My favorite things ~ Best of Breathtaking Basket *closed*

First things First.

We have two babies over in Congo who officially have the last name Chappell!!!!

I can’t pronounce their given congolese first and middle names right now but soon they will be known as Ezra and Evie Chappell.

Ezra (11 months; yes... he's a Big Boy!) and Evie (3 months) for security reasons I can't show faces yet

Sorry this basket is just now going up. One thing I’m learning lately is that there is just not enough hours in the day for everything I need to get done… or at least feel like I need to get done.

With only 5 weeks left until I get on a Plane headed to the DRC. My mind is spinning and won’t stop for anything.  I feel like I need to have my house spotless… completely organized… kids scrapbooks started and up to date….my heart in letters to them telling them every wonderful thought I’ve had about them…. both “nurseries” decorated….  I know so much of that isn’t going to happen… nor should it. It’s just how my mind is racing right now.  But thankfully time is racing faster and I’ll be leaving regardless of what I have done and that’s okay.

So for now… I’m trying to focus on what really matters most. (the story of my life) And right now… aside from placing my trust and faith in what is True about God and the Gospel,  loving my family well each day and packing for my 4-6 week trip…. Coming up with the rest of the funds needed to bring these babies home is what matters most. Because if you haven’t got the money…. then you don’t have government fees, meals and lodging costs,  taxi costs, medicine to take over, and  all that good stuff that is involved in this part of this adoption journey.  Praise the Lord flights are purchased. Praise the Lord Formula is being given to take over to orphanages. Praise the Lord everytime we have a need He has met it and continues to showcase His almighty provision for us.

And I can’t say enough how grateful I am that He’s using YOU to do a lot of this!!!!

I love recommending products to others… I love gift giving…. I love photography… But the fact that all this is to give two babies a forever home and a mommy and a daddy and a sissy and a bubba…. That Takes My Breath Away!!!!!

So… Here are some things that I hope take your breath away! 😉

Swoon. Sigh. Gasp. Daydream. Gaze.  Those are the words that make up the contents of this basket.

You will probably tell what kind of person I am by this basket. I love all things romantic and vintage and ivory and sweet.  So it made sense that all  things that just are extremely lovely and pretty and vintage… I just HAD to include them in one BIG Georgous Breathtaking Basket.

So… by now, you know the ropes…. For every $5 donated for the next two weeks then I’ll enter your name into the drawing for this FAB-U-LOUS Basket. Give the post a shout out on Facebook or Twitter… I’ll enter you in again. 🙂  On October 3rd I”ll do the drawing and somebody’s life will have just gotten a lot prettier!!!

Here we go……..


This Antique Window has been with me for years!!! I adore it. It’s great for just decorating a blank wall… it’s great for hanging photos in it… it’s super vintage and super sturdy.  And yes… it’s in this Basket!!!!  It’s really going to be hard to part with… but I think I”ll be so busy with 4 kids under 3 that I won’t even notice it will be gone. (and I’ll enjoy knowing that someone is enjoying it who helped bring these bundles of beautiful chaos into my life!!)

Thank you Josh and Lindsey for being such Breathtaking Models!!! I love you two!


I’ve had a love affair with cupcakes lately. (sorry pies… I still love you, it’s just I can’t resist a cupcakes cuteness)  World Market has my favorite cupcake holder there and It’s totally something that had to be included in this basket.  Maybe when I”m bored in the Congo waiting for our babies visa’s to come in I”ll do a post on the 6-7 cupcake recipes I’ve made lately. I definitely found some winners!!

This baby will dress up ANY occasion or picnic or get-together or really anywhere.  I LOVE this Mason Jar Drink Dispenser. LOVE IT!!! Of course what do you expect from Pottery Barn? Swoon!

Okay… Don’t be like me and collect all sorts of pretty frames and NEVER put photos in them. One day. Anyway, I adore photo frames, I think they are a huge part of making a house a home. I especially love this pretty frame!! (and because I LOVE  quotes and sayings I asked Kristin to put this quote in this frame for me… because I think it perfectly goes with adoption both of orphans AND of us as Children of God!!!

I love flowers. I love getting them. I love giving them. I love making new arrangements out of old ones as they start to fade. I love unexpected types of flowers. I love the classics.  well, you get the point.  And you ALWAYS want to have a pretty vase to put such flowers in whether you brought them home from the grocery store yourself… or your lover surprised you with a bouquet.  I’m not really a tall glass vase kind of girl…. I want ALL the attention to be drawn to the pretty blooms. So this simple West Elm Flower Sack is the PERFECT fit for any arrangement!!!

And what goes best with cute frames and an awesome vase of flowers? Why a pair of candlesticks of course!!! They will add instant romance and warmth to any table! (and if you’re like my family… nothing declares Fall has arrived like the first lit pumpkin scented candle.)

I’m a bit strange. I have a HUGE love for jewelry and accesories but I don’t wear them often like I want to. I do think it has a lot to do with the chapter of life I’m in. I mean, I don’t know about you, but I don’t want a 1 year old ripping a pretty dangling earring from my ear. And I think with all the years of being a photographer with a strap around my neck I just didn’t wear a lot of necklaces… but I’m actually starting to now when I go out. (which isn’t often… but it makes those necklaces all the more fun!!)  So… I had to include this bracelet I bought at a nearby mall. Isn’t it great? It would definitely add a flare of vintage to your outfit.

Go bold with the eyes… wear a nude lip. Go bright with the lips and cheeks…. go really natural on the eyes.  It’s a great fashion principle that I’m a fan of.  So… you have a Bold Vintage Bracelet… then wear something dainty around your neck and vice versa.  I’m crazy over dainty gold jewelry.   And one of the brands/designers that I bookmark and pintrest like crazy is Jess LC. I LOVE her work. It’s so sweet and classic.  And she has all sorts of styles…. but this bracelet and this necklace are two of my favorites. (they will go with EVERYTHING!)

You know you’re offically in autumns embrace when you find yourself needing to make a switch. A switch in handbags. All of the sudden the brights, whites and florals that you swung around all summer needs to be replaced by something smooth and neutral. I spotted this handbag and grabbed it before the other girls who were oodling over it could get it. It will be the perfect way to finish off your new fall look.

I”m smitten with clutches & wallets…  Often after carrying around a diaper bag everywhere I go, when it’s just me I grab my phone and my wallet and just go! This one will look great on it’s own or nestled inside your new tan handbag!  *Both Bag and Wallet I found at Charming Charlies.

One thing I do tend to gravitate to and collect is purfume. Any given Christmas or Birthday Dan and I can always bank on giving each other cologne or purfume and know that it will make the other very happy!  Two that take my breath away are Men’s Dolce & Gabban Light Blue and Women’s Lovely by Sarah Jessica Parker.  They are both light and lovely.  I think you’ll love them too.  (runner’s up were Men’s Banana Republic Classic &  John Varvatos’s Artisan or  Women’s Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue & Carolina Herrera 212.) Okay… Lorenzo, so it’s not a whole basket, but here is something you as a guy would like!! This cologne rocks! So you better be getting in on this one. I’m sure Claire won’t mind taking the rest off your hands. 😉

Anthropologie. Nuff said. If this store doesn’t make you swoon at least a little… then well, I’m not sure you’re the “swooning type”. (name that movie) So into this basket goes a sweet little $100 Gift Card to Anthropologie.  So, if your name is drawn you can let your heart be your guide in this store and not your cute wallet. 🙂

I still have polaroids from when my parents took them of us as little kids and they are some of my favorite photos. I have one with Brittany and me holding a sign saying “Happy Birthday Grandmommy” and so this year… I couldn’t resist and took one of these cute little polaroids of Jack and Zoe holding a sign saying “Happy Birthday Great-Grandmommy” (who by the way turned 93 last week!!!)  This Instax Mini is a great polaroid camera and it’s small enough to put in your purse  and would make a great way to document guest’s who come over or take to a birthday party and give 10 photos from the evening as an instant birthday gift!! I love taking them and then hanging them with clothespins on some twine!  So I’m including a white Fugi-film mini instax with a box of 20 exposure film! (more film can be ordered and it’s not expensive at all compared to the classic polaroid film these days)

I’ve been given this book and I’ve given this book. It’s beautiful. In One Thousand Gifts Ann Voskamp writes with such beauty and takes her readers into the area of her heart that she opens and pours out for all to see and feel. It’s really been great for me to absorb lately because when things get busy I tend to forget to stop and just be thankful and full of joy.This book is definitely FULL of theological deep truths but doesn’t read at all like a theology book. (I tend to let Dan read all the intense theology books and then he just breaks it down and regurgetates it back to me in a way I can grasp and live out day to day)  But this book…. it’s like it was written just for me.  And hopefully you will too.

I could spend all day online looking at blogs…. but sometimes I want to turn off the computer, turn real pages, and still be learning about and reading other writer’s and photographers blogs. This magazine does the trick! I LOVE Somerset Magazines. They are just filled with all sorts of textures and colors and just all things swoon worthy.  So… I’m including the Autumn 2011 issue of Artful  Blogging. (check out Where Women Create, Somerset Weddings, and Somerset Home because they are amazing as well!!)

And when you’re done with your magazine…. then you can tear it into little strips and make this: (I would do a tutorial on how to do this… but literally you just tear strips from a pretty magazine and then glue them to a canvas…. super easy!)

where Kristin's pointing is where we are going in a few short weeks


And speaking of Kristin….. She, being the amazing friend she is, took most of these images for this post!! Aren’t they delightful??  You all know I’m a huge fan of her photography and of her friendship. She is going on this incredible journey to Africa with me. Yes, we will be sweating and sleepy and who knows all what else together for almost 3 weeks together. And I couldn’t ask for a better person to start this african adventure out with me… she’s been so excited about this whole adoption and even been here through the tough and frustrating parts of it as well.  She gets it. She gets why we are doing this and why we are going and why it matters that orphans get adopted.

I really wanted her to be a part of this basket. Because I think her photos and her writing can be breathtaking!!! Check out her blog and I know you’ll agree with me. Well, She is going to donate a Kristin Shyla Photography Beloved Session for one of our DFW or RDU area donors . She captures love beautifully and whether it’s  you and your husband or… you and your bff  or… you and your dog…. as long as it’s just the two of you…. Beloved is yours! Let Kristin Shyla tell your story… I promise it will be one that can’t help but to be beautiful…. because it will be You & your Beloved!!



So…. now, Take a DEEP BREATH. After all this Breath Taking you probably need it. 🙂

Just to remind you that this will be up on the blog until Oct 2nd…. and on October 3rd…. I”ll do a video of the random drawing!!

And then I’ll ship all these goodies to you.  (except for Kristin….and she’ll just work out those details with you via email)

After you donate……  post something about this on Facebook or Twitter and we’ll add your name again to the list.  Just be sure to friend me and tag me (Casey Nichols Chappell) in your status on FB and mention me @caseychappell in your tweet!

If you desire your name to be put on the list for the basket drawing without donating just email me at

PayPalDonationsare not tax deductible. If you would like to send a check just email me.

Donations will end on October 2nd and the lucky name will be announced on October 3rd!

*an actual basket is not included.


Finally….. you know what else is breathtaking to me?? These two!!!

Unfortunately due to limited supply… I’m having to keep them for myself.

For always and ever.

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