Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Merry Christmastime :)

It is our first Christmas together and I am loving every minute of it :)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Merriest of Christmases!

It has been almost four months since I have been signed on here, I have missed it so much!
The place in my heart that loved reading blogs, crafting, and posting pictures to stay in the loop with family and friends, was filled with anatomy, biomechanics, and researching for way too long! I love all of that, but can not wait to take a breather from it all!
It has been a tough semester, but finals are almost over, my grades a pretty set, and I am SO ready for a break!
I am on a quest to find a number on the scale that has alluded me lately, clean our lived in disaster of an apartment, and conquer the mile high mound of laundry that has accumulated over the past stressful couple of weeks.
{yes, it has been a couple of weeks since I've done laundry, don't judge}
Despite life and hectic-ness happening over the past few months, we are still the same little newly-wed family, trying to love every minute of our insanity :)
More updates to come, but for now...
Merry Christmas from our home to yours! :)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Until Christmas Time...

It has started... real life in the form of PT school.
So far, everyday has been a constant battle to keep my head above water, yet I am loving {almost} every minute of it!
It took me a little while to get acclimated. I still am not entirely convinced I really understand what we will accomplish by the end of our three years {let alone the end of this semester!}
But I am welcoming it with open arms because I KNOW this is where the Lord has put me {and us},
not on accident but as part of his intentional plan.
Due to this drastic change in well, everything, I don't think I will be blogging for awhile. I wish I could, because I love chronicling things and keeping those who care in the loop. I would love to look back at a photo documented few years, but thats just not in the cards right now.

So, on that note, I am headed back to my semi-permanent location of my head burried in my anatomy book(s).

Au revoir!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Nine Ingredients to Keep Out of Your Diet

As I start school, I become more and more aware of my desire to eat and live healthfully.
While staying at a target weight is important, I would much rather have as much energy, be as focused, and enjoy life as much as possible!
For me, that means closely monitoring my diet, I know not everyone has the same standards for health as I do but here is a list of nine ingredients everyone should avoid!
Nine Ingredients to Avoid {at all costs!}{not at all costs, but really, they're bad}

1. Artificial Colors

What: Chemical compounds made from coal-tar derivatives to enhance color.
Why: Linked to allergic reactions, fatigue, asthma, skin rashes, hyperactivity and headaches.
Artificial Flavorings

2. Cheap Chemical mixtures that mimic natural flavors

Why? Linked to allergic reactions, dermatitis, eczema, hyperactivity and asthma
Also can affect enzymes, RNA and thyroid.

3. Artificial Sweeteners

What: (Acesulfame-K, Aspartame, Equal®, NutraSweet®, Saccharin, Sweet’n Low®, Sucralose, Splenda® & Sorbitol) Highly-processed, chemically-derived, zero-calorie sweeteners found in diet foods and diet products to reduce calories per serving.
Why: Can negatively impact metabolism
Also, some have been linked to cancer, dizziness hallucinations and headaches.

4. Benzoate Preservatives (BHT, BHA, TBHQ)

What: Compounds that preserve fats and prevent them from becoming rancid.
Why: May result in hyperactivity, angiodema, asthma, rhinitis, dermatitis, tumors and urticaria
Also, can affect estrogen balance and levels.

5. Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO)

What: Chemical that boosts flavor in many citric-based fruit and soft drinks.
Why: Increases triglycerides and cholesterol
Also, can damage liver, testicles, thyroid, heart and kidneys.

6. High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)

What: Cheap alternative to cane and beet sugar, sustains freshness in baked goods, and blends easily in beverages to maintain sweetness
Why: May predispose the body to turn fructose into fat
Also, increases risk for Type-2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke and cancer
Also, isn’t easily metabolized by the liver.

7. MSG (Monosodium Glutamate)

What: Flavor enhancer in restaurant food, salad dressing, chips, frozen entrees, soups and other foods.
Why: May stimulate appetite and cause headaches, nausea, weakness, wheezing, edema, change in heart rate, burning sensations and difficulty in breathing.

8. Olestra

What: An indigestible fat substitute used primarily in foods that are fried and baked.
Why: Inhibits absorption of some nutrients
Also, is linked to gastrointestinal disease, diarrhea, gas, cramps, bleeding and incontinence.

9. Shortening, Hydrogenated, and Partially Hydrogenated Oils
(Palm, Soybean and others)

What: Industrially created fats used in more than 40,000 food products in the U.S. {Cheaper than most other oils.}
Why: Contain high levels of trans fats, which raise bad cholesterol and lower good cholesterol, contributing to risk of heart disease.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Harvard's Take on the Food Pyramid

This food pyramid is SO much more accurate than the FDA food pyramid! This food pyramid is from the Harvard University Health site.

1. DAILY EXERCISE is very very VERY important!

Daily exercise should be part of your routine. We all know that only eating healthily isn’t enough to remain completely healthy.

2. HEALTHY FATS AND OILS are not bad for you. In fact, they should be an essential part of your diet, especially plant based oils.

3. VEGETABLES AND FRUITS should not be limited by a number of servings.

4. Good whole grain CARBOHYDRATES are just as important as fruits and vegetables!

6. NUTS, SEEDS, BEANS AND TOFU - these should be part of your daily diet.

Nuts, seeds, tofu and legumes should be part of what you eat everyday. They are another source of all sorts of vitamins and minerals, calcium (tofu), plenty of fiber, protein and good fats (nuts). Beans keep you full for a really long time!

7. FISH, POULTRY AND EGGS should also be an essential part of your diet.


9. Dairy products/Calcium supplements - eat 1 to 2 servings.

Dairy is not the only source for calcium, there are many vegetables, such as broccoli, that have high levels of calcium. Tofu is also a good supply of calcium.


It may be a little of a surprise to find red meat in this category but red meat is incredibly hard to digest and often very high in saturated fats, as is butter. Refined grains such as white rice, bread and pasta are highly processed, bleached, and are high GI and should be eaten very little if not at all. Potatoes are also a form of carbohydrates to consume sparingly.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Just An Antler {or Two}

If there is one thing my husband has learned, it is that when I want something, I am so much worse than a dog with a bone.
If there is one thing I have learned, it is that my husband is much more "by the book" than I am.
I like to think I am conventionally unconventional.
I love to find alternative routes to reach a goal, place, or pretty much anything that would save more time or money than the "conventional" method.

When I got the idea in my head that I would love to have an antler to put on our bookshelf, I was pretty sure I knew how my husband would respond.
He said what I expected to a "t"

Last Night:

Me: So how do you feel about antlers?
DJ: {questioning look}{imagine Despicable Me "Whaaa?"}
Me: Well, I think I might buy an antler {or two} to put on the bookshelf

Here it comes... wait for it....

DJ: But We Don't Hunt.

I knew it!
Where is the rule that you must hunt to have an antler?!?!?!
I don't want a whole moose head on our wall, just one little antler!

I know, you're probably thinking "poor DJ"
But NOT poor DJ!
He has done this every step of the way in decorating our apartment,
he looks at me like I'm a crazy person {which is a possibility} before, but ends up liking things once they're put together.

Anyways, PT school starts in two weeks, so I do need to bring my summer full of blog reading, pinterest pinning, craft attempting, and overall decor loving to an temporary end.
I will probably not get an antler {or two} in the next two weeks, but I can still love decorating with them.

{I bet Keri Russell didn't hunt the moose that antler belonged to... just saying}

Last night was wonderful, just big salads {his with buffalo chicken, mine with beans a corn}
for dinner, followed by some quality How I Met Your Mother watching :)
I love our simple life. I just keep praying we will still be able to have some of those nights even after school starts :)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Decorating with Antler Accents?

Love the look!
They're rustic but can be combined with pretty much any other decorative style :)

{the turtle shells on the wall kind of creep me out, but love the antlers on the table :)}

What do you think? :)

Definitely Not Using the "V" Word

So, I have been eating meat-free for the past three weeks or so.

I am not a real fan of the word "vegetarian"
I feel like when most people say it they have a purist "I'm better than you" mindset about it. While it is a conscious disciplined lifestyle, its definitely not a superiority thing. Everyone's bodies are different, some respond well to eliminating meat, whereas it would be detrimental for others.

For me, it has been great, I sleep better and have more energy throughout the day.
Since eliminating meat has been so successful, I decided to try going all the way animal free.

I was already mostly there, why not? :)

It was pretty easy for me to eliminate meat, fish, and eggs right off the bat three weeks ago.
It was the cheese holding me back. I know its SO fattening and not even good for me, but it adds so much flavor to things! I don't do much dairy, but where I do, I REALLY do. :/

Parmesan cheese, half & half, and pizza are the three main culprits.
Pizza most of all (I LOVE pizza, probably more than most kids I know... its bad)

So, last Friday we took a little date to EarthFare.
LOVED exploring. Hubby found some out of the ordinary German beer, and I found...

Vegan sliced cheese

Vegan Pizza

Vegan Parmesan Cheese

Soy Coffee Creamer

I figured it would be fun to try and at least see if it could work.
On all levels :(

First of all, I have read in more than one place that excessive soy consumption is not great for estrogen levels, guess what one of the main ingredients in all of these products is?
You guessed it!
Soy overload.

Secondly, taste did not compare, while it did add flavor, it was not good, the Parmesan just tasted like I poured a bunch of salt on my pasta, pizza was really spicy and flavorless, and creamer was no more than over priced soy milk (ick! - I'll stick with my almond milk, thank you very much!).

It is totally a mental and marketing thing. I will not die if I do not have dairy substitutes, they add very little to my health. It's labeled "creamer" so it must be better in coffee than regular sweetened soy milk, right? I tell myself "I need Parmesan cheese on my pasta," so I seek an alternative rather than go with out. The main ingredient in the alternative is walnuts... seriously? So instead of going without I put flavored walnuts on my pasta?

Come on Shelb, big picture here!

Finally, the price was not justifiable. The tofurky pizza was $8.99 for a pizza with a diameter less than a foot! I would rather spend our money other places than on overly processed soy and rice products.

In conclusion, I would rather wean myself to eat less dairy than put these things in my body. While they are all animal byproduct free, I can not imagine they are much better for me than the real deal, and are most certainly not better for our budget!

Thank you for listening to my somewhat rant on vegan products :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Vow

Such a sweet trailer!
Rachel McAdams is beautiful and not to mention Channing Tatum!
I hope the movie is a good one!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Some Quickies :)

Currently: catching up on the bachelorette online {JP, Constantine, Ben maybe? :P}

Recently: spent the weekend at the pool - put in my two weeks notice - have been working A LOT of long shifts

kidney bean wreath {for our "fancy wall"}

jewelry frames for our bedroom wall :)

chalk boards {three different ways and places}

{for the living room}

{for the kitchen}

{for the porch, and the aloe plant, I think?}

Running: I have been! This morning I ran 3.4 miles in 25 minutes... constant increase in mileage and decrease in time! SO exciting and loving my running highs :P

{for real though!}


{LOVE this book! Definitely keeps things in perspective and keeps me from pointing the finger, examining myself and my motives more than anything!}
{VERY interesting, out of the box, and alternative}
{pretty raunchy (obviously, from the title) but very informative and inspiring}
{also pretty alternative}

Eating: In response to the last two books I have weaned myself off of meat and am in the process of completely eliminating sugar, empty carbs, and dairy out of my life :)

Life is wonderful, I love my puppy and husband and can't believe classes start in 23 days!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Just Staying on Our Toes! :)

Another wonderful weekend!
We traveled up to Clemson to spend a couple days with Mike, Sarah, and Madison
and had an absolutely great time!

On the way back to Columbia we stopped in Greenville.
DJ had spent a weekend there and kept telling me about how awesome it was, and I was not disappointed!

This park is pretty much in the middle of downtown Greenville

the bridge over the river definitely adds a cool architectural look

the whole park was just so clean and landscaped

We only stopped for a little while, but completely enjoyed exploring the city :)

We came home to a little bit of a flea scare, but after extensive scrubbing and cleaning, I can confidently say the apartment is cleaner than it probably has ever been
{Still completely gross, I know}

{He was not happy with us 1. for leaving him for the weekend and 2. for giving him a bath pretty much the minute we walked in}

I definitely should have taken extra precautions with it being summertime and all of Peyton's afternoons in the river.
Live and learn!

He hates swimming, but could lounge and play in the river all day long, and I let him :P

On another Peyton note, I have had this fear for awhile and it finally came true yesterday.
When we leave Peyton home alone, he always stays in his kennel.
Yesterday, as I was heading to work, I said "Peyton, get in your kennel"
But forgot to go lock him in.
I left at about 1:15 and around 5:30 DJ came home to this...

He did much better than expected, he usually chews on cords
{which could have been a BIG bummer!},
But, needless to say, I hope not to forget again!

We have had an eventful few days, and are enjoying them as much as possible!

I can't believe how time flies! One month from yesterday I will be starting fall classes! {ahhh! and yay! :P}

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Thinspiration :)

I have become one of the many.
The many who gain a few extra LBs as a newlywed.
After a panic moment or two, I have begun to transition from wanna-be homemaker extraordinaire, to a more moderate wife-y role.
{Ironic that this post follows one completely dedicated to food :P}

I have set goals to...

1. Run everyday
{outside is BEST}{love it when I get up early, but nights work too}
2. Alternate abs and arms every other day
3. Walk Peyton every afternoon
{in the hot HOT heat}
4. Drink TONS of H2O
5. Walk on the treadmill while studying as much as possible

So... thinspiration photos
{thanks mostly to Pinterest and we heart it}

Still living a beautifully blessed life :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Happy Happy Birthday! :)

Yesterday was SUCH a fun day!
My sweet and wonderful husband of {a little over} 3 months turned 24
and I was sure to take that opportunity to show and tell him how special he is to me :)

Not only did I get to show him how much I care for him, but I was also able to enjoy my day trying new recipes, which were all pretty big hits {yay!}

Breakfast in bed came really early, so I gave these little guys a try

They were as easy as could be, quick, and looked much fancier than they were. Paired with a bagel and cream cheese, breakfast was balanced and filling :)

Once he left for work, the real fun began, making dinner and dessert!
I found a great link on Pinterest to a Family Circle article with some slow-cooker recipes

Beef Stroganoff was our main dish and gets two big thumbs up for its success :)
The only suggestion I have is use regular soy sauce. The recipe called for low sodium soy sauce and while it tasted good, it probably could've used a little bit more flavor.

These rolls were so cute and much easier than they looked! I used basil in the topping instead of oregano {i'm allergic} and they tasted like they had a pesto spread on them {SO good!}

We also had a salad {nothing special} with a vinaigrette dressing :)

And for dessert, oh dessert!
I decided to try this

"The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie n' Oreo Fudge Brownie Bar"

And oh my goodness it was ultimate!

Our simple little birthday table-scape :)

We had such a fun night, and despite what it looks like, we did do more than just eat :P
Presents followed dinner, and a late night watching of Sherlock Holmes after that.

Happy Birthday Babe, I hope it was all you wanted!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Finally, Pillow Covers! :)

This is the day that the Lord has made let us rejoice and be glad in it! :)
It has been a beautiful day, it began with a nice quiet run this morning and will conclude with an early dinner and an episode of Prison Break (my husband's new {yet old} favorite show) before bed.

Before that, I wanted to share some pictures of our little home with our recent updates, especially the pillow covers, since I was so enthusiastic and dramatic about finding the right fabric.

my favorite and the most complete part of our apartment :)

Love how they turned out, all of the fabric is from fabric.com

The red ticked pillow is Ralph Lauren from Homegoods, but the other two are my covers :)
{yes, he regularly rests his chin on the coffee table... weird... yet still irresistible}

another bookshelf picture, moving things around already! :)

I took this picture of Peyton on Friday afternoon, it was laundry day, there were piles of clothes everywhere, it just seemed like our little home was in chaos, and I absolutely loved that he had no problem with any of it, just cuddled up with a front row seat to my busy day :P

We had a beautiful weekend, on the lake with family Saturday, and met up with them again today for some birthday celebrations :)

Tomorrow is my loving husband's birthday and I have been searching for fun recipes for the past few days to show him how much I appreciate him.

We'll see how it goes!