I'm Nikki, a creative old soul who loves tea time, tip-toeing through gardens, mounds of books, swaying to records, watercolors, sunset walks with our three yorkies, and star-gazing with Paul. This blog carries snippets of my life with just us two (five with Rusty, Lucy, & Ethel) - I hope it brings you happiness as you snuggle in with something warm and delicious and begin reading. Enjoy, friends!

the blog!

If I had to choose:

Life Back at Home | A Typical Day

Rusty the Yorkipoo 2018 | Nikki Jean Tran Blog | www.nikkitranphotography.comHello sweet friends!

The ocean waves are rolling in, a piano plays in the distance, the smell of fresh fruit lingers nearby, Rusty is basking in the sunshine…

Did you think I was in Jamaica? Oh no, just another l-o-v-e-l-y day in my office. I have a relaxing ocean video playing on the TV (join me?), piano songs playing on the computer, a cup of fruit sitting nearby, and Rusty has found the smallest drop of sunshine in my office and is snuggled on the carpet for warmth. :)

What can I say, friends? Life is rather wonderful right now. For the first time in a long time I feel like I’m following the right path. Ideas are flowing so easily, tasks are getting accomplished, and so far boredom and a lack of motivation have been kept far at bay.

Jane Austen Watercolor Quote | Nikki Jean Tran Blog | www.nikkitranphotography.com

And until Paul gets home from work late in the afternoon, the days are my own. I wake up with him, lying in bed just a few minutes longer, then shuffle downstairs in my bathrobe and slippers, Rusty always at my side. Paul leaves for work and I take my time making coffee and breakfast for myself and Rusty (Paul doesn’t like to eat breakfast before work – he likes to rush in and begin work as early as possible). We meander into the living room, enjoying breakfast with a favorite TV show or two, me writing in my diary and planner while Rusty is perched on the couch watching everyone get on with their day through the front window. I put makeup on, curl my hair, get dressed, and then we troop on upstairs to the sunlit office. The walls are yellow, there’s lists all over the place, my paints are in a pile on my desk, there’s fresh basil dancing in the sunshine, and Rusty’s comfy chair is calling his name in the corner.

There’s all sorts of tasks for me to accomplish – nothing ever too similar since my projects are all over the place – and I absolutely love it. This isn’t work for me, a feeling I’m still getting used to. I love putting check marks next to things on my lists, and I get a thrill every time I add something new – it means I’m going in the right direction.

Paul comes home late in the afternoon and usually continues working in his own office while I continue working in mine. Finally, we close our laptops, turn off our office lights, and meet in the middle in the chilly kitchen. We turn on the oven and open the door to get the heat flowing, and we discuss the highs and lows of our day over coffee, wine, or beer. Dinner’s done cooking, we’re exhausted, so we take our plates to the living room and collapse on the overgrown couch, Rusty always at our side. I go to bed at night, always excited for the following day and the endless possibilities awaiting me in that sunlit room.

Valentine's Day 2018 | Nikki Jean Tran Blog | www.nikkitranphotography.comOn my first day back at home I gutted my desk and closet, organized my shelves and drawers, and made sure my office was being used in an efficient and functional way. I’m quite pleased with it. I organized my camera bags, making sure all batteries were charged and SD cards were cleared, then I stored them away in the back of my closet. I moved my printer and scanner around so they’re easy to get to. My painting supplies are right in front and ready to be used. I just received my business cards in the mail, as well as little “Thank You” cards I painted that I can slip in customer’s packages –  it’s all coming together, friends. :) I even began building my online store (right now if you visit my website – nikkijeantran.com – you’ll notice The Little Store isn’t available yet) and have been having all sorts of fun creating products for it, both in my head and on paper. :)

I also decided to bring my camera downstairs, fully loaded with a battery and clean SD card, so that we can get better at documenting our life at this new home. We’ve barely taken any photos in the last few months – even when my little nephews had a week-long sleepover!! – and surprisingly, just having the camera in the open has encouraged me to document life in the past few days! ‘Tis a miracle! Last night was even documented; the records were on, candles were lit, and we stuffed ourselves with pasta and bread until we began to feel the shame and guilt. (Those are always the best meals, don’t you think?)

Spring Things Watercolor | Nikki Tran Blog | www.nikkitranphotography.com

Just think, soon we’ll be watching the Masters on TV with the windows open, birds chirping, late sunsets, the smell of dirt and grass – I can hardly wait either! Paul and I have started discussing garden plans for this new house, and although I would LOVE the same vegetable garden from our first house, I shall have to settle for something smaller (but still just as wonderful, I’m sure). The thought of roses are getting me through these last week’s of winter – hold on, friends. We’re almost there.

And now I must be getting back to work. There’s still so much to do – the sun is shining and I was able to enjoy some rare warmth as I let the dogs outside (we’re baby-sitting Rusty’s best friend/our previous neighbor’s dog). We’re even moving rooms around this weekend! Soon both of us will have our offices upstairs! Crossing my fingers his desks are lighter than they look.

And crossing my fingers you get a moment to enjoy the sunshine, perhaps with the windows down and the heat all the way up while you’re driving home from work. That’s the best, isn’t it? I hope you all had a delightful Valentine’s Day, or Galentine’s Day, or Wednesday yesterday! The weekend is almost here – hip hip hooray! Cheers! Saluti! Prost! xoxo