Wednesday, July 27, 2011

i can do this

In less than 24 hours J & I will be getting on a plane while baby girl heads to spend the week with her wonderful Nana & Grandpa. Just writing that sentence makes my heart hurt. I have spent time away from her but never for that long. 

When J & I planned this trip last year we knew it would be difficult being away from our baby. Until baby girl arrived we had NO idea actually how difficult it would be. And we're doing this for a week. A week people. 

The trip will be amazing. We get to do couply things. Go on "dates", dress up, sleep in, sit on the porch, go to the beach, take lots of pictures, drink wine. Since we weren't able to get a honeymoon, we will be soaking up this anniversary trip. I do know that a moment won't pass where we aren't thinking about our dear daughter. 



To my darling daughter,
This week has been a tearful one. I will miss you desperately and will think of you constantly. The thought of being away from you has been a not so exciting experience. Please know that the day you were born such unimaginable joy entered our lives. Life will never be the same again. In your short six months of life you have already reshaped my soul in ways unimaginable. I am yours. Forever.

Just in case...I want to remind you of some things until we meet again,

1. you shine. you can change the world with your smile. the world is yours baby girl.
2. make Jesus number one in your life, He will never fail you...cling to Him. He will forever protect you & will show you who your momma and daddy were through others around you.
3. you are extremely loved. and forever will be. you have blessed the lives of so many people.
4. always snuggle, always give kisses to your family, always inspire, always dream, always love
5. choose joy, choose hope, choose peace

Your momma and daddy love you very much and can't wait to see you after our trip. Enjoy your Nana and Grandpa. They love you more than anything. You have brought them so much joy.

You are beautiful, baby girl. See you soon.

love, momma

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

great words from a great man

My Papa {my momma's daddy} was always the sharer of the good word{s}. 
Both biblical and quoteworthy. 
There is one quote in particular that has meant a lot to all of the grandchildren. 
My cousin used it in her wedding, my brother repeats it on a daily basis, etc. 
It is a great reminder of a way of thinking and I want to share it with you.

This is the beginning of a new day.
God has given me this day to use as I will.
I could waste it or use it for good.
But, what I do today is important 
because I am exchanging a day of my life for it.
Tomorrow this day will be gone forever,
leaving in its place something I have exchanged for it.
I pray the things I do today will be for good, not evil,
success, not failure
so that I will not regret the price I have paid for it.

I've also created a print for the first five lines of it & have sent it off to the print shop so that I can let it hang in my house.
This is a daily reminder for my family.
Maybe it can be one for yours as well.


P.S. My best friends will be in town in an hour and a half and this makes me very happy. I haven't seen them since March & I know they're excited to see how Layla has grown! Expect pictures :)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

veggie tacos

I am linking up with Casey's recipe exchange to share this easy, inexpensive & delicious meal that my husband and I enjoy at least once a week!

Meet veggie tacos.

I don't cook much. Mainly because I married a man/chef and there is not usually a point in me taking a long time to follow a recipe when he can whip up something incredible and off the cuff in less than 20 minutes. These lovelies are easy for me to make & are quite the treat. AND they only cost around FIVE dollars and take only about five-ten minutes to make!

When I was introduced {back in college} to these veggie tacos I am pretty sure I rolled up my nose. Veggies? Are you kidding me. But, after trying them, I discovered that they are absolutely perfect.

So, to make veggie tacos {for 2} you will need:

1 avocado
1 roma tomato
6 tortillas
sundried tomato and basil feta crumbles
balsamic vinaigrette {or a balsamic reduction}
salt n peppa

{1} slice avocados
{2} slice or chop tomatoes. we change it up. the photo shows them chopped. 
{3} distribute avocados and tomatoes between the six tortillas. if you feel like you'd like a little more of either, just pull out another avocado or tomato and slice 'em up :)
{4} pour on feta crumbles to your liking
{5} dip a spoon in the end of your balsamic {after putting in a jar or bowl} and drizzle it over the top of each taco. you don't need much. 

{6} sprinkle a little salt and pepper over each taco


If you live in TX you are lucky. Avocados are super cheap. They're about $1.50 - $2.50 here in TN but it's still really inexpensive overall. Roma tomatoes are the best in my opinion but any tomatoes will work! We use the small flour tortillas. You may want to try corn to change things up. But...we prefer flour :) Sundried tomato and basil feta crumbles add the perfect tiny addition of flavor. Regular feta works too, though. We use a balsamic reduction we bought at a restaurant here in Nashville. Justin has also made some. If I didn't have him or the restaurant, I would just use a balsamic vinaigrette.

Here is a simple recipe for a balsamic reduction from Lori.

1 1/2 cups balsamic vinegar
1/4 to 1/2 cup of brown sugar (to your liking)

Bring vinegar to a boil, turn down the heat and let it simmer. When it reduces halfway, add brown sugar. Simmer some more until it becomes syrupy and sticks to the back of a wooden spoon. As it cools it will thicken up. Store leftovers in frig.

I hope you give these veggie tacos a chance. I'm quite proud :)


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

new items in the shop & things layla loves volume 2

The RUFFLE HEADBANDS have been added to the shop!! AND I'm shipping off the giveaway winners' headbands tomorrow!!

Go getcha one...or more...oh, and by the way...I only added three styles...the three I feel are the most popular! IF you're interested in another style just e-mail me & we can create you a custom order. I'm sure I'll be adding more styles as they come to me :)

Also...the time has arrived for Things Layla Loves Volume 2! 

It was really hard to pick just ten things that she really loves or loves doing! She is growing and changing so much and is beginning to be interested in so many things! I guess it will just mean that volume three will come much sooner :)

Have a wonderful week!


Sunday, July 10, 2011


SURPRISE! If you entered the giveaway, you won! 

Congratulations Krysten, Alan, Kristine, Lynn-Ann, Tara & {YES...AND} Valerie

Since this was my first giveaway and I am new to the blogging world, the traffic on my blog is not extremely high. BUT - we will get there. So, those of you who support and are interested in my products deserve them! 

Seriously y'all. Thank you for the support. Thank you for your follow! Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Stay tuned for more giveaways. I like them. And I like y'all. Also, I'll be adding the headbands to my shop this week so if you'd like other styles or more, they'll be available for purchase! 

If your name is Krysten, Alan, Kristine, Lynn-Ann, Tara or Valerie, please e-mail me at designsbyabbylynn {at} gmail {dot} com with your mailing address and if you need the headband for an infant, child/teen, or adult! 


Friday, July 8, 2011

make a joyful noise

There is absolutely nothing sweeter than a child's laughter.

I find myself tearing up quite often at the precious sounds coming from my sweet daughter.

She fills me with joy. She is full of joy. How sweet that she knows such a wonderful thing as joy at such an early time in her life. 

. . . 
Earlier this week, she was SO entertained by her daddy's silly sounds & faces and I thought to myself, "she is making such a joyful noise." JOY.JOY.JOY. She is FULL of joy. and. she let's us know by sharing her laughter, her babbles, her sighs, etc. with us.

. . .
So, I created a print with the words "MAKE A JOYFUL NOISE" as a reminder of my sweet baby girl. 
I've also chosen to share it with you HERE.

Have a wonderful weekend, y'all {I'm from Texas...}!

OH ... have you entered the GIVEAWAY? You have until Sunday! :)


Thursday, July 7, 2011

charcoal ruffle headband GIVEAWAY

{Baby girl is wearing the layered ruffle headband}
So, after a lot of positive feedback from the charcoal ruffle headband in the post below, I'd like to give my first giveaway a shot.

I created five different styles of the charcoal ruffle headbands & will be giving them away to five different people who enter my giveaway.

Mandatory to enter: be a follower of my blog {leave a comment telling me you are}
additional entries:
Pick your favorite style, comment which one.
"like" my facebook page here & comment. 
Follow me on twitter here & comment.  
The giveaway will close at 8:00 P.M. Sunday evening. So, get your comments in & win some free stuff! After the giveaway is over, I will recreate these lovely headbands & make them available for all on my Etsy shop. 

Thanks for your support!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

charcoal ruffle headband

Today I made a headband for Layla.

I was inspired by the simplicity & "recycled" idea of this sweet headband on Etsy.

Here is what I came up with...

It was super fun & EASY to make. I'll give a little tutorial later.
I also made a jersey circle scarf which was loads of fun too.

I'm thinking of adding this to my Etsy shop if anyone would rather purchase one!

I'm also going to think up some alternate ruffle styles!

Yay for recycled accessories!


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Baby Girl's Nursery

I'm sure many of you have seen Layla's lovely nursery. It quickly became our favorite room in the house. There are still a few simple details I'd like to change & some sweet accessories I would like to add but for now this is it. & we sure do love it.
 All photos were taken by my dear friend, Valerie Hammond.
She also took my maternity pictures which were absolutely AMAZING. You can find those here.

Baby girl was weighing in around 8 lbs in this photo. She is now a whopping 18!
We love the chandelier hanging over her bed. 
It gives off the perfect light & she gets mesmerized in it.
 This lovely blanket kept me warm during the middle of the night feedings.
We are very thankful those are no more :)
 This quilt was handmade by Layla's Grandma - Justin's mother.
 Love this lamp.
Bird I made hanging from her burlap curtains - mmm.
 One of my favorite parts - lockers for storage!
Bench for later with storage under.
Tiny feet.
 Love these shelves.
These frames now have pictures in them.
Maybe I should retake the picture.

I linked up over at