how charming.

Life is confusing and stressful and downright cruel sometimes. (Not the introduction you were expecting for such a fla la la title, was it? I’m getting there…)

I am not a stranger to the hard things in life- and I don’t believe that anyone in their 20’s really is, despite the fact that we are all desperately trying to seem “normal” and mentally sane. (Easier on some days than others.) For a long time, I believed that “strong” and “private” were synonyms.  And by private, I mean mostly about the less than perfect things. That you couldn’t be happy while admitting that sometimes that your life can really suck, that the way you yelled at your dog was Jerry Springer material, and that you’re not quite sure how you’re going to afford your dentist bill. In a time saturated by social media, where every meal you eat can have a Walden filter thrown on it, you can easily feel disconnected from the genuine emotion of humans. I can also easily get sucked into this world of charm and, sometimes, narcissistic billboarding of one’s “lovely” life. I am here to say that my life is not this perfect picture. Behind every meal is a huge mess of flour in my hair and splatter on the walls. Behind every date night picture is a month of conquering our differences and fighting not to be another statistic in a world that glorifies selfishness. Every fun weekend with friends is years of misunderstandings, hurt feelings and wondering if you’re worth it to them too.

That all to say, I can tell you that I am happy. Happy and flawed. And I am happiest when I can admit the flawed, ugly, and weird aspects of my life, because that’s what connects you to people and let’s them know you’re just another person. And while Instagram and Twitter can be charming and beautiful, it is the other side of the lens that is crucial. Because we’re all messed up. And we need something deeper than our heavy filtered snapshots to feel connected to one another.

Now, I am a wanna-be professional photographer. I am not saying give up social media or hashtag your acne breakouts, but I challenge you to be cognizant of the world and people around you. Send letters with your real hand writing and real emotions. Reach out to people and encourage them. Be intentional with your conversations. Don’t get on your phone during dinners. Be honest in your short comings, not just your successes. Apologize when you’re wrong. Even if it’s from years ago. Start listening and asking questions. Real questions. And don’t let this shallow world swallow you whole.

For the love of pete, don’t let it swallow you whole.

 

xoxo, k

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four great things.

Here are a few things that made the month of January special, that I happened to catch with my camera.

art1*One: My best friend, Corie, came to visit me for a weekend. We never stopped laughing… or eating. Corie is one of those gems of a friend that is always down for a new experience- no matter what it entails. This quality we share never fails to get us in trouble and, consequently, provides the best stories. This particular weekend had us galavanting through Houston, singing at random Karaoke establishments, making friends with strangers, and making sure we ate everything the city had to offer.

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Two: Clint and I went to visit my family for my younger brother’s birthday. I can’t believe how old they are getting. And they both tower at least 6 inches over me.

I was also able to visit my grandmother, Mimi. We had lunch and talked about anything and everything. I always feel so blessed to have her cheerful encouragement in my life. She always tells me that I give her hope in the current state of the world, but in reality, she gives me hope in myself.

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Three: This last time Clint was home, we were able to experience lots of peaches. (Clint and I describe the good things in life as peaches and the bad as pits.)

1. After months and months of searching, we found a church that we both love. This is a hugely exciting thing to us, since we have been craving a Christian community- and between me going to church on my own when he was gone, and us not “clicking” with a church when he was here, it was a frustrating roller coaster.

2. I applied for my dream job. I honestly believed I had no chance at getting it, but after several rounds of interviews, I got a call offering me the position! I am still completely blown away and insanely excited. Starting tomorrow (ah!) I will be helping with the design of Free People stores. I will help plan events, pick what goes on manequins, style customers, and help design the inside of the store… the perfect collision of everything I love into one job description.

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Above: Me in my favorite little nook of the house. The coffee table is an old war trunk and we found that killer wingback chair at an estate sale when we first moved to Houston.

And below: Clint and I went to several different museums over the two weeks he was home. It was so funny to see my grown husband get all giddy for the dinosaur exhibit at the Museum of Science- and then he completely geeked out over the natural gas exhibit like the engineer he is. I love him.

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Home: I went to Canton last weekend, and found this awesome iron canopy. I decided to attach it to an old window frame (that came from a barn in Austin), to keep from having to drill any huge holes in the wall. Then I went to World Market and got some sheer curtains that I could tie on. Then I put a chandelier inside, and voila!

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DSC_0153For the vase, I took a mason jar and sprayed mercury paint (you can find it at Hobby Lobby) inside so that it looks silver/a mirror finish.

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Four: I have a thing for instant cameras. My most recent addition to the collection is Fujifilm’s instax 210. This guy is a wide shot camera, producing pictures about 3 times as large as the popular 7s. Definitely too large to casually carry around, but the pictures are easier to see and the camera provides alot more control over your results than the 7s (lightening/darkening options, different zoom lengths, ect)

I am also excited about this year’s planner from Kate Spade. Each month is sectioned off by beautiful pictures and fun quotes.

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Off to my first day of my new job tomorrow. Wish me luck.

xoxo, k.