My Sunny Side

An Update this Fall

Hello friends!

It’s good to get back to writing on the blog. I thought this would be a good time for an update. On September 7, 2016, I started my doctoral studies in Clinical Psychology at Pepperdine University. In these two (long) months, I have been challenged in so many new ways and stretched beyond what I was imagining. I call this program Brain Bootcamp because it has been nothing but studying, reading, and writing day in, day out.

But I am so glad that I going through with this. I have had days of doubt when I have wanted to give up. I have almost talked myself out of going the distance. This program will be four years, a good bit of money, and will take the majority of my time. Sacrifices have and will be made. No one said this would be easy.

But I know in the end that it will be so worth it. I am so amazed by my classmates and by the professors that are leading us. I love my classes—especially my cognitive assessment class. So many new possibilities are emerging and I am so eager to see where these next few years take me.

I also had an incredible thing happen in the past month. I got my very first Siamese kitten! To be exact he is a Chocolate Point, short-haired, Applehead, Siamese kitten. Now that’s specific. His name is Mochi and he was born August 9, 2016. I am so in love with him and I have truly never been happier. Having a little one to take care of and play with is such a tremendous joy. I’ll try not to post too many pictures of my little love but I just think the world of him.

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Many exciting things in the works currently and I’ll try to post more regularly. This has definitely been a season of change in my life and I’m adjusting in the process. I hope your fall has been a happy one and that you have something to smile about these days.

Keep shining,

The Sunny Girl, Lauren Cook

Bachelorette Soiree Fun!

This has been one of the happiest seasons of life—I am having SO much fun being my best friend Lauren’s Maid of Honor. All the party planning with my mom has brought on so much joy and I am loving getting to know all my fellow bridesmaids. I can’t wait for Lauren’s wedding this upcoming July in Mammoth.

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I thought I’d share some of my favorite photos from the Bachelorette Weekend. So many of you loved the post from the Bridal Shower so I thought I’d share the pictures of our most recent bridal soiree. We started the weekend out with some fun at my house before jetting off to Santa Barbara for a night of dancing. The next morning we had brunch by the pool for our “Party Like a Pineapple” Sunday party. Love that I got to spend some time with these amazing girls!

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We made our best shot at bringing the Pinterest images to life—it never comes out just like the photo shoots but oh, how we try! It’s not about the end results anyway—it’s about the fun we have in the process!

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Last fling before the ring!

Ready to hit the road!

Ready to hit the road!

Caution: Bachelorette Party in progress!

Caution: Bachelorette Party in progress!

Here comes the bride!

Here comes the bride!

Team Bride!

Team Bride!

Love these girls!

Love these girls!

Can never have too many balloons!

Can never have too many balloons!

The next morning after a night on the town!

The next morning after a night on the town!

Ready for a day at the pool

Ready for a day at the pool

Party like a pineapple!

Party like a pineapple!

Getting some sun before the big day!

Getting some sun before the big day!

Keep shining,

The Sunny Girl, Lauren Cook

Showering Lauren with Love

There are special days that happen once in a lifetime…Saturday was one of those days where we celebrated my best friend’s bridal shower. Our friendship has been 23 years in the making and watching her prepare for the exciting road ahead has been such a joy. Lauren and I go way back—our parents met taking the two of us to swim lessons during babyhood—and we’ve been friends ever since.

My mom and me with the lovely bride-to-be!

My mom and me with the lovely bride-to-be!

Lauren and I are both only children and we’re each other’s honorary sisters. Being Lauren’s Maid of Honor has been such a privilege and I’m having so much fun with it. I wanted to share how special this day was when we got to shower Lauren with love. It might also be entertaining to see my Pinterest and Etsy hits and fails…

Holding a picture within a picture within a picture!

Holding a picture within a picture within a picture!

You shouldn’t need a special occasion to shower someone with love—we can express that care on a Monday, during an uneventful season of life, or just because. We shouldn’t need a reason. As you read this, who can you shower with a little extra love? As you try to make others feel special, it’s amazing how happy you’ll feel in the process.

Joy all around.

Joy all around.

I don’t think I’ve ever had more fun planning a party before. My heart was so in it and seeing how happy it made Lauren and my Aunt Bonnie made it completely worthwhile.

A cupcake wedding dress

A cupcake wedding dress

Salad bar for lunch

Salad bar for lunch

Bio of the bridesmaids

Bio of the bridesmaids

Wedding cake cookies

Wedding cake cookies

My mom made the cake herself!

My mom made the cake herself!

Party favors

Party favors

My mom summed it up perfectly: “What a blessing to be able to have a shower for someone—how thankful are we to have friends like these to celebrate in our lives.”

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Now on to planning the Bachelorette Party!

Can't wait for the wedding in Mammoth!

Can’t wait for the wedding in Mammoth!

Keep shining,

The Sunny Girl, Lauren Cook
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