Saturday, August 13, 2011

Quick Update

There has been a lot going on around here. We have been busy adjusting to our new jobs, furnishing out apartment and just catching up with life. There have been many difficult times and there have been many awesome times...we are just trying to learn our new normal in a new land. 

Some of the exciting things:

JJ has been busy working in the studio recording for his new record. I heard some samples of his stuff today and I must say..WOW. Jim, JJ's producer, is awesome and it is clear that they are quite a match! I can't wait for the world to hear what is to come. You can check out JJ's new label, Red Parade Music, here:

I have been busy learning my job at work. I was just in Seattle last week for my first trade show and I had a blast! I feel so lucky to have the opportunity to work for the company I do with the potential to grow that I have. 

Sorry this is such a short (but sweet:)) blogpost, but we are to see "The Rise of the Planet of the Apes." I will updated more later!

Love to you all!

Thursday, July 14, 2011



the domination of one's thoughts or feelings by a persistent idea, image, desire, etc...

Many people don't know this, but I am quite a bit obsessive and when I say "quite" I mean MAJORLY. You may be giggling at the comment, but it has actually wreaked havoc on my life as of late. I have always had this issue starting when I was little. My mom says she noticed it first beginning when I was about 4 years old and my dad went to Korea for the Army. You see, I have the personality (and life experiences) that do not convey or articulate change as being something "good." I am a creature of habit, security and assurance. Although I am a person who has experienced so much change in my 24 years, it is something that I don't typically respond well to. So you take marriage, job change and a major move and you pretty much get a Jessica version of a crap sandwich. My poor husband...Nah, he is pretty crazy about me:)

 For a long time there has been no tension, friction or movement to really entice any of this behavior, however as of late it has resurfaced in full force. Case(s) in point: Locking my car 2 times and hearing the horn and still not believing it, checking the curling iron 5 times in a row, staring at it and still not being sure that it is turned off. A few more: thinking that somehow an email I sent had sensitive information (that magically appeared there??), being terrified of sending emails with typos (and having to get JJ to read them and be the one to send them so I don't "mess" it up), thinking that my phone line is always open and that people are listening into private conversations. Sadly, the list could probably go on a little longer, but I have already outed myself enough, I think:) 

I reveal all of this for both selfish and selfless reasons. I feel that if I put my sin out into the world and confess it then I may be taking a step to be set free. Also, I have to believe that there are other people, women specifically, walking on this earth right now who process stress, fear and loss of control this way. I know whole-heartedly that this is a way that Satan has chosen to attack me in 2011. I know that he has seen the opportunity to throw arrows of doubt at me as he is a brilliant study of character. The storm has been a perfect one for me to be under attack and I ashamed to say that I have let it hold me captive. After 4 weeks and moments of major inner turmoil and feelings of weakness, I am finally starting to turn my mind over to Christ. There is nothing more frustrating than how hardheaded I can be, waiting way too long to ask my Father for help. I guess weakness and false sense of control will do that to you. 

All of this to say, if you are women out there feeling like a crazy person for a ridiculous manifestation of fear or anxiety (whether it be similar to me or totally different) know you are not alone (oh, and feel free to reveal yourself so that I am not the only one standing here naked;-)). There are plenty of us out there, struggling with the many feelings that all women do and often times blowing these captivating behaviors off as just "who I am" and failing to admit how much joy it steals from our lives. We all want to feel safe and I am learning everyday that true safety will come from God, not in how many times I check the stove;-)

*wipes brow and steps down from soapbox*


And now on a lighter note, a few fun things that I am "obsessed" with right now:

Samsung Front Load Washer and Dryer
The only part of Mexican food that Cali CAN'T mess up

SOOO Good, makes me miss the South

Juicing, a doctor in a glass

Oh, and my beautiful music man <3

When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.- Psalm 94:19

With all my heart,

Thursday, July 7, 2011

"Better joy in a cottage than sorrow in a palace" - Proverb

With the move into our new place, I have become a bit obessed with trying to find out how I want to decorate. Although we will be in a condo- type apartment, I still want it to feel like a home. I tried this in our last apartment, however it was a bit difficult due to an impending move and trying to merge lives. Not to mention, I ended up with blue walls (do not read that the wrong way, tehe;-)). Don't get me wrong, I loved the time. I can't tell you how glad I was when we moved and I knew that I would get to start from scratch in a new place and take my time decorating and creating. I consider this our first real place together since it is the first place that JJ and I picked together AND it is where we will have our first Christmas tree. I have been collecting personalized or special edition ornaments since I was very little (most given by my grandmother)  and I have been waiting for SO long to get to decorate a tree of my very own. Anyway, I is JULY after all.

As I have been researching my new home decor, I keep coming back to a cottage style. I never thought I would like something so whimsical, but it kind of makes me really happy. I am choosing white, beige, yellow and grey tones, but here are some inspiring pics that I found to help me as I create our new home. Enjoy and let me know what you think!

Love the light gray walls

Such a cute white hutch

Adore this color scheme

Love the yellow accent walls

 Our new place has a GIANT, ceramic sink and window above it similar to this one.
It make me SO happy:)
 Accent color in master room- "Secret Passage"
Accent color in dining room and laundry room- "Cornmeal"

Can't wait to see how things turns out....


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Oh! The Places You'll Go....


Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!"


There is a Dr. Seuss book, "Oh! the Places You'll Go," and I read it along time ago. Probably on the last day of a school year or something like that. Anyway, as I sat down to write this blogpost, I immediately thought of this book as the inspiration. 

In honor of this book, I would like to use this (very long) blogpost to describe Oh! the places we've gone, the people we've said goodbye to and the newness that God has blessed us with. 


 Saturday, June 4th, marked the last gig off JJ's Houston career. This night was very anticipated with both excitement and sadness. JJ and the trio played this Char House gig for almost a year and it was always so much fun, a place for the band to let loose and for friends to come together. This night in particular, though, I was holding my breathe the whole time and not wanting to say final goodbyes. Below is the journey of that night in pictures. 

 Dana and myself starting the night off with excitement:)

Sweet man

 My Kelly

 The Char House gang who were AMAZING to all of us!

 My friend and former boss, Mandi, and her hubby Greg


 Bella <3


(members only)

 Cake balls!

The final night fans!



A great way to end the slide show:)


June 5th is the day that we began our journey to the West Coast. It was a hectic day, to say the least. In honor of our departure, a Texas storm blew in just as we were finished with the final load into the UHaul. 

The little UHaul that could....

"Adios, Tejas!"

Somewhere in New Mexico

"California, here we come!"


We weren't in California for a week before we found our new apartment. It is about 3 minutes, if that, from my job and is within walking distance from Trader Joe's, Edwards Cinema, Native Foods (a vegan restaurant that I love) and lots of cute boutiques and other stores. The property used to be condos and they renovated them and turned them into apartments. However, their layout is very private and individual which I loved. In fact, I loved this place so much that I leased it while JJ was detained and couldn't come and see it. Fortunately, I got his permission to make the decision and he was not disappointed! Since then, we have just been buying furniture, our latest purchases being a front load washer and dryer, a stainless steel fridge, a sectional and a king-size bed! As many of you know, we sold/gave away all of our stuff so we had to start from scratch. It has been fun:) I will post pics once we get moved in and I can start the decorating.

Here are some pics of our new town and county:)
 Peaceful Aliso Viejo

Laguna Beach 
(takes about 10 minute to get here)

 The view on our roads

The town center right near our place


We have been so happy living here in the short 3 weeks that we have called California "home." I have been loving my job, JJ is enjoying getting to practice and write while he waits to begin his record in July. While there have been challenges, tears of sadness, comfort zone adjustment and fear we know we are being obedient. I have been blessed with a husband whose faith and certainty can trump mine from time to time and he is always there to remind me that as long as we keep our eyes on God, all other things will fall into place. I am reminded of my past blog post when I talked about Peter. The second he took his eyes off his Father, his stability was compromised; I need not forget this. JJ has been a champion during this time, helping me when I have felt nervous about my new job or about what is next to come with finances, new friends, etc. He has offered gifts to me that money can't buy and, as always, those gifts are centered on Christ. I am thankful for this move and the sweetness it has given to us as we grow in our marriage, in our faith and as individuals.


be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O'Shea,
You're off the Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So...get on your way!"


Friday, May 27, 2011

.... Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.

Things have been chaotic. But they have been fun.

When you ask God to direct your path and really try and trust him, HE DOES. It's a funny, beautiful thing to watch God work and know that the ballsy (excuse lack of filter) thing you are about to do is a true testament to something miraculous.

When JJ and I pray, it is always for God to help us step out of the boat, to give us faith and for him to help us keep our eyes on His gaze lest we begin to sink. This time of life and particularly in regard to this big move has caused us to ask for help more than usual and we have been ears wide open. About 5 weeks ago I began the interview process with my current company for a position out in the heart of LA. It seemed liked a great opportunity and I pursued it full force, even flying out there spur of the moment. However, last Friday after much prayer and counsel, I passed on the opportunity...and this was before it was even offered to me. The entire time I was in the process I prayed that God shut the door if it was not the right path for me, and He did. So that meant, of course, I was about to head to Cali with no job, no benefits and no idea what I was gonna do. All I knew was that I was at peace and doing what was right for me. I was "stepping out of the boat" and just KNEW that God had something greater in store for me and that my faith would prevail. Please note, however: I was still slightly freaked out and endlessly praying that I wasn't just having a hallucinogenic, crazy moment .

Well, as we know, GOD IS GOOD! Today I got the final offer on a job that I began pursuing this week doing corporate sales. This is a HUGE opportunity for me and for our family, and I am so excited to grow, learn and be challenged while I develop my career. God has been faithful to help JJ and I both take leaps of faith. He has been a good Father to us both together and individually.

Just goes to show that when you step out of the boat and walk toward Jesus, He will help you walk on water.

 “Come,” he said.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

This Week in the News...

This week....

Rob and Whitney got married on Saturday and their wedding was STUNNING! I love that they branded their wedding with a "WR" logo that was fluid and repeated throughout the entire wedding and ceremony. They seriously did not miss one detail. I mean, heck, they even had Marble Slab Creamery (complete with mix-ins) for guests to enjoy... I was blown away. 

Their wedding was also an opportunity for me to get to know Dana and Jeremy Williams whom we danced the night away with. Well, Dana and I danced, JJ and Jeremy had convulsions and spasms. ;-) It was REALLY fun. 

Jeremy, Dana, Me and J

Monday night was awesome because I got to go hang out with JJ and Laura and see "Bridesmaids." I am pretty sure I have not laughed that hard from a movie in many years. It was such an enjoyable 2 hrs and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a new flick to go see. 

After the movie, JJ and I went over to Laura and Travis's place to say goodbye. Let's just say that once the door shut, I was a basket case. I have been through 4 of the most transitional years of my life with Laura as my friend and many times, my family. We have been each others emergency contacts, have been each others bridesmaids, have gone home to each others home-towns, have had wedding initiations addressed to us TOGETHER (actually, a couple of those sound kinda sad and cat, whatever:)).  She is a treasure to me and I will be forever grateful for her, her heart and for the fact that she will be my friend for life. She will forever be my original boo.

My lingerie shower
Girl's Night!
Laura's Big Day
Kentucky for X-Mas

On another note, Wednesday night  I began my "Body by Bethenny" yoga DVD. I love it because it is only 40 minutes long. I hate it because I can only get through 13 minutes so far. It's mildly sad and I'm still praying for arms like Bethenny.

JJ and I have also been working our way through the 6th season of Weeds. We are obsessed. Truly, there is nothing God fearin' about this show but it is so nuts we can't turn away. If I was a soccer mom who decided to gain income through selling canibus, I am pretty sure I would be Nancy Botwin. 

I am very much looking forward to this weekend. I think I may get in some good QT with my husband and then Saturday night I get to go watch him play at Char House, hang with some ladies and go dancing to celebrate a sweet new friend's birthday. I am SO excited to go dancing. Honestly, the last time I actually went out dancing was in my college days and with a whole different set of convictions. I am looking forward to letting loose in a good, clean, Christian kinda way ;-)

On another note, today is my 2 month anniversary... I think he may be the one.

Until next time,

Jess <3

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Mother's Day, Mama!

I am writing this post in honor of  my earth mom. There is not a better mother on the planet (if I do say so myself). Ever since I was a little girl, I new my mom was a place to take refuge, find comfort and glean strength from; my mom truly is the definition of strength. She has overcome
more than many can even fathom. She has risen up to challenges, stepped over obstacles and saved herself from disaster time and again, and always with another joke up her sleeve or a smile to save the day.

I remember times during my awkward, pre-teen/teenage years that I would come home from school or be heading to school and my mom would hand over a picture she colored for me (she worked at a middle school at the time:)) or give me a letter that she had written me, just to say she was there for me. My mother is the queen of letting you know she cares, loves you and that she will always be there, and it was during this time, a time where many push their parents away, that I drew closer to my mom.

The greatest things about my mother are that she is free of judgment, she is accepting, she listens, she lets you be you, she respects you as a person separate from her and by being around her, you become more positive and feel uplifted. I love that my mom and I talk about everything. I love we make each other laugh. I love that she inspires me to one day be a mother EXACTLY like her. I love that she is the girlfriend I run to for a 100% judgement free perspective.

Many people are put on this earth for many things, and I have said it many times, that my mom was put on this earth to be a mom. She is BRILLIANT at it and I know God gifted her with the precise ability; it is innate in her, it is baggage free and it is unconditional.

I love you, mama. Forever and ever. Thank you for always dusting yourself off, changing in any way you have ever needed to and sacrificing for Jonathan and I. We have all that we do because you have loved us well, because you taught us the love of Jesus and because you have always tried to live that example out everyday. You are the BOMB!