weekly words: #3


adversity is a fickle thing. it sneaks up on you, usually when you have so many others things that need attention, and smacks you in the face. Kurt and I just found out we would need to move from the house we have barely gotten settled into. and we need to do so before the middle of December. talk about a bit of adversity when you definitely don’t want it.

I think this quote is true though – realizing and overcoming adversity leads to the best kind of prosperity. it energizes and restores confidence. it answers that which was questioned. it provides opportunity for growth and reflection.

right now, I am yearning for that prosperity. keep your fingers crossed for me that I find it.

weekly words: #2

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mistakes are one of those fickle things sometimes. no one ever wants to make a mistake. but inevitably, we all do. as my work has increased over the past few weeks, I have been so conscious of working to not make mistakes. I know that my drive for perfection is a strong one, and I think that mistakes slow me down.

what I forget sometimes is that the opposite is also true… by not slowing down, I am often more apt to make mistakes. the balance that must be struck between working efficiently and quickly, and avoiding mistakes is delicate and something I feel I work toward a lot.

I was in graduate school when I was first introduced to the concept of failing forward. it is a concept supported by John Maxwell, an author who focuses on leadership development. Maxwell says that any failure is actually an opportunity to learn, an opportunity to be propelled forward. it is this concept that I think supports the statement above. if you think of a mistake as an opportunity to fail forward, then it makes absolute sense. do not fear opportunities to learn. and therefore, do not fear mistakes.

a good reminder for me as I move forward some big deadlines between now and the Christmas holiday…

I’m traveling this weekend, so here’s an early happy weekend wish to you!

weekly words: #1

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I mentioned yesterday that things had been blurry as of late. and then I found this quote from Mario Andretti and I just laughed at how applicable it was. so true, my friends. it is so true!

in return for my general lack of posting of late, I offer you a new weekly feature: weekly words.

the power that words hold can be so intense at times. there is truth in the simplest of phrases for some, and as I have moved through the past few months, I have been constantly struck by this. so each week, I’ll offer up a collection of words that seem relevant to my life at the moment – think of it as an opportunity for some reflection and for some meaning making perhaps. two things I love to do in my own little world.

and please feel free to participate – I’d love to hear your thoughts on how the words I select resonate with you…

and with that, I wish you a happy weekend!

out of the fog and into the clear


should I reintroduce myself? because I feel like I should reintroduce myself based on how long ago I last posted. my goodness these past few months have been a blur!

the last time you heard from me Kurt was finally back from his year-long stint in Vienna as a Fulbright Scholar. well, he was around for about six weeks and then he was gone again – this time to Florida though, so at least now we are in the same time zone. and the even more exciting news? I get to join him in a few short weeks… for good! yes, in December I too will make the move to Florida so we can finally spend some time together. something else that is kind of hard for me to believe? a year from Saturday Kurt and I will be embarking on our next phase together – we will get married! I can hardly believe how quickly the time has passed since we set the date and started our planning over 15 months ago.

the past few months have felt so foggy in my little world. I hate to use this word – busy – but I truly have been busy. like non-stop, can hardly keep up at times busy. it’s one of the reasons my move to Florida was delayed a bit behind Kurt’s; I didn’t feel ready to figure out how to manage all that was going on at work and start life in a new place. but all that is starting to come to a close and I am finding myself closer and closer to the clearing.

living in this cloudy phase has also really made me consider my priorities. with feeling like there are demands being placed on me at every turn, it has really made me think about what makes me happy, what gives me energy, and what just doesn’t. it’s been a great exercise at times in self-motivation and self-reliance. I am glad to be emerging somewhat stronger than when I went in.

there is lots still to be done, and I have lots I want to share with you all, so I hope you’ll excuse my belated return. I am so glad to be back!

my love and my heart is back


yes, Kurt is back in the U.S.A.! he has been back for just about three weeks and it is just so wonderful to be together again. we have a few weeks together until the next phase of our lives unfolds, but I have a feeling that this summer will be just what we need it to be. 

already we have jumped fully back into wedding planning, so I have a few posts lined up to share some of our thought processes. in the feedback I received from those of you who took the survey (thank you!), you mentioned wanting more wedding. so it is definitely on its way! 

I hope you all had a safe and restful holiday weekend – happy summer!

the last of my european vacations for this year

this year, while rocky, has also allowed me the opportunity to have some great travel experiences. in april, I was able to visit Kurt again for one last time before he comes back to the states (which is in just 10 days now!!!). during this trip we split our time between lower austria, venice, and vienna; in a word is was inspiring. with great food, beautiful places, a chance to get back in touch with some serious mountains, and a wonderful nine and a half days with Kurt, it was by far my favorite visit. here are some highlights from the tour!

lower austria:



San Marcos Platz


well, I’m back… and a giveaway!

with just a week left until June, I am back friends! I won’t lie – the disappearance and eventual loss of my friend shook me very hard. but after processing his death and thinking about how he would want me to live on, I am glad to be back with you all.

I do have a couple of posts lined up for the week that will share with you what I’ve been up to this spring… but as I prepared to enter back into regular blogging, I started thinking about this little blog of mine and what I hope it achieves. so, I want to hear from you! I’d love to hear what it is you love about circle city, twenty-six and what you’d be ok to not see again. as I begin to embark on some bigger life changes, I want to continue blogging as an outlet and an exploratory place. I feel like I get so much from reading the blogs of other women; I want to be able to provide something for you all that is just as impactful and meaningful! I would love for you to share your thoughts here:


for those of you who respond, you will be entered into a drawing for my very first giveaway! about a year ago I found social print studio and prinstagram. ever since, I’ve been printing my favorite instagram photos through them – their prints are so clear and really highlight the beauty of your instagram photos. something relatively new to their list of products are magnets – I have been dying to buy some! well, one lucky reader who successfully completes the survey will win a set of 15 magnets featuring some of my favorite photos around Indianapolis and of my travels this spring! complete the survey by June 1 to be entered.

I cannot thank you enough, readers, for joining me in the journey of circle city, twenty-six. I look forward to your feedback and continuing to build this little space on the internet!

my friend is missing.

you guys, typing those words is so surreal. my friend from college is missing and has been since March 30. and it finally hit me tonight – that he is missing and no one has any information at all that will help in finding him. I was talking to my mom on the phone and she mentioned how upset she was and that she could hardly imagine what I was feeling. in that moment I felt the tightness build in my chest and I could hardly respond to her. because I can hardly express what I am feeling right now – is it stress? or disbelief? or a mixture of anger and defeat? I don’t know because I don’t want to believe this has happened to him.

I feel like I am caught in some dream and that any minute now I’ll wake up and he will be safe and back. but I’m not waking up and I am terrified at what could have happened to him. being in Indianapolis is not easy knowing the pain his family and friends – my friends too – are experiencing in NJ. I feel so disconnected and so helpless. this feeling is so debilitating.

I thought about him over the weekend and caught myself thinking in past tense – he WAS a genuine person. and I had to stop myself and think no, he IS a genuine person. because the thought of him not ever being found is just too much.

knowing how much good he has done and how much happiness he has brought to not only my life but the lives of so many other people I know, I have to believe that he is somewhere. and that he will be home soon. I just have to believe it.

will you be…

one of the first questions I remember being asked after Kurt and I got engaged was, “how many bridesmaids are you going to have?!” and quickly following that question, “who are you going to ask?!” I’ve said it here before, but I really was never that girl who dreamed of her wedding. and even though I am a sorority woman, I didn’t go through my college years dreaming of the day my chapter sisters would be standing up with me. so for quite some time, I didn’t know who I wanted to ask. I didn’t know how many I wanted to have. to be honest, I didn’t even know if I wanted to have bridesmaids at all!

during my most recent visit to Kurt over the Christmas holiday, we talked again about whether or not we wanted to have a bridal party. after thinking more about what we wanted our day to be like, we decided that yes, a bridal party was indeed for us. our desire to share this day with those friends and family closest to us helped us realize how important including these people would be. and I think knowing we will celebrate with them will allow us to feel comfortable and relaxed all throughout the day.

so when I decided on who I was going to ask (those details coming at a later date!), I thought a lot about how I wanted to ask these women. if you search on Pinterest for “how to ask your bridesmaids” too many options show up. seriously – try it. I went from excited that I had made this decision to immediately overwhelmed at how to carry it out. so I decided to crowdsource instead, asking women who I know that are married and/or have been bridesmaids before. this direction was much more helpful. and from those conversations, the little box below came to life!

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each bridesmaid will get the same little box – a quick notecard outlining the most important details, a handmade bracelet and nail polish for them to wear on the big day, a photo book with bridesmaid introductions, the dress options they have to choose from, and inspiration Kurt and I are using to plan the celebration, and a lovely card asking them to join us on this special day.

my favorite part of the box is definitely the photo book. this idea I saw on one of my favorite wedding blogs – Snippet & Ink. I used the 4×6 photo book template from vistaprint and filled the pages with all of the important information they will need to know. here are a few of my favorite page spreads!

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information about the dress choices they have


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the color palette and inspiration photos we are using


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a place to keep all of the important dates

I mailed each of them their boxes and now just have to wait for their responses… which I will admit has this nervous excitement running through me!

for those of you who are married, how did you ask your bridesmaids? and for those of you who are engaged but haven’t popped the question yet, how are you planning to ask? I look forward to reading your thoughts in the comments!

and the eyes have it… part 2!

so remember a couple of weeks ago when I shared with you all my new options for glasses? well today, I actually have some more options to share!

shortly after that last post, I was contacted by Penn Avenue Eyewear, a Pittsburgh-based glasses company who wanted me to give their home try on program a go! after peeking around on their website, I quickly found some frames that looked promising. what I really like about Penn Avenue Eyewear, though (besides their being based in PA), is their nonprofit and charity support. for every order placed, they donate 10% of the order total to the customer’s chosen charity or nonprofit organization. and as someone who likes to champion companies who make giving back a priority, I was so glad to see that Penn Avenue Eyewear fit the bill! check out their website to see what organizations they support – there is definitely an organization that would appeal to anyone I think!

because I was still on the fence about the first round of frame options, I was really excited to get some new options sent to me from Penn Avenue Eyewear. they arrived earlier this week, and I’ve spent the past couple of days giving them all a try and getting some opinions. here are the five options – which means it’s time for round two of voting to begin! same rules apply – vote here in the comments or vote over on my sockbunstyle instagram account. I’ll be tallying the results over the weekend, and hopefully picking my new frames!

the allen in butterscotch tortoise

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the morgan in sandy beach fade

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the macarthur in black/crystal gradient

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the grant in tortoise bronze

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the august in crystal violet

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