Soulmate Tattoos

Two weeks ago, my husband and I got matching tattoos on our arms!  After researching and asking around, we settled on Birch Avenue Tattoo, which is praised all-around as the best tattoo parlor in Flagstaff.

Before I get into the actual story, I want to note that yes, Joshua & I are Christians, and we are okay with tattoos.  I know a lot of people, especially Christians, have problems with tattoos and that’s okay.  We just happen to like them.  🙂

Joshua and I have both been interested in getting tattoos for a while now.  I hadn’t seriously considered getting one until Joshua & I started dating, and after we got married, I had hoped to get one for my 21st birthday.  I was going to get a paw print on my leg in memory of my sweet dog who passed away in 2014.  Unfortunately, we weren’t able to make it work due to not having the money, so we put it on the back burner until we could allot funds for it.

I’m not sure when it dawned on us, but at some point in the last few months, we thought it would be pretty cool (and sweet) for our first tattoos to match, as well as to get them at the same time to share the experience.  It took us forever to settle on the design, size, and placement because I’m extremely picky when it comes to ink being etched into my skin for the rest of my life, lol.  It needed to be something I really wanted, something that felt perfect; a design meant to capture our marriage.

As you can probably imagine, it took a lot of searching “couple’s tattoos” to find it.  😉  This is what happens when you have OCD and you’re unfortunately a perfectionist.

Joshua had a far easier time deciding, giving a few suggestions and then trying to help me narrow down what I wanted.  He was much more easy-going with the whole process than me, haha.  Finally, after months of searching, contemplation, going back and forth, etc, we finally found the design.  A few more conversations decided how we wanted to customize it as well as the placement.

We settled on two hearts joined by a cross integrated in the heart pattern, with the verse Matthew 19:6 written inside the bigger heart.  If you don’t know, the verse says:

“So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” (Mt. 19:6, ESV)

When we showed up the next week at our consultation appointment, our tattoo artist easily went with our ideas for the design, but then asked us if we wanted to do it that day.  Though I was excited, I was completely shocked, because I was not emotionally prepared to permanently change my skin that day.  Even though I wanted the tattoo, it was still overwhelming to suddenly know it was actually happening and my skin would be forever altered.  I don’t know if this makes any sense, because I still wanted the tattoo…it’s simply that, for things like this, I have to emotionally prepare myself.  Without being mentally prepared for going through with something big, I tend to get overwhelmed.   That’s just who I am.

We went ahead with it, because we knew we wanted it, we were there anyway, and he had an opening, so it didn’t make sense to come back another time.  Also, parking is terrible downtown with exclusively parallel parking, which meant we’d already hunted for a spot and fed the meter.  If we could avoid coming back again anytime soon, we would.

After we filled out our paperwork, confirmed the design with our artist, and agreed Joshua would go first (I was still freaking out a little bit), we headed to the back.

Joshua actually had an easy time with the pain, barely wincing and talking through the whole thing.  It didn’t bother him very much and he made it look quite doable.  In half an hour, it was done and looked incredible!  He was (and still is) so excited about it.  I’m pretty sure it made his week, if not month.

When it came to my turn, unfortunately, I was caught off guard because the pain affected me way more than Joshua.  I’m still surprised because generally, I have a higher pain tolerance than him, since he has zero pain tolerance.  (Or at least that’s what we thought.)  Yet, I had a pretty hard time with the pain.  You know how it feels when hot oil in a pan pops, splattering your skin?  That’s how it felt to me, except constantly.

It wasn’t fun, but in retrospect, I can say it was worth it.  It didn’t last very long, only about twenty minutes, and the permanence of the design is definitely worth it!  Even the first week of tenderness was worth it, and seems comparatively short when looking back on it.

We love them.  It was so nice to experience it together!  It really warms my heart to think about how we not only got the same design as our first tattoos, but we were there for each other when experiencing it for the first time, and we’ve been able to support each other through the healing process.

We are already looking forward to our next tattoos, and we’re pretty sure we want to make it a tradition to get our future tattoos together, not the same designs, but at the same appointment to make it just as fun.

Until next time! 🙂

-Tialla ❤


Our Six-Month Anniversary

(Heads up that this will indeed be a mushy post. 😉 )

On Tuesday, January 10th, Joshua and I celebrated our six-month wedding anniversary.  It’s absolutely amazing to me that it has already been half a year since we said, “I do.”  These past six months have simply flown by.  With each month that passes, I’m reminded of the reality of the saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun.”  I know without doubt that I’m going to blink and we’ll both be decades down the line, amazed at the time that has sped by.


I think back on what has happened these past months since our wedding ceremony, and it just blows my mind.  Various aspects of work (both Joshua’s and mine), family, friends, aspirations, hopes, plans, goals, projects, and routines…so much has happened, and so much has changed from the day before our wedding.  What an adventure we’ve had so far, both good and bad, and I wouldn’t want to spend this life with anyone else.


This was the caption I posted on my social media for our anniversary post:

“How has it possibly already been half a year since we said our vows? These past six months have simply flown by. To think, when we had been dating for six months, you proposed, and now we have been married for six months! As I tell anyone who asks, marriage is the best thing ever. Always having my soulmate, best friend, and lover by my side each and every day, through thick and thin. Knowing that no matter what, he is there for me. Many things may happen during the day, but at the end of the day, we have each other. Since July, our lives have seen many changes. Ebb and flow with both the good and the bad, the exciting and the mundane, but the constant is the fact that we still have each other. I’m so grateful to share this life with you, Joshua, to always have you here to support and encourage me, and to give me the blessing of always being there for you, supporting, and encouraging you. And most importantly, I’m so grateful to the Lord for bringing us together, as well as for giving us the humbling opportunity to mirror Christ and the Church with our marriage. It’s such a blessing to settle in married life with you, Mister, to figure out how to be married together, to be your helper, and to go on this journey together, hand in hand. I’m so excited to see where God takes us. Happy six months! I love you to the moon and back! <3″


We celebrated our anniversary starting with a meal of homemade biscuits and gravy.  This was my first time making both homemade biscuits and gravy and I have to say, I LOVED how they turned out!  Definitely will be repeating.

If this doesn't look appetizing, I apologize, but it really was DELICIOUS! :)

If this doesn’t look appetizing, I apologize, but it really was DELICIOUS! 🙂

After dinner, we headed to the movies to see Rogue One (thanks to my in-laws for a movie theater Christmas gift card!).  It was a wonderful time out together, especially since we can rarely afford to go to the theater these days.


Happy halfway anniversary, my love!  I can’t wait to see what these next six months (and beyond) hold for us.


-Tialla ❤


We Decided on Forever


Hello friends!

Back at the beginning of the year, I mentioned my boyfriend and how I feel so thankful for him.  Well, God has blessed us further by showing us we are meant to be together forever.  Yes, we are engaged! ❤ ❤ ❤


Joshua proposed to me a month ago, and I honestly can’t believe it’s already been a month!  This has been the absolutely busiest and craziest month of my life!  We have accomplished SO MUCH with wedding planning…I don’t even know how we have done it all, but it’s coming along swimmingly!  Our wedding date is July 10, 2016, so just long enough to complete all the preparations.  However, thanks to a couple handy checklists (specifically a wonderfully helpful app called The Knot), we’ve been able to get tons of tasks accomplished already and not get too stressed in the process.  Yes, it’s taken about a month to have a chance to breathe, but it’s been a fun ride. 🙂


I have had a few people ask about the proposal, so I thought I would include that here if you are interested in knowing! ❤ I was sitting down to watch a T.V. show with Joshua, and he said he would “be right back,” and left the room.  A few minutes later, he came back with a Hershey’s chocolate mug with a letter taped to it.  When he handed it to me, I removed the letter and as I opened it, realized it was a long, adorably sweet and romantic love letter from my mister.  It took me a few minutes to read, and once I had finished with a smile on my face and my heart overflowing with love, I said, “Aww,” while reaching over to give him a hug.  We hugged for a moment, but then he said, “And…” with a grin on his face, knelt on one knee, opened a ring box and asked, “Will you marry me?”


It was my own fairytale. ❤


Anyway, I just thought I would update all of you, especially my longtime readers!  We greatly appreciate your thoughts, prayers, and well-wishes as we continue to prepare for the big day, and as we begin married life together.

Much Love,



Wrapping up 2015

Happy 2016!  It has been quite a while since I’ve shared a personal post here on the blog, hasn’t it?  Well, no fear, I’m here to change that today! 😉  Since it is the beginning on 2016, I thought it would be nice to wrap up 2015 with sharing the biggest and most positive moments for me that occurred.  2015 wasn’t my favorite year, but it still had some huge blessings and I’m so thankful for God taking me through it and being by side for every moment…even in the darkest hours.

Participated in my first cover reveal and blog tour.  I have been part of other authors’ cover reveals and blog tours and I always thought they were fantastic ideas, but I hadn’t had one for myself yet.  In May, Shane over at Itching For Books hosted my very first cover reveal for the upcoming release of my book “Where Shadows Lie.”  In August, she also hosted the blog tour, and I had quite a bit of fun with both!  I definitely love the cover reveal idea, but I’m not so sure I’m partial to blog tours for myself.  I don’t know if I will be doing another for upcoming books, but it was great to have the experience!

Published my second novel.  This point pretty much goes along with the last one, but publishing my second book was certainly a huge highlight of 2015!  Some days I thought it would never be finished! Haha!

Manned a booth at the AFHE Convention.  As most of you know, I manned my own booth once again in 2015 at the two-day homeschool convention in the book fair section.  I have done this three times total and they have all been a blast, so it was definitely a highlight of my year!

Disney Costume Party.  I dressed as the Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland for a Disney costume party in July and it was so much fun!  I loved stepping into his shoes for a night. 🙂

Attended a Lindsey Stirling concert.  I adore Lindsey Stirling.  I think she is incredibly talented and what she can do with a violin is unparalleled in my opinion.  Therefore, when I had the opportunity to see her in concert for the second time, I jumped on the opportunity.  It was absolutely amazing, and you can watch my video all about it here.  ’Twas a definite positive moment in 2015!

—Chopped off my hair.  In August, I made a scary decision and had my hair cut much shorter than I had had it in YEARS.  Even though it was a huge change, this was the first haircut I’ve ever walked away from that I’ve felt completely confident with.  The response to my haircut was quite varied—some people loved it, some people wanted my longer hair back and said the short hair didn’t suit me.  However, I still loved it!  I’m currently growing it out just because I get bored very easily with my hair at any length. 😉

Changed churches.  I’m not going into details, but the week after I cut my hair, I decided to leave the church I had been at for the past seven years or so, maybe longer, I don’t quite remember.  My whole family decided to change as well and we have migrated to a wonderful new church, and it has definitely been one of the best decisions made ever!

Celebrated my 20th birthday.  In September, I turned twenty.  We celebrated by spending an entire weekend with some amazing friends, all of whom I am so VERY thankful for.  It was the best birthday I have ever had, no one has ever gone out of their way to make my birthday as special as they did.  It was absolutely mind-blowing!

Pierced my upper ear cartilage.  I’ve always thought that upper ear cartilage piercings look cute, but I never had the bravery to do it until a couple weeks after I turned twenty.  I went ahead and had it pierced and I LOVE it!  It was way less painful than my ear lobe piercings and far more fun!  One of my best decisions ever!

Met the love of my life.  I don’t know if any of you have guessed this from when I said that 2015 completely turned around in September, but meeting this amazing guy is definitely the reason why.  Even with all the other highlights, there was a whole bunch of negativity infiltrating 2015, making it out to be a pretty hard year in my opinion, until I met the man who is now my best friend of all time in the history of ever.  I am so thankful for my absolutely incredible boyfriend, and I can’t wait to see what God has in store for us!  I feel extraordinarily blessed, and I can’t thank God enough for bringing my love into my life!


Until next time,


“Where Shadows Lie” Blog Tour!

Today marks the first day of my blog tour for “Where Shadows Lie,” my recently released novel.  In celebration of the blog tour, I’m hosting a giveaway for a $10 Amazon gift card AND an autographed paperback of “Where Shadows Lie” (U.S. entries only)!  Enter the giveaway by clicking on this image:



Genre: Christian New Adult Suspense
Release Date: June 14th 2015
Purchase: Amazon
-Book Synopsis-
via Goodreads:
His dark past haunts him. His new life taunts him. 
After twenty years in the gangs and a hefty prison sentence, an early release gives Shawn the opportunity to turn his life around.
But that isn’t so easy when gangs are involved.
Only a year into his fresh start, the gang catches on and makes Shawn’s life miserable. After all, once a gang member, always a gang member. His very blood belongs to them.
Threats become promises. Whispers become actions. Words become bullets. He must fight – not only for his life, but to save his honor, prove his integrity, and protect the woman he loves.
An ember of hope glows in the darkness, strengthening his resolve. Will her support and his determination be enough to dispel the shadows of his past?
A story of discovery and faith, love and perseverance.
* * *
-Book Trailer-
 * * *
I just want to say a HUGE thanks to everyone who is participating in my blog tour, and for making this celebration possible.  My biggest thanks to Shane for organizing it all.
Below, you can find the schedule for all the tour stops this week.  Be sure to check them out per day!  🙂
* * *
August 10th –
Writings, Ramblings, and Reflections *Review & Favorite Quotes (blogger picks)
Fallen Over Book Reviews *Review & Favorite Quotes (blogger picks)
August 11th –
August 12th –
August 13th –
Marissa Nicole Reads *Review & Character Interview
Writer of Wrongs *Spotlight
deal sharing aunt *Spotlight
August 14th –
Rebekah’s Quill *Review & Character Interview
A Fold in the Spine *Review
Have a great week!
-Tialla ♥

“Where Shadows Lie” is PUBLISHED!

WSL release day image

TODAY!  Yes, TODAY is the day, my dear readers!  I have finally released my second novel, “Where Shadows Lie”!!!


wsl title work

It’s a little hard to believe that this day is finally here.  Not gonna lie, there were moments in the editing and revision process when I wasn’t sure it would ever be ready.  It truly has only been through God’s strength that my book has made it to this point.  I am so thankful for my family, friends, readers, and foremost Jesus Christ who kept me motivated to keep at it.  And even though this may sound weird from a non-author perspective, I’m also incredibly thankful for my characters who kept pressing me to tell this story right and make sure I did my absolute best to tell it so everyone else could read about their experiences.  If it wasn’t for their nagging persistence, well…what reason would there be for a story?

But acknowledgments aside, THE BOOK IS OUT!  If you’d like to purchase a copy, you can order it from:





It will also be available as a paperback on Barnes and, but that will take a few weeks to fully process and become live on the site.  No matter which purchasing route you chose, if you do buy a copy, I greatly appreciate your support!  If you could share about my book with your family and friends, that would mean SO much to me as well!  Every little bit of promotion helps an author like myself.

You can also add it to Goodreads here:


-Book Synopsis-


His dark past haunts him. His new life taunts him.

After twenty years in the gangs and a hefty prison sentence, an early release gives Shawn the opportunity to turn his life around.

But that isn’t so easy when gangs are involved.

Only a year into his fresh start, the gang catches on and makes Shawn’s life miserable. After all, once a gang member, always a gang member. His very blood belongs to them.

Threats become promises. Whispers become actions. Words become bullets. He must fight – not only for his life, but to save his honor, prove his integrity, and protect the woman he loves.

An ember of hope glows in the darkness, strengthening his resolve. Will her support and his determination be enough to dispel the shadows of his past?

A story of discovery and faith, love and perseverance.

WSL 3D book image cropped w. seal


-Book Trailer-


* * *

Genre: Christian fiction, action-adventure, New Adult, suspense

Age-range: Teens and adults (for crime violence)

I truly hope you enjoy the book!  Also, it would make a great birthday gift for anyone who loves books and reading.  I will be ordering a case of books to sell personally, so if you’d like an autographed copy, send me an email ( and I will get one to you as soon as I can.  Shipping fees will apply and it will definitely be a few weeks, possibly a month or longer due to shipping speeds and considering the fact that I don’t even have the books myself yet.  😉  However, I am willing to jot your name down and get you one when I can!


-Online purchased paperback: $16.99

-eBook: $3.99.  

-Autographed copy from me: $15.00 + $6.00 shipping.

Are you excited?  I’m over the moon excited.  Can’t believe it’s finally out!! XD




Much love,