Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Who What Wear Wednesday

Holy Smokes I cannot believe it's already time for another Who What Wear Wednesday. It literally feels like I just posted last weeks. Where is the time going? I swear it has been so Chaotic around our parts lately. Anywho, in honor of Halloweek I have a Halloween Edition of Who What Wear Wednesday. Lets get to it.

WHO: Josh Sundquist

Man, what an inspiration- in life and how to make great Halloween costumes. Check out his genius ideas below. Talk about making the best of your situation. I think we could all learn something from this guy.


 

Josh Sundquist: Best Halloween Costume



WHAT: Trick or Treating & the World Series

When does your town trick or treat? Since our town loves us some football and our team plays on Friday night we are having Trick-or-Treating on Thursday night. I can't wait as this will be Sawyer's first Halloween. My town is crawling with little critters, demons, monsters and princesses too on this night. It's a guaranteed sugar high for all. But what about those kiddos with food allergies? Turns out they can enjoy in the fun as well. Just check out this article: here. Does your little one have any food allergies? Do you allow your kid to stuff themselves on candy or do you limit the intake and spread out the yummy sugarness among the next few days?



Ok, so baseball is not Halloween related but the World Series is tonight, right in the middle of Halloween Week and I love a good underdog story. I'm not really a baseball fan and could care less about what team wins this each year but tonight I am rooting for the Kansas City Royals!!





WEAR: Easy Halloween Costumes





3 Blind Mice & Office Appropriate


The Classic Audrey Hepburn & Office Appropriate as well.


Gypsy, Fortune Teller & Pirate
I'm going as one of these for our office Costume Competition on Friday because I had everything in my closet and made my accessory so it literally cost me nothing!


Who doesn't love Mary Poppins.



Rosie the Riveter. Classic & so pretty.


Lauren Conrads take on Mary Poppins. Who said you couldn't update the look?








Love this Minnie Mouse.

 
I'm a huge fan of "A League of Their Own" so I instantly fell for this idea. I may have to keep it in my arsenal for future costumes.


And here's a cute couple costume idea. Is your Hubby as picky as mine about dressing up for Halloween?





And I will leave you with one additional non-halloween related W today.


WTF: Bear Selfies!?

Come on folks. Really? Really!?? I mean I don't even have words for this other than sometimes you get what's coming...




Friday, October 24, 2014

Transforming Your Body- Part 1:Prep Work



Welcome to what I am officially dubbing- Fitness Friday. Like it? I thought so. I seriously can't tell you how thrilled I am to begin this series so let's get to it.

I want you to get some type of notebook or blank journal, just something you can write in each day and keep your info all in one place. Why? Keep reading and you will see. (see above link for ones you can purchase, just one I stumbled across. I've never used this particular one.)

This is not going to be some quick fix or fad diet. In fact when I say the word diet I am referring to what you are habitually putting into your body, not something like Atkins or fruit diet, your daily diet of what you are eating. That being said this will require you to change your lifestyle, yes you heard me, change your lifestyle. If you continue on the path you are traveling do you really think you are going to see the results you are wanting? And if you do change your lifestyle briefly yet return to the previous habits what do you think is going to happen? This is not going to be easy, if it were, everyone would be smitten with their body and not have to do a thing about it. And before you start comparing yourself to others and how they don't have to lift a finger in the gym and can eat candy bars and still look great, let me stop you right there- you aren't reading this for them and you aren't living for them so stop comparing yourself to them. This is about YOU! You are competing against yourself so you can become an even greater version of you! Got it? You still with me? Good. Now, let's continue.

Find your reason why
Before you even get started on this journey you seriously need to fine your reason WHY. Without knowing this it will be easier to give up and give in. When you know your reason why it will keep you going during those moments when it it so hard you want to say, "Why bother?", then you turn to your reason why and push through. I want you to write this down on the first sheet in  your notebook/journal. I'm not kidding, write it down. Write down your reason and state that you are making a commitment to yourself, to change and transform yourself to an even better you. You will have this to think back to whenever your mind starts telling you that you can't, or anyone else for that matter. Trust me, there will be days where you want to just say, "screw it",  and eat that Reese cup or days you just really don't want to go to the gym or moments where you just feel like you can't push out that last rep. Focus on your WHY and tell yourself you can do this. If it helps find some pictures of women who empower you or motivate you , someone that you look up to or admire because of their healthy lifestyle. I remember when I first started training I took a picture of Gwen Stefani to my trainer and said, I want these arms. I loved her toned physique and knew it was something she constantly worked on to maintain. *told you I loved Gwen since she was in No Doubt.

Educate yourself
I honestly believe that if more people did this we would not be such an obese nation. Why? Because when you educate yourself on nutrition (and exercise) you know what to actually put into your body and what you should be consuming and why you should be consuming it. We cannot & should not rely on those buzz terms used in advertising. (eg.-low fat, sugar free, no sugar added, no high fructose corn syrup) If we as a nation would educate ourselves on what is really healthy I believe we would be in a different situation than we are now. Knowledge is important if you truly want to change your body. If I tell you to eat X, Y & Z that is great but what happens when you have a girls night out and you meet up for dinner? What should you order on the menu? What is actually healthy,what isn't and how should you ask to have it prepared? These are all things we should know. Also, a calorie isn't just a calorie. Unfortunately for us we need to understand or at least have a little understanding of how certain foods break down in our body. This is when reading labels come into play. How many sugars, carbs, fats, protein, fiber is found in this? Have I lost you? Maybe, but hopefully not, just hang in there with me. We will discuss more of this as we go but in the meantime begin to educate yourself. Google is awesome, just make sure it's a creditable source. I'm not asking you to learn this all at once either. Heck, I learn something each day. Just don't stop educating yourself and don't limit that knowledge to nutrition only. What? Now you're saying I have to learn something else? Yes- fitness and exercise. Again, this is not something that should be consumed all at once but as you continue on your journey continue to educate yourself on different workouts, stretches and form. I was in the gym training once and had someone ask me, "when does this get easy?". My response-never. If it becomes "easy" then you are not pushing yourself enough. You are working your tail off to become the best you, not to become a mediocre you. You get out what you put in so push yourself and don't waste your own precious time. Don't know where to begin? Visit bodybuilding.com. This site can become your friend and aid in this journey. Don't let them name fool you. It's not just for your stereotypical "bodybuilders". This site has great articles and information on nutrition as well as physical exercise and also sells a HUGE variety of supplements, vitamins, etc. You can even create your own profile to track your fitness journey. Go check it out and look around between now and next week. Learn something. In fact read at least 1 article on nutrition and 1 on some type of exercise or physical activity.

Create a food journal
Before you start changing anything with your diet I need you to commit a week to journal truthfully  everything you put into your mouth, the time and the amount. Also record what type of physical activity you do, how long and at what time. And if you really want to go a step further record your feelings after you eat something or exercise. (Eg.- still hungry, satisfied,bloated, craving more, headache, tired, energized, etc) Jot down how your body is feeling. I want you to do this for one whole week, no less, so you can get a really good visual of your eating habits. I will address this further next week. A plain journal or notebook is all you need. You don't have to get fancy, don't complicate this.


Set a realistic goal
During this week I want you to think about what you want to get out of this? Strive for something measurable. Not just I want to lose weight. Set defined goals that are realistic and set a  realistic deadline as well. For instance rather than saying I want to lose 60 lbs say I want to lose 60 lbs in 6 months so I need to work toward losing x lbs per week. Or if weight isn't something you care about (which in my opinion shouldn't be your primary focus but will touch on that later) set  a goal of I want to run my first 5k in 3 months from now or I want to run a 5k in x amount of time or I want to be able to push/ lift x amount of weight. Set a measurable goal so you can actually see yourself working toward it and eventually accomplishing it. Go ahead and write this down in your notebook/journal along with your reason why.

Ok, time to get at it . You've got the weekend to get started and get your head wrapped around all this. If you have any questions or comments fire away in the comments section. I'd love to hear from y'all. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Who What Wear Wednesday


Who: Taylor Swift

Unless you've been living under a rock you know who this country music turned pop singer is. She is everywhere and will be mentoring/coaching the contestants on NBC's The Voice next week. While I enjoy most of Taylor's music I am not what you would consider a die hard fan. Howevah- I think she has a keen sense of style. And who cares if she doesn't keep a steady relationship- just makes for better music. Any-who, Taylor can pick, sing and dress. Below are some of the outfits she has donned. I am LUV-ing the J. Mendel get-up she wore to the ACM awards back in April and if you click the link below the photo you can purchase it for yourself. Enjoy.

I loved the bangs.


Spot on. I want the outfit on the far right.

So classy, each time.

Adore! These outfits make me smile. Oh I'm so ready for fall.

Elegance.




  
T. Swift with my girl Gwen! Looking forward to watching Taylor on The Voice next week.
(Oct. 27th) She cracks me up- just watch a few of the promos they are airing. This chick is so humble and can laugh at herself. Qualities I admire.


What: Pumpkin Spice Everything & What's Up Moms

Good Heavens- Pumpkin Spice is taking over the world! Not really but it does seem to be EVERYWHERE. Now I L.O.V.E. me some pumpkin spice lattes but do not think everything needs to be pumpkin spice flavored. Click the pumpkin image below to see just how far the pumpkin spice craze has gone. *fun fact-this time last year I was preggo and could not stand the taste of a PSL.


http://mashable.com/2014/09/12/pumpkin-spice-all-the-things/




Hahahahahaha-hilarious and so truthful. This is how I would describe the video below and pretty much every other video found on the What's Up Moms YouTube page. Give it a watch and go check them out. They update with new videos every MWF @ 9am ET. They cover a range of topics and also encourage collaborations as well. I'm telling you some of these have me in stitches.


                     

Wear: Capes

Capes are a trendy item for this fall and winter. They are totally perfect for the South since it doesn't stay cold here for very long. Below are several options that are uber pretty and functional. I especially love the ones from Nasty Gal. A post on Nasty Gal, here.
Not sure how to wear it? Pair it with a solid color long sleeve blouse (and for us girls in the south, short sleeve blouses are just fine too) and slim leg jeans or pants. Add heels or riding boots to finish off the look. What about you? Are into capes? Not? Have a different way to wear them? Feel free to share.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Sawyer: 6 Months



Sawyer is now over half a year old will soon be turning 7 months and a little beast. Lol. We had our 6 month checkup and man does this little kiddo take shots like a champ. He hardly fusses and is over it as soon as I pick him up. Believe me, I realize I am blessed in that aspect. Saw-man weighs 22 pounds is 27.5 inches long and has an 18 inch head. He is our big boy. His 9 month clothing is getting too tight and often wears 12 month outfits and sleepers because they fit him better.  He is sitting up great and trying to figure out the whole crawling thing. Sleep is minimal for this momma as he has started tossing and turning in his crib and wakes often. I'm sure the wubbanub has something to do with this as well since he goes to sleep with that thing....le sigh....but could be worse I guess. We are still eating solids and have introduced a few more veggies and potatoes. Summer squash is still by far his favorite. He enjoys his oatmeal now as much as his rice cereal. He will say ma-ma-ma-ma and da-da-da-da but usually only when his teeth are bothering him. We still only have the bottom 2 teeth but I swear any day he could cut several up top. We ordered him a Joovy Spoon Walker and he loves that thing. He has become pretty good at maneuvering around obstacles but really enjoys slamming into the furniture as well. He has figured out how to pick up speed and coast to where he wants to go, it's quite amusing to watch the little fella. I can't believe how much he learns every day. I just love him to pieces. 



Monday, October 20, 2014

Remembering to Give Thanks through it all


Well I hope your weekend went better than ours. What started out as a beautiful Saturday turned into a bit of a nightmare. Our water heater burst and it looked like Niagara Falls in our computer room. Thankfully no one was hurt and the damages could have been much worse. Now we are dealing with all the headaches that come with repairing everything. However, I know it could have been much worse and am still very thankful. It's just one of those things that you can't change so you might as well move forward and focus on fixing it. No point in dwelling on should-a would-a could-a, ya know?

But amongst all that went wrong I can still see the positive. Even as I sit here typing this post on my ipad mini in my kitchen with blowers and dehumidifiers blowing like crazy in the next room, I've still got a smile on my face. One, my husband walked in seconds after the leak started so we caught it quickly. Two, our good friend happened to stop by at that exact time it happened so he was able to shut our water off because he had one of those key things that you need to shut it off and we don't have one. (note to self, purchase one of those key things for future water issues) Three, it happened earlier in the day so we had daylight to light the house and it didn't happen in the middle of the night when we were sleeping and would have been running around the house in pitch black because we had to switch off the electricity. Four, I was able to grab all the computer equipment and get it out of the room before it was soaked.

Yep, this is not how I wanted to spend my weekend, but I am still thankful and gracious because what was a bad situation could be a very much worse one. I think it's important that we try to look at the silver linings in things (as hard as that might be when it is happening) and continue to give thanks because ultimately He is in control and we are not guaranteed the next minute here. And as bad as we think we have it at times there is always someone somewhere who has it much worse than you do. Again, I know this is not always something easy to do, my husband is the worry wart and always has a hard time letting go or getting over things, so I see firsthand how not everyone can grasp this idea. Regardless, I think we should all stop and give thanks for what we have been blessed with during the good times and even through the bad. Don't take anything for granted and appreciate everything. You never know when something will happen to change your norm but through it all give thanks.

Any-who, besides all of that The Tide won and it was a beautiful day.  Make this week a great one!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Transforming Your Body: Fitness & Health Series



For those of you who don’t know, I competed in the NPC Bikini Division for 2 years. The above photo is from backstage at one of my competitions- think pageant with muscles and before you judge please educate yourself, just saying. 
Now, I am in no way a Licensed Physician or Registered Dietician BUT I did learn a few things along the way.  Because of this process I get asked quite often about dieting, fitness, meals, exercise, weight loss, etc.  So I thought why not write a series of blog posts that I can refer people to when they have any of these questions. This is exactly what I plan to do. During the months of October and November I am going to write a series of posts on transforming your body. I plan to cover a wide variety of topics so if you have any specific questions in mind please feel free to ask in the comments section. I will also try to post pictures of my Bikini Journey so you can see the results and may even post current pictures as well. And if any of you are inspired and want to share your body transformation journey with me please feel free. This is something you should be proud of. Anywho, don’t be bashful, fire away with any questions/stories you may have. I can’t wait to start this series with y’all!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Who What Wear- Wednesday

Who: Amal Alamuddin or the new Mrs. George Clooney
http://www.eonline.com/news/584025/see-amal-alamuddin-s-wedding-dress-fitting-plus-check-out-her-reception-dress


Her wedding gown design is sweeping Bridal Fashion week. It's being called "The Amal Effect". But I mean, C'mon, what's not to love here? Her style is seriously impeccable.




What: ShopBop Friends and Family Sale
3 Days Only. Save 25% off your order. Below are a few of my faves.


Wear: DuBarry Boots
These boots pull serious double duty. They are of the moment style, hello riding boots, and are actually made for work boots. They are a bit pricy but worth the penny spent since they are very well made. I have my eye on a pair for myself!





 


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sawyer: 5 Months

So sue me, I was late on this one too. Enjoy!

We still are not sleeping through the night. In fact we have resorted to Tylenol. This is the first time Saw-man has had to have Tylenol for anything including when he gets shots. I hated to give it to him but do not want my little one in pain. His upper teeth are driving him nuts. I swear it feels like 4 or 5 are trying to come through. I took him to the Dr because I was scared he was getting an ear infection due to his constant fussing and pulling at his right ear…nope (thank you Lord) just pain from him teething. I will be glad when we are done with all this teeth crap. lol His sitting up is steadily improving and shows only little interest in trying to crawl. He has also unfortunately become fascinated with our iPhone’s. Although this is something we seriously plan to limit with our kids. (interesting article on this here) But we are grateful for this technology because face timing is the only way the Hubs gets to see Sawyer during the week since he works out of town. Anywho, Sawyer still enjoys the Baby Channel and his new favorites are Peekaboo & Little Vinny’s Art. Napping is a little better but buy does he still fight his sleep. His crib is still in our room but I am planning to move it back into his room somewhere after the 6month mark.


 

Sawyer: 4 Months


Yes- I know this is late but it's my blog and I can do whatever I like. Kisses.





Our big little boy is cutting his bottom 2 teeth and is surprisingly dealing with it pretty well. We are rolling over more and starting to sit up better. He loves the baby channel, especially VocabuLARRY. I swear he gains a pound every day. He outgrows his clothes like crazy. I’m already putting him in 9months and forget buying for Christmas; I have no idea what size he will be in by then. Not to mention the fall and winter months here in south Alabama are erratic. We will seriously have 80 degree days and the next the high will be in the 40’s, not joking. We are introducing solids and I plan to make my own baby food but we will see how that goes with my schedule. Since introducing rice cereal (Beechnut Brand) he seemed constipated so I gave him some prunes- it worked. He didn’t seem to mind the prunes either. He made many very hilarious faces but ate them pretty well. So far we have attempted a few flavors of the Beechnut brand but nothing really tickles his fancy other than the rice cereal. We will keep trying. Napping or should I say Lack of napping is common for this guy. Cat naps seem to be his preference. And sleep at night is still interrupted. He usually wakes 1-3 times. Hoping this gets better as he gets a little older- fingers crossed. But I can’t get enough of my little man. Every day is a new adventure with this big little boy.





Monday, October 13, 2014

Fall Gender Reveal


This time last year I was planning and plotting our gender reveal. My 20 week mark fell in November so I knew I wanted to incorporate a fall theme. I did not particularly care for the whole blue/pink idea so we went a different route. My husband and I both enjoy the outdoors and are hunters so I came up with the idea “buck or doe”. We used autumn d├ęcor and decided to have a no fuss outdoor low country boil and chili. Friends and family pitched in with setting up and food prep. We are very blessed, indeed.

The hubs and his friends handled the shrimp, potatoes and corn. We had long time friends, who we consider family, Mrs. Jama and her daughter Brittany make the cupcakes. My grandmother made pumpkin pie & butternut squash pie. My sister-in-law made her famous chili. My mother-in-law whipped up some cornbread and corn salad. And my best friend Misti cooked up heaping batches of cheese grits. (the best ever recipe) For drinks we served water and tea and sodas.

The event was to be held outdoors in November so we prepared to have the fire pit going and blankets and throws draped across the rocking chairs so everyone would be warm and cozy. Well we were warm alright. I believe it was in the 80’s that day- I. was. Sweating, or glistening as we say in the south.  But, it was a great day and we had a blast with all our family and friends and we found out we were having our little wildcat, Sawyer.

So, here’s an easy way to put together a fabulous Fall Gender Reveal.

We created chalkboards where people could cast their vote on whether or not it would be a boy or girl. This is the only pink/blue thing I used.



We made a list of all the Old Wives Tales and circled which one applied to my pregnancy. This was fun.
  

Shrimp, potatoes & corn on the cob. For the non-seafood eaters...Cheese grits and Chili. 



And of course Cornbread! 
 


 It wouldn't be fall without caramel and apples.


My grandmother's homemade butternut squash pie. 


My neice, Natalie, helping herself to some yummy pie and homemade cupcakes. 

I bought the cupcake wraps and pumpkin sticks from Hobby Lobby. I thought they turned out perfect.

I used the pumpkins I bought to decorate my yard. My sister-in-law added her stash of fall gourds and pumpkins as well so we did not have to purchase much extra.



We set up a table for my baby book. This was a gift from my childhood bestie when we found out we were expecting. 


This necklace was also handmade by a dear friend of mine. She mailed it to me not long after we received the good news our wildcat was on the way. You can find her here.


Love him. 


These are my amazing grandparents. They are the ones that have the amazing garden each year. 

I didn't want to cut a cake to find out what we were having so my sister-in-law and BFF ordered a pinata just for the occasion from etsy. We then had a friend take the card that had the gender written in it by the nurse who did the ultrasound and she stuffed it with either the blue or pink confetti/balloons we bought from party city.

Stringing up the pinata. 

SURPRISE!....IT'S A BOY!!


 The card from the ultrasound tech. 

This is me and my best friend since we were brought home from the hospital. We have literally known each other our entire lives. 
 

My brother & sister-in-law giving me a big congratulations. Love them!
Brett grows his beard out every hunting season for "extra warmth" in the duck blind. He eventually begins to look Amish in my opinion but I love him nonetheless.


More of the delicious cupcakes. I mean these are literally better than some you will buy at bakeries. Everyone wanted to know where they came from. I told them-Jama's kitchen. lol

The boy votes won by the time we were ready to do the actual reveal.
Funny story but true- Brett & I knew we were having a boy before the ultrasound. He just had a gut feeling but I thought we were having a girl up until about week 14. We had the name Jackson picked out but I was having a change of heart because so many people have used that named recetnly. Well on the way to work one Friday Amy (my bestie above since birth) and I were talking about names and how I wanted to pick a new name. We discussed a few like Easton and Elias. That night Brett and I decided on Sawyer which neither of us had EVER mentioned before. Saturday morning I sent Amy a text and that said we had a name. She sent me a text back saying that night she had a dream that she was holding our baby and it was a little boy and she called him SAWYER!! Yeah! That Happened. SOOO, it was solidified that we were having a boy. I was not the least bit surprise to see that blue fall out of the pinata.



And this is my Momma-Jim. I love her to pieces. And man oh man can she throw down in the kitchen and grow a mean garden with my Daddy-Will. So proud of them.


We used burlap and fall colored leaves for decorating the tables as well. Just keep it simple and incorporate things from nature you would find during this time of year and you will have am easy yet beautiful fall themed gender reveal.

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