Archive for the ‘Dating’ Category

Drybar Dallas

September 15, 2011

{via We Heart It}

No cuts.  No color.  Just blowouts.

This is the genius business model behind the newest craze in pampering!  My friend Jenna and I visited Drybar Dallas yesterday and I loved it!  For $35, they wash and style your hair whichever way you choose.  It’s a super girlie outing in an adorable atmosphere with complimentary cookies and champagne.

Jenna got her hair styled pretty and straight while I went with loose beach curls.  My hair NEVER holds curl…ever.  This may be one of the first times I’ve ever worn it that way and it’s still curly right this second!  24 hours later and it’s hanging in there. Victory!  We’re trying to organize a girls night out soon and our first stop will be Drybar.  Know what’s not awesome?  I totally forgot to take pictures!! Rawr!!

Know what’s awesome?  There are plenty of Drybar locations popping up all over the country!!! Check them out and fall in love.  Tell them Laura Elizabeth Stephens sent you.  They’ll just look at you like you’re crazy but I’d get a laugh out of it.

For those of you that are STILL reading, I’ve got a little treat for you.  I hardly ever blog about my dating life because even I have a hard time keeping up with it. However, I did meet a handsome long haired musician in the Apple store the other day and spent the evening riding around Dallas on his new Harley.  So/much/fun! No, it’s not a long term thing.  I have places to see, people to meet, countries to explore before I settle.  BUT it was a pretty magical night…full moon and all. 

 

All The Single Ladies!

October 24, 2010

Last month, I wrote a little post with a few dating tips for single guys.  It was fun for me plus I enjoyed hearing the opinions from those who took the chance to read it over.  I thought it would be interesting to hear a guy’s perspective on the list, so I asked my good buddy Drew Worsham to write a post in response.

Meet Drew:

He’s a dear friend who lives far away in Washington and trust me when I say that the man has a heart of gold.  I like this guy a lot (in a friend way…geeze) so be nice.  Clearly, neither one of us are dating experts because, duh, we’re both single.  However, we both have ideas about what works and what doesn’t.  Read Drew’s post below, as he explains some of what goes on in the mind of a guy during a first date.  Don’t worry, there’s no reason to be entirely nervous.  *wink*

From Drew:: 
Okay ladies, you are probably wondering what us fellas are thinking about this whole dating scene. Let’s be honest, men and women are looking at this from two totally different angles and frustrations arise when we are trying to communicate our wants, desires and expectations just to find out that we are speaking different languages.  So here it goes, a list formed by a group of eligible A+ bachelors in response to what you ladies desire in a guy, plus some behind-the-scenes additions that we would love for you to know about what we are looking for during a first date.
 
1)  On Opening Doors
At the beginning of the date, the guessing game starts as we try our best to figure out what’s appropriate or not, gentleman vs cheeseball. Most men (especially those of us from the south) were taught to open doors for our mom and/or our sisters. If we didn’t, we got smacked on the backside of the head and as we looked up to see where the abuse came from, we would see dad pointing to the door as mom waited patiently for us to be a gentleman. Guys love opening your door just as much as you love us to open them. We’ve been training for this most of our lives.  It’s a simple act that says I’m here for you, I’ll protect you if I need to and you’re a lady worthy of this small gesture.  Ladies, let us open your door! It gets awkward when we have to race you to the door as though it were a competitive sport. So pause for a moment.  I personally love it when my date will wait at the door for me, not in a “I expect this” way but rather in a “I’m allowing you to be the man” way. Very attractive.

2)  Be Adventurous
Chances are we put some thought into this date. We are trying to be creative and make it a fun experience for the both us. Be willing to try new things like sushi, foreign dance lessons or watching something other than a romantic comedy. Don’t immediately assume you are going to hate it, even if you know that you already hate it. It’s very attractive when a woman is willing to get out of her comfort zone, plus we begin to associate you with excitement and adventure.  Definite points.

3)  Go with the Flow
While out on the date, make sure to take it easy and go with the flow. Anything can happen on a date, including spilt wine on a white dress, bad service from a waiter, a flat tire, or even being chased down the street by robbers.  (from Laura:: HA! Chased by robbers?  This made me laugh out loud.  Ok…continue.)  Whatever happens, try to keep your sense of humor. One thing that does turn off most men is a woman who haggles or bargains too much or has a habit of sending her food back in a restaurant because it is not exactly right. This makes him think that you might be judging him in the same finicky manner. Whatever may arise, be cool.

4) Affirmation! Affirmation! Affirmation!
I put this as number 4 but if you read and take anything away from this list, I believe this may be the most important. I’ll let you in on a little secret: Us fellas are really, really nervous on this date. We are second guessing everything from the restaurant we picked, the car door we opened for you and the flower we got or opted out of getting because we didn’t want you to think that we were trying too hard. We are insecure creatures and we are desperately seeking your affirmation. We want you to get excited about the elements we selected for the evening and we want to hear it. We are kinda like puppies, if we do something good and you want us to do it again, it’s important you give us a treat.  For example, if we open the door, tell us ‘thank you’ or if we do something you think is sweet, let us know. There is a good chance we will do it again in the future.

5) Don’t Read into Things
We are destined to do something that is going to confuse you. If you are unsure about anything, ASK! It’s not as weird as you think it is and it’s way better then guessing. Plus it keeps us accountable and makes us man-up and be honest with what we meant by holding your hand during the newest Harry Potter movie trailer.  (from Laura:: I’d like to think the HP reference was put there just for my enjoyment.  I’m affirming that decision.)

6)  Get a Life
This goes both ways, I know…but I’ve noticed that (especially with the christian, single ladies out there) there is a tendency for some (not all) of you to put your lives on hold until Mr. Right comes galloping up on his white steed and saves the day and gives you a purpose to live for.  However, we love it when you have hobbies, friends, goals and ambitions of your own.

7)  Love Your Dad/Father Figure
I realize that there are a lot of ladies out there with alcoholic fathers, abusive fathers or absence fathers.  For that, I’m really sorry but I hope that you’ve been blessed and surrounded by Godly men and I hope that you love and respect them.  This is the equivalent of us fellas loving our moms.  The same rules apply. The way we see you treat and respect your dad or any other father figures will one day be the way you treat and respect us, if sparks continue to fly and we choose to carry on.  If you’ve got “issues with men”, rest assured we know that these matters in question will trickle down toward us and cause big problems in the end.

8 ) Save some for Date #2
Make sure you check your emotional baggage at the door. This is not the time to discuss your cheating ex-boyfriend, your alcoholic mother, or your psychotic boss.  We are trying to get acquainted with who you are but we don’t want to play therapist. Fight the impulse to reveal too much too soon. It’s the mystery of it all that makes us interested; save some details about your life for date #2.

9) We Don’t Want To Hear All About Your Ex Boyfriend
Period. We feel compared to the people in your past just like you do when we talk about our ex’s. We don’t want to hear about the last guy you dated who was a supermodel, how he drove a jeep, had an awesome golden retriever named Sam or any of your past date experiences for that matter (unless they were awful, that actually might make us feel better).

10) Put The Phone Away!
Same rules apply.  Texting during the date doesn’t give us the impression that you have an awesome life that we would be lucky to be a part of of.  No! It makes us think you are bored and we take that as an insult to our pride and immediately begin to check out. If you HAVE to take a call, use manners and politely state, “I’m sorry. Do you mind if I take this call?”  We will always say ‘yes’ and it makes us feel important and considered.

11) Relax.  Be Yourself.
We’ve gotten this far. We worked up enough courage to ask you out. You might have just been being nice by saying ‘yes’ to our date invitation but we put a lot of thought into it and probably practiced our speech in front of the mirror days before asking you out and, if you want to know a secret, we probably didn’t just bump into you at that coffee shop that you go to every Tuesday at 3:30.  Surprise!  We think you’re attractive and we are interested in you.  And we want to get to know the real you, not some pretend version of you.

12) Ask Questions.
Women have a tendency to talk a bit more than men.  One way to get a man’s attention on a date is to pay a lot of attention to him.  Rather than talking about yourself, ask him some questions.  Guys love to be asked about our jobs, hobbies, school etc.  However don’t turn into too much of an interrogator or we might feel that you are getting too personal too quick. It’s also not a good idea to ask us puzzling questions such as “If you were a balloon, what color would you want to be?”  That’s just weird and we will think that you are weird.  (from Laura:: Blast.  I always thought that balloon question was a crowd pleaser.)

13) Slooooooow Down!
It’s just a date.  We probably don’t know each other very well and this is our way of remedying this and getting more familiar with one another.  But remember, it’s just a date!  Don’t get online and mash both of your facebook profile pics together to see what your babies may look like and don’t put our last name with your first name to see if it has a nice ring to it.  Trust me ladies, nothing good will come of this.  We are here to have fun and enjoy one another’s company.  Don’t turn this harmless, exciting experience into a marriage interview.  Good to avoid questions like “How many kids do you want?”

14) Let us Pay
It’s always nice to offer but never pay. Let us sweep in with that famous line accompanied by a smile and maybe a wink, “Nope, it’s on me!” It makes us feel smooth, even if you set us up for it.  (from Laura:: Drew, I need a picture and/or video of this ‘wink’.) 

15) Easy on the Make-Up
Ladies, we can’t tell you how much we appreciate the time and effort you put into getting ready and looking nice.  Trust me, we love it and we notice!  But don’t feel like you have to completely paint your face up as though you are doing a photo shoot with Glamour magazine or, better yet, like you just had a job interview with Barnum and Bailey’s.  I remember hearing that the secret of make-up is to look like you don’t have any on.  Hear me out, us guys are not anti-make up but we just want you to take it easy.  Less is more.

16) Be A Lady
We are NOT looking for a barbie doll and at the first sign of high-maintenance we will run, but feel free to be a lady. Dress up, fix your hair, look like you are trying to grab our attention. Yeah, of course we like it when you are interested in the things we like but please don’t feel the pressure to impress us by ‘fitting in’ with the boys by burping at the table and only talking about fishing, hunting and other outdoor sports. There is a reason we asked you out and not our video-game-infatuated roommate. In many ways you are different than us and that’s what we love about you.

17)Follow Up
After we drop you off for the evening, don’t be afraid to text us and let us know that you had a great time (but only if you had a great time, see #4).  However, let us do the leading and schedule the second date if that’s what we see in the future.  What if the date was just okay or horrendous and we don’t really see a second date on the horizon? When it comes to the appropriate way to follow up on our not-so-great get-together, protocol can be very tricky. Let’s face it, if it’s a lose-lose situation more than likely we won’t call. I know… I know… it sounds like a jerk move but let’s consider the alternative. We call you up two days after the date just to tell you that we probably won’t be asking you out again.  Bigger jerk move.  The  follow up is us calling you to tell you we won’t be calling.  So if he doesn’t call back, please don’t take it personal and please don’t slander his name all across town, he may be doing you a favor.  Not all dates are going to lead to happily ever after.

To be honest, the list goes on and on.  I realize that these views, by no means, represent those of the entire male population and there are some things that could have been overgeneralized. This was not meant to be an exhaustive checklist but I think it will give you a little insight into the minds of some of us guys. We walk a fine line between sweet & charming and trying too hard & being cheesy, so cut us some slack and expect us to be a little stupid and make mistakes. We think differently on almost everything.  We are just as excited about the date as you are and we are looking forward to actually getting to know you.  So in short, be you and we will have an exceptional time.  (from Laura:: Hehe, you said exceptional.)

 Thanks, Drew!!

So, what do you think?  Agree or disagree?  Anything you’d like to add?  Feel free to comment it up.  As always, thanks for reading AND make sure you check out Drew’s website because not only is he nice but he’s also a pretty talented guy.  Well….I have a lot of super talented friends but his giftings are pretty unique.  Adios! 

Virtual Hook-Up

October 21, 2010

It looks as though my friends are not only trying to set me up with men they do know but NOW even people they’ve never met.  Don’t you love how much smaller the world is thanks to the grand ole Internet?  My friend and co-worker Molly (whom I love so very much) took it upon herself to try and virtually match me up with Jenks, the adorable MTV dude.  Read her blog post here.  It’s super funny/clever and I’m flattered…of course. 

{pics taken from Molly’s blog! Hehe!}

All The Single Fellas!

September 28, 2010

(We Heart It)

A few weeks ago, I was sitting around with some of my girls at a local coffee shop downtown.  Of course, like usual, the conversation ended up on dating and then to what each of us looked for while out with a fella.  I decided to compile the findings and make a handy dandy little list for all the men out there trying to figure out exactly what makes date #2 in your immediate future.  Clearly, you may not agree with everything that I’ve said.  People have their own opinions and are in different stages of life but these are some of mine.  So….here we go!!

1)  Open doors
I know some ladies have made quite a big deal out of this move & seem to hate it (what is wrong with them?!) but here’s what my friends and I think about it…we love it.  I smile every time somebody opens a car door for me.  Every time.

2)  Drive
It’s just nice when a man picks you up and takes you out on the date.  It’s sweet and then, to make it even better, it gives us a chance to control the music. Win.

3)  Know Where You’re Going
Plan out a destination beforehand.  This will get you major points! Not only is it nice for us to chill and not think about it but it also shows that you put a little thought into the date and women ::love:: thoughtful.  Sure, you can ask my opinion but it is so great when you’ve already planned ahead and know exactly where we are going, where to park, when it opens, if there are any cupcakes nearby! *hint hint*

4) Compliment, please!
Chances are we put some time into getting ready for this shindig and our feelings will be hurt if a) you don’t notice and b) you don’t even say anything about how we look.  I like being told I look pretty…there, I said it.  Simply notice a feature and compliment us on it….dress we’re wearing, how our hair looks, the sweet awesome boots we have on.

5) Beautiful vs Sexy vs Hot vs Cute
If you really want to make a girl swoon then tell her she’s beautiful. (And mean it.)  It’s a huge turn off if somebody tells me I’m sexy or hot.  Let’s get real, any girl with a fake tan, short skirt, and heavy eyeliner can look ‘hot’.  That’s totally not what I’m going for here.  True beauty is natural and softer and a huge part of that comes from within.  Cute is great most of the time but sometimes you just get tired of hearing a word that’s associated with baby rabbits and chinchillas.

6)  Full Time Jobs Are Sexy
I’ll admit, it’s nice to know that a man can take care of himself financially.  Sure, I totally understand that tough times come but it’s how you handle those that speak the loudest.  Work…just do something, anything!! Also, along with the work thing, every girl I’ve talked to agrees that it’s a HUGE turn off if you’re completely obsessed with your job and have no interests or hobbies outside of your 9-5.  Balance, balance, balance.

7)  Speaking Of Hobbies….
Get some and then tell us about them!  I love to talk about pretty much everything (except sports).  If you’re into music, art, cars, cooking, running, horseshoe collecting, boxing, maybe even sports then we want to know about it.  It’s so awesome to meet somebody with a multitude of interests and experiences.  Cultivate these.  Plus, when you’re passionate about something, it’s attractive (unless you’re passionate about something ridiculous, like watching grass grow.)

8)  Love Your Mom
This is HUGE!!  There’s a difference in being a complete momma’s boy (not cool plus I don’t want to compete with that) and having mad love and respect for your mother.  When you’re kind to your mom (don’t roll your eyes when she calls you, help her with things, take her out to lunch) this speaks volumes about how you’ll eventually treat me.  So when you talk about your family, know I’m totally paying attention.  It’s a huge deal.

9) Call vs Text
When you’re asking a lady out on a date, 9 out of 10 of them will say they prefer to be called on the phone or asked out in person.  I am that one weird girl who honestly doesn’t care.  Text me if you wish…you’ll probably get a hold of me easier that way.  But I realize that I’m the total exception on this because my friends will all say don’t even think about texting them or facebook messaging them to go out on a date.  Ok, I will admit that asking me out on facebook is super lame. 

10) Be Creative
Girls love when you put thought into a date.  I’m talking LOVE it.  So put a little brain power into it and bravely pursue something outside of the dinner and movie scenario.  Even if it bombs, it’s alright! Us gals are pretty forgiving and won’t hold it against you forever if the creative date takes a turn for the not so awesome.  Ha! There’s always a coffee shop nearby to stop in and chat about life.  Those are some of my favorite times anyway.  Also, being outside is always amazing.  Especially when it’s FALL!

11) We Don’t Want To Hear All About Your Ex Girlfriend
Period.

12) Put The Phone Away!
I take it personally when I’m out with somebody and they keep their phone face side up on the table.  Good grief, if it’s that important not to miss a facebook notification, text, call, tweet, email then why are you out with me?! Just don’t do it.  At all.  Nope, don’t even think about it. 

13) Relax.  We Like You.
Dating should be fun!  Be yourself.  If we’re out with you then chances are we probably already like you a little bit.  Don’t feel like you have to have ‘fake’ interests that match ours or that you should agree with every word we say.  I can handle a little difference in taste and opinion.  Plus, it’s attractive for a man to have a mind of his own. 

14) Ask Questions.
We ::love:: this.  If you ask me questions about life then I’m swooning.  There’s just something about a guy that cares enough to ask questions and then actually remembers what you say.  Learn this technique because it will pretty much work every time.

15) Slooooooow Down!
It’s just a date.  I’m not planning our wedding after the first time we hang out (trust me) and I really do not need you trying to call my dad and ask permission to take me out a second time.  Seriously, don’t do it.  I think he’d also prefer if you didn’t!  Ha!  Not all girls are in a mad dash for the bridal finish line.  Most of my friends aren’t and this will royally freak me out if you start heading that direction.  If it moves towards the serious then yes, family time is extremely important, but not after we have coffee once.

16) ASK!!
So many guys never even get to the asking part.  See a girl who interests you and you want to know about her?  Goodness, ask the lady out!! Get some courage and do it.  I’ve heard of guys who are secretly head over heels in love with some of their close girl friends and never made a move because they were completely afraid of rejection.  Ok, let me clue you in on something here, us ladies have been trained since birth to NOT make the first move and trust me when I say that I’m not making it.  It isn’t our place.  So, if fear of rejection is your only hurdle then get over it.  No really, get over it and ask her out…like now.  It’s a wonderful feeling to be pursued when intentions are out in the open.  If you’re into us then tell us!! It’s that easy.

17) Pay
If you ask us out then it’s the right thing to do.  Also, if you do pay for the date don’t make a huge deal out of it by saying something to the tune of “oh my gosh, this is so expensive” or “well there goes my gas money for the rest of the week.”  Seriously?  Of course, we are probably going to offer to pay and I’d gladly pay for things later but the first date is all you.  Come on man, you got this.

18) Hygeine matters
Take care of yourself.  Take a shower. Look presentable.  Iron that T shirt.  Easy on the cologne.  Don’t order every fried thing on the menu and chase it down with a massive triple extra large Dr Pepper then order three desserts.  Just don’t. 

19) Be A Gentlemen
Walk us to the door when you drop us off.  If I drove, ask that I text or call when I get home to make sure I made it.  Pump our gas for us (unless you’re in Oregon.)  Do not push the physical…ever, ever, ever.  Be sweet.  It will pay off.

20) Flowers
This is just an extra one because I personally am a huge lover of flowers.  It makes me light headed to get flowers from somebody…in a good way.  A lot of girls hate them but they make me super happy and because I’m the one writing this blog post then I say buy the girl some flowers!! *smile*  It doesn’t matter where they’re from.  Sometimes Target and Whole Foods have the most amazing flowers for pretty cheap.  It’s just the thought…..always the thought.

So that’s it!  I have a wonderful father and some great guy friends who have taught me to expect a lot of these things.  Plus, my great dates outweigh my bad ones and I’m thankful for that.  Just trying to shed a little light on the female mind for the fellas trying to figure us out.   Yes, there are plenty more points I could have talked about and should probably talk about.  However, these are some important things to remember about dating.   Major thanks to my girls who give me hours of great honest conversation about life and love.  Ladies, did I leave anything off?  I’m sure I did.  Just leave it in the comments.  Thank you!!

Why I’m Still Single…

July 11, 2010

On Saturday, I helped Daniel shoot a beautiful wedding. 

I took a few iPhone photos of D doing his thing.  You can’t help but think about love and marriage and commitment when immersed in weddingly bliss for nine hours.

Lately, it seems more and more people keep asking why I’m not married yet.  I’ll be 29 in eighteen days and apparently I should be worried about being nearly 30 and still single.  But…I’m not at all.  There are so many reasons why I’m content with my life even if a husband isn’t in the picture.  Maybe I’ll explain this mindset in detail later on.  But for now, I want to share the wedding vows written by my sweet friend Bailey, in Portland. 

I love you.
And I will continue to love you.
Because He loved us first.

I don’t just love you,
Because our word love has been abused and it has been torn
In Hebrew I would say Raya
You are my companion
I know your good and I know your bad
Raya is the moment when I see your baggage
When I see your stains
And I choose to stay, because of Raya
In Hebrew Raya breathes into Ahava
There is no place that I would rather be
Than right here
Right now
With you
Not cliché or over-romantic.
Not standing at a viewpoint
Not kissing you in the rain
Not dancing or singing
Not watching a sunset
Ahava
Is when we are poor
When there are tears
When you yell
When I scream
When you’re sick
When you’re well
When we walk
When we run
When we are together
When we are apart
When you hurt me
When you pick me up
When I push you down
When we live
And when we die
Ahava is stronger than death
Many waters cannot quench it
Nor will rivers overflow it
You are who I want to struggle with
Through the painful realities of reality
Each and every day
And I will not let you go
Because I Ahava you
In Hebrew Raya breathes into Ahava which brings forth Dode
And Dode is something well beyond our bodies
It is the mingling of our souls
I know you with no body on
Because I am not here to purely touch your body
But to connect with your soul

For we are two different people
With many differences but you have something to teach
and I have something to learn
I have something to give
And you have something to receive
then through the days
This is how we will become one
Christ’s home is in you
And it is in me as well
I see him in you
And you see him in me
He makes us one

I love you.
But more than love you,
I Raya you, I know you
I Ahava you, I will stay with you
I Dode you, I feel your soul

The word love does not capture my commitment to you.
But with all these parts of love in place I can promise you
That I will be devoted to you as the church is to Christ.
Making my days first devoted to being in His presence,
So the fruits of my devotion can be poured onto you.

I love you.
And I will continue to love you.
Because He loved us first.

(the pretty couple)

I’m content because I haven’t felt the way they have.  I’m content because there is more to life than being married.  I’m content because there’s a lot of living left to do and time goes by so quickly.  And I’m content because I’m not ready for marriage…simple as that.  Will I ever be?  Possibly.  But if not, I’m content knowing God knew my life would be ok without it.  Maybe even great, and so far it has been.