Tag Archives | Travel

Let’s go to the Caribbean & Bahamas

Castaway Cay in the Bahamas - Disney Fantasy - www.pencilshavingsstudio.com


If there could be heaven on earth, I’m pretty sure it’s a beach in the Bahamas. Or maybe in the Caribbean. Either way, pristine sand and sparkling clear blue water makes for paradise, no doubt. This spring break’s Disney Cruise took us to a few ports of call I’d never been to and as I love nothing more than a gorgeous beach, this was right up my alley. I thought you’d enjoy a little virtual vacation too.

First up is the incredibly lovely island of Castaway Cay in the Bahamas. Owned by the Disney company, it’s the cruise line’s private island that  was converted into a perfect little port of call thanks to a $25 million budget back in the 1990s. Last year we didn’t get to visit due to high winds and bad weather, but not knowing what we were missing out on, we weren’t too disappointed. Now that we’ve been, we can say hands-down that it was our favorite stop of the whole trip.

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Spring Break 2014 – Disney Fantasy

Spring break on the Disney Fantasy 2014 - www.pencilshavingsstudio.com

If you’ve been following along on Instagram, you probably saw a handful of photos of our Disney Cruise last week. We were almost entirely unplugged (thanks so much, uber expensive internet connection at sea) and so I didn’t check in hardly at all!  We arrived back home in OKC on Saturday after 7 glorious nights on the Disney Fantasy. Last year was so much fun on the Disney Magic that we decided to go again, this time with Simon’s grandmother JoAnne. Looking at these photos, I’m having major withdrawals from all the white sand beaches and incredibly blue water.

Disney Fantasy itinerary Spring Break 2014 - www.pencilshavingsstudio.com

For those of you who are unaware as we were, apparently the Entire World descends upon Orlando during the middle of March, as evidenced by the most insane amount of people in an airport security line that I’ve ever seen.  But it was worth it. Because if you see no other photo from the trip, this one photo below says it all.

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Weekend Getaway: Carlton Landing

Carlton Landing, a community designed by Andres Duany, of Duany Plater-Zyberk. Eufaula, Oklahoma.

 all photos by me for Carlton Landing

A few weeks ago we were invited to a dinner to learn more about Carlton Landing, the development on Lake Eufaula that we visited two years ago and we haven’t stopped talking about it ever since. It’s a beautiful new lake town envisioned by Grant Humphreys and designed by  Andres Duany, of Duany Plater-Zyberk (for those of you not familiar with the New Urbanism rockstars, DPZ designed Seaside and Rosemary Beach). Gorgeous architecture and a walkable lifestyle. Beautiful public spaces. A variety of amenities and price ranges. Our interest was piqued.


We were excited about Carlton Landing when we saw it two years ago, but even moreso after visiting Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach this past summer. I get the vision already – and it thrills me to pieces to think that we could have something so beautifully designed so very close to us. We finally made it back down to Eufaula this last weekend, and it thoroughly rocked our world. Warning: there are a TON of photos ahead! Continue Reading →

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Stationery Academy 2013


I’m back from the craziness of Stationery Academy 2013 – and it was a doozy! This year’s (two!) sessions were held in Dallas and we were put up in super swank digs at the Hotel Palomar.  And just like last year, it was chock full of inspiration, excellent how-tos, fun parties, and all the perfect details that Whitney and Natalie are so good at.

As an invited speaker this year, I really struggled with knowing if I should only go to one session or try to do both, so fellow speaker and alum Emily McCarthy and I both traveled into town on Friday to catch the end of Session 1 and then we were also able to be there for the beginning of session 2. To be perfectly honest, I don’t know that I would do that again – it was really hard to leave that second session and not be able to see how much the attendees take away from the experience. My favorite part of any event is getting to connect with fellow attendees, and that wasn’t totally possible this go around as much as I would’ve liked. Live and learn, you know?


My favorite parts were getting to know Emily even better, and also getting to meet design crush Erin Haines of Be True Designs.  There was a whole lot of talent happening in both of those sessions for sure. Additionally it’s so great to connect with people that you might not have ever met otherwise. Big ideas happen when you show up.

I can’t wait to see all the good things that happen for all the attendees of Stationery Academy!

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