our full life: july & august

Welcome to the last two months! Holidays, birthdays, beach bashes, family, community, and work celebrations…big months! I will be posting again this week about some other news from August, but until then – Enjoy these little snapshots. This is our (VERY) full life.

j1 Our annual Red, White, & Brunch party went off without a hitch!

j2 Four girls in red, white, & blue…and a photobomber!

j3 A Wednesday latte, crumble, and good read before dinner.

j4 We went to Disneyland with our family this July. So many good memories made!

j5 Jr. High photo scavenger hunt in The Village. This was worth a lot of points so they had to strike a pose and flex.

j6 Just a normal day at Moonlight…just kidding! The Switchfoot Bro-Am brought out crazy amounts of people. It was a good day.

j8 Bro-can at the Bro-Am.

j7 Sun, surf, and clear horizons. :sigh:

All kinds of FUN-FETTI up in this birthday party.

j10 Sweetly reading together about spiders.

Summer salad: romaine, blueberries, cucumbers, tomato, and goat cheese with a homamde creamy herb dressing.

j12 This cutie was in trouble. He was having silent time and looking quite adorable to me.

j13 Friend time at Tower 30 Beach Night!

j14 Breakfast is served on a late Saturday morning.

j15 Enjoying a staff dinner at Bagby’s in Oceanside. Good friends, food, and drink for the win.

j16 Gelato with the Fandeys. We were all trying to decide which is better – this place in The Village or the little Florida shop we go to every other year.

j17 My cute date at golden hour. Let me tell you…this is guy is so good to me.

j18 Youth Summer Camp never looked better.

j19 My watermelon fell apart into this heart! The kids were so amused. ❤

j20S’mores and chats and waves crashing in the background. Summer at its finest.

a4 Succulent love.

Childrens Hunger Fund 2015 - bPacked some huge pallets full of food for the hungry in our San Diego neighborhoods with my coworkers. Great day and a great cause!

a1 Enjoying a margarita and waiting for all our Family Fun Friday guests to arrive and events commence. :deep breath and exhale:

a10 Looking fancy dancy at Agave Del Mar for the annual work dinner.

PCO FFF 15-48-b
Splashing around in the Carlsbad Lagoon at PCO’s Family Fun Friday. It took ALOT of planning to pull this day together, but it was SO fun and one I won’t forget! (photo by R.Helms)

PCO FFF 15-96-bPCO volleyball! Again, SO fun! (photo by R.Helms)

a2Much needed relaxation after a crazy couple of days.

a3Better Buzz coffee drinks on a lazy Sunday. I got a honeybee latte…YUM.

a5Finishing up Bread & Wine at Pannikin in Encinitas. If you are looking for a good iced tea, the sport tea there is my favorite.

a6I had four drinks at my desk…I’m blaming it on the heat.

a7I had four drinks at my desk…I’m blaming it on the heat.

a8 Little cutie Lucy! She is so funny! I have missed her so much and her and her family is visiting from Alabama this week. Trying to soak it up where I can.

HEY – Let’s start this full month of September right! My recommendation: 100 days with Jesus. It leads up to Chirstmas time! Let’s do this together and be encouraged. Sign-Up HERE.

Until next month for more fun photos!

xo sarah


our full life: may

I started May in the best way.

m1On the beach, with my friend, and some good books. ❤

m2Friends Forever. Thank you for celebrating me, girlies! xo

m3 Best Drink Ever? Should have used whole milk. Loved the little drive thru though.

m4 Foggy mornings call for a frothy cuppa in pajamas.

m5 Best lunch ever. So happy Bret liked this place!

m6 Wine & Cheese night with The Lists. Long overdue and more than worth the wait.

m7 Good reads & coffee. If only I made it habit to start every morning like this…

m8Rainy day = Pho for lunch.

m9 Girls be shoppin’…the sale rack at Anthro.

m10Happy Birthday Naomi! xo

m11“Take me out to the ballgame. Take me out to the game!” (another P&R reference)

m12Resort life. My kind of errands.

m13My favorite Hotel and I still haven’t had the chance to stay a night here. I can dream…

m14Raspbery mint lemonade with a side of love-birds.

m15Omelette & frites for lunch. Still thinking about this meal.

m16Coffee & Tea Collective stop for the office.

m18Wedding planning with the future Mr. & Mrs. Tarpley!! Bret is cracking jokes, I’m taking pictures, The Crandals are keeping everyone on track…sounds about right.

m19 Scattergories & Bananas Foster. Goodnight!

m20Walk to the beach, walk on the beach, dinner by the beach, I love the beach.

m21The last Friday in May included danish, softball practice with my office, and lots of to-dos getting crossed off the list.

m22Burrito Bowl Fixings.

I ended May in the best way.

Now it’s my goal to post again before June! Who’s going to hold me to it? Hehe!

What was your favorite part of May? Graduations? The gloom? Trader Joe’s Peonys? What?

xo sarah

our full life: january

Hello friends, readers, loved ones,

I have missed you. I have missed posting and writing and sharing life here. Here’s a good start though. I hope you enjoy and relate on some level to what my January looked like. I started a new job, had some fun, got sick, drank lots of coffee, and made sure to take in creation every so often. Here we go!

cookie breakThis sugar cookie was visually irresistible! But to be honest…not that good. I took it back for the snickerdoodle.

drops keep fallingI ❤ raindrops.

goodbye waffles My old office took me out to a goodbye breakfast. I indulged and it was DELICIOUS. It was a wonderful morning with great friends, good food, and bittersweet goodbyes.

goodbye deskGoodbye student ministries desk. I hope my old office is still enjoying my tea cabinet.

baby silas The things that amuse little ones: blanket fringe.

bb graceyToo much cuteness. I can’t take it.

pco day 1 First day as the new Office Manager at PCO.

market dateDate Night at Market. SO fancy and SO worth it.

you mule That Mule though.

pho sho Getting strept throat was really terrible. 102 degree fevers are THE worst. Having friends who bring you soup is the best though.

2015-01-22 17.22.16 The picture did not do it justice.

2015-01-24 17.46.30So glad we stopped to take this. I never want to live anywhere else.

sortingBuilding shelves and sorting lots of…stuff. Three days of it helps you understand the band-aid and coffee. Necessities people.

it's a boatI see a tugboat.

it's saturdayMy Saturday just got better with this cup of joy.

squirrel Hi there Mr. Squirrel. He was so close!

the bandThere’s my man and the team. Making beautiful music in a potentially beautiful place.

now at new buildingPraying for and singing with The Fields.

January was an interesting month because it meant finding a new normal for our family. I am so excited to see more of what God will do in this next season of life.

What was your favorite thing about this January?

xo sarah

our full life: week forty six through forty eight

I’m baaaaack y’all!

I apologize for being out of the loop for a few weeks. I guess Thanksgiving took more prep than I thought it was going to. Either way, I’m happy to share with you what our life looked like the past 3 weeks. Please enjoy!

puffsGod provides such joy in the sky above.

tabbyI had trouble getting him to stay still, but S’CUTE!

lake SMLake San Marcos at dusk. Just before going to sushi with a friend.

seaviewOcean view on the way home. Taking in the crazy beautiful sky…again!

brunchIced latte & toast at noon. Just what the doctor ordered.

community projectOur Community Group served a park in Carlsbad a few weeks ago by planting & beautifying. Also, some of the men built fences. 😉

RV CupcakeI had a gift certificate for a cupcake that was about to expire. RED VELVET!

sourBret made me a freshly squeezed whiskey sour while I made my DIY “Give Thanks” banner. I thought it was appropriate…and quite tasty.

CUTS practiceMusic men. Creating sets and making my ears glad.

the sauceCranberry-Pear sauce. My personal additions: lemon peel and a cinnamon stick.

the tableThe Thanksgiving Table. It was so fun to host this year and open our home! And the food was delicious!

fall saladFor example: A fall salad with homemade maple-mustard vinaigrette, homemade maple candied roasted pecans, gorgonzola, dried cherries & cranberries, and honeycrisp apples!

thanksgiving asparagusRoasted (and quite steamy) asparagus in a buttery-herby-garlicly sauce.

the birdAnd TURKEY! Brined for 24 hours then roasted while being basted with a lemon, olive oil, garlic, rosemary, butter sauce. We’re loving all the leftovers we got too!

the centerpieceWe had more food…but I only pictured a few dishes and just enjoyed the rest – like homemade white wine gravy, buttermilk biscuits, and more!

best everThe day after Thanksgiving, Bret and I had a mini “vacation” down in San Diego. We had to hit up one of our favorite places for lunch.

little houseWhen I see little shacks like this one, I envision the “first house” Bret and I might enjoy one day. We both love simple and small…we shall see!

balboaBalboa Park for stunning views and beautiful weather.

planesWe enjoyed seeing planes fly overhead and the jet stream rushing through the trees!

relaxI felt like I was in a storybook. It was lovely to relax with Bret here.

marshmallow tutus Marshmallows in tutus at a sweet 3 year olds b-day. ❤

cleaning dayBack to work today. Cleaning away and listing to APJ podcast. Now on to DECEMBER!

Hope you are getting ready for CHRISTMAS! Thanks for reading.

xo sarah

our full life: week 21, 22, & 23

Hi again, friends!

Here is what the past (VERY busy/overwhelming/sad/happy/blessed) three weeks looked like:

monday chores.jpgMonday = chores & 5 loads of laundry day. Little did I know that this one of my last Mondays at home for a while. I was asked to pick up more hours at work and while it keeps me away from what I love doing most (home-making), I am earning a little extra money for the future. 🙂

restraunt dinner at home.jpgThe picture doesn’t really do it justice, but this dinner was, in the words of my husband, “restaurant quality.” White wine braised chicken thighs, savory wild rice, and steamed asparagus with olive oil and garlic.

new starbucks.jpgStarbucks has been tempting me lately.

tues dinner.jpgDinner when Bret is gone: Eggs. Every. Single. Time.

neighborhood.jpgThe neighborhood.

dessert night.jpgI work within two (now three) separate youth ministries. Sometimes the same type of events fall at the same exact times. This time it happened with a Parent Dessert Night that I helped put on. Costco run to the max!

peets deal.jpgPeet’s always gets me with their coupons. Free vanilla macchiato? Don’t mind if I do!

mussels .jpgMussels in the Harbor. It was great to have lunch with our sweet Nannie.

nannie date.jpgChula Vista Harbor boat life.

peony season.jpgPink Peonies, take me away.

kettle date.jpgMy sister in Christ, walking pal, thrifting buddy, and beautiful friend Luanna.

taco tues.jpgTACO TUESDAY!!

granny's view.jpgI will miss this view. Not nearly as much as the people leaving it.

GBD2.jpgBaking Day with The Fields youth girlies! ❤

GBD.jpgThe “fruit” of our labor: chocolate pecan banana bread, chocolate oatmeal cookies, mint fudgey brownies. I just wish we had used more chocolate…


xo sarah

our full life: week three

This week was a much needed, and long awaited return to routine and living! I am so glad to be feeling better and spending time with the people I love. Here is how week three went:

chubbyThis cute pug is named Chubby. I got to spend some of my working hours this week with him.

working at the daysI spent my first day back at work at my bosses house sipping tea (and working of course). It was lovely.

Love FrameLove cares more for others than for self.

my desk Whatever you do (in this case, eating breakfast while I work) do all to the glory of God.

paris cake My very talented boss made his beautiful wife this Eiffel Tower cake! So rad!

dehydrated pineapple My husband and I dehydrated some pineapple slices for gifts. Major success!

fig orange almond scones Fig orange and almond scones with a simple vanilla icing.

baby shower 1 My beautiful sister and her baby shower prize.

baby shower 2One of the most gorgeous baby showers I have ever been to for my friend Kerri. Complete with these perfect sugar cookie party gifts.

tea party 13 Annual Tea Party.

bfffiveThese girls have been in my life for more than 13 years. I love them so much! And now we have another girl to love too.

Have a very wonderful and blessed week.

xo sarah

our full life: week forty-eight & forty-nine

Usually when I have to blog two “full” weeks at the same time, it means that I/we have been extremely busy. I would say that is partially true.

The other reason I haven’t blogged very regularly recently, is that I have felt a little discouraged. Sometimes it feels like I have nothing to say, nothing new to report, and nothing trendy or exciting to blow your socks off with.

However, I am so blessed to be posting this blog right now. I just spent the last twenty minutes replying to comments that I have received from some of my readers. I had not replied to them in a while, and I do apologize. I should have read them sooner! So many sweet readers encouraging me, complimenting, and asking for more. WHAT?! I was blown away and reminded of my goal in having a blog in the first place: to share my calling, to proclaim the gospel, and to live life abundantly! I love my readers, and I am so happy to be sharing once again.

OFL 48 & 49

pumpkin ice cream 1I made pumpkin ice cream recently. Recipe will be going up soon – just in time for Christmas.

selfie morningTuesday morning selfie. No make-up and a pretty dress. About to head in to work.

off work skyIt’s getting darker earlier which is always hard for me. However, getting to see the sunset everyday when I’m leaving work is pretty amazing. You can see the moon and a star in this one!

thanksgiving treatsMy co-worker brought some delicious homemade/from scratch chocolate peanut butter salted caramel cupcakes to work. What is she trying to do to me?

work lullWork lull selfie. Loving the high-bun lately. Painted my nails neon orange/pink and started counting down the days until summer again.

ELF gameThis is me setting up a Jr. High Christmas party game called ELF. Do you remember an Elf’s main food groups? Well the Jr. Highers had to chug them one-by-one.

in progress decoratingDecorating in progress. Charlie Brown Christmas is playing in the background.

christmas tree decoratingHe makes it all so good.

staff partyLet’s just say, my staff Christmas party beat all years past.

Hope you enjoyed seeing some of our life in pictures. I would love to hear what you have been up to lately! Make sure you enjoy the Christmas season for all it has to offer.

xo sarah

our full life: week forty-seven

OFL 47Documenting week forty-seven – check! This week was SUPER busy at work, BUT so many little blessings popped up to enjoy.

EWSEgg white scramble with some seriously hot salsa.

november skyCotton candy clouds.

dinner for oneThe remnants of a super yummy carrot coconut soup!

november sky 2Post-rain sunset. Such beauty from our Lord.

dinner dateSmashburger date with my husby.

all nighterSometimes my job is pretty cool. Jr. High All-Nighter with over 60 students!

holiday nutsMade some holiday nuts for you!

fields meetingYouth leaders meeting over coffee and treats.

sun roofView from the sun-roof before we turned down our street.

pizza for fourHomemade pizzas & wine with dear friends.

cuddlebugOur UHHHHH-DORABLE niece.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, friends.

xo sarah

our full life: week thirty-two

OFL 32I dont know about you…I’m feeling thirty-two! Week thirty-two was busy, and that’s what we signed up for. I love our life of community, ministry, family,  and the random things God throws our way.

cappuccino time with grannyIced cappuccino for my sweet Granny. I love her!

treasuresMy Great Grandma’s memorial service was this last weekend. I was given some little treasures to remember her by.

homeworkMy first time working from home was a complete success. Honey bran muffin along side a homemade latte makes answering loads of emails a breeze.

girl with glassesI’m a girl with glasses. Shopping for them is hard work!

concertJon Foreman came to work this week. Yup…it was awesome.

boomers natureLoved the colors of this. Made me feel like summer is going to linger for a bit longer.

ice cream barClassic ice cream bar for a classic girl.

haircut dayI got a haircut! I like how she styled it with a middle part.

mini golfMini golf with some of my favorite Jr. Highers! They’re champs.

boomers girlsWaiting in line (for an hour) for the go-karts. Never a dull moment with these girlies though.

ice cream partyIce cream party with our favorite staff! The wonderful Wilma made mocha, chai, butter pecan, and mint chip.

Enjoy the summer while it’s still here!

xo sarah

our full life: week twenty-two

OFL 22Yay for the last week of spring, memorial day resting, and friendly faces. Enjoy this photo tour of our life last week!

sleeping inThis is my husband, Bret. He wakes up for work every morning at 4:30am. This is a picture of him sleeping in until 9:30am on Memorial Day. He works so hard to provide for us and I was so glad to watch him rest so peacefully for once.

what's her faceThis is an iced chai latte. My co-worker picked it up for me. And yes, he got it for “what’s her face.” It made me laugh and strangely felt like a compliment.

broccoli saladThis was my busy Friday strange salad creation: broccoli, red pepper, and cashews with olive oil, apple cider vinegar and garlic salt.

flower shoppingThese are flowers from Costco. A litte sunshine amongst the crazy sea of people. Sunflowers have been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl.

chocolate cake 1This is a dark chocolate devil’s food cake. I made it from scratch and it is delectable. The frosting to cake ratio is unreal.

cake timeThis is my coffee table. It was surrounded by family on Saturday afternoon. I felt blessed to feed them and give them a place to relax for the day.

papa timeThis is my father-in-law and our adorable niece Lucy. There is some legit Papa time happening in this photo.

nana timeThis is my beautiful mother-in-law with sweet Lucy. Lucy wants to wear everyone’s sandals and walk around. Too cute, right?! And Nana time is the best.

project weaverThis is the Weaver Wedding project I’m finishing up. Braiding fabric while watching the office is never a bad thing. Having Bret help me was even better!

bathroom vandalsThis is a joke. It was written in a stall of a Jr.High School bathroom. Oh Jr. Highers…

beach walk w bretThis is Carlsbad Beach. I can’t believe I live a mile away from this. Thank you Jesus.

I hope you enjoyed your week as much as I did! What were you up to?

xo sarah

our full life: week twenty

OFL 20

Late to post…yet again. But work has been a little nuts lately. And all I had time to take pictures of was my food. If you didn’t know, I love food. So, here we go!


My job has taught me a lot about being a servant and helper. Thank you Jesus.


A Beautiful Mess came out with an iphone app! It’s so fun and I really love it!

blt cafe

Such a GOOD BLT with avocado from Encinitas Cafe.

lofty week 20

Best coffee in North County. Love the colors in this photo.

orange baking

Baking orange ginger pie and squeezing some orange cubes with all my orange loot.

sat coffee & fruit

Saturday morning fruit and cinnamon coffee with lots of sunshine.

Just some little snippets, but big blessings! Thanks for reading.

xo sarah

our full life: week seventeen

OFL 17

I think these boys are trying to kill me. Too cute…I can’t even handle it!photo (14)

Martha Meal with my beautiful friend Brittan was UH-mazing!!! Stay tuned for next month’s meal!photo (11)

Lunch break: enjoying the afternoon sun, eating a yummy salad, and re-reading The Great Gatsby for the first time since I was 16.lunchbreak

Work was a bit crazy this week. Preparing and sending out this mailer was the easy part…mailer

I can always count on coffee and tea at our team meetings though. Thankful for that.aprilmeetings

Right outside of Peet’s.springtime

Date night at La Especial Norte for the BEST chicken soup. Great chips & salsa too!la especial

I really enjoyed Anthropologie’s window display while I was out shopping for ministry supplies. The reflections were kinda rad too.anthro

We took Bret’s Granny out for her birthday! Love this picture.grannybday

After the exhausting week that I had…I really loved getting a haircut. The head massage never felt so good. I love how stylish the salon is, and how they brew you organic loose leaf tea to drink while you wait! How great is that?!twig

A couple of our Jr.High girls celebrated their birthday together with a beach party. How adorable are they!?!? They each got their own GIANT cake. So awesome.katherineandemma

I hope your week was blessed and filled with peace and rest in God.

xo sarah

what do you want to be when you grow up?

We start asking children this question at such a young age and it definitely starts off being such a fun question to answer. Like we really need a reason to talk about ourselves, our dreams, and our hopes, right!? However, as time goes on, this question can either get more exciting or become very confusing. For me, the answer to “what do you want to be when you grow up?” has always changed year by year and season by season. Yet, in the more recent past I (so very wrongly) didn’t like the answer I had to give: Right now, I work part time and I am a wife.

I graduated CSUSM in the Spring of 2010 with a B.A. in Human Development with emphasis in Counseling Services. I had so many expectations of what life would be like after graduation, what job I would have, how much money I would make, what a difference I would make, etc.
Well…I don’t have the job I thought I would, I don’t make the kind of money I thought I would, and I definitely don’t even have the capacity I thought I had. I now realize that a lot of those expectations were, in some ways, sorely misguided and, worse, even sinful. When I think about it now, I’m not even sure how often I incorporated God’s desires for my life into my own expectations – that should have been my first thought! For a while now, I have struggled with believing the lie that I need to do one very specific thing with my college degree and that if I do not do that one very specific thing, I have failed.  What it basically comes down to is this: I keep telling myself that what I am doing with my life at this time is not “good enough.”

But God has taught me, through His perfect Word and the encouragement I’ve received from both my husband and my sisters in Christ, that those thoughts are completely bogus and, in some ways, even more misguided and sinful than the expectations they stem from. When I believe those lies, I am also believing that God is not in control, or (worse) that He is in control but He’s doing it wrong – Wow – how little faith do I have!? Just because I’m not yet using my degree in the way I thought that I would, does not mean that I am a failure. It only means I’m not using my degree in the way that I thought I would – plain and simple. For the time being, I have been blessed with a great job where I succeed and grow. On top of that, I would never want to belittle one of the biggest callings I have been given: being a homemaker and a wife to the kindest man I know, which brings me great joy and excitement.

I don’t know why I thought my dreams and aspirations would stay the same forever and ever. Especially when I look back and remember all the things I thought I would be when I “grew up.”

Here are some things I have aspired to do/be as a child & adolescent:

dolphin trainer

artist/oil painter

interior designer



book critic

Here are some things I have aspired to do/be during college:

masters student

marriage and family counselor

social worker

SD County adoption worker


Here are some things I aspire to do/be in the future:



masters student



own a french cafe

Pretty all over the place, huh!?

Well, here’s the good news: If I do reach some of these dreams, or if I reach none, I am still a child of God, covered by the blood of Jesus and redeemed for His glory. I can never forget my true identity is secure in Jesus and what He accomplished on the cross.

I also need to remember that God’s will for my life is GOOD and that He doesn’t waste a single thing. Everything I learned in college and all the experiences I grew in throughout the past couple of years can be used by Him and for His glory! It just might look different than I thought it would. Maybe my Human Development degree was meant to help me in my own marriage, or in counseling my friends in their marriages, or in teaching my children someday. Or maybe none of those things. Maybe cooking meals for my husband will help me grow culinarily and I will open that Cafe someday. Who knows?! Ultimately, my hope lies in the God who saved me. That’s more than enough.

So, here is a picture of me in 7th grade (yes…I looked that good! j/k!). I have obviously grown and changed a lot since then! It was really refreshing to look at this picture and see the answers I wrote down. It reminded me once again that, even now, I will continue to grow and change for the rest of my life and that’s okay because the God who loves us is in complete control.

What did/do you want to be when you grow up? I’d love to hear it!

xo sarah