The Prettiest (book release) Party Ever

JPEG image-70970E530685-3.jpeg

I can't believe it's been nearly a month since Beautifully Interrupted released into the world. The party held in my backyard just days before it officially, launched was one of the most spectacular + meaningful days of my life. I'm so humbled to tell you that friends flew in, found sitters, and even canceled weekend plans simply to help figure out how in the world to make a balloon installation.

It. Was. Perfect.

Except that I forgot to take silly photos of us laughing and playing and getting everything ready...and us in the midst of the party when it was in full swing. Bummer!!

Even so, I have about five and a half million photos to share of the most spectacular day. To those of you who came, helped, and supported...I don't know how I'll ever be able to explain how much it mean to me.

Ready for the fun pics??? Ok good.

Let's just start with the cake...because I'm pretty obsessed with it.

I've recently found the most incredible little bakery here in Denver, aptly named Happy Bake Shop because walking through its doors makes me instantly happy. The owner is as kind as she is a gifted baker and every morsel I've eaten is to die for (including the vegan and dairy-free cupcakes).

**Totally off-topic but our family munched on Happy Bake Shop's Lemon + Elderflower cupcakes while watching Megan and Harry's wedding...the royal couple's wedding cake flavor. It was sublime).**

JPEG image-556919E9D83B-1.jpeg

The gorgeous flowers are from my dear friends over at Something Styled (see the pics below of the darling + happy centerpieces they also made).

The flowers were placed on the cake by yours truly...took me a couple tries to get it to look the way I wanted. I was crossing my fingers that I didn't destroy the cake in the meantime (I kinda put a lot of holes from the stems all over the place)...thankfully the flora covered up all my puncture holes and the end product was fantastic! The adorable sprinkles are from Shop Sweet Lulu.

JPEG image-FBD101DA558B-1.jpeg

The fun coral and peach frosted rosebud cookies are also from Happy Bake Shop (True story: there were only a few cookies left over after the party and I hid them in the cabinet behind the quinoa. Yes, I hoarded them for myself...THAT'S how good they are, hahahaha).

We sprinkled rose petals on the lemon bars as well as all over the beautiful charcuterie board. The Raspberry Rose spread for atop the fancy cheeses was just as pretty as it was tasty!

My sweet husband surprised us with the adorable donuts that morning, and sprinkling some edible gold stars on them, made them even more party-worthy!

The floral napkins and hexagonal paper plates can be found in these links!

JPEG image-C9622A5EF052-1.jpeg

See this gorgeous girl below? This is my best friend (of 20 years), Kiesha...she's going to kill me for including this photo but I don't care because she basically planned the whole event all the way from DC. You know she needs a shout out.

JPEG image-4A5B4BF2E007-1.jpeg

When you expect nearly 100 people for a party, somewhere to beautifully store glassware is always a big concern. After brainstorming a few ideas, I decided to bring down this caned bookshelf I found at Goodwill a few months back. It was so cute, I just loved it set up next to our drink table.

JPEG image-A0047DED37B8-6.jpeg

Have you ever heard of One Hope Wine? We received a bottle a Christmas or two ago and have been in love with the mission (and the yummy wine) ever since. If you don't know their story, click here. We're so honored that they came alongside us to celebrate this special day!


Our mimosa bar was complete with Rose Lemonade, and a whole slew of juices (FYI, healthy mint-infused green juice is SO not good with a little bubbly poured in. Just don't do it. It's disgusting. You're welcome.)

JPEG image-D08FC8785C63-1.jpeg

Because I knew some children would likely come (i.e. my own six), I wanted something entertaining for them...and for I asked if perhaps my dear artist-friend Jessie would be willing to paint "floral tattoos". It was just so fun. The kids loved it and so did the grown-ups!

JPEG image-97F616E299D6-6.jpeg

Can we just talk about our photo backdrop for a minute?

Using some PVC pipe we typically use for the screen on our outdoor movie nights, I hung a yellow and white checked vintage sheet and covered it with paper streamers of differing colors, widths, and lengths.

And then...the FLOWERS!!!! I'm still freaking out and pinching myself that working with Katya Paperie became reality. Katya handmade hundreds of paper flowers to be mailed out to the Influencers (other authors, Instagrammers with larger followings, etc), along with my book.

JPEG image-1C2301A7F463-1.jpeg

She also handmade these massive beauties specifically for our party. Can you even handle how gorgeous they are???

Sweet Katya also made this singular large rose for the Book Signing Table. It was the perfect accompanyment for the gorgeous flowers friends brought as gifts.

JPEG image-E0068850B792-1.jpeg

Speaking of the Book Signing Table...let's just go ahead and swoon over it. Ready??

JPEG image-F18B8563BE2F-1.jpeg

I know. Those balloons. I can't believe this actual thing is in my own backyard. It's too pretty, I can't handle it. This kind of thing is only on Pinterest. No it's's in MY actual backyard. WHAT?!

I just cannot believe it.

JPEG image-47D4D1A4D4E6-1.jpeg

Erin, the sister of my friend Sarah (from Something Styled, and did all our live-flowers) is just as crazy creative as her flora-loving sibling. Erin asked if I needed help with anything and I sent her a Pinterest photo asking if she knew how to make a balloon installation (fully expecting to her to shrug and say no).

Instead, she texted back a list of all the things I needed to purchase and came over the day before the party, spending hours sewing them all together and stringing them with fishing line. There are over 200 balloons in this baby, believe it or not.

Check out a bit of the balloon setup in this little video (below) that I sent to a friend who was unable to fly in for the event.

The little details are my favorite part... from the vintage sheets used as table cloths, to the Anthropologie tea cups and saucers with tiny plants inside, the lawn games with matching pieces, and floral everything.


We scoured our local nursery for anything pink, coral, blush, and peach and planted the colors of my book cover throughout the front and back yards.

My mom and I kept laughing as we remembered Father of the Bride and how they took a hair dryer to the tulips after it snowed...because we had several inches a week prior to this big event and I was just so nervous it'd happen again.

May in just never know what you're going to get!

JPEG image-07D8558F659E-1.jpeg

Here's another little video taken as the party was just beginning.

And PS these flowers from Something Styled really just made everything come together. See those tiny daisy-looking things? Those are chamomile!! Who knew that's what they looked like?

Aren't they the cutest?!

For some reason sections of our lawn didn't come back this spring and we didn't have time to roll out new sod before this event, so I had to think outside the box on how to detract from the large patches of dirt in places where lush green grass should be growing!

JPEG image-99DC9D3A8E0A-1.jpeg

I decided to purchase a bunch of outdoor rugs from World Market and build a little "living room" area. By piling up and spreading out these rugs and brining out some of our furniture from throughout the house, we put together the sweetest little sitting area.

JPEG image-753C83402131-1.jpeg

We also brought out the plants from my office and bedroom to help bring more life to the space and used the caned screen to detract from some broken parts of our old fence behind.

JPEG image-9E2FD2334342-1.jpeg

The lawn games from Rustic Road Designs were another really fun element to the party, especially for the kids who came.

JPEG image-2C53B5A610C0-5.jpeg

We stored the pieces in cute baskets next to each game and loved seeing kids of all ages laughing while playing around.

And also loved that I was able to specify what color I wanted the Giant Connect Four pieces and Cornhole beanbags to be (in this case, I wanted black + white)!

We've used the lawn games for several parties lately and have been really impressed by how they're holding up...even with kids stepping all over them. Not that I'd recommend kids walking down a Cornhole game, but they're super sturdy and beautifully well-made. We just love them!

JPEG image-9D49DAC15983-5.jpeg

I still can't believe after several years of waking at four in the morning to write before the kids wake, my book is a reality and my release party actually took place.

JPEG image-97F616E299D6-4.jpeg

My heart still beats fast when simply seeing the cover because this is my heart poured out onto page. And while it feels like I'm standing naked before the world to see and judge, I feel excitement and peace, knowing it was a book the Lord asked me to write...He definitely interrupted my life once again.

A big, HUGE thank you to all who came to support me and gave time and product to ensure this party and Beautifully Interrupted's release, was a marvelous success. Especially Crystal Miller Creative for all the gorgeous photos!!

Something Styled . Happy Bake Shop . One Hope Wine . Rustic Road Design

JPEG image-09AB5069ED6D-1.jpeg

NOTE: If you have photos of your own from that day, or any of you reading the book, please post on social media with the hashtag #beautifullyinterrupted. Can't wait to see your photos!!!! xo

Take Joy,


P.S. I'd be SO honored if you'd consider posting photos from the party on your Pinterest page!! OR even doing an Amazon review of the book!! Thanks sweet friend! xoxo

An Evening to Nourish - June (table decor)

Last Thursday night was June's Evening to Nourish!

And ohhhhmygosh it was amazing.

nourish june 1

The theme (if you want to call it that) of the evening derived from finding this gorgeous wrapping paper over at Tiny Prints.

And...get's editable.

I realize the paper is supposed to say something like "with love, the Anderson Family". Or "Happy Birthday" since after all, it is gift wrap.

But instead, it lended itself perfectly to displaying the name of our evening..."An Evening to Nourish" and repurpose it as a table runner.

nourish june 23

 The paper is thick and glossy and I really think if it hadn't rained (actually poured + thunder stormed) at the end of our night, I'd have been able to use it as a table runner again another time.

nourish june 22

Once again, I lucked out in finding some great flowers in the Clearance section at our neighborhood grocery store.

Do you ever look there?? I find the best deals!

Using this technique, I bunched the flowers together into old soup cans that I've been saving.

nourish june

I didn't have enough silverware to set the table for all the ladies coming (I swear my kids are throwing them in the trash or something), so my sweet friend AnnMarie brought over hers to mix in.

I love that it all looks a little mismatched yet coordinates because it's like in color and style.

Just like my plates!

I'm collecting vintage floral china and have been frequenting antique markets, garage sales, and thrift stores looking for random one-offs. I have far from a collection, but I now have enough to mix in with my regular China.

My most recent find was this week at Goodwill (for 25 cents)!!

nourish june 11

Several months ago, Joss & Main showcased a great collection of wedding tableware and I couldn't resist getting a few things, like these laced (painted) tea lights and wooden place card holders.

nourish june 20

Aren't they so fun?! Though truthfully anyone with a branch and a saw could probably make them.

(If you do, tag me on the photo...I want to see!)

nourish june 2

I absolutely love pairing polkadots and stripes so I had so much fun playing around on Illustrator making our menus and place cards.

We had Street Tacos and Mexican chopped salad, and blood orange sorbet for dessert.

And yes...don't worry...I'll be sharing those recipes (and more!) later on in the week.

nourish june 6 printables



I will send out both blank menu cards as well as one with our menu on it, in case you would like to use the same recipes we did!


Caviar Dreams, Bebas Neue - Menu Cards

Coneria Script - Place Cards


nourish june 19

take joy-signature-new-pink


imani's room

imani's room

Imani's bedroom is my favorite room in the entire house. It is bright & cheerful and full of vintage pieces with pops of color mixed with loads of straight lines.

It's the kind of room that makes you happy the moment you walk in.


Back when we lived in San Antonio several years ago, we had this fantastic playroom. The floor was cement so I painted huge colorful polka dots all over it {with a stencil} and hung paper lanterns by brightly colored ribbon from the ceiling. It was truly a fun room.

I still love the paper lanterns and have again used them once again. This time pairing tissue paper poufs that I saved from a baby shower I did for a friend awhile back.


Hm. This photo is pretty grainy, sorry about that. I'd retake it but Imani is in bed sleeping.

Anyway, this special piece is a shadow-box I put together when my mom gave me one of my baby dresses, along with my dad's baby rattle. When my mother-in-law also gave me her grandmother's {or great-grandmother's??} infant-sized gold cross necklace, I knew I needed to make it into a special piece to keep forever. {My nursery was light blue gingham, so that's why I chose blue for the background}


These two little guys were total scores from a baby boutique that was going out of business a few years ago.

They were originally in my office, but I think they're way more fun up here.


Imani knows not to play with this one. It's just to "look pretty" and houses her stuffed animals, since it's about to fall apart and was probably painted with lead paint anyway.

It's fun to think how old the baby is now who once was pushed around in it. Sixty, years old? Seventy??


This chair was a big splurge when I was pregnant with Anton. The guy at the store convinced me it was important to have a rocking chair you can grow with.

I was sold when he told me it was wide enough to sit side by side with your child when they got older, so you could cuddle and read books together. {Well, that and the fact that it reclines and my head sits at the perfect height so I don't get a big crook in my neck after accidently falling asleep in it and waking up 6 hours later.}

It's one splurge that was SO very worth it.

africa quilt

Oh how I love this quilt. It's the first one I ever made {well, honestly and the last. they take forever!} and sewed it while taking a class at the most fantastic quilting shop. One where the instructor had a sleeve tattooed up her arm. Needless to say, it's not your grandma's quilting store.

Get this...I dragged Ben along with me. Yes, it was a "date weekend" and Ben made his own quilt. The other ladies hated him because he was better and faster than the rest of us. {I often call him "my seamster" - he can now sew anything. How many guys-guy type men can do that?!}

I wanted to personalize it for Imani so I appliquéd the shape of Africa on the center rectangle and hand sewed a felt heart over the spot where Ethiopia resides.

These dolls make their way up and down the stairs every day. Sometimes they sit in the zebra chair next to the fireplace, other times they're lovingly carried the hair. The one on the left was handmade by a friend when we brought Imani home. The one on the left is a traditional Ethiopian doll from the Mercado in Ethiopia.

One of my favorite things in the entire room is this gorgeous pillow with Imani's name embroidered upon it. It also came from a sweet friend when Imani came home from the orphanage. It's timeless and even more beautifully delicate in real life.


I truly hate blinds so most of our windows have not only drapes that can be closed at night, but gauzey sheers {from Ikea} so neighbors can't see inside even during the day, yet the sun is still able to stream through.

These yellow blackout shades {which in no way actually make the room dark} needed a little something, so I found these gorgeous polkadot sheers online. I adore the scalloped edges. So perfect for a little girl's room.

When the sun streams through,  the lighting in the room feel so dreamy.


I wanted a big white dresser with straight lines and love what we found. I thought it needed "a little something" so I changed out only the top knobs.


I think if I'd replaced every knob with the flowered ones, it would have been too much and more foo-foo than I was going for.


Another of my favorite pieces is this pink vintage baby scale. It's another find from that baby boutique that was going out of business.


Upon it lies vintage baby shoes, a cupcake candle from my mom, a favorite discontinued Stella & Dot necklace, several old books, and because every room needs a little greenery {even if it's faux}, a little plant.


Though this is currently Imani's room, once baby Elsabet starts sleeping though the night {Lord let it be soon!!}, she will be in here as well.

So these diapers in the huge apothocary jar are obviously hers. I love how cute they look and how easy they are to grab.


This little bouquet of flowers was made with extra faux flowers after a project left only little buds. I hated the idea of throwing them away, so I just piled them together and wrapped the stems with ribbon.

Goodness how this book was the find of the century!!

I have looked {and looked and looked} for vintage books with some color in them!!! {I'm talking colored kids in them, not that the book was IN color}

And it's the most precious story. I love that the little girl looks so similar to Imani. We love reading it together.


Yes, another book in my decor {surprise, surprise}. But I had to purchase this one when I saw it was called My Little Sister. So sweet to put in a room our girls will share soon.

The blocks are a fun and recent addition, as is the singed fabric flower that I had made awhile back {tutorial here}.

imani's room

Isn't this little guy so sweet? I got him for 90% off because his rear-end is cracked. {I tell ya, I love my deals!}

The felt flower from Anthropologie is a fun addition because Imani is obsessed with purple right now.


I'm still trying to figure out what to do with her duvet. She was just using that cozy chevron blanket to cuddle up with at night, but now that the weather is getting colder, I wanted something thicker to keep her warm.

But the white is a little too stark and boring. Not sure yet what I'll change it to. Any ideas?!


I love this heart print above her bed. It was signed by all my closest friends in San Antonio when they threw me a shower right before bringing Imani home. It's a treasured piece.


These ores were originally purchased for Ezekiel and Abreham's room but they wanted to pin up the Ethiopian flag on the wall where I was going to put them.

So they have a permanent home in here instead. {I think they're cuter in here anyway}

imani's room - vintage cheerful

This wall was a mystery to me for awhile. I knew I wanted to use these darling child-sized mannequins that I bought forever ago when I had an online shop for baby clothes, etc, {because they're so darn cute}, and thought it was a good spot for some of Imani's books {though the shelf still needs to be hung}. But I just wasn't finding the right thing to fill the rest of the space.

So I made my own.


It's way more fun in real life, but I simply bought a big canvas and found a map with colors that complimented her room.

I taped it on, purposely a tad haphazardly because I didn't want it to look perfect, and then stuck a bunch of circle-shaped gold stickers around the map. I then decoupaged the whole thing to finish it off. There's a lot of texture and shine on the piece. I love it.

. . . . . . . .

I'm so happy with how it turned out! She loves it and so do I.


signature 1