Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I ❤ My Sponsors + Giveaway: {Penelope's Porch} CLOSED


~You know how much I adore miniature things. And how much I gasp over vintage-ness.~

...You don't? Why, that's silly--I though *everyone* knew that I am head-over-heels in love with the adorable-ness of a small, dainty, doll-sized object. I could stare at a teeny teacup for hours...yes, really. :)
With that said, you can only imagine how Miss Penelope from Penelope's Porch had me swooning over her handmade, vinatge-looking goodness. At this shop, you will find an "eclectic selection of unique, whimsical, modern, and vintage style jewelery." Take a look {don't faint now, ladies}:

Secret Garden Teacup Necklace - Porcelain Rose

Bakers Love Cupcake Muffin Pan and Whisk on a Sterling Silver Plated Chain

Bird Watcher Lariat Necklace with tiny bird and binocularsMiniature Porcelain Vintage Style Clock Necklace - Pink Flowers
Lucky Four Leaf Clover Charm on a Silver Chain NecklaceThe Orange Tree Necklace

Tiny Tea Time Teacup on a Sterling Silver Plated Chain Necklace

...Drooling yet? ;)

Now, Miss Penelope has been extremely wonderful in donating this item for our latest giveaway. Here is the adorable item one of my blessed readers is going to find in the mailbox for them one day:  

Tea and a Cupcake in Paris necklace

Tea and a Cupcake in Paris necklace

..Okay, tea and cakes and miniature are divine, but with Paris? L-O-V-E.

....How to Win This Lovely....

*Visit Penelope's Porch and comment with the link to your favorite item.*

....For additional entries, worth (1) each....
{Leave seperate comments for *every* thing you do, please!}

>Follow "From Under My Little Umbrella" via Google Friend Connect

>Post about this giveaway on blogger/twitter/facebook; leave me the link

>Like Penelope's Porch on facebook and tell her I sent you! :)

>Post this button to your sidebar:

This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only, aged ten years and older. A winner will be drawn via ASAP after the giveaway ends on April 18th, 2011, 5:00 p.m. EST. Please leave some form of communication {such as an e-mail or blog link} in an entry so that I may contact you if you win. If the winner does not resond within 48 hours of the drawing, another shall be picked.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Because "Blogger" Should Really Be Entitled "New Friend Maker.."

I always get excited when a new follower joins our ranks at the top of the page, because it means something wonderful: I have a new friend! <3 Even better is when I discover that my new friend has a blog, and we begin to correspond and truly become online "buddies." :)

..But the sad thing is, though I may have many sweet blogging buddies, I am never destined to meet a good 99/100 of them. :( In fact, over all of my years of online friendships, I have yet to meet a single real, live young lady from my list of pen-pals and favorite bloggers, giver her a real, live hug that doesn't look like this --> {{HUG}}, and have a real, wonderful, conversation.

All that is about to change, because for the first time ever, Lucia is about to change her history.

Miss Michaela F., from the delightful blog The Last Rose of Summer, and her sister Anna F., from the ever-popular blog Oooh La La! are coming to my home state, for a visit.

~Is that exciting or what?!~

...Now, it is a funny thing with us, because a little while back we all discovered that we all knew the same young lady, Miss Nicole C. (yes, she taught the dress-making class).

Michaela and Nicole are actually pretty much best friends, and it was by mere coincidence that, whilst browsing through Anna's blog a few months ago, I came accross a photo of Nicole and the two F. sisters at an "Ohio Rendevous." I was like, "Wha..?!"

Thus, it was discovered that we are connected in mysterious ways, and...they are arriving here in May to visit Nicole and their other friends here, just in time for the "Count of Monte Cristo" ball, too {which I shall be attending...more on that later}!

~Michaela and Anna, I so look forward to meeting you, my dears!~

..Blessings, friends! I wish I could meet all of you someday...<3

Sunday, March 27, 2011

LORD's Day...

I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses


And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses...

And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own!

And the joy we share, as we tarry there
None other has ever known!


~Happy Sunday, dear friends! May the Lord bless you on this, His day.~

::Song: "In the Garden," by Austin C. Miles::

{By the way,  and AMAZING GIVEAWAY is going on over at "The Twinners Reviews and Giveaways!" If you are a photographer in need of a camera, click here...}

Saturday, March 26, 2011

When the Rain Gets You Down.. ☂

I was out running with my sister today, happy and carefree in the sunshine along country roads.

☂ Then, it started to rain. And I got wet. Reeeally w-e-t. :P ☂

I was feeling rather chilled and mopey by the time I plopped down and opened up the laptop, and my fingers left wet imprints on the keys as I typed in the password.

...And then, my dampened spirits {pardon the pun..} were lifted. Because, I saw this dress:

The Paige- Vintage 1950s Pale Pink Ballerina Tulle Floral Party Dress
{Via the BohemianBisoux}

..Isn't it the floofiest, dreamiest thing ever? And with some straps and a cute sweater...*sigh*
My spirits couldn't help but be lifted.

Not to mention the fact that I was eating a fresh-off-the-George-Foreman

::Grilled Cheese Sandwhich::

..What makes you happy, friends? What puts a smile on your face, and lifts your heart?


Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

❤ {Proverbs 16:3} ❤


{Perhaps entering my giveaway, before it ends on the last day of March, will help brighten your day?}

Thursday, March 24, 2011

What Song Do You Sing?

...You're just gonna stand there and watch me cry?
Well that's alright because I like the way you lie...

Do you ever write songs?
..Just, you know, to write them?

You know they're terrible, you know you could never make anything off of them, and you would die before showing them to anyone, but they reflect what your heart is singing, and so, you write them.

If this is the case, then you are a songwriter. Just like me. :) I've written a few songs in my liftetime--mostly in the form of poems which I have yet to set to music, but nevertheless, they are songs.

Most people write songs about heartbreaks and boyfriends and being dumped and oh-I-hate-you-so-much stuff. The above lyrics are from that type of song--*"I Like the Way You Lie."* (Please see disclaimer below...I do not endorse this song!) 


Well, sometimes, it's tempting to want to pour all of your "grouchyness" out onto a sheet of paper. It makes you feel good to spill out the things that have gone wrong, the things that you are fuming about, the people you aren't feeling kindly toward at the moment. :) Afterall, that's how most of the big singers make their money--by complaining through their lyrics. It's what we want to hear, because somehow, knowing that another person is going through exactly the same things as us makes us feel better.

If you write songs and poetry and all that good stuff, and find yourself pouring self-pity into your works, I have a suggestion to make:

Why not write about Jesus, and the heartbreaks He's fixed within you?

*Note on the lyrics used at the beginning of the post: I do not in any way endorse this song, I simply heard the chorus awhile back and have no idea if it's an "okay" song or not. My guess is that it isn't--I just used it to illustrate the point.*

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

"Springy-Spring-Springa," She Eees Here! :)

{Photo credit, my sister Olivia}

...Annnd, if you could decipher my title, I congratulate you. :) Yeppers, I *love* Miss Spring {a.k.a., "Springy-Spring-Springa"}. Not as much as Summer. Singing praises of Summer would take all day. But, I love Spring, and I make sure that when Spring comes around, she knows that I love her, too.

Hence the Spring-y outfit, hence the daffodil photo shoot, hence the post dedication.


..Still with me? Good. Now, let's do a victory parade whilst the seasons-who've-passed-away watch in envy. :)

Remember him?:

Yes, Mr. Winter. Well, he snuck out the back door while there was still time. Lucky for her, Miss Spring slipped in when he wasn't looking, right behind him through the door he opened.

..and remember him?:

..Right. Mr. Fall. He has been gone on vacation a good while now, and though we liked his prettyness while he lasted, I say, "Good riddance!"

..Now, you all should have seen a bit of her by now, wherever you live:

❤ ..Welcome back, dear Spring!.. ❤

I have waited for you, and my feet are itching to be free.. :)


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Blogging for Books Review: Dragons of the Valley

What would life within a world of dragons, castles, and elvish beings be like?

...J. R. R. Tolkien once gave us a glimpse into such a magical atmosphere alongside Frodo and the Ring, and now Donita K. Paul invites fans of this courageous adventure to travel within the similar pages of Dragons of the Valley.

When war threatens her peaceful land, like Frodo Baggins of Middle Earth, Princess Tipper Schope of Chiril is faced with a qwest as vital as the keeping of the Ring. However, the aim for this journey is not to destroy, but to find saftey for the three statues of Wulder--which keep Chiril alive. And like Frodo, Tipper isn't about to succeed on her own--she needs the help of her constant companions: Bealomondore the artist, Fenworth the good wizard, and the ever-faithful dragons.

I must confess that fantasy is not my first choice when it comes to reading. I enjoy Tolkien's work, but find all other attempts at elvish magic to be nonsense; complicated character names and far-fetched plots. Thus, it was with great surprise that I found this novel appealing. The complicated names are there, to be sure, but the storyline runs smoothly, mingling with several exciting side-plots along the way. Also, the tale isn't just centered around one specific hero or heroine; instead, we get a glimpse into the thoughts of several characters, good or evil.

One of my favorite aspects about Dragons of the Valley was how its authoress managed to intertwine truths about faith, God (represented in this case by Wulder), and developement of character within the mysteries and narrow escapes. Tipper and Bealomondore, especially, find valuable life lessons despite their challenges; in the meanwhile, discovering what will always last when even Chiril seems about to fade away.

And, dear friends, I would love it if you would take a second to please rate my review, and give me the chance to win an iPod! Comment and let me know if you do, so that I can thank you personally! :)

*DISCLAIMER:* I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Current Food Obsession...❤

Do you know what my new obsession is right now?

Greek Yogurt.


Okay, so it's a leetle bit sour all by itself, but with the right amount of fruit and honey....:) And it's healthy, too, so I'm headin' in a good direction, right? Right.


Have you ever tried this foreign delicacy? What is your favorite way to enjoy it?


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Famous Persons I've Seen Live...

Yesterday, my family and I were privileged to attend a business seminar called "Get Motivated!" Now, I must confess that we didn't attend as much for the "motivation" part as we did for getting to hear several famous speakers...;) Hehe. Anyways, we got a special limited-time-only deal where we only payed $1.95 per person, instead of $225 at the door! BIG discount, huh? Otherwise..yeah, we wouldn't have been there.

So do you wanna know whom I can now add to my "famous persons seen live" list?

::Laura Bush::
Former first lady.

::Colin Powell::
Former Secretary of State and renowned five star General.

::Rudy Guiliani::
"America's Mayor;" former mayor of New York and prominent figure during the World Trade Center tradgedies..politician.

::Bill Cosby::
Renowned comedian

...and many more whom weren't *quite* as famous, so I won't bother searching for their names/pictures in the back of my mind. ;)

Who have you seen/met who is famous? Who is someone whom you would love to see in the future?

Here is someone I would love to meet:

::Scotty McCreery::
American Idol current contestant

..Now, I don't watch American Idol, but some friends told us about Scotty, and we watched a few of his performances. Let me tell you, he has an *amazing* deep voice, sings country, and best of all, loves Jesus! He is really humble about all of this fame, and cares about the other contestants, and the light of Christ really does shine through him. He's also not afraid to sing songs that have the Lord in them, and in his own interview (paraphrased):

"..I love Jesus Christ with all of my heart. He is the reason I am where I am today."

..Awwwe! I would love to meet him someday. :) If you haven't heard him, look him up! He's still in the running--top twelve! *Hopes*

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Be Still and Know...

Have you ever stopped what you were doing, just for a moment, and breathed in the quietness?


...Your surroundings might still be busy, a crowd might be surging past you, clamoring and shouting.

But you, you are still, you are silent.

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to go to the mountains with a part of my family and some friends for a skiing/snowboarding trip. We are blessed to live only about two hours from "the slopes," so we go as often as possible with our five-time night pass.

It was our last run of the night. There were very few people still out, and we just managed to clamber on to the final lift.

The night was clear, but a few small snowflakes were gracing my cheeks as the steady purr of the lift's motor began.

About half-way up, the lift suddenly halted--someone had most likely taken a spill getting on or off, and all was postponed as they struggled to their feet.

It was calm. Beautiful.

Breathtakingly silent.

It was just me in the moment of tranquil, listening to the little voice inside of me that whispered,

"Be still and know that I am God."

Pause for a moment, my friends, in the midst of your daily busyness, and listen.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

here i am, there they are..{pray for japan}

Chinese Earthquake

here i am, sitting cozily at the laptop upon our large green sofa.

there she is, lost in a street of rubble, crying and alone without her mother.

here i am, watching the rain splatter on the window panes, feeling calm and cozy within our heated home.

there he is, struggling in the water, desperate for help as a lone survivor.

here i am, frustrated at the low internet connection.

there they are, standing in a forlorn circle around the bodies of their family.

how spoiled i am.

how desperate they are

for help in this time,


for God.

::pray for japan. pray for this world.::

"I will never leave you or forsake you."
{Hebrews 13:5}

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A Few Things That Make me Smile..❤

❤ ~ ❤ ~ ❤ ~ ❤ ~ ❤

Tiny Little Stardust Sparkle Coin Necklace in Silver

Shabby Chic Embrace Happiness handmade card

Bright Pink Flower with Lace Hair Clip

Vegan Faux Leather Journal/Notebook-Pink

Paris Chic 2 - Set of 8 Shabby Chic ATC Cards -


❤ ❤ ..Aren't these items simply divine? ❤ ❤


..Ah, the joys of online window shopping!


Also, ~HAPPY 18th BIRTHDAY~ to my blogging friend Anna, from Oooh La La! May the Lord bless you, dear!

{Wish her well today}❤

Monday, March 7, 2011

❤ A Night to Remember. ❤

❤ My first-ever dance was truly a thing I will always remember. ❤

{Watch this video for a peek at the delightful occasion! Yes, that is me in the light green up there, dancing with my sweet friend shall see us go waltzing by a few times. Just watch for a girl in a white puffy skirt and green jumper.. ;)}


The costumes were lovely. The music was beautiful. The dances were fantastic--and OH, so fun! I had the time of my life, as I knew I would...:)

::Waiting for the carpool! Left to right: Chrissy M., me, Liv..::

The dance was in a beautiful barn.

::Photo credit ECD Oregon..I know, not *quite* a barn, huh? More like a ballroom!::

..Our little group of eight girls was the best.. ❤
::Left to right--Bella, Michelle, me, Katie, Chrissy, Liv, Nicole..and we're missing Hannah! :(::

..Twirling and whirling around amidst laughter and music was something I could have done for hours!

..Now I can hardly wait for the next one. ;)


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

My "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" Barn Dance Attire!


I am so excited. I mean, really excited. You know: that excitement that comes with a once-in-a-life-time experiance that you know is going tobe loads of fun no matter what happens?

Yup. You guessed it. No, you didn't..because I haven't updated you on it for a good while, so you most likely have forgotten. I'll give you three hints:

~Puffy dress

..Oh, wait. I forgot about my title. :P So, you already know. But I shall refresh your memory, anyways...

It's only two days until the "Seven Brides for even Brothers" themed barn dance!

..You're probably going, "Wha..? I didn't even know this was coming up!" Well, hehe, I didn't want to tell ya'll all about it until I had finished my dress. =D

..Some of you may remember my mentioning a "regency dress" I was making for an up-coming "regency ball." Well, as it turns out, the ball is not to be regency themed, but "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" themed! How amazing is that? I mean, c'mon--who doesn't L.O.V.E. the adorable film? I just saw it this past month for the first time, and thought it was the cutest thing ever.

And the dresses?! Don't get me started..:)

Despite the change in theme, I was going to be wearing the white regency dress I am currently making. Until I saw the movie, that is. First of all, I am not about to dance around a barn dressed like a British Jane Austen. Second..I'm not near being done with that dress. So, plan B had to come into action.

Introducing: my closet. I threw a few things together...a ragged jumper, a vintage blouse of my great-grandmother's, and two {yes, *two!*} puffy under-wedding-dress skirts, and..that's it! Here is the result..all I had to do was hem the jumper, patch {er, quite a few} holes, and wash and bleach the blouse and skirt:

..And pardon the horrible background. Done at night, in bedroom..not the best photogenics in there. :D

Anyways. It is reeeeeally fun to wear {though I don't know how I'm going to fit in a van with seven other girls for two hours}, and I know it doesn't look exactly like the ladies in the movies' dresses, but..whatevah. I like it! What about you? Do you suggest anything else that might authenticate the outfit?

Soo..the dance is in a barn, as stated. It is hosted by a local ECD (English Country Dancing) no, I cannot dance. And yes, I will try to find a better hairstyle for the dance other thah a plain old pony tail. And yes, don't worry, I shall post MANY pictures of the event after it has come to pass. *And,* YES, I will keep working on my regency dress and hopefully have a few pictures to show you of that sometime, too.

I can't wait! I've never been to a dance before..and I haven't gotten to dress this old-fashioned for such a long time!


Cheers, m'darlings! Till another day. May the God of Peace be with you !
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