumpkins, but since I couldn’t physically be there, my family toted around a picture of me, from high school, I might add, and posed me all over the place.  I’m sure my mother was mostly behind it, but my dad and my sister posed, and that in itself was a huge feat. The second I read the cover “Flat Stephanie Goes to the Farm” I started to sob and laugh at the same time. My mascara started running into my eyes and that just made me cry more. Seriously happy tears though, my family is the best. Seriously. I love them. Like, a lot.

– Stephanie

P.S. You can see the actual book here if you want to. I’m just glad my mom chose one of my better school pictures to use.


[233] Normailities


Football is back, and I could not be happier (except if the Giants weren’t embarrassing themselves right now.) Late summer/fall is one of my favorite times of the year, but it’s a little different this particular year. For instance, I started watching football at 10am this morning, which, even though it initially seemed a little weird, I actually love. I slept in a little bit, had a late breakfast, a cup of tea, and was done with the first round of football by 1pm. Even though the weather ended up being beautiful today, I wasn’t really in the mood to do anything outside so I continued to watch football and make a bunch of food for the week. Another thing that I’ll be missing out on this fall is my family’s traditional apple and pumpkin picking. We’ll usually make a half day of it, eat lots of apple fritters, drink even more apple cider, and trek through a patch of pumpkins in order to pick our own. And with those 50 or so pounds of apples comes apple pie, apple crisp, and apple sauce. Today I made apple crisp, but not with apples that I picked myself. I had to call my mom for her recipe for the apple crisp topping, and now I have it memorized, and stored away in an email in case I forget. Even though I can’t share the apple crisp I made with my family, I still feel like one of them is going to catch me eating huge chunks of the topping and shoo me away.


– Stephanie


[221] Down Up Down


You know when your mood just feels off, and all you want to do is reset and start fresh? I was able to reset, and it came in the form of an hour long phone chat with my mom. I get these waves of homesickness that seem to come out of nowhere. It’s not a traditional homesickness, because I feel like Seattle is my home now, but I miss the people that made Syracuse my home.

My mom always knows what to say to calm me down and remind me how important this chapter in my life is, plus she’s really good at sending me snail mail and packages. My dad knows exactly when to send me an email that makes me tear up with just a few words. I’m sure Jacob would know when I need a cuddle sesh if he wasn’t a dog. And my sister sends me Snapchats that make me snort while I’m laughing.  I’ve got some pretty kickass people in my life.


– Stephanie


[171] I. Love. Getting. Mail.


Really, only good mail though, not that coupon bullshit. On that note, a package arrived for me today! It came from my lovely mother who returned last week from a trip to England. Which means this girl got some souvenirs! First of all, everything was bubble wrapped, even the tea. Second, there was this plastic bag that felt kind of like paper when I was trying to untie the knot, and I got distracted. Oops. There was tea and chocolates, a fancy Top Shop eyeliner, adorable antique teacups and saucers in the most beautiful sea foam hue, and a hand written note. I have this obsession with cups and bowls so reading the story about my mom finding the tea cups in an antique shop was very sweet. The note was probably my favorite part of the package, but considering I already ate the chocolate, I’ll call it a tie. My mom’s the best.


– Stephanie


[168] Deserted


Work was a ghost town today. I swear I saw a tumbleweed rolling down the hall. Since I’m using most of my vacation time in August when I go to the Outer Banks, NC with my family, I didn’t want, or need, to take the day off.

It reminds me of when I was younger, my mom would make me go into work with her even if we had a snow day (she works at the school I went to starting in 4th grade.) Most of the lights in the halls would be turned off, and it had this very eerie feeling since hardly anyone else was there. I’d roll around the halls on an office chair and entertain myself for hours. Lunch usually consisted of something we could heat up in the microwave, like cups of ramen, and then I’d color and keep myself occupied. If I was lucky and could get the antenna to pick up a signal, I’d watch cartoons on a tiny portable TV. I also vaguely remember playing around with a typewriter that my mom actually used for work (it was the mid 90’s but that still seems so outdated to me.) When it was time to go home, we’d bundle up and get into the car as quickly as possible. It had probably been snowing the whole day while we were inside, so my mom would clear off the snow and ice while I got to sit inside the car.

Snow days at my dad’s work were similar except that he works at a college in an area where there is a lot of big, old machinery used for making paper. It was even more desolate than my school on a snow day, and ten times more eerie. Even if the machines weren’t in use they’d make noises, catching me off-guard as I walked around by myself. In order to get to the bathroom, which was in the basement of the building, I had to walk past this big rectangular hole under one of the machines a floor above. I would always picture a massive anaconda slithering around in the hole, and then I’d speed up and get the hell away from it so the imaginary serpent couldn’t eat me. To keep busy I’d color; my dad was more strict with the TV privileges, plus it was ancient…probably one of the first color TVs ever made. There was this stash of pretty colored paper from machine runs past, and I knew where it was, but it was locked up so I’d have to ask my dad to let me in, and even then I wasn’t allowed to go wild. He would say something along the lines of, “You can take one of each color, or a few of a couple of colors, but you’re not the only one who gets to use the paper so we have to leave some for everyone else.” Yeah, ok. I think some of that paper is still stowed away, and I’m pretty sure it could survive the apocalypse.

Hope you enjoyed my walk down memory lane!

– Stephanie


[114] A Day for Mothers


I generally don’t give in to the peer pressure of writing a long-winded status update about how amazing my mother and other mother-figures in my life are. I call them, or tell them in person, to let them know how much they mean to me, and how much it’s meant to have them in my life.

Being away from my mom this mother’s day got me thinking about how much I’ve learned from her, even though I fought her wisdom and advice for a long time. We didn’t always get along, especially when I was in high school, but once her advice didn’t seem forced on me anymore, I started to listen to what she had to say. When it came to relationships, she had more experience than I knew about, and some of her stories directly related to what I was going through. I couldn’t have gotten through the past 7 months without having her to talk and cry to. She has this weird way of knowing exactly why I’m acting or reacting the way that I am, and that’s because she knows me. That’s not to say that I haven’t had other people to support me, but today is about my mother.


You’re an amazingly strong and intelligent woman that I look up to and appreciate every single day. You love with your whole heart and I wouldn’t be half the person I am without your tireless encouragement, and tolerable pushiness. I love you.

It’s been 114 days since I’ve seen my mom, and the rest of my family, and it’s been the longest 114 days of my life. I miss her like crazy, but can’t wait to see everyone in June when I go home for my sister’s high school graduation in 27 days. Yes, I started a countdown.

– Stephanie