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my bff jen

This is my friend Jen. She and I have known each other for going on twenty-five years! In December, I was able to do a shoot of Jen and her adorable daughter Emma down in Dallas. I’ll share photos of Emma and both of them together soon, but today I just wanted to show off my bff Jen.

Jen is one of those friends who I can tell anything. Absolutely anything. And never will she judge me.


Jen is strong. She is the living, breathing definition of “survivor”. She has gone through more crazy stuff than pretty much anyone I know, and yet she has weathered it all and come through with her sense of humor intact, still loving and living life.


Jen is not afraid to ask the hard questions. She thinks things through deeply before forming opinions or convictions. I admire her ability to question and yet still believe.


Obviously, Jen is beautiful! {Quick, what actress does she look like?? :)} Whenever I am anywhere with Jen, it seems like people are always telling her how beautiful she is. :) I love her hair and eye color combo! So pretty!


Actually, Jen is not really just one of my best friends. She is family. Our hearts are bonded in a way that is usually reserved for siblings.


Love you, Jen!!!


ps Get this: I found those pretty amazing leather boots for Jen at Goodwill for $6.99!!! :) Also, I know Jen got her scarf and skirt at the thrift store, too! Yay for thrifty best friends! ;)

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Kathleen MillerJanuary 25, 2011 - 9:48 pm

Abi, once again- you are such a gifted photographer and ARTIST. These are aamzing! I love al the different patterns, textures, colors, etc. SO fun. Those boots are MY FAVORITE! I want some like that more than anything. size 7.5 ;) ;)

~abi~January 25, 2011 - 9:53 pm

thank you! i'll keep an eye out for some boots for you! ;)

Huntington PhotographyJanuary 25, 2011 - 10:52 pm

Great Job Abi! Couldn't agree with you more on the Amy Adams look alike.

Hayley WellsJanuary 27, 2011 - 1:37 pm

Great job Abi – the pictures are amazing! What is even more amazing is the fact that you were able to put into words how special/wonderful/original/EVERYTHING Jen is to people like you and me. Thank you for doing this :)

~abi~January 27, 2011 - 2:22 pm

thank you, john!

and thank you, hayley – means a lot coming from another best friend of jen's!!!

Kelly BeaneJanuary 28, 2011 - 3:14 pm

Jen is so very fabulous and these photos are the perfect representation of that! Awesome session!

CassieJanuary 28, 2011 - 11:20 pm

Jen you look amazing!! Love the outfit! Love the pix!! Love love love!!!

[…] pix to post next week. So, if you’re unfamiliar with my life or my blog, this is my BFF Jen and her daughter Emma.  As I was readying these photos to post, I was thinking about my wonderful […]

sometimes i rock tennis shoes

Anyone who knows me would probably describe me as a “heels girl” when it comes to my footwear of choice. But lately, I have been craving the instant feeling of coolnes that comes with sporting a fresh pair of kicks. And since I am ever in the pursuit of that elusive label of “being cool”, I figured some sweet tennis shoe outfits might do the trick. And yes, I do usually plan my outfits around my shoes. You don’t?

My too-cool-for-school friend Cassie got me this awesome pair for my birthday. Love ’em! Thanks, Cass!

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I especially enjoy the fade from dark to light purple.

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{sweater dress and leggings – Ross; belt – Rue 21}

This rad yellow pair I’ve had in my closet for months and months. I think I’ve worn them once, or maybe twice. Got ’em at Ross.

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{shoes – Ross; black skinnies {actually they’re jeggings, i just hate calling them that} – by Elle at Kohls; plaid shirt – Tommy Hilfiger from Goodwill :)}

Have a fun weekend, friends. Be cool. ;)


***In case you can’t tell, these are all phone pix, so don’t judge color and quality too harshly, ‘kay? :)***

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CROBJanuary 22, 2011 - 5:24 am


~abi~January 25, 2011 - 5:00 pm

yay! love you, cass!

snow days {yay!} and wrinkles {boo!}

This morning, I was thrilled to discover that schools were closed for a snow day, or actually an ice day, here in Oklahoma. I called work and my kind boss told me to see how it was around noon and then decide if I wanted to come in late. Yay. I promptly went back to sleep for a couple more hours.

When I went out to start my car and let it thaw, this is what the ground looked like:


Are you northerners laughing?

But, there was still some ice on my little ol’ car.



Anyway, I survived the Great Ice Storm of 2011 {sarcasm} and headed in to work. :) But I did love the extra sleep!

In completely unrelated news…I turned thirty less than one month ago, and suddenly I have wrinkles developing on my forehead?!? What’s up with that???



Boo! :(


I noticed that I am sporting some sexy under-eye circles, too, in that first photo. I was sporting them in the second photo as well, but I photoshopped them out. I was too lazy to go back and fix ’em in the other one. haha.

Dumb wrinkles.


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Steve RiceJanuary 20, 2011 - 11:54 pm

lol…i went downtown yesterday and walked out onto the lake. THAT's ice! j/k. I am laughing cuz KC is getting hammered this winter (after I leave for WI). It's been snowy here, but not nearly as bad as i expected. They clear it so fast (for the next time), that it's easy to get around. Stay safe! Oh, and rock the 30's…they're the best…wrinkles and all! Ur still a hot mama, IMHO!

Kelly BeaneJanuary 21, 2011 - 4:01 am

Abi's school must have been one of the only one's that didn't cancel, craziness here I tell you. Sometime Oklahoma amazes me. I have to say that I am excited to get into my 30s. Of course I say that now. ;) And I must say I adore your beautiful wrinkles. So many stories and much character behind those little things. I already have some at 26. It'll all be alright. :)

you rang?

Not that there is a fiancé, or even a boyfriend, on the horizon for me; but after seeing this post on A Cup of Jo this morning, engagement rings are on my mind. I used to tell everyone and anyone that I wanted the hugest, splashiest diamond ring ever when I got engaged…something about how a guy should spend more on The Ring than he did on his car, signifying the perceived value of his relationship, blah blah blah. And it’s not that I don’t think that at all now, but over the past few years, my thoughts on engagement rings have changed some. I’ve never seen Blood Diamond, but I am aware that there are scandalous and awful things having to do with the diamond trade. And my overall style and taste has changed and developed to where I appreciate and desire more unique clothing, accessories, or whatever. So I guess it’s only natural that my ideas about what I want for an engagement ring would also change.

So, I ran a quick search on etsy {I mostly looked at emerald and jade rings, because I love the color green and think either one would make a cool engagement ring} and pulled these in about five minutes. They range from the ridiculous to quite reasonably priced.

First there’s this detailed sterling silver and emerald ring, which might just be a tad extravagant in the pricing…


Then you have this pretty thing: the most typical engagement-type ring of the ones I chose, except with an emerald instead of the usual diamond center stone.


I especially love this vintage ring. I love the idea of getting a ring that has been around for a long while.


Probably my favorite of the ones I saw today is this uniquely beautiful jade ring. Even though there’s a lot of heavy gold going on in the design, I would gladly sport it on my ring finger! :)


I had never heard of this stone before, but I thought this ring was oh-so-charming. And I love the thought that no one else would have a ring like it.


So, there you go. A round up of potential engagement rings from a girl who doesn’t even have a boyfriend! How’s that for random — and perhaps just a tiny bit wistful. ;)


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AnonymousJanuary 19, 2011 - 10:05 pm

I love the ring at the bottom! It is very pretty! I've always said because I've had to wait so long to find the "right guy" that I better get a BIG ring!!! We shall see if that's actually happens.

VictoriaJanuary 19, 2011 - 10:25 pm

I've always wanted a big ring, too. And, I'm not a big jewelry-wearer. I've also always wanted a Tacori ring. I love how they're a little vintage..anyway, I saw this on their fb page a few days ago and LOVE it for a diamond-alternative. I've always loved sapphires…good thing I was blessed with it as a birthstone. :)


~abi~January 19, 2011 - 10:33 pm

i love, love tacori rings!!!

JacquelynJanuary 20, 2011 - 9:44 pm

I love that we both blogged about wedding stuff in the past couple of days. Even though we don't have boyfriends. Um, God? Cool. Thanks. ;)

Kelly BeaneJanuary 21, 2011 - 2:34 am

I remember when you used to talk about having a huge ring :) I adore the third vintage one, of course that's probably because it's the most traditional… and you know me :)

the process of inspiration

This past Saturday, I did a portrait session for my friend Brandie that I just loved!!! I absolutely adored the entire process. The shoot was done in my house, utilizing window light from the double french doors in our dining room, and a gray paper background that I have owned forever.

I would like to explain a little about what inspires me. See, Brandie is a huge fan of the show Gossip Girl. She and my friend Jen both convinced me that I needed some Chuck and Blair, and Serena and Dan or Serena and Nate or Serena and whoever {but mostly Chuck and Blair ;)}, and some Upper East Side Fashion {yes, with a capital F} in my life. It didn’t take me long to become completely hooked. I started last year and went through all the seasons on disc, and now I am anxiously awaiting the return of new episodes! :)

When I saw the episode with Serena wearing this look for her mother’s wedding, I just loved it…


And in another episode, when Serena attended The White Party at The Hamptons, her hairstyle was simply stunning…


I suppose I filed those looks away somewhere in the creative recesses of my brain. But it wasn’t until I came across a vintage yellow dress with a cream lace overlay at a thrift store, that I became consciously inspired. I scooped up the dress, knowing full well that it would never fit me. Instead, I knew I would use it for a shoot. And I hung it on the door fame of my closet. It hung there quietly for months, silently challenging me to come up with a subject and theme for a shoot worthy of it’s uniqueness.

I’m not sure exactly when it came to me, but one day, it all just fell into place. See, I happen to know that my beautiful blond friend Brandie has a ridiculous girl-crush on Serena, and from somewhere in my brain, up bubbled the images from Gossip Girl that I had filed away months ago.

So, I did a Google image search and started a folder of actual inspiration photos. Next, I had to make sure the tiny-waisted vintage dress would fit Brandie. So, I wrapped a strand of ribbon around the waist, cut it to length, and made Brandie “try it on” one night at LifeGroup. :) It fit. Whew.

Here’s one of my very favorite shots we came up with on Saturday.

{I made the lace “headpiece” – just wide lace and a needle and thread. She’s just holding it here, but it could easily be bobby-pinned into the hair. Oh, and Brnadie made her black bead necklace.}

Now, I had also saved a few images of Blake’s/Serena’s “everyday” hair…


And when Brandie showed up at my house for the shoot Saturday, she brought a few casual outfit options. So we also did a casual Serena look.


Honestly, I was completely thrilled with the entire shoot! I will probably do another post sometime featuring more images from it. These were just two of my initial favorites. But seriously, I am like a kid in a candy store when I am executing a shoot that has been stewing in my mind.

One last note about drawing inspiration from whatever random source…..When I am inspired by a look or even another photo shoot that I see {all photographers are!}, I never try to replicate it exactly. Instead, I use it to get my creative juices flowing, and then go from there.

Anyway, just thought it might be fun to share a little bit about my creative process, as opposed to just showing pretty pictures. Hope you all didn’t find this post to be too boring. :)


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Kelly BeaneJanuary 18, 2011 - 4:46 pm

Absolutely love these images of Brandi! Great share!

allison harrisonJanuary 18, 2011 - 10:48 pm

i LOVE this!! YOU inspire me!!

JacquelynJanuary 19, 2011 - 10:03 pm

you did amazing. a-maz-ing.

~abi~January 19, 2011 - 10:34 pm

thank you, ladies. :)

LaurenJanuary 27, 2011 - 2:53 am

I love this post!! I think my favorite was the casual look..but I loved it all! It makes me want to get creative..