Monday, December 30, 2013

Holiday Recap

So my holidays were kind of boring, one may even say a tad depressing, buuuut I enjoyed them! First off, I want to say thank you to everyone who participated in the snowflake swap, you guys made this amazing and I was blown away with seeing all the goodies.. I however, am a terrible blogger and while I've been sick have left taking pictures and such to the birds. BUT I did get an adorable box full of goodies including hairties -because I always lose them! - and the cutest little penguin bubble bath (love) hooray! 

Now you read before that I was sick, that I was, but those pictures from above are basically the only "holiday" type pictures I have. 
So as far as my holiday, the first half of Christmas was spent in urgent care where the doc was like "your lungs sound gross" to which I was all "oh good!" he mandated 2 days off which I was extremely thankful for because I felt like poop. Bronchitis is a no fun way to start your holiday! So I am just kinda sitting here now.. after roommate Christmas going "wow I am lucky" I have some amazing friends and lovely people who have been great guidances to me. I got a really sweet cross made from a tree in Oregon, by a guy in Oregon.. so its pretty freakin special now. 

Also I want to just say thank you to everyone whose commented and shown lots of love for the breakup. A and I are still friends, better as that than anything and I am glad that through all of this I don't lose someone who really is apart of my odd little family. Bru will continue to be "my" dog and I will always love him, but he will stay with A. Lots of love guys! 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Belle Hiver Photography | Relogo

Long time no write, and I am really sorry about that! Life has kind of went from busy to busy to busier to ...hectic, but I'm not here to write about that -yet- I'm here to show you what I've been up to! 
Most of you know I'm a photographer, but did you know that I am now a photographer whose managed to do 3 sessions in almost single and/or negative degrees?! Yeah. 
Below are a few shots I've done over the last two weekends, and let me tell you.. COLD HURTS! For starters, your legs go numb and then your fingers and then you think "why am I doing this?" and then you get about a bajillion thanks from the families for bearing the cold and capturing some great moments. Worth it. 

ALSO .... Jane re-logo'd my photography! <3 aint it grand?! 

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Where do you go from here?

For four years I spent bettering myself, but supporting someone else at the same time. Investing more and more of myself into them every. single. year and to have it all come "crashing down" in a sense.

It'd been over for awhile, but I'm stubborn and will fight for something I believe in till there's absolutely nothing left to fight for.

To literally have someone tell you they didn't take it as seriously or that you aren't that "smart, beautiful and strong woman" they saw themselves with... wow kinda hit to the core, but I kept trucking, thinking "we just need time" but then... time happened and I was the only one fighting anymore.. so I gave up.
I continued to be told what I'm doing in life is wrong... and how I was raised, and where I'm going and my lack of education and blah blah blah and eventually... I woke up and said
"I'm over you"
Yeah, you know.. it probably stung for someone who thought -and I thought- I would be hung up on for awhile to just be told that I'm over it. You know what it took? A moment of weakness on his part saying "I'm not sure I am right about breaking up" ... giving me that glimmer of hope, but then turning around and saying "the only reason I said that is cause I don't like to see you sad"
I had no idea how fast my heart and brain could shut someone out until that moment... it took about 30 seconds.
So while I may have stood up for him in the past, made excuses for his behavior towards me and the actions he took by belittling me and making me feel like I was inferior.. I wont do that anymore.. and I wont repeat this cycle.. for whatever reason I've found the guys who are oh so incredibly sweet, but then catch you of guard with mean words and actions... I'm over it.
SO where do I go from here?
I go someone awesome.

**that awesome place will probably be oregon** 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Canvas | LOVE!

So a few weeks ago I got the opportunity to get a free canvas print from Easy Canvas Prints to test out. Now being that I am a photographer who has an obnoxious amounts of pictures of other people I decided do hold a contest with my five favorite prints from 2013 and the winner was.....


So first thing that I noticed about this canvas was that it was true to color. As a photographer I have high standards for getting prints/canvases made, the biggest thing I've noticed about Target and Walmart prints are that they always change my color! Second thing? The image is clear, crisp and just plain beautiful! I know that Sam & Tori were extremely excited to have won and get a canvas and I was just as excited to offer this opportunity to gift such wonderful clients. 
I highly recommend you get a canvas from Easy Canvas Prints for three very awesome reasons. 

1. They are affordable! Anyone want a wonderful canvas, but can't afford one from a photographer? Well they offer multiple different options, prices and they always offer deals! 
2. Delivery is fast! I got this canvas in less than a week after ordering, they are on par with my photo labs! 
3. Quality! I am a big fan of quality, duh, and like I said they offered such a great, quality product that I am definitely going to be looking to using them again for future gifts and maybe prints of Brutus. 

Thanks for the opportunity! Also, if you guys are expecting a homecoming, or need an amazing t-shirt made check out their affiliated sites! and
**Product was provided by Easy Canvas Prints, but all thoughts and opinions on this product are my own** 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Snowflake Swap | I like gifts

So since we're doing this gift exchange I wanted to share some winter/holiday things I just absolutely love. 
First things first, I love boots, I have such an immense love of boots that I get kinda sad when A says I can't wear my boots in the house. It really isn't winter until I bust out my boots and scarves.. which sort of brings me to my next item:
If you didn't know I have a small (ok ginormas) love of penguins. I have a penguin stuffed animal, stocking, ornaments, socks, decorations... you name it.. I more than likely have it.

Salted caramel anything: 
Starbucks, legit caramels (I kind of love the ones from Fran's Chocolates in Seattle) cupcakes.. it makes me happy and warm inside. 

What kind of things make it feel like winter/holiday season for you? Share and remember to link back for the snowflake swap if you post your ideas, let me know! 
Snowflake Swap

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Holy crap..

I bet you're all "where's Acacia?" because I was apart of this snowflake swap stuff, right? Well I did something crazy.. I got a third job. 
 I've been working 8-5 at one place and 6-9/1030 at the other two and weekends! I had an amazing little post for the snowflake swap scheduled but it never posted.. I 'm blaming blogger. 

Anyways, I hope you're all doing amazing, I am so SO SOSOOOOO excited that so many have signed up for the swap and hopefully you've received emails and soon you'll receive your buddy! Remember the best way to spread holiday cheer is to sing loud for all to hear - Buddy the Elf ;) 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

sometimes its hard...

Words are permanent and I have an unimaginable memory for words said to me. 
I can remember when my best friend asked me to be in her wedding.. her exact words, as I went assuming I was shooting the wedding she looked at me and said "I don't want you to be my photographer, I want you to be my maid of honor" 
I cried. 
Call it my obsession with song lyrics for the reason I'm able to remember.. or the fact that I just take things and internalize them -I'm kind of messed up- or just that I am elephant like... (memory, I'm not an elephant) 

Its hard for me to sit down and write on a blog when I feel like I'm not being honest.. I feel like of all the things I've been, honest has been the #1 thing.. I hate keeping people in the dark.. but the minute I write the words down, its permanent. 
No going back.
No fool me once's.. no second chances. 
The bad thing about me is that I'm fiercely loyal, to myself.. to my God, friends and family.. and that loyalty has been what's been keeping me so silent.. but when the silence is broken, well, its broken forever. Then I can heal, then I can move forward and I can -like I have been- see the good an the extremely bad.
I'm not blind. 
I'm just choosing not to see. I'm choosing to put myself on the back burner for the benefit of someone else and I am doing this out of love.. as idiotic as that sounds.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Snowflake Swap | Sign up!

So I know you're all excited to start signing up, heck I know I am! Keep sharing the link and instagram post (just #snowflakeswap and tag me, Moira and Jane!) 
Snowflake Swap
So now that's all said and done, below is the sign up sheet! From now until the 15th we will be posting this sign up -or linking to it- so you can share it wherever you like. 
Can't wait to tell you who you're swapping gifts with :) 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Snowflake Swap | Gift Exchange

In case you've missed the tweets of all the secret squirrel things we've been posting today is the day we finally get to announce what we've been up to!
Snowflake Swap 2013
& myself are hosting this amazing blogger swap.
Starting on 11/4 (Monday) we will be positing signups and highly encourage you share this with your friends from now until then! 
Below are the instagram picture and blog link. 
Just put #snowflakeswap and tag us! 
@acaciaduh @mcdapkus @poppiness

Follow on twitter for any updates:   -   -  

and share the blog link below!

Snowflake Swap

I'm looking forward to seeing you all on Monday!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

on my heart | witnessing in hobby lobby

Over the last couple Sunday's we've been studying and have learned about sharing your faith, building bridges and starting where people are as far as witnessing to people.. 

The only real reason this laid on my heart as much as it did was because of a conversation I had with a lovely lady D about God, life, children and marriage. Now I'm not married, I don't have kids and my relationships have a tendency to suck really bad.. but I do know about life, suffering and just plain terrible things.. don't we all? 

D and I were walking in Hobby Lobby (uh that store is huge and I love it!) and she was saying they were talking about having kids.. but she's scared of what it would do to their relationship. Right then I wanted to be like "GOD! SEEK HIM HE WILL HELP!" but I quieted the brash Acacia and decided to just continue listening. She went on about how in her relationship things weren't perfect, family issues, the normal things that we would fear before starting a family... I asked the usual 
"how does he feel?"
"are you emotionally ready?"
she answered pretty typically... and about half way through the stationary I finally asked:
"Do you have a good relationship with God?" 
and what made my heart sink was the no that came after. I'm not here to judge, but I could feel myself being called to just testify to her, to be the one to bring the Good News about Him.. but again, I just listened.. and it made me sad because here is this beautiful woman, this amazing relationship and a man who -in her words- "wants to have a relationship with God, but that's all him, not me" and I was kinda just... needing to hear why.. and when she told me.. I understood. 
"I just don't see how God could make so much hurt, so much loss, its useless and I decided He was useless" 
And I spoke... the ENEMY is who brings this pain, God didn't make your child sick, your best friend die -just examples- your dad beat you, drink, become a terrible person... God doesn't want that for you, He gave His SON for you! -I said it a little less enthusiastic- in fact what I said was this: 
"I've been there, I grew up knowing a lot of hurt and pain.. a lot of loss and questioning God. Why did He do this, what's the point?! But then my pastor said what has stuck with me: GOD DIDNT DO THAT, THE ENEMY OF OUR SOULS DID!" 
Now I don't know if it struck a chord, I don't know if she'll come back to Christ.. but I do know that this kind of sat on me for the last week and it needed to be written. In my home, I am the one close to Christ, I am fully aware of the right we have to question and learn and I encourage it!! But I do not want my friends thinking that God is hurting them when all He wants is to bring them in and protect them.. to give them the tools to protect themselves. I hope this wasn't too long.. sorry for the run-on sentences and everything ;) 

Friday, October 25, 2013

New Design | Poppiness Designs

So obviously last week I was utterly excited about getting this new blog design and I kind of just felt like I needed to make an entire post about how incredibly working with Jane was. 

I had looked into Jane's designs previously, but wasn't sure I wanted to go the route of getting a new design because I don't blog.. but then I was all "nah, I need one so I WILL start blogging" obviously me spending money makes me use things.. my best blogging buddy Moira got one of her designs and I looked into my finances and decided that this 50% off October deal is not worth passing up and decided to take the plunge. 

So here I am.. sitting in front of my computer rapidly emailing Jane the following:
Beach meets ballet 
feminine and clean
can grow with me

and about 2 hours later Jane writes me and about a day later Jane sends me this:
Its like she knows me ;) 
I am pretty much in love, obsessed and going gaga over this layout! 

She did this design so quickly and hit the nail on the head as far as what I wanted. Seriously, how often do you head to a design site and read "waiting list: not taking new designs till 2014" or similar things? I just cannot express enough how amazing she is and that's why I'm gushing about her in two blog posts -and probably the rest of my blogging life- 
So yeah, head over to Poppiness Designs and check out all her lovely design work and make sure you follow her blog Pursuit of Poppiness so you can follow her adventures -also send her happy thoughts for this upcoming deployment! 

Any pictures posted were designed by Jane from Poppiness Designs and all credit goes to her. 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

bet you didn't know...

Five facts about me: 

1. I have matching scars on the top of my wrists. One from when I was five and the other seventeen, caused by different things. 
2. I sing songs to my dog substituting his name for lyrics.. I usually do this alone. 
3. I tell people I have no home, not in a "pity me" way, but in the fact that I have yet to find the place that I will call my "forever home" 
4. I wanted nothing more than to start a family with A.. 
5. I haven't bee back home (AZ) since 2009, and I don't really plan on going back.. ever. 

Monday, October 21, 2013


So ladies, and maybe gents, guess what... 

give up? 

I'm getting a new blog design!! 

Seriously, Jane over at Pursuit of Poppiness is doing 50% off for the month of October and guess who just had to get in on it? ME! 

She recently sent me the inspiration board.. 
beach meets ballet
beautiful fonts 

You should all hop over there and check out her amazing deal, get in on this awesome deal! 

North Dakota Living

In case you didn't know I live in North Dakota now... its a very cold place, where the buffalo roam.. more like where the oil workers roam! Seriously this was never on the "top 10 for Acacia to live" in fact when I thought of the Dakota's I thought of Mt. Rushmore, cows, cowboys and cold. 

But here I am two months in and I kind of like it here... 

I know, slap me! 
I am the girl from Arizona, the one who hates cold and wants to permanently never wear shoes, likes North Dakota.. #smh -I like to use hashtags.. it makes me sound ridiculous- 

Now before we all get bent out of shape I can easily list the reasons I like this place: 
1. Its small! I was not meant for HUGE cities and I kind of like that it only takes me 10-15 minutes to get anywhere.. including another state. 
2. We live right next door to Minnesota, over the river -literally- to cabellas we go. 
3. My dog likes it. He is a fan of cold weather. 
4. Like minded people. I am conservative, but in a weirdly liberal way.. I like my Jesus to be talked about and not looked down on for it, but I also support marriage equality... nothing wrong with love in my book. 
5. I finally feel less judged for wearing leggings as pants. Stupid reason? NOT! You know how much it blows being looked at like a common whore -I said it- because Acacia was too lazy to put on pants? NO because here, people don't care, they are like "I like wearing leggings as pants, because they are pants" YAY! 

Do I fit in? Probably not.
Is my redneck showing? YES... incredible amounts of real tree and duck/deer meat have been blessing my home. 
Does A like it? I think so.. we both miss small things about "city living" but in all.. this would be a place to raise any sort of family.
How does my family feel? They laugh uncontrolably when I tell them about the weather. In fact my dad said he could never again tell me I'd never experienced a "real" winter. Win. 

So here it is.. my redneck, starbucks loving, boot wearing, leggings are pants declaration to my love of North Dakota... but I am extremely excited about going to Washington in Feb!

Friday, October 18, 2013

life lately

life is crazy, exciting and has been a lot nicer than when living in a hotel. 
basically A bought a house, we moved in and started unpacking and now.. now we are enjoying a beautiful life filled with a giant kitchen and our own bed. 

I've been working and looking for full time work.. despite how much I love both my jobs I have things to do, bills to pay and school to plan for. I just look forward to being able to focus on the real and very important parts of life. 

aside from getting the house settled I've been playing suzy homemaker.. cooking dinner every night, cleaning, laundry and of course enjoying lifetime.. because that's what homemakers do, right? Just kidding! But seriously, I do watch a lot of lifetime. I'm also -hopefully- done looking for a new church, which ironically, is hope community.. and I got to do a first for my photography: I shot a love session for a same sex couple!! 

© Belle Hiver Photography

Obviously I haven't posted this on my photography site, but I am getting ready -we literally just got internet. 

Well I suppose that's a pretty good update, stay tuned for an amazing blog-redesign and some great news for the holidays! 

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Four Years

Four years ago I met that man up there over kings cup and tequila.. we still have the bottle of tequila -its empty- and since that fateful night in your Tacoma apartment we've gone through a lot of ups and downs. Deployments, homecomings, TDYs and life. 

To say that the last four years have been easy would be a lie, but they have certainly been some of the best. I look forward to being with you for however long we are together and I am extremely excited about this new house and spending a very cold winter together. So heres to four years of love and having my best friend by my side. I love you, and always will. 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

I moved..

Well we both moved.. technically three of us.
We moved across country to North Dakota.
Our last picture in front of our first house together. It was bitter sweet, I left my sister and some pretty amazing friends. I feel as if I'll never meet their dopple gangers in North Dakota, but we'll see. 

We hoped in our cars on August 25th and went to Montana that night. We decided after that initial night out that we would go camping so we found a place about six hours away and drove about six hours. Boulder River in MT.. its a little north of Yellowstone. 

Our family picture after Brutus dug out about twenty rocks from the creek. 
We managed to drive through to Miles City the next day -after a short stop in Billings, MT- and then to Fargo, ND
It was a weird feeling when we finally crossed the boarder to North Dakota. I was really doing this, moving with A and we were going to figure it out as we go along. Then again .. I have this crazy guy who I'm lucky to call mine (my boyfriend and my best friend) and while a lot of crazy things have happened.. I am comfortable saying that this is going to work out no matter what. 

Our first night in North Dakota we realized that 1. we left Bru's favorite toy in Miles City (moms bad) and 2. that this place isn't nearly as bad as everyone said. We went to Granite City Brewery and they were so gracious to allow us to come in a few minutes before the kitchen closed, but it was worth it! Delicious flat bread pizza, great beer sampler and a brucheta chicken salad. If you're ever in Fargo.. GO THERE! 

The next day we go to Grand Forks, we get in and literally start looking at houses.. see the tricky think about this city is that they aren't too keen on big dogs and you all know we have a 95lb bundle of love. We had discussed buying a house when we found out about the house situation, but didn't expect for things to move so quickly... I got a job Labor Day weekend and A bought a house.. yeah in one weekend. 

Oh well this is a little update and we hope to be getting into the swing of things in the near future, maybe a give away from my work and of course letting you all know how the move goes! 
I do hope that Oct 10th gets here soon.. our king sized bed and my FULL closet is calling my name. 

<a href="">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>
don't forget to follow me! 

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Unsteady Ground

Our church is doing an area on Journey's which we're going through the book of John..
This series couldn't have come at a better time. I'm going through a new season, I'm feeling my heart torn into multiple different ways.. and as much as I want to be with Jesus I see myself clinging to what is here, what I can physically grasp to. 
I am working towards letting go. 
I'm working on having nothing: Jesus+Nothing=Everything 
I am scared of moving, to be completely honest I'm scared of how A and I will turn out. I find myself praying for us daily, I find myself thrown into a state of depression which becomes scarily clear to those around me before myself. 
I'm on unsteady ground. I am not sure where my future will lead, but I am sure that I'm starting to cling more to my Father than to anything else.. which in itself is scary. 
I am looking at getting that tattoo, I was thinking about how my pastors wife said "YOU ARE NOT A MISTAKE!" and that verse makes me feel like I'm not, I was not and HE LOVES ME! 
I have a torn life right now, and I'd appreciate prayers for it.. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

Riann Photography
Property of Riann Photography - no watermark out of respect, but please respect the image.

While everyone is enjoying their BBQs and long weekends -I am enjoying mine- we need to have have a moment of silence. In the picture above is Trevor Pinnick who passed away June 12, 2012 that little girl is his daughter and that little girls mother is a great lady who is so incredibly strong. He passed away before his baby turned two, before he could come home one last time and before his wife could say she loved him again over a sat phone or an infamous skype call. Like I've said in the past, being able to take their family pictures was amazing, having them in my life has been amazing, but his sacrifice should and has to be remembered today.

This holiday.. I don't even like calling it a holiday, is very close to my heart. This day makes me remember those who've passed before by giving their sacrifice to this amazing country. 
I just want to take a moment, not to just remember those sacrifices, but also to thank every single service member. 

Thank you. 
All gave some. Some gave all. 
Hug your airman, soldier, marine, sailor, grandparent, husband or just anyone who has served or has lost someone whose served. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Oh.. this ones hard

Sometimes I feel like I'll never be able to write out what I want to say.. That I'll never be able to explain the things going on in my life, my head or my heart. 
When I was a kid.. I was kind of just there, I had the "awakening" moment and then drifted by. I was nothing special, I felt more like a burden.. abandoned and left at the mercy of the world. I was different and I knew it, but I didn't know why. 
This last Sunday we were talking about the power of prayer at church, and as the last few weeks have, it was just pulling on my heart.. the guest pastor asked if we had anything we wanted to have prayed over to go ahead and meet them at the back of the auditorium... and I went back there with this man and his wife whose pregnant.. and said the worst thing in the world that I could possibly say. 
"When I was 15, my mom told me I should've been an abortion.. and when I confronted her about this, about all the things she's said and done and just.. never said anything more about she stood by her comment" 
I've talked about this a few times to people, trying to figure out why someone would say that about a child.. about their fourth child and wouldn't think the same for their other children. To say I was tearing up, that the pastor and his wife were tearing up.. understatement. I've tried to come to terms with this over the years, and last week when this all came to a head..  I sat and prayed.. I talked to A and let go. I finally felt okay, that a burden had been lifted from my chest and that I am able to move on.. that I am able to finally become whoever I am meant to be. There is a season that I'm in and learning, I am just becoming better than I ever thought I would. 
I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well. -Psalm 139:14 
All I can say for you moms, for you ladies whoever want to be moms, if there is ever a moment in your pregnancy or your child's life that you think "I don't want you" or that you can't have them... adoption is a beautiful thing, and there are so many people who want a child who don't have the ability to have one or want to give someone a beautiful life. I'm not saying that I should've been adopted, but I can say that those words have stayed with me since I was 15, and it has taken this long to finally be okay and move on.. and unfortunately, my mother wont be in my future. 
Think before speaking. 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

May 4th | Blog Everyday in May!

<a href="">
<img src="" border="0"/>

And here I am again, I am so gonna rock this month! 

Favorite Quote:

It is truly hard for me to decide on just one quote.. I have a few things out there that mean a lot to me. So here are a few that I have on my desktop at any one time. 

Moving with A... 

Friday, May 3, 2013

and our new base is.....

Grand Forks AFB in North Dakota! 
Was this our first choice? No, was it even on the list? NOPE! But it is where we are being placed and it is where we will call home for three years come August.  

What do I know about this place? 
It floods and its cold.
2/3 of the time its snowing in the winter.
It gets in the negatives. 
Its close to Canada. 
I know this isn't a place that we were hoping for, I know that we are moving to a place close to Minneapolis and that we're putting in to possibly swap to a different base. 

I wont lie when I say I'm nervous, scared and possibly going to freeze my butt off. I'm excited too.. we're going to be away from family, and we'll be going on many adventures. I'll be possibly starting school there, maybe buying a house? I don't know! But whatever it is, we will figure it out. 
But until we know for sure (orders are printed) we will assume this is our new home.