Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Affordable Booties

I don't know about you, but I don't always want to spend a ton of money on shoes. Target is pretty much my favorite store to buy anything, and I have to say, when it comes to booties #targetdoesitagain! Here are some of my favorites.

2. Double Zipper Booties I got these last year in both the cognac and black (I did go up a half size). Even after wearing them all the time, they still look brand new! Highly recommend!

4. Leopard Booties - I had been eyeing a much more expensive pair of leopard booties on the Nordstrom website, but couldn't quite justify spending the money since I wasn't sure how much I'd actually wear them. I am so glad I held off because I absolutely LOVE these and the price was so much better! These fit TTS.

5. Burgundy Suede Booties - I wear a lot of neutral tones, but I love the idea of adding interest to my outfit with my shoes (hello leopard booties!), and this burgundy color is perfect for fall!

I have done way too much shopping lately so I'm trying NOT to buy anything for awhile, but I'm afraid the sock booties and the burgundy booties may be calling my name! LOL! Which are your favorite?


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

What I'm Packing for Hawaii

I'm not usually into getting clothes to match my vacation destination, but it seems that most of the items I've purchased for the summer seem to match our destination: Hawaii!

Orange Dress As soon as I saw this dress, I knew it would be perfect for our trip! It just looks like Hawaii to me.

Flamingo Shorts I ordered these shorts on a whim, and I have to say that I love them! The pattern is so fun! I also got these and these. I love to pair a patterned bottom with a basic top. They'll look great with my favorite v-neck tees and tanks!

White Embroidered Blouse The embroidery on this blouse is so pretty, and I love that the material a little heavier weight (read: not sheer)!

Bikini (Top & Bottom) I love that this swimsuit brand comes in small, medium, and large, but also the cup sizes D and DD. I am always worried about not getting enough support from bikini tops, but this one is great!

Sandals (less than $30) I posted about these in this post, and am so glad that I ended up ordering them! They're so cute and fun!

Straw Purse I got this version for Mother's Day, but I love the orange - it would look great with the orange dress!

Earrings If there's ever a time to step out of my comfort zone and wear some fun tassel earrings, Hawaii is it!

Sleep Shorts I either sleep in these sleep shorts and a tank top, or this romper. Super comfortable and cool (as in not hot, I'm not commenting on how cool I am!).

Black Strapless Romper Maxi This was a last minute purchase. I love the combination of shorts and the maxi skirt!

Here are some other items I'm packing for the trip! Are you taking any trips this summer?

Monday, May 8, 2017

Travel Essentials

We have some fun trips planned for the summer, so I've been doing some travel research and planning to get ready. Today I thought I'd share some of my newfound travel/packing wisdom with you. :)

1. Packing Cubes I am what you would call an overpacker, so I'm all for anything that will help reduce the amount of luggage I need without reducing the amount of stuff I'm bringing. LOL! I've read really good things about packing cubes, so I decided to try them out. I ordered the six piece value set as well as a three pack of the medium bags. The first time I use them will be when we go to Hawaii in June, so I'll do a full review after that, but if you're looking for ways to organize your suitcase now, definitely check them out!

2. Woolite Travel Detergent Packets I am notorious for spilling on myself (if I can make it through a meal without getting food in my hair or on my clothes it's a miracle!), so while wearing something more than once on a trip sounds like a great idea, it's rarely ever worked out in the past. I discovered these Woolite Travel Packets on our trip to Europe a few years ago, and now I don't travel without them! They're perfect for throwing in your suitcase, and it's really quick and easy to handwash an item in your hotel room sink when needed.

3. Wet Beach Stuff Bag Oftentimes when traveling your return flight is after your checkout time, but it's hard to go to the pool because you don't want to pack a wet swimsuit in your suitcase. This wet stuff beach bag is the perfect solution to that problem - now you can spend your last morning relaxing by the pool or on the beach, and when you're ready to change out of your wet suit you can stick it in the bag before throwing it in your suitcase. Sounds heavenly (pool/beach time, not a wet bag in your suitcase - ha!).

4. SKITS Tech Case I mentioned this in my Holiday Gift Guide for Him and I have to say that this is probably one of Michael's favorite gifts from Christmas! It seems so silly that someone would be excited over cord organization, but when you think about how many chargers you need to take with you when you travel (phone charger, eReader charger, fitness watch charger, laptop/iPad charger, etc) it really comes in handy in terms of keeping cords organized and untangled.

5. Noise Canceling Headphones I've been going back and forth about whether or not I should order these before our Hawaii trip. We're flying first class, and the airline's website says they provide them, but what if they run out or just don't end up having them? They're pretty expensive to buy, and I'm not sure how often I'll use them other than when we're traveling, but at this point I don't have any headphones (I lost my earbuds when we were in Mexico last year) so I probably need to get something. If you travel a lot like Michael does, then you should probably invest in some good noise canceling headphones (Michael has these and loves them), but if you don't travel as much a good pair of earbuds is probably enough.

6. Kindle Paperwhite In the past I've always carried at least one book onto the plane with me and packed one in my suitcase, but they tend to take up space and add weight, so I'm excited to start traveling with my Kindle instead! When I first got it I wasn't sure I liked it, but it's so handy to have a book with me wherever I go, and it weighs less than 8 oz so it doesn't add much weight to my bag (truth be told, I don't feel much of a difference when it's in/out of my bag). It's also really nice because as long as I can connect to WiFi I can always download a new book, so I'm never without something to read!

7. Passport Holder If you're leaving the country, you need something to hold your passport that will stand out when you're digging for it in your bag, and it doesn't hurt if it's cute!

8. Large Tote When I travel I like to bring a book, a puzzle book, magazines, my wallet, a snack (essential on the plane to help prevent motion sickness), a cardigan, etc, and I don't want to get bogged down with an extra bag, so I carry my LV Neverfull and fill it to the brim. I usually keep all of our passports in my purse, so I keep them in the wristlet that came with my LV Neverfull. This reversible tote & wristlet (less than $50!) would work perfectly to hold your passports/travel documents and all of your other travel essentials! And it comes in so many fun colors (I especially love the blue/grey combo)!

Where are you traveling to this summer? What are your travel essentials?

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Life Update

I wanted to pop in and let you know that my posts may be a bit light for the next month or so. I was offered a tutoring job at the elementary school where I used to teach (the school my kids go to) that I just couldn't pass up. Initially it was going to be half day, so I though I'd still have time to blog, work out, stick to the cleaning schedule that I started a few weeks ago, etc, but now it's full day, so it's going to be a balancing act. At the end of the month I'm either going to be filling out an application for a full-time teaching job next year or be exhausted and ready for a vacation (or both!). A few months ago I was sure that I'd be back to teaching full-time next year, but then I started to find my way, and now I'm kind of thinking I'm good the way things are. Of course, I'm two days into my tutoring job and spent half the night planning for the groups I'm working with, so teaching is definitely a passion. We shall see. If any of my PTA friends are reading this they're probably freaking out a bit right now - I signed up to be president-elect next year, and can't exactly do that if I'm teaching! Rest assured ladies, I'm happy where I am. I think?

Anyhow, I will update my blog when I can, and I'll do my best to keep up with my Facebook page. If you haven't liked my page yet, please do!

Talk to you soon!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

I Am Enough

I have been debating about whether or not to write this post, but I decided that if I'm going to be real with you then I need to put it all out there. I've been struggling a lot lately with whether or not I'm I pretty enough? Smart enough? Am I a good enough mom? Wife? Sister? Daughter? Friend? Blogger?

Unfortunately a lot of these feelings have come up since I stopped working. Being a stay-at-home mom when your kids are at school, your husband is at work/traveling, and most of your friends are still working is hard. It's lonely. That's one of the reasons I started this blog. It's a way for me to still feel connected to something. When I write a blog post it's like I'm talking to a friend. I'm not as lonely. I enjoy it. But it's also hard because I don't necessarily feel like I can write a post if I don't have something "new" to share. Since there isn't much new going on in my life, that usually means new clothes, shoes, decor, etc. And that means I'm spending money. It's not like I'm spending my way into serious debt, but it's also not realistic to always be going out (or online) and buying things. And again, am I good enough at this where people actually want to read what I'm writing? Am I writing about things people actually care about? At this point my blog traffic isn't very high, but is it because people aren't interested in what I have to say or is it because I'm not good enough (again with not being good enough!) at marketing myself?

It's so hard not to compare myself to the other bloggers I follow. And at this point my followers pale in comparison to theirs. But it's not about them, it's about me. I need to stop comparing myself to them, but as women isn't that what we always do? We live in a society where we're constantly comparing ourselves to others. I even find myself comparing Sophia and Carter at times. But I shouldn't compare them. And I shouldn't be comparing myself to anyone. But how do you stop? I guess the first step, as with anything, is recognizing that it's happening, which I guess I'm doing now.

I am good enough at everything I do. Could I be better? Absolutely. But I only need to be better for myself, not for my blog audience (that would be you), however big or small, not for anyone. I am enough.

Source of Quotes

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tuesday Trends: Tassels & Pompoms

A huge trend the past few years, in everything from jewelry to home decor items, is tassels and pompoms. It's such a fun and easy way to add some flair to your outfit and home, and there is no shortage of options in all categories!


I tend to wear stud earrings more often than anything, but every once in awhile I like to wear a statement piece. Up until recently that meant a chunkier necklace, but lately I've been drawn to fun earrings. BaubleBar has been my go-to for affordable statement jewelry, and now they have an even more affordable line at Target! It's called SUGARFIX by BaubleBar. Everything is less than $30 ~ all the earrings are under $20! When you can get a fun pair of earrings for $12.99, you don't feel so bad if you only wear them a few times (or if we're being honest here, still haven't worn them....I'm packing them for Hawaii and will wear them then....). Here are some of my favorites, both from BaubleBar and their SUGARFIX line from Target.

Fashion & Accessories

Tassels and pompoms are just fun! When I was browsing, I did find a pair of jeans that were just a bit much, but other than that I loved everything I was seeing! I mean, how can you say not say hello right back to that sweet little iPhone case (pun intended)?

10. iPhone Case

Home Decor

There's something about tassel and poms in home decor that makes me think of summer. They're whimsical, and add a touch of playfulness to your home (trying hard not to just say cute and fun all the time). 

1. Throw Pillow (on sale!)
5. Stool
8. Pom Pom Pillow (on sale!)

I need to STOP shopping, so I'm resisting placing any orders today, but several of these are on my wish list!


Monday, April 24, 2017

Save vs. Splurge: Shoe Trends

There are so many fun shoe trends right now! When it comes to trendy items, I tend to try to save rather than splurge because there is no guarantee that the trend will carry through to the next year. With that in mind, I decided to find some dupes for current designer shoe trends. Target is really upping their shoe game - most of the dupes came from there!

Trend: Studded Sandals
Mossimo Gertie Gladiator Sandals / Valentino Rockstud Sandal

Trend: Perforated Lace Up
dv Marybeth Laser Cut Cork WedgeJeffrey Campbell Rayos Perforated Wedge /
Mossimo Maeve Gladiator Sandals

Trend: Pom Poms
Mossimo Kayla Gladiator Sandals / BP. Darah Sandal /
Elina Linardaki Mermaid Motel Gladiator Sandals

Which trend do you want to try? I have the Gertie Gladiator Sandals as well as the Kayla Gladiator Sandals from Target and they are both really cute in person and seem to be good quality.

I linked some other fun Target shoe options in the widget below. Happy shopping!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Sephora Sale!

The Sephora VIB Spring Sale started today and runs through 4/24 for for VIB members (use code "VIBSPRING"), so I thought I'd share some of my favorites in case you want to pick anything up. This is one of my favorite sales because you get 15% off with no exclusions.


1. Urban Decay Anti-Aging Eyeshadow Primer I never used to use eyeshadow primer. Who am I kidding, I never used to wear eyeshadow! Anyhow, this was the first primer I tried, and after trying several others I went back to it. It really makes a difference as far as keeping your eyeshadow in place and preventing creasing. I also like this primer, which you get free with the Smashbox Full Exposure Palette.

2. Smashbox Full Exposure Palette The perfect neutral palette. This palette is another favorite, but the Smashbox palette is more balanced in the number of matte and glitter shades.

3. Too Faced Sweet Peach Eye Shadow Palette This palette is perfect for spring and summer, and it smells so good!

4.Kat Von D Tattoo Liner This is my favorite liquid liner. You get the smoothest line, and it's so easy to create a winged look.

5. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara I still love this drugstore mascara (especially Step 1), but this mascara is a new favorite.


1. Fresh Sugar Face Polish I love the way my skin looks and feels after using this!

 2. Murad Time Release Acne Cleanser I can't use this during the winter because it dries out my skin too much, but it's still one of my favorite cleansers. I don't have bad acne, but every once in awhile something pops up. With this cleanser that doesn't happen as often, and I love that it's anti-aging.

3. Clinique Acne Solutions Liquid Makeup I struggle with finding a foundation that will even out my skin tone and provide some coverage without looking heavy/caked on. I have tried several different brands and always end up going back to Clinique. This evens out my skin tone, but my freckles show through and I still look like me. I ordered this one for summer (SPF 40!).

 4. Nars Orgasm Blush Prettiest blush ever!

5. Laura Mercier Matte Radiance Baked Powder Highlight My favorite highlighter!


1. CAVIAR Anti-Aging Replenishing Moisture Shampoo & 2. Conditioner I rotate between this shampoo & conditioner bundle and a few others. I tried their Repair RX bundle thinking I'd like it just as well, but it just wasn't just as good. I'm ordering this from the sale today.

3. CAVIAR CC Cream for Hair 10-in-1 This is right up there with the Living Proof PHD 5-in-1 Styling Treatment in terms of my favorite styling products. You can't go wrong with either one. If you want volume, go for the Living Proof.

4. Moroccanoil Glimmer Shine The best finishing spray!

5. GHD Platinum Professional Styler I purchased this when my Babyliss broke. It heats up really fast (like in less than 60 seconds) and straightens in one pass through my hair.


Nirvana White / Nirvana Black / Sephora Perfume Sampler

If you're looking to buy a new fragrance, now is the perfect time to buy! I just ordered the Chloe Love Story Rollerball for myself and the YSL L'Homme Travel Spray for Michael. I love the idea of buying a rollerball or travel size to start because it allows you to try the fragrance before you commit to a bigger, more expensive, size. Sephora actually offers a fragrance sample kit that comes with a coupon for a free rollerball of your favorite! I'm sharing some of my favorite perfumes here. I'm still searching for the perfect cologne for Michael. My two favorites are the ones my dad wears, and I think it might be a little weird if my husband smells like my dad. Lol! What's your favorite men's cologne?

The sale starts tomorrow (4/20) for Beauty Insiders (use code "BISPRING") and lasts through 4/23. It's free to become a Beauty Insider, and it's definitely worth it just to get to shop the sale (did I mention 15% off?), so if you haven't joined, sign up here

I've somehow spent WAY too much money at Sephora over the past year and am VIB Rouge, so I placed an order yesterday (code "ROUGESPRING"). We are going to Hawaii in June, so I had a cart full of products for the trip, and I decided to take advantage of the 15% off and pick up a few things that I'm running low on. So yeah, my order was huge. Here is what I ordered:

What are your hair and beauty must haves? Happy shopping!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Bring On Swimsuit Season

I don't know about you, but now that I'm a mom I want a swimsuit that gives me a little more coverage. Okay, maybe it doesn't have as much to do with me being a mom as it does with my body not looking like it did when I was 23.....but just because I'm a mom and I want to cover a little more doesn't mean I can't look good, right? With that in mind, I thought I'd share some fun one-piece swimsuit and cover-up options for the upcoming season. I found lots of cute options at Target and Old Navy, including some that are dupes for pricier versions, so definitely check those out first! I also threw in some accessories just for fun!

Swimsuit I have this suit in dark purple and it's one of my favorites. The plunging neckline isn't too plunging so I can wear it without feeling self-conscious that my boobs will fall out, and I love the lace detail!

Cover-Up Maxi Dress I originally ordered this coverup in black, and liked it, but ended up returning it. When I saw this blue and white striped version, I decided to give it another chance. The website says to size down, which I did for the black one, but for this one I ended up ordering my regular size. I will say that because of the way the pockets lay, it kind of makes me look a little hippy, but not in a bad way - you can tell it's the dress, and I wanted a more relaxed, comfortable fit so I preferred the medium.

Straw Hat Ohmygoodness, I love this hat! I ordered the white version of this floppy hat a few months ago, but am seriously considering getting this one too.

Straw Bag So cute and fun! Though I have to admit, every time I read it I read it as "B*tch Please," which is a little inappropriate. Probably why they made it, Heidi, duh!

Flamingo How fun is this flamingo drink holder?

Flip Flops I usually stick with my Reef Ginger Flip Flops, but I decided to step up my flip flop game with these. Don't get me wrong, I'll still be wearing my Reefs plenty, but now I've got these Sam Edelman ones too.

Towel Love the pink and white stripes!


Cleaning Routine

One of my least favorite things to do is clean, but I also can't stand it when our house is messy. Not a good combination. What makes it even worse is that Michael could care less about what our house looks like. I guess in a way that's good - I don't have to feel guilty when I spend my day sitting on the couch watching Hallmark movies or out shopping, but it's also somewhat frustrating because it means when something is out of place, he doesn't notice/do anything about it. Case in point - this blanket sat on the floor right in front of the stairs for a day. Carter even walked right over it. It killed me just to leave it on the floor, but I left it until the next morning.

I decided to create a cleaning schedule to try to keep myself on track and thought I'd share it with you today. I just started, so fingers crossed it's something I can actually stick to.


Day: Unload dishwasher, do a load of laundry (fold and put away), clean a closet/drawer, dust mop, vacuum downstairs rugs
Night: Run dishwasher, wipe down counters, trash/recycling, junk baskets*

*The kids both have baskets that we keep on the stairs. Even though they keep their toys in their bedrooms and the game room closet, somehow toys, books, etc. always end up downstairs. During the day as I come across anything that belongs upstairs, I put it in their baskets. Then at night before they go to bed we take one last sweep of the downstairs before bringing the baskets upstairs to empty.


Saturday - Shine the Sink (see this post for details on how I do this)
Sunday - Sheets
Monday - Floors (upstairs)
Tuesday - Bathrooms
Wednesday - Weekly Chore
Thursday - Dust furniture, clean mirrors
Friday - Floors (downstairs)

Weekly Chores:

Week 1: Blinds
Week 2: Sweep Front & Back Porch
Week 3: Clean Refrigerator
Week 4: Baseboards

I have been really curious about trying Norwex products since my mom mentioned it a few weeks ago. Then when I was trying to come up with a cleaning schedule, I searched Pinterest for ideas and came across a blogger who raved about their products, so I decided to order some. I'm all for anything that makes cleaning easier, and with Norwex products you don't have to use any cleaners, you just use water! Sounds almost too good to be true, but I'm hoping that's not the case. I just placed my order today, so I'll do a full review once I've had everything for a few weeks.

Do you follow a cleaning routine? If so, please share in the comments below!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Shopbop Sale

Okay, so I've been trying really hard to stick to my no shopping rule for Lent, but all of these amazing spring sales are making it really hard! Shopbop is having a sale right now that is WAY better than the one I mentioned in this post (that one was tiered, whereas in this one you save 20% on any purchases under $500 and 25% if you happen to spend $500 or more), so I thought I'd share some fun items that are included in the sale. Shopbop had become another favorite place to shop (behind Nordstrom) because they offer free two day shipping through Amazon Prime.


Here are some of my favorite shoes that are included in the sale. I either own them or will be purchasing them during the sale. I know, I'm not supposed to shop during Lent, but Easter is this Sunday and the pairs I'm ordering were already on my wish list, so I might as well buy them now when I can save some money!

1. Sam Edelman Patti Sandals I ordered a black patent pair from Nordstrom to wear to a cocktail party in early May, but I'm considering returning them and ordering these instead.

Okay, so I'm editing this to let you know that I am returning the black patent shoes, but I won't be ordering the leather ones. The shoes are super cute and the ankle strap makes them look kind of sexy, but they fit my toes weird. The strap hits my toes in a weird place and you can see the bottom of my baby toe behind the strap. Toe cleavage? No thank you! Sorry for the unattractive photo of my feet, but I thought I'd share a picture so you can see what I mean.

Anyhow....I shared earlier in the week on Facebook that I had ordered these shoes for Easter (shown on the right in the above photo). The strap on these is wider, which means it covers up the toe cleavage. Long story short, I'm returning the Sam Edelman shoes and have already ordered a black patent pair of the BP. shoes. It works out well because the BP. ones are only $59.95 and even on sale the Sam Edelman ones are $80. Nordstrom offers free shipping, so get these if you haven't already taken my earlier advice and gotten these.

Side by Side Comparison

2. Sam Edelman Gates Fringe Sandal How fun is the fringe on these shoes?

3. Soludos Espadrilles I did a review of these in this post, and also included them in the last Shopbop sale post, but I wanted to include them again because I love these shoes! I have the tan ones right now, but I'm picking up the black ones today. They are seriously one of the most comfortable pair of shoes I own and I get tons of compliments every time I wear them. I've seen mixed reviews as far as sizing - for me they fit true to size. They felt tight when they first arrived, but they have stretched with wear, so I'm glad I didn't size up.

4. Sam Edelman Gigi Sandal Another one of my favorite shoes for spring and summer, and I love that they come in fun colors and prints! Adding a fun shoe can take a basic outfit and kick it up a notch.

5. Hunter Original Tall Boots If you've been considering getting Hunter boots, now is the perfect time to get them at 20% off! I have them in black, but I love this light blue, and how fun are these hot pink ones?


Some of these items are a little more expensive, but handbags and accessories are an item that I tend to splurge a little more on, so it's even better when I can get them on sale!

1. Sam Edelman Straw Beach Tote I love the scarf on the handle! I'm not sure how often I'd use the strap, but it's nice that it's an option.

2. Clare V. Black Foldover Clutch Every girl needs a little black clutch! I have it in the british tan and carry it all the time! Seriously considering adding the black to my shopping cart.

3. Le Specs Neo Noir Sunglasses I love the tortoise print and reflective lenses!

4. Shake Things Up iPhone Case My iPhone case is boring, so I've been looking for a new one.  I've also been thinking about upgrading my phone, so now is a good time to order a new case! Kate Spade cases are always so fun!

5. Vanessa Mooney Earrings The perfect statement earring that will go with everything!

6. SUNDRESS Indiana Short Beach Dress I ordered the striped version of this coverup about a month ago and I absolutely love it! It's nice because you're completely covered in the front, but it's open in the back (business in the front, party in the back).

7. White + Warren Cashmere Travel Wrap Scarf Cashmere? Yes please! Unfortunately, even on sale this is a bit more of a splurge than I'm willing to make, but a girl can dream!

I've linked some other cute options in the widget below. Happy shopping!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Spring Dresses

When I was little, one of my favorite things was getting a new Easter outfit! Now as a mom I still get excited picking something cute out for Sophia and Carter, and I try my best to find something cute for myself as well. With that in mind, I thought I'd share some cute options, both for Easter and any special occasions (or even just because it's cute!) you may have coming up this Spring or Summer.

1. White Lace This dress is beautiful! I love that the spaghetti straps are adjustable. I actually originally ordered this as my Easter dress, but I kind of felt like it was a little too much va va voom to wear to church on Easter Sunday. I think it's probably best for smaller chested girls, but that may just be me being self-conscious about the size of my chest.

2. Green Lace Dress I love the color of this dress! It's just so springy! I just recently discovered Chicwish. They are offering an extra 20% off through the end of today with the code "Sun20."

3. White Collared Dress I ordered this dress on a whim when I decided that the the white lace dress I'd originally ordered for Easter was too revealing. It's cheaper, which is nice, and I think I like the shorter length on me a little better. I ordered these shoes to wear with it for a fun pop of color.

4. Floral Cold Shoulder I love flowers for Spring, and the cold shoulder look is a trend that is still going strong.

5. Yellow Floral I love how bright and flowy this dress is! Unfortunately I don't look good in yellow, so if I order it I'll probably get it in blue, but the yellow is beautiful!

6. Blue off the Shoulder This dress is less than $30 at Target! Um, yes please! I love an off-the-shoulder top or dress ~ there is just something about exposed shoulders that makes you feel a little sexier without being too revealing.

I couldn't leave without giving you a peak at Sophia's Easter dress. GAP is offering 40% off right now with code "SPRING."

I linked some other pretty dress options in the widget below. Happy shopping!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Fitness Update

It's been a little over two months since I shared what I was doing to get fit and healthy in this post, so I thought I'd give an update. 
The biggest lesson I've learned in the three months that I've been working out regularly (4-6 days/week) is that it's not about the number on the scale. Okay, so I probably shouldn't say it's a lesson that I've's a lesson I'm TRYING to learn. I've  lost about five pounds, but the past few weeks I have kind of been at a standstill with my weight, which is frustrating. I'm okay with my current weight, but then I think about what I weighed when I got married.....I'd like to get closer to that number (see, I said I want to get CLOSER, not reach it. I'm being realistic....there isn't any way that I'm going to get back to my weight as a 23 year old, right?). I wish that I would have taken measurements prior to beginning the regimen because then I wouldn't be so focused on the number on my scale, which I'm still loving, the scale, not necessarily the number (buy it HERE or HERE).  When I look in the mirror I can definitely see a difference in my body, in a good way. My stomach and my upper thighs are my biggest concerns, and I have noticed a big difference in the way they look. This is where taking measurements would have come in handy - the number on the scale may not be changing as dramatically as I'd like, but if I'd taken measurements I'd have confirmation that a change was happening (because, you know, looking in the mirror isn't good enough).

Anyhow...with Michael traveling, soccer practices, etc it's been hard to stick to the meal plan I created, at least when it comes to dinners, so while I was still trying to make smarter choices when it came to what I ate, I wasn't necessarily paying attention to my daily calorie count. A few weeks ago I started using the Lose It app. I had originally planned on joining Weight Watchers, but it's $20 a month and Lose It is free (unless you select their premium plan, but even then it's only $39.99 for an entire year), so I decided to stick with Lose It. It's really easy to use - you simply create a profile with your current weight and your goal weight (and how quickly you want to reach your goal) and it tells you how many calories you can eat each day. Once you've created your profile you log your meals, snacks, and any exercise by scanning the item, searching by product, or manually entering the product information. You can even create recipes to calculate the complete calorie count on different foods (eg Linguine in Clam Sauce - 361 calories per serving, Dilly Dip - 96 calories per serving, Dump Cake - 201 calories per serving). When you log exercise, it subtracts the calories burned from your daily total. I still try to stay at or below my daily calories without deducting the exercise, but it's nice to have a buffer.

While the elliptical is good for cardio, I decided to add in some additional exercises. I've started doing the 30 Day Butt Lift Challenge as well as the 30 Day Plank Fat Burning Challenge, and have also started including crunches and weights into my daily workouts. I'm hoping that by adding in these exercises I'll begin to see a bigger difference.

We are going to Hawaii in June for our 15th anniversary, so that was my motivation to start working out, but I've gotten to the point where I feel guilty when I don't work out (even though I still don't enjoy it, like AT ALL), so hopefully I'll keep it up. What are you doing to get fit and stay healthy?

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

My Thoughts on Some Recent Purchases

Rather than doing a standard favorites post (though when they've been sporadic at best I don't know that I could call it "standard" anyhow) I decided to share my thoughts on some of the things I've purchased recently.
1. La Mer Crème de la Mer I have been really concerned with aging, so I gave in and purchased the La Mer Introductory Collection. The main reason I purchased it was to try the Crème de la Mer. I was surprised by how thick it was and felt like I had to use a lot of it to cover my face and neck. Because of this, I won't be repurchasing it. It's too expensive to repurchase every month or two. Instead I'll be going back to using the Clinique Moisture Surge Intense that I mentioned it in this post.

2. Fresh Sugar Face Polish I went to Sephora a few weeks ago to find a new foundation that gives me a little more coverage than my Vitazing. Unfortunately I ended up returning the foundation she recommended because it didn't give me enough coverage, but I ended up buying this exfoliator once I got home because the consultant told me that my nose was dry. I've never thought of my nose as dry, but I took her advice and ordered this when I got home. I've only used it a few times, but I've already noticed a different in how smooth my skin is. Love!

3. neuLash Serum Several bloggers I follow have raved about this eyelash serum, so I splurged on it to see if it lived up to the hype. I have only been using it a few weeks, but I feel like my lashes are thicker and longer ~ I'm not sure if it's because the serum is actually doing what it claims to do or it's just in my head, but so far I like what I'm seeing. You can probably achieve the same look by using this mascara, so I'm not sure it's worth the price tag, but if you want to try a lash serum I'd recommend this one.

4. L'Oréal Double Extend Lash Extension Effect Mascara This mascara reminds me of the Younique Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lashes, but it's less than $10! It adds so much length and volume to my lashes - they almost look fake! I think "Step 1" makes the biggest difference in adding length. I use it with the Too Faced mascara and it creates major drama (in a good way!). I also love that it doesn't run or come off. It's quickly become a beauty must-have.

5. Essie Fiji Polish This is the perfect pale pink nail polish. It's all I've been wearing since purchasing it a few weeks ago!

 6. Soludos Espadrilles I ordered these during the Shopbop sale that I blogged about in this post, and they have quickly become a new favorite! I ordered the tan and am considering ordering the black as well. They are incredibly comfortable and are so cute! I've seen mixed reviews as far as sizing - for me they fit true to size. They felt tight when they first arrived, but they have stretched with wear, so I'm glad I didn't size up.

7. BP. Mirrored Aviator Sunglasses I love these aviators! And the best part ~ they're $12! Yep, you read that right. BP. is a super affordable brand that is carried exclusively at Nordstrom. I have several BP. pieces, including my favorite long sleeved tees (on sale for less than $11!), and I have the Rose Gold aviators and love them! I'm the worst about throwing my sunglasses in my purse without a case, so the lenses are a little scratched, but since they were only $12 I can easily replace them when needed. Buy them!

8. Le Spec Rapture Bat Wing Sunglasses This sunglass brand is a little more of a splurge when you compare it to the BP. brand sunglasses, but at $59 I'd still consider it more of a save when compared to my dream sunglasses which I won't be purchasing anytime too soon. The "bat wing" is a fun take on the cat eye and it adds some interest to basic black sunnies.

If there is something specific you'd like to see on my blog, please share in the comments below! Happy shopping!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Office Preview

We purchased most of our furniture when we built our last house in 2006, so it's time to update things a little. It all started with Michael buying two monitors, a keyboard, and a laptop docking station for his office. Once everything arrived I realized that our desk was way too small and I needed to find something new. Several of the decor items in our office are black and gold, so I decided to stick with that color scheme. The first two purchases I made were this console table and rug

I'd originally planned on getting a more modern glass desk, and found what I thought would be the perfect one, but then Michael set up the monitors and docking station and I realized that I needed something that would hide some of the cords and the actual docking station. I started searching and found this L-shaped desk at Adam's Furniture. It still fit with the overall color scheme of the room, so I decided to switch directions a little. We ordered this desk and the matching lateral file.   

Bridgeport L-Shaped Computer Workstation
Riverside Furniture Bridgeport  Lateral File in Antique Black

Right now the only things that have been delivered are the table and the rug, but I'm so excited with how the room is coming together! Stay tuned for the full room reveal soon!