Thursday, March 27, 2014

Happy Birthday, Ashley!

I recently clicked "view friendship", which I've done maybe twice ever since it has been an option on Facebook. I feel like it's a little weird to be able to "view" your friendship, and it got me to thinking.

Friendship shouldn't be totally viewable. Sure, you can post funny or sweet messages publicly to each other, pictures of fun things that you do etc., but ultimately, the strongest friendships are the ones where you privately share struggles, build each other up, and giggle over silly things. 

The vast majority of the time that Ashley and I have been friends (6 years this fall!!), we have lived at least 2 hours apart - man, I wish for the days when she was just a short road trip away! 

We have packed many trials and joys into those six years and I am so thankful that even though there are over 3,000 miles and an ocean between us, we still talk daily and are very involved in 'life stuff'.

Today is Ashley's birthday. Her very first birthday outside of the country! Even though I know that she will have a wonderful day, and I'm sure that her husband and friends in the UK will give her 'special birthday treatment', it's still hard to not be able to be there to celebrate and do those things with her.

Skype, Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram make the distance seem less, but sometimes ya just need to hug your best friend on her birthday!! I love you, Ash!!!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Clean-er Eating Recipe Round-Up

So with my newfound energy from Plexus, I got super motivated to get rid of our processed food habits! I must say, it is expensive, but not as difficult to make the meals as I thought it would be.

Below are a few that we have tried. All the pictures are from Pinterest because I never think to take pictures of the completed recipe until I'm halfway through inhaling it... ;-) Classy, right?

Breakfast: I am the worst breakfast eater ever. If I'm being honest, I could drink a bottle of water and eat a few pieces of chocolate around 11am and not even feel guilty about it. BUT, with drinking Plexus Slim, I get hungry about thirty minutes after drinking it, so I needed to up the ante in my breakfast habits. Toast with jelly isn't really gonna get me fueled up for the day.

So here's what went into MY frozen smoothie bags: Oats, Sunflower Seeds, Banana, Apple, Kale, Spinach, and Mixed Frozen Berries (will replace these with fresh in the spring!). 

I threw it all in there and put them in my freezer. The next day, I put it in the blender with 1 1/2 cups of Almond Milk and about 10 melted semi-sweet chocolate chips, tasted kinda grassy to me. BUT, with the chocolate in there, it tastes so delicious! AND I know that I am getting 45704 times better nutrition than if I were eating, say, just the ten chocolate chips by themselves.

The next two were meals that I made this past week, and they were pretty big hits! I know that they aren't strict clean eating, but hey - it's a process, right? No pun intended.
Penne Rosa with Shrimp. Yum. DElicious. Click here for the original blog post!
Chicken Parmesan Meatloaf "Muffins" - Click here for the original blog post!

I have a few more recipes up my sleeve for the rest of this week, and I will be reporting back on how they have gone over with the toddler and husband!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Real Style: Amy

(Scroll over the words to find links to each item!)
Meet Amy - a work-at-home Mom of 2 stinkin' cute kids- from the suburbs of DC. She has a super cool blog and an AWESOME taste in music (hello, she just saw JT in concert. Yep).

 I see this outfit as a take-your-kids-to-the-doctors-office (and let's be honest, Target afterward) outfit.

The jeans are Banana Republic, and you can get similar ones here on an awesome clearance deal.

Here is a similar sweater to what Amy is wearing, available at Kohl's for $27. 

The shoes that Amy is wearing are black Tory Burch 'Reva' flats. They retail for about $225 here, and go with juuuust about any outfit you could possibly imagine.

The scarf was purchased by a friend in Finland, so I'm afraid if you're in love with it - you're fresh outta luck. :-) BUT, lightweight printed scarves are everywhere, so I'm sure you can find one that suits you - for instance, this one from Target for $15:

This second outfit is what Amy refers to as her "work from home but have to run to daycare and want to look like the living" outfit. 

The shoes are the same Tory Burch (see, told you, they go with everything!) flats from above, and the leggings are from Target. I love Target's leggings and have owned probably three or four pair over the past years -- just make sure they stand up to the bent-knee-test. If you can see your skin through them when you bend your knees? Everyone else can see your skin too. ;-) (end legging rant)

The shirt is from Marshall's, but I had some trouble finding one on there, and found this one on Kohl's website that is similar, and for a $10.80! I also found this as a great way to turn this outfit into a Maternity outfit - hello, comfy!!

One thing that rounds out this outfit is Amy's cute bangles and chunky watch. I love to shop at Charming Charlie's for accessories lately, and they have the cutest watches

So for the last Amy outfit, we're going simple. Cute, springy, perfect for casual parties, church events, or if you're like me - any day of the week (I love dresses!).
I was particularly excited to see Amy in this Target dress, because I've been eyeing up the one in our local Target for a few weeks. :-)

Again, paired with bangles, watch, and cute sandals or flats - you're good to go!! 

A BIG Thank You to Amy for being willing to ransack her closet for me for this challenge. :-)

Friday, March 7, 2014

Plankin' and Stuff

Use Grammarly's grammar check, because if your blog has bad grammar, I will unfollow you on Pinterest - unless you pin lots of Ryan Gosling memes, in which case I will never unfollow you.

So, as you all know by now, I am a lackadaisical exerciser. I want to love exercise, I really do. But I just don't love it. I enjoyed running last Fall but then it got cold and miserable.

 I got a gym membership so that I could keep running on the treadmill. Let me tell you what...running on a treadmill, while easier on my legs, is B O R I N G. Even with 800 TVs in the gym, I find myself watching the miles I've run and feeling like they are taking forever!

To break up my obnoxious winter lull that I am in, I had a little fun and created a 30 Day Plank Challenge! WOOHOO. Not. I hate planks, but I notice that they seem to do more for me than most other strengthening exercises. I made it cute and pink to try and trick myself into being excited about it. 

Anyway, this challenge starts TOMORROW (March 8th) and ends on April 1st! Sooooo, who's in?