Sunday, May 31, 2009

Last Thursday was Dessert Thursday

Written by Shannon Leigh

And to my delight Matt and I went to Cafe Luna in the old train station downtown.  I had just recently heard about the place and was dying to try it out. The ambiance was great and the food very good (Matt was concerned by the gourmet-ness of it all, but was pleasantly surprised).  We splurged on tapas and dessert and we were also served a big hunk of roasted garlic with fresh baked bread.  
I loved the art in the entrance (photos on canvas)
We ended up getting the poached pear dessert with homemade chocolate sauce and ice cream (we would definitely recommend it).  I, of course, sipped on decaf coffee and Matty enjoyed a tall glass of cherry coke.  We live on the edge.  Don't you just love the tapestry on the walls?  Now if I could only get Matt to let me wallpaper our house like that.
We had a super busy weekend (I shot a wedding and we did lots of driving).  So that means a few minutes of snuggling before we both drift off to dream land. 

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Give me organization

Written by Shannon Leigh

preferably in a cute vintage suitcase (which I happen to have).{photo via: DIY magazine}

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Right Now...

Written by Shannon Leigh

I just got in from planting flowers, Matty is mowing the lawn, and Izzy is drinking out of the toilet (someone always forgets to leave the toilet seat down).  
It's getting ready to rain so my flowers will get a nice big drink.  I think I'll get Matty a fountain soda, I think he'd really enjoy that.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

New Location

Written by Shannon Leigh

After church on Sunday, I took Matt to a new location for possible photo shoots (we only had a few short minutes).  I wanted to check out how the place photographed, so I made him pose for me (to his delight I'm sure).  They turned out AWESOME!  I cant wait to shoot some seniors here...
But in the mean time... here are Matt and I acting like 17-year-old seniors. 


Saturday, May 23, 2009

If there were no them...

Written by Shannon Leigh
There would be no me.
Mary Lou & Wade walking up the aisle 11_3_51 (small)
Grandma &  Granddad Dudley on their wedding day.  November 3rd, 1951.  
Aren't they stunning?
This shot will be hanging somewhere in my house someday...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Just a few photographs

Written by Shannon Leigh

Of a lonely adventure.  The way I prefer it.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Did I forget to mention....

Written by Shannon Leigh
that I posted another wedding on my photo blog??

Check it out HERE.

Monday, May 18, 2009

No time to sew... writing from Chicago

Written by Shannon Leigh

Another grocery bag dispenser (this one was for my mother-in-law).
Maybe I should start an Etsy shop... only if I had the time.

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Little Lily Film.

Written by Shannon Leigh

This week Matt and I are dogsitting for our good friends Derek & Janna. They went on a road trip out West. We got word a few days ago that Janna broke her leg after slipping on some gravel (now that will be a fun ride home). I know they are missing their pooch (I don't blame them, she's a doll) so I put together a little film for them...

Thursday, May 14, 2009


Written by Shannon Leigh

To all of you who sent me money for my birthday...
I bought a film scanner. 
It's the kind of gift that will keep on giving.
It came in the mail today.
I couldn't wait to open it.
I did.
I was so excited.
But I didn't get to play with it.
I had to do 6 loads of laundry instead.
Maybe I'll get to play with it next week.
Oh... and Izzy has something to tell you....
Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Fried Pickles

Written by Shannon Leigh
I usually prefer my chips to be super greasy or so cheesy that my hands are stained orange for two days. Come to think of it, I am a big proponent of all things fried.

Speaking of fried, have you ever had fried pickles? We were discussing this last night at our Covenant Group and my mouth was watering just thinking about them. They are my absolute favorite. There is a place in Murphysboro, Il called 17th ST. Bar & Grill and they served up the BEST fried pickles. They have recently opened up locations in Marion and O'Fallon too. Matt and I are headed to O'Fallon this weekend so maybe fried pickles are in the not-so-distant future. YES!!!

Putting aside my love for greasy fried potato chips I have recently discovered Baked Lays Cheddar & Sour Cream. I was pleasantly surprised with the taste and these bad boys are so much better for me. When the package says cheese and sour cream, I'm bound to enjoy it. Here's to healthier eating (or something like that). Maybe I'll save the fried pickles for special occasions only.

Monday, May 11, 2009


Written by Shannon Leigh
I would never describe myself as simple. In fact I am incredibly complicated. My feelings are complicated, my wardrobe is complicated, my ideas/dreams are complicated, my LIFE is complicated. Most of the time I am a hot flaming mess.
I long to be simple.
I've been traveling a lot over the last few months and I have learned the importance of simple. I pack simple, I have a simple unpacking system, a simple shopping list every other week, simple expectations about time, etc. By being simple I have saved a lot of time and energy.
Most of my house is organized pretty simply. Everything has a place, even stray pencils and pens. There is one room, however, that is anything but simple...

my craft room.
It is stuffed to the brim with sewing things, scrapbooking utensils, old photography equipment, and all other things crafty. I have lots of hobbies... sue me.
For my birthday I ordered a slide scanner (I have a slight obsession with old family slides). That is one of the things I have missed the most from my photography school days. We had access to some of the most incredible equipment.
That, however, is really beside the point. When I got home from my parents yesterday I was TOTALLY overwhelmed with all of the crap in my craft room.
In college I would spend an exuberant amount of time cleaning my room and desk before I could start studying. When my room was cluttered, my mind was cluttered. I was so much more productive after my room was simple and organized.
That being said, I KNEW that I would never be able to start the scanning process until my room was nice and tidy. So last night my darling hubby helped me organize and reorganize our craft room to utter bliss. Simple Bliss.
Thanks Matty, now I get to simply create in my simple craft room.

Floating shelves from Menard's.
Bed roll, lamp, rug, and curtains from Urban Outfitters.
Jars from Hobby Lobby or thrifted.
Funny Bones Game thrifted.
I'm sure there will be me more updates soon, I'm still waiting for my chandelier, stupid ceiling fan. But for now, bring on the slides!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

To ALL of the mothers in my life...

Written by Shannon Leigh


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Let me jump in you... please.

Written by Shannon Leigh

A perfect puddle for the most perfectly dreary night in this perfectly dreary city. Makes me think about London, but most things make me think about London.
If only I had brought my rain boots.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Hotel Magic

Written by Shannon Leigh

I'm starting to get used to my bed being made everyday and the toilet paper being folded in a neat little triangle.  Pretty sure it's magic. 

 Matty, do you think you can handle this when I get home?  

Monday, May 4, 2009

Ode to being 24 (part 2)

Written by Shannon Leigh

On my actual birthday (last Thursday) Matt and I celebrated my 24 years with Mexican soda.  If you haven't had some you should really go to your local Mexican grocery store and pick some up (you might want to stay away from the meat because of the whole Swine Flu thing).
We ended up going to the Courier Cafe in Urbana.  Matt and I are frequenters of this cute little establishment.  It's practically famous in these parts.  Read their story here
I had some birthday blueberry pie and Matt celebrated with a brownie covered in ice cream and whipped cream.  Both were delightful.  We left with full bellies and happy hearts.

Good thing my birthday fell on Dessert Thursday.  What a happy coincident. 

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Ode to being 24

Written by Shannon Leigh

When I was twelve I always wondered what I'd be like when I was "old," like in my mid twenties.    I remember trying to picture myself.  I wondered if I would be married, if I was a mother, what I did for a living, if my hair would still be blond ... It seemed like 24 was so far away.  

Unfortunately, now that it is here, I still feel like I'm twelve.  I still feel gangly and unsure of myself.  My skin has never cooperated and my hair is still frizzy.  No matter how much I excel at school or careers, when I look in the mirror I still feel like an awkward junior higher (minus the braces). I think I always will. 

Regardless of feeling like a prepubescent school girl my 'real life' husband and family made my day (or days... with an 's') special.  Thanks everyone!  

The night before my birthday Matt took me out to The Great Impasta (another favorite local place) and we ate lots of Italian food, sipped on Cherry Cokes, and listened to live music.  Did I mention there was Tiramisu

We then proceeded to play in the park... because we're really cool like that.

I will tell more about my birthday festivities tomorrow but I am in Chicago again this week and I am tired, mostly from eating at Buca (eating takes a lot out of a girl).  That big king size bed is going to be lonely... 
until tomorrow.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Tulips & Jesus

Written by Shannon Leigh

This morning I am enjoying (2 of) my birthday presents.