full table | new year

Twenty years old.

I think I spent a lot of high school growing up fast, but the last year I’ve felt my true age more than ever. I’m not an old soul in a young body. I never have been. More so a young soul with a big job to do. I’ve been putting off writing a blog post for my newsletter like this, but yesterday was the perfect push to make it happen.

The truth is I have no idea where I’ll be in 10 years, 5 years, or next year. My goals have swayed, my vision has shifted into guidelines, and my concept of the future has been altered by my faith. The Lord has taken me to places I couldn’t have dreamed. He has given and taken. He never ceases to surprise me by gifts and mercies. love I don’t deserve. joys he never promised I would have, but simply gives. I don’t want to come up with a detailed plan. I’m done trying to plan my biggest dream, because his is beyond what I could muster up.

Ephesians 3 is clear,

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

I know his glory isn’t my fleshly desires. By accepting christ, laying my sins at the cross, and pursuing his plans, happiness is not promised, joy and gifts are not my reward on earth. But we are in it for the long run. for his mighty plan and his victory. his glory, for the kingdom. All I dream is that this year, next year, in five years, in 10 years, I want my table full. full of friends, family, and strangers.

Reading apostle Paul’s letters to the churches makes me nostalgic over memories that aren’t mine. There was fierce struggle, the good fight was daily just like it is now. There were hidden churches, there were joyful believers celebrating in low voices around tables. They leaned on each other as family and community. They had abandoned all. He wrote to encourage and challenge.

I think about the good fight I’m fighting with my brothers and sisters. The tearful phone calls, the hours of prayer, the long travels to just be with each other, the challenging conversations, the times of worship, the times of communion and fellowship. I love when I glance around and we are together and laughing. “We” is vague because I experience this “together” in different homes, states, and countries. As my birthday has passed and this new year is around the corner, all I’m praying for is that in 2018 my table is full. Even if it’s full in a different way than I imagine, may it be full.

God blessed last night, as the table was full.

At 11:00am, my best friend Ginny arrived to my new home. We greeted each other with squeals and hugs because we’ve become accustomed to not seeing each other for months due to distance. She is joining MTR (Memphis Teacher Residency) next year, and I’m proud of her. At about 12:30pm, my friend El arrived with “hazelnut spread” and a container of parsnips with carrots. She brought stories and updates from her first semester at school in New York City. We laughed over subway experiences and conversed about art, work, and community. Quickly our little group grew as Tiana, my friend who is studying dance in university, arrived; then Olivia Grace, a music major; Kelly and Vincent, friends I’ve known through Avenue Coffee; and more and more. The day continued with grinding loads of coffee. I had mentioned that you could bring your presents to wrap so we could all be together, and many of them did. So out came boxes and bows. My mom and her best friend Megan, my art and science teacher from HS, stopped by. My sister arrived with 18 boxes to stuff and package for my clients. It was a full experience.

As dinner grew near, food was arriving with each person. It was two sets of incredible mac + cheese, blt bites of some sort, bananas, fried chicken, parsnips + carrots, and veggie chili. We slayed that mac + cheese. Nothing left.

I was in the kitchen for maybe 20 minutes when I rounded the corner into my room, and dear Lord, there were so many people all together sitting on the floor, chairs, and bed. It was a full room, barely room to walk. People I didn’t recognize came and introduced themselves, new friends brought other friends. My heart swelled. This is what I’m about. I’m about the sharing food and having conversations. I love when I hear people learning about another lifestyle and culture. I’m all about hearing a friend from one part of my life introduce themselves to a friend from another part of life. Even baby Liam made a showing with Jo and Peter, my freakin’ people. I didn’t want this to end. As every bit of mac + cheese was scraped from the casserole dishes, it was time for music.

Mary Mad, as her friends lovingly call her, brought out her guitar to start us off. She is a student at MS State and a dear friend to one of my dear friends. So of course, we are tight. <3 She played and we all joined in as she finished off with Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours”. Next, Jackie, my Zimbabwe queen. She brought her drums and spontaneously (under much squealing on my part) started hyping up the room with her beats. We even morphed a beat into jingle bells and it was so fun. Wyly began setting up his piano, and swept us away. My favorite of his last night was an original called Memphis Nights. SHAMELESS PLUG: https://open.spotify.com/track/22l9CHlqXrDL0zp8J985Gx . Olivia Grace brought out some Mariah Carey with Wyly killin’ it on the keys. After many a request, out came ice cream and cookies. We gathered together in my room again to grow quiet for John Black to play a “rough draft” of his music. He drove home to get his amp and guitar just for it, and everyone had no complaints as he kept playing.

Gosh, so much joy that night. This friend family I had left nothing for me to do, as they gathered plates, cups, moved furniture back into place, cleaned mugs. The house was back to normal in a few short bustling minutes! I was driven to Gibson’s by Sara Beth to finish off the night.

I came home, heart full, room empty. I won’t ever forget how full it was. And I hope it will always finds its way back to that state.


So first things first: I moved. Don’t worry, I’m still in Memphis! This move is semi-permanent, in the sense that I know an end date for how long I’ll be here. I’ll probably be in Memphis afterwards, but you never know where the Lord will lead me. Here are some FAQs about my move!


I know! eeeep


I now live in a pocket neighborhood behind Walnut Grove. I have some awesome new roommates named Bekah and Maggie; I already love living with them. They let me drink their coffee, so…it’s a good deal.


Pretty short and simple: it was an unexpected move. I graduated from high school and decided not to go to college, and it was the best decision I’ve ever made. As I’ve started learning how to work from home, though, it has become clear that it’s difficult to fit your bedroom and your office into one average-sized bedroom space. And don’t get me wrong, I don’t think size is always necessary–companies like IKEA can help you prioritize organization. I think it’s really important to live a minimal lifestyle in terms of organization and how much stuff you have. I strive to live a life like this, but even I began to feel claustrophobic in my own space due to all of the equipment I have. I haven’t narrowed down exactly where I want to be–I mean, I don’t know if I ever will–I think I just know that I will always want to be creator. I don’t have a designated “creation” or outlet so to speak–I think in general it will probably always include photography, but I’m not confident enough to say that photography will be what I do for the rest of my life. Because of that, I have a lot of other art supplies including canvases, paint, packaging materials, and loads more in boxes I was never able to unpack at my old house. My space at the new house is twice as big, with lots of additional storage space. Being able to find a place for things and store my equipment has been a huge blessing.

Did something happen with my roommates?

This is more of a personal note, especially for my friends and family who really didn’t expect the move. Before this, I lived with my best friends Hope and Katherine. Hope and I moved in together July after graduation from high school, so I really haven’t known living with anyone but her, and then Katherine joined us not too long after. To be clear: there was by no means any tension there. The move was not an emotional decision–it was very practical. There have been many tears shed after having separated the three musketeers. I will seriously hold dear the memories of living with Hope and Katherine for the rest of my life. I’m going to always be telling all of the crazy stories and talking about all the laughter and fun we had. We’re excited to learn how to be friends now– that is, how to schedule out intentional time together and hopefully that will go really well. It’s already been really strange not coming home to see them, so I am slowly learning and would definitely appreciate prayers in that area.

What does your new space look like? How have you set it up?

One thing that attracted me when I walked in was the beautiful stone floor and the exposed brick wall. I ended up painting the wall with white primer and I’m really happy with the results. My friend Emily Gluntz was the final push that convinced me to do it and we did it together with two gallons of primer paint. We did one layer with brushes to get into the mortar and grooves and the second layer was done with a roller–my new roommate Maggie ended up helping us roll, too. In the end, we did it in four hours. I was actually moved in before then, but the space is big enough that I was able to move everything away from the wall before painting. On one side of the room, I have a standing desk that I got from Autonmous, and my bed is on the other. I decided to make the brick wall a feature wall mainly because I think it’s unique and it’s what makes the room really feel like a studio apartment. I have an awesome table that was built for my sister’s wedding by her husband Josh, who heads up Olive & Iron Woodcraft. He does some personal projects on the side so if you’re interested in getting a new piece of furniture built, let me know and I’ll send you to his inbox. I really wanted to put that table in here because 1. the space was available, and 2. I want this room to be filled with art and artists, and I want to be able to share this space. I feel like I would never have dreamed I would be able to live in a space like this when I was 19, and I want to give it back to other artists as much as I can. Super excited about the future of it! On another wall, I have a seating area and my big ficus, and also a huge closet that has allowed me to expand and unpack a lot of those boxes I mentioned before. If you would like to come by and work and treat my place like a coffee shop, you are welcome to! I have been able to stay at home a lot more and work from home and I’m excited about that. I hope to continue to soak in the amazing opportunity to live here. What I’ve learned in this process is that the Lord is not held by leases– and when His will is to be done, His will is to be done and there is no fighting it.

How are you doing?

I am doing well! This space has been life-giving. There is space to create, breathe, stretch, and separate my work and personal life. I’m loving inviting friends and even clients over to have coffee. I am enjoying having an area for messy art while keeping my “work” desk clean (since there are two desks). I have felt growing pains, but I know His plan is greatest. Thanks for asking!

Here are some PICS from the whole process.







The lovely Jo of JoDarling Photography took a few photos of me in my room:

First Time Bread Baker | Attempt Once

To be honest, bread seemed really intimidating to me. Since its so easy to buy, and you hear so many talk about how hard it is to bake bread. However this summer I visited dear friends of mine, and they make bread. Well, Anna bakes bread. It all seems very simple and well time consuming but not difficult. So when I was given the bread + cheese platter for one of my best friends baby shower, it seemed the perfect opportunity.

I didn’t own a dutch oven, nor was I at all informed by the true task of baking bread. My sister came to my rescue… a baby sitter if you will. She face timed me the night I stirred it all up, and came over in the morning, let me barrow her dutch oven and stayed till it was all golden crust! So I send all my gratitude to Dough vs Girl and my sister!

Now I went with the simplest of recipes that my sister uses! And I’ve broken it down and photographed my experience below.

no-knead dutch oven bread

I made two batches. Left – Plain bread . Right – Rosemary bread


  • 3 cups of flour

  • 2 tsp of salt (for the plain bread)
  • 2 tsp of garlic salt (for the rosemary bread) + rosemary

  • 1 Tsp (one packet) of red star ACTIVE DRY YEAST

Mix until just mixed.

cover with siranwrap or something. I used parchment and then a cloth on top.

leave over night in a warm space in your home.

Turn oven on to 450 and place dutch oven inside as well!

Flour up and scoop on pan. Will use quite a bit of flour to ensure its not too sticky to mold into roundness.

Once round and cute on its pan, cover again with cloth and let rise for 30 minutes at least.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

If you so desire, you can slit an X or just a line to allow a crack .

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

You can’t totally tell in this photo, but pick up the borders of the parchment paper and plop into the dutch oven.

Cook with cover on for 40/45 minutes. Then take the dutch oven top off and let bake for 8-10 minutes to make it all golden!

Me with bread.