Thursday, December 12, 2013

Some Thoughts On This Next Chapter

I hope this will not be the typical "end of semester" or "school is out" post.  It is quite a bit more than that for me this semester, it is the end of a chapter.  I am one big step closer to graduation.  I am excited, joyful, thankful, anticipatory, and honestly somewhat anxious.  I have been in school pretty much non-stop since the age of 4 and it is all wrapping up.  I am so thankful but also recognizing I can't pretend not to be a grown up anymore.  I know I am responsible and capable, but it just doesn't seem right sometimes, in less than a year I will be a Doctor.  I don't feel confident or mature enough to be a professional.  I know I am completely competent and continue to grow in knowledge and experience daily.  Will there always be a little voice in my head saying "you don't know what you're doing" or "how are you pulling off this charade?"  I know it is little more than lies in my head, for the past couple of years it has been "you can't do this, you must've gotten into this program on a fluke."  And now Satan must find new lies to tell me because the old ones have become almost obsolete.  Two clinicals, two classes, and the comprehensive exam are the only things standing between graduation and myself and it is intimidating.

Which brings me to, but why???? What in the world do I have to be intimidated by? I have been re-reading the book A Heart Like His by Rebecca Manly Pippert lately and am in the portion where she compares David and Saul.  Ironically I am also in the middle of Beth Moore's Bible study series on David.  It has all centered on living confidently in the Lord, stressing that that is the only source for true confidence.

I drop the ball so often.  I let my anxiety get the best of me.  I get my little pity party on and get carried away. (Think grad school barbie depressing thoughts.)  And where is the Lord in all of this? Right where I left Him.  I don't say that condescendingly, but more as encouragement.  He is never the one to waiver.  I do that all on my own.  I listen to everything around me but the peaceful calming voice of the Lord.

So, I am resolved to make this short break from the anxiety causing insanity of PT school to wait on the Lord. To listen to the Lord and overall, seek Him and His will above all in the things I do and say.  Lord, make my heart open to receive your counsel and guidance, and Lord most of all, make me desire Your will above mine in the life you have given me.  I am so blessed and squander that blessing so often with my selfishness.

Time with my in-laws is always difficult for me, which I often do not handle well, and only serve to cause anxiety for my husband and diminish the joy we might have spending time together.  Lord, please do not let me steal the joy of others for my own selfish motivation or due to unkind words spoken to me.  Lord, let me not become a selfish gossip, leaving a wake just because I want them to accept me, and acting as a crutch to others just because I am shown unkindness.  My worth is not determined by anyone's opinion of me but the Lord's. Above all Lord, let me trust my husband to make the right choices for our little family, and in so demonstrate my love for him and confidence in You.

God I am so weak, but know that in You I am strong and you are capable of taking me and my life and completing something more than I could ever imagine.

I hope you are having a Merry Christmastime!

Friday, December 6, 2013

The Potting Soil Inicident

So, at Bible study the other night the topic came up that we were all forgetting things. Entire chapters have disappeared, a picture or reference instantly brings back a memory, but left to our own recollections, there are blanks.  That being said, I want to try to update more often and photo document more effectively. (New Year's Resolution maybe?)

That all being said, I thought I would share my most recent housewife-y faux pas.  Haylee, DJ and I have been rolling about it and thought it might bring smiles all around, and likely quite a few "oh, honey"s.  

It all started about mid October when I decided to clean out the planters on our porch.  I had basil and rosemary this year and they were so cute in their prime, but they had since withered and were now just a depressing remnant and reminder that winter was on its way.

I pulled out the plants & roots and dug around the bottom for the golf balls, wine corks, and stones I used to create a drainage system in the bottom of the container and was left with some potting soil.  It didn't look like too much to me, so I figured I could just rinse the containers out in the kitchen sink and everything would be all clean for my gardening endeavors come springtime.

Had that been the case, this would be a pretty lame story. Apparently garbage disposals and dirt don't work very well together because the sink quickly became backed up.  Eventually I got everything down the drain and cleaned up, just as I had pictured, all squeaky clean and ready to be put away. I moved on with cleaning & straightening things up, fixed dinner, and did not give it another thought.

It wasn't until the next evening as I was unloading the dishwasher that I was reminded of my not so great idea.  The entire dishwasher was covered in potting soil, dishes and all. I repeated the cycle on rinse, which did absolutely nothing. On top of that the dishwasher was not draining, so there was a nice pool in the bottom of it.  I unloaded a few dishes, hand-washed them, and used a cup to scoop as much of the water into the sink as I could and completely forgot to tell DJ about my issue until he was doing the dishes following dinner and I heard "oh my gosh, there is something seriously wrong with our dishwasher." He was seriously upset because we were just given a new one by our apartment complex and he was "so sick of dealing with everything breaking." I was in the middle of studying for something and only paying half attention until I heard "This is so disgusting, the entire dishwasher is covered in mold!"  It was then that I explained the whole story, oh I wish I had a picture of his face.  Big eyes, raised eyebrows, and and crinkled forehead that I knew was saying "you have got to be kidding me."  We called maintenance and were told they would be there in the next couple of days.

Well, the next day, once again I had forgotten about our little problem I had been choosing to ignore in the dishwasher.  Haylee came over to watch an online class at our apartment and brought some kale to make kale chips out of.   She prepared and seasoned the chips and put them in the oven. Well, as luck would have it, maintenance stopped by to check out the situation.  On the work order we specified "water in dishwasher," a completely true statement, but our maintenance man came slightly under prepared for the disaster he was about to meet.  Haylee was completely unaware of what was going on, all she knew was that the kale chips were about to burn and burnt kale chips would smell a million times worse than regular kale chips.  

The maintenance man left to get the shop vac, because, yes, it was that bad.  During that time, we caught the kale chips right in time and I filled Haylee in on the happenings.  The maintenance man came back and spent a long time trying to clean out our pipes, I felt soooo bad, and could not bring myself to make eye contact.  The dust he stirred up caused my allergies to flare up, sending me into sneezing & sniffling craziness.  So naturally, I went to sit on the porch, and left Haylee to awkwardly take responsibility for the issue.

All he said when he left was "have a good day." Praise the Lord because I have no idea what would have come out of my mouth had he said anything that required more than "you too, thank you!"  We could not have done more to come off as the strangest renters in our complex.  Who knows what type of leaves he thought we were baking, our incessant giggling definitely did not help, and the pipes filled with potting soil most definitely sealed the deal.

DJ got home soon after and between the smell of the potting soil, sewage, and kale chips, quickly decided we would be going to study at Starbucks that evening.  Since this incident, both Haylee and DJ have had some serious conversations about "appropriate things to put down a garbage disposal" and potting soil is definitely not on that list.

Happy Christmastime!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Some Light Reading: A Link Round Up

 Happy Fall Y'all!
 Just Thought I'd share some favorite posts and articles I have come across lately :)
  • 5 reasons we don't homeschool: a well rounded reasoning behind homeschooling.  We haven't talked a whole lot about what we want to do when we reach that decision in our lives, but I am not taking homeschooling off the table (my husband is strongly opposed, hmmm...wonder why -that is a rant for another day).
  • How to build your housekeeping muscle 6 helpful 'how to' points to stick to when it comes to cleaning house.  I hate to admit that I do not clean like I would like to, but thought these were some good points to keep in mind.
  • Dale Cooper Thinks You Should Drink More Coffee I am probably showing my ignorance, but I have no idea who Dale Cooper is, however, I do love a good cup of coffee and drink a cup (or two, or three) daily. So, naturally I like to hear how good for me it is :)
  • 3 things I wish I knew before we got married: spoiler alert #1 = marriage is not about living happily ever after, shocker, I know. I am such a sucker for all of these marriage posts, its hard work, but so incredibly rewarding :)
  • Girl Talk: Only Runners Understand Loved these, I am not alone! :)
  • How to Look Rich LOVED this post, such a good reminder that class doesn't come from designer pieces or require big money to acheive. 
  • How Does One Get The Polished Look Similar to the above link, loved this quote:
  • You got rid of the impossible dream to be Grace Kelly, now get rid of all those lists that say you need X perfect pieces to be well-dressed. I’m talking about that crisp white shirt, that trench coat, that pencil skirt, and the little black dress. Yes, these are great pieces for many women, but not all women. You’re an artist, you’re a weekend warrior, your wedding registry was at R.E.I., you have more curves than Marilyn Monroe, you live hundreds of miles from a city and heck, it never rains where you live. 
  • How to Shop Sticking to Budget I always love reading blog posts about budgeting. So often 'shopping on a budget' posts are disappointing at best, but this was a good one.  One thing I do a lot is play 'would you rather' which often ends up going like this:
    • which would you rather have – that It Bag, or a sushi and sake date night with your mate once a month for a year? Which would you rather own – the perfect pair of black leather pumps, or six pairs of sandals from Payless? Which is more important, your morning Starbucks, or a pair of riding boots? Break down the price of the item and compare it to other items in your life.
  •  I also liked this quote a whole lot, especially pertaining to all of our Dave Ramsey talk lately.
    • A woman should get fitted for a new bra every year. She should have the perfect LBD in her wardrobe to be ready for unexpected social events. And she should be able to sleep well at night, knowing full well what is going on with her finances. The best accessory I acquired was getting out of debt – the best accessory any woman can wear is self-confidence, and confidence comes from being true to one’s self, feeling strong, and being financially solvent.
  • The World's Weirdest Fitness Tips & Tricks I know a few of these are legit, it would be pretty crazy if they all were, who knows!
  • 10 Foods Sold in the US that are Banned Elsewhere I love America as much as any patriot, but would argue we seriously fall short as a country in keeping our food, hygiene and pharmaceuticals safe.  

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

How to Cure Your Sugar Hangover

I hate to admit it, but I have fallen off the eat for health bandwagon numerous times since Halloween.
From baking sweet treats, to filling our home (and fridge) with them and everywhere in between I have been absolutely failing in the "make good choices" department.

I thought I would explain the physiology behind my series of bad decisions, with the hopes that harping on them will help to turn me away from my sickening and fattening ways.

First, we must stop the cycle.

When you eat too much sugar, it enters your body & is converted to glucose, which enters your bloodstream.  Those simple sugars are easily processed, so there is A LOT of glucose entering your bloodstream very quickly. That increase in blood glucose (sound familiar?) causes your pancreas to create more insulin to help deal with the excess glucose in your system.  Unfortunately, that glucose is used up quickly, which causes a crash.  Your body is working on over drive to handle that sugar and once the sugar is all used up, it takes your pancreas a little while to decrease insulin production.

What does excess insulin cause? It makes you hungry quickly, but more importantly, it makes you crave more and more sugary foods. Aha! There it is, its not you just being "weak" there is a chemical component to it.

The key to interrupting this vicious cycle is to resist the impulse.  Try to fill your diet with things that are more difficult for the body to digest and will help your body level things out.  Protein, fiber, and even good fats are where you want to look.  These will curb your hunger without continuing the depressing sugar craving cycle.

Not only is your blood sugar out of whack, but the bacteria and yeast living in your body are also thrown off.  Both love feeding on those simple sugars, and when they are in the body in excess, those colonies flourish.  Stopping the sugar helps this, but probiotics to restore the balance and put the yeast and bacteria back in check are also helpful.

So, application:
1. Eat good protein, fiber, and fats
(think veggies, lean meats, and legumes)
2. Up the water intake.
The water will help you to flush that excess junk out of the blood and fight dehydration. (Thank you kidneys!)

I loved this article (this post was pretty much a summary)
And the book Skinny Bitch is another that skimming always helps me get back on course!

Summing things up:

I need to get my act together before these cute little guys arrive on the scene!


Happy Tuesday!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Bringing in the Holidays with You've Got Mail

Here it is, apparently now my annual whimsy nostalgic You've Got Mail blog post.
I love it, somehow it just puts romance and excitement into the holiday season.
I picture Kathleen Kelly in all of the hustle and bustle and her relaxed, smiley disposition throughout the movie.  Her femininity and transparency is what I most love.
I conclude all over again that I want to be Kathleen Kelly when I grow up.
Someday ;)

"People are always telling you that change is a good thing. But all they're really saying is that something you didn't want to happen at all... has happened."

Happy Weekend!

Halloween, Holidays, and Hospitality

In a world where excuses are so simple to make, I am attempting to avoid them all together. In my diet, exercise, academics, relationships and most of all spiritual life.

An attempt to eliminate excuses manifested itself last night in the way of hospitality.  In our life right now, we had every excuse in the book to avoid opening our home, but we stepped out of our comfort zone and did anyway.  The results were so refreshing.

We opened our little one bedroom to ~15 guests last night for a night to celebrate Halloween and carve some pumpkins! In my usual fashion, it was an under-photographed event unfortunately (something I would also like to work on).  The menu I set out was:

Mini Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
(Not my picture, obviously)

With sour gummi worms, candy corn, and hot apple cider :)

Everyone brought all sorts of other treats and ended up being one big sugar high.
Despite all of our poor dietary choices, the night was exactly what I needed to re-charge my batteries and get out of my whiny I'm-so-ready-to-graduate rutt.  Not only was it a good night, but it was very clear the Lord was teaching me through it.

We went to Chipotle for dinner as Pumpkin & Pi for some boo-ritos :)

I love entertaining.  I dream of having a beautiful home someday because I dream of opening it to others, welcoming them in, and showing the Love Christ has afforded our family through the love and joy we impart.
I dream of my home someday being a comfortable place, not a perfect place, but a safe place.  A place where people can come and know no fronts or Kevlar necessary.

I felt convicted that "someday" is now.  We could sit around our whole lives planning for "someday." Right now we have been so blessed with a wonderful location and sweet home.  Small and busy are two terrible excuses not to take the plunge of entertaining that I feel the Lord has put in my heart.  Life will always be busy and while the size of our home might not always be my insecurity, there will always be some insecurity the enemy will sneak into my head.

While this sounds slightly dramatic and pretty insignificant, it was a big step for me.  My husband was not on my page at first. He graciously agreed to move forward with my proposed plans however, and in the end, we were both glad things happened as they did.

Anyway, the moral of the story is that 1) excuses are exactly that, excuses and 2) hospitality is like anything else, it requires practice and the longer you go without doing it, the easier it will be to believe those excuses.

I read this blog post a sweet friend posted on Facebook yesterday and wanted to share it also, with Thanksgiving quickly approaching, it reminded me of the blessings in my life and to thank the Lord for them every. single. day. because things can change so quickly. I am so challenged to "consider it all joy," even the situations that seem less than ideal. Please keep that sweet family in your prayers, they have stood strong in such adversity.

Happy Friday!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Coincidence? Probably Not.

The more life experience I gain the less I believe in coincidences.
The "probably not coincidence" I am experiencing right now is related to living with debt and sacrificing to get out of debt ASAP.

 Firstly: This past week a sweet teammate from college and her husband posted their "we"re debt free" scream video on facebook.

I have been dreaming of experiencing that moment ever since!

Secondly: My husband has been wanting to sit down and discuss our finances more and more often lately. He wants us to both be 100% on the same page and 100% in agreement about our goals.

Thirdly: I came across this blog post yesterday titled "Becoming Debt Free & 6 Odd Tips That Helped Us"

Fourthly: My PT program hosted a job fair Monday that made finances and getting into the work force seem so much closer and more real. (even though in reality my PT, DPT status is still (hopefully only) 15 months away)

I know, this very well could be coincidence, but I'd argue more so it is the Lord trying to prepare me for when the day does come when I am earning a paycheck.  He is trying to shape my heart and mind to be in line with my husband's. To quote the blog post mentioned above:  Paying off debt in agreement as a couple and taking longer is better than paying off debt by a bureaucratic tyrant and doing it quickly.

That really did challenge me because I am more of the free spirit in our relationship.  Always making the argument that we should live frugally within reason and that we should live joyfully, which sometimes requires a break from the daily grind or a date night to clear our head. Its in this region where we occasionally butt heads. And I am embarrassed to say, I paint my husband has the bureaucratic tyrant.

I know submitting to my husband to accomplish the goal of paying off student loan debt will be even more difficult for me when I am working and there is more room for "my" and "yours" to creep in.  Which is why focusing on respecting and submitting to my husband and his development & maintenance of our financial plan now is so important.  Luke 16:10 says "Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much."

I want to be the couple whose marriage is strengthened when living with little to be strong enough to handle living with much.  I know that the condition of my heart will be one of the biggest obstacles we will have to overcome.  I want to be debt free, but my actions do not always support my words.  I hope and pray with everything in me that we will not let things and finances cause division in our marriage. Through prayer and constant petitioning of the Lord for humility, I am sure He will provide exactly what we need.

Friday, October 25, 2013

It Finally Came!

I have been watching ebay for weeks for an inexpensive juicer. Unfortunately, since juicing and specifically Breville juicers were featured on the documentary Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead, the prices since my parents bought theirs ~4 months ago had sky-rocketed.  Juicers were featured in home magazines and were actually included in catalog kitchen layouts.  My husband is convinced I am jumping on a bandwagon, and I guess only time will tell, but for now I can't wait to start juicing regularly.  I spent most of October off and on sick and knew I had to try something different.  This is my attempt to change my diet and in doing so, a greater attempt to boost my health and immune system.

I chose the Breville Juice Fountain Compact because I wanted Breville quality and simplicity with cleaning, but was unable/did not want to invest too much in an item I was unsure I would actually use long term.

I thought I would share some of the juicing tips I have found through Google and Pinterest over the past few weeks :)

There are definitely some discrpencies as to some of the best fruits & veggies to juice.  Here is a combination of quite a few lists:
  • Collard Greens
  • Swiss Chard
  • Cucumbers, which are very cleansing and good for skin health.
  • Celery, anti-inflammatory and alkalizing; also said to lower blood pressure.
  • Beets, a super liver cleanser and great vegetarian source of iron.
  • Carrots, rich in beta-carotene, beneficial for eyesight, and also a great liver/gall bladder cleanser. Use caution with carrot juice, as it's also high in sugar.
  • Spinach (occasionally), high in iron, very alkalizing, and great for skin health.
  • Wheatgrass, overall great detoxifier and also alkalizing.
  • Fennel, excellent for digestion, reduces bloating. Great licorice-like flavor.
  • Herbs are great, too; use parsley, cilantro (helps to chelate heavy metals), and ginger (good for digestion and cleansing). Throw in some raw garlic if you're brave or want to ward off vampires. It's great for immune health
  • Apples
  • Pineapple
  • Cranberry
  • Lemon
I found this website most helpful.  There were a few points that I found noteworthy, due to the popularity of juicing specific vegetables.  For example these two points especially stuck out to me:
"Use raw spinach, beet greens and chard sparingly. They contain oxalic acid, which can irritate the the mouth and intestinal tract and block iron and calcium absorption. Oxalic acid has also beed linked to the formation of kidney stones."
"Stay away from juicing raw cabbage, collards, bok choy, kale and broccoli. All cruciferous veggies are goitrogenic, meaning they contain substances that suppress thyroid function when consumed raw. They may also cause gas, bloating and stomach upset in some folks. Don't get me wrong; the cruciferous have wonderful health benefits when cooked or lightly steamed. Cooking deactivates the goitrogens."

I wasn't sure of the site's credibility and I definitly didn't just want to go around spreading unfounded rumors. 
Especially with natural medicine, I tend to question some claims, simply because there is often not research to back them up.  I don't believe research is necessary or infallible by any means, but it never hurts to check more than one source. So, in an attempt to be thorough, I searched Google Scholar and found this case report:

Getting, Jane E., et al. "Oxalate Nephropathy Due to “Juicing”: Case Report and Review." The American journal of medicine (2013).

I did not read the entire thing, but in the abstract I found that the claim made about kidney failure (nephropathy) was sound, as well as this article:

which stated that a study was conducted on women in New Caledonia which found that there was a higher incidence of thyroid cancer in those with iodine deficiency who consumed large amounts of cruciferous vegetables. In case you were wondering, New Caledonia is a special collectivity of France located in the southwest Pacific Ocean. Just in case.

Due to the sources available to support those points, I wholeheartedly recommend the MindBodyGreen website when it comes to juicing :)
Here are some links to other sources I found helpful: one two three

I made my first vegetable juice this morning with things I had in the fridge, tomato, cucumber, celery, and some lettuce and so far so good! And clearly Peyton is none the wiser :)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

October Updates!

So so much going on!

Fall break was last week, filled with lots of research and class projects for the most part, but we did get to head to Atlanta for the weekend :)
  Quick Nashville trip Saturday for Aud's soccer game, back to Atlanta that night. Sunday was packed full, beginning with an awesome service at Apostle's, which was followed by Aud's first shower, and concluded by celebrating her 21st birthday that night (which was followed by a LATE night drive back to Cola).

At the shower
"Innocent" in the kitchen while making meatballs Friday night

The weekend before that DJ and I completed our first Olympic triathlon, woohoo! To say it was tougher than we expected would be an understatement! I had been sick the two weeks leading up to race day and in the end ended up having to day-quil my way through, but we made it and loved it!  We went back and forth about investing in wet suits but were SO thankful we did! A small price to pay for how helpful they were, not to mention we would have frozen without them! So much family came to watch, we felt so loved!

The night before the race we were able to catch this hot air balloon light show in Anderson, SC!
Pre-race: antsy as all get out!
So much fun to see everyone afterwards!

The Thursday before that DJ forced me out of study mode and to the SC State Fair to eat corn dogs and watch Corey Smith in concert.  Watching him took my back to high school, we had so much fun meandering around the fair and re-hashing high school memories.  Definitely not as exciting listening to his song "twenty-one" from my now over twenty-one perspective though :P
Felt like such old folks! (I thought we were going to get shot with DJ all UGA decked out!)

Loved it! Every minute!

As far as continuing tri training goes, I dream about doing a half and maybe someday a full Ironman. Unfortunately right now I don't have cold weather cycling clothes and 1. am not able to invest in them right now and  2. cycling through 30-something temperatures sounds absolutely terrible. For those reasons (and many more) I have chosen to train for another marathon!  I missed running so much when tri training, the running aspect for us was an after thought due to our inexperience/lack of practice in the other two sports.  Another reason I am returning to running for now is that the time tri training required was just too much for our life right now.  I would sit in class all day (DJ would work), we'd work out for 2-3 hours, and after that would still need to take care of dinner and studying/school work.  It was just too much.

Going to try Hal Higdon's Intermediate 1 marathon training program and can always knock it down if its too much during the holidays.  If I start the week of November 2, the 18 week training program will get me to race day, which will be the Columbia Marathon on March 8, 2014!

I am going to try to integrate Pilates into my training schedule this time around.  I know I needed to integrate more strength training in my tri training to be more effective, just could not justify the added time commitment.

In other news, I ordered a juicer yesterday and hope that helps me stay healthy this season.  I have been fighting colds/sore throats for the past 3 weeks and am about ready to be done with it!

Super excited for the holidays!  Although Halloween is not my favorite, $3 Chipotle burritos, pumpkin carving, and candy eating is hard to beat! We're planning on staying in Cola for Thanksgiving, followed by finals week, Audrey's bachelorette (WOOHOO!), Christmastime, and then WEDDING TIME!

So much coming up, I can't wait, just need to finish classes strong and get onto celebrating! :)

Friday, October 4, 2013

Moving Into Fall: A Quick Reminder

I am so jealous of all of the bloggers who are able to complete 31 days of blogging this month and completely enjoying all of the reading.  While I was reading this post, I was reminded how rewarding wearing the right colors can be.  As someone who enjoys shopping second hand, if I enjoy the look of an item I tend to buy even if the color is less than ideal.  After reading that post, it is a mistake I will stop making now.

I'm pretty sure I am a Deep Winter. I didn't go through any testing or anything to determine that, just compared my eye, skin, and hair color to the swatches on the pictures.

Happy fall shopping! :)

Here are some links that are helpful to determine your own colors: 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Here's to 25!

I turned 25 almost 2 weeks ago now.  I feel old and am not just saying that for attention.  It legitimately has thrown me for a loop.  I don't like change and absolutely can't stand getting older.  I don't like increased responsibility, my gray hair keeps multiplying, and I am pasty white due to avoiding the sun to protect against unnecessary wrinkles.  Its depressing to do nothing but study and stress about school related craziness all. the. time.  While in the meantime it keeps happening, I keep getting old.

So, in order to combat this depressing feeling of oldness, I have tried to make changes in different areas. It started with changing my jewelry choices from plain and simple to fun and trendy, has progressed to experimenting with nail polish, and finally has taken a turn to re-vamping my wardrobe that I have kept oh-so-simple for so long. I'm branching out and having fun doing it.

I asked for a sewing machine for my birthday.  I never thought I would see the day that I would wish for a sewing machine!  Partly I want to try to actually get around to making us Christmas stockings and a tree skirt this year, but also, I partly wanted to try what so many bloggers seem to be trying these days, refashioning.  If I can do it with furniture, how hard can a skirt be? :)

Our first test of the semester was this morning and I celebrated with some thrift shopping.  I love the thrill of the hunt (as well as the price tag, of course!).

With my sewing machine in the back of my mind, I took some purchase risks, see exhibits A and B.

 The uglier the better, right? :P

The sequin skirt was a "most definitely" will try and make a cute sequinned mini. I have loved seeing sequin pieces all over Pinterest lately and thought this would be a fun project to try. I'm going to try and make a cute summer skirt and possibly tank with the top/skirt combo.  We'll see how it all really turns out though :)

Some looks I have been oogling over:

Polka Dots:

1 2 3 4 5


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 

Some links I have found with advice for sewing sequined fabric
1 2 3

Some other updates lately:
1. DJ starts a new job working at the local technical college Monday (woohoo! such a God thing!)
2. DJ's sister got married last weekend, super excited for them and super exhausted at the same time!
3. Both of us are back into the grind of classes, but it is my last full semester of classes so everything seems a little bitter sweet. Ha, just kidding, I am soooo ready to be done!

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

How is it Already August??

My acute care clinical ended Thursday and Friday we were Athens bound for our first sprint triathlon together and my husband's first ever!

We had a blast, it was a great weekend, and overall were happy with our performance :)

Since then I have enjoyed getting ready for classes to start tomorrow, lots of blog reading, home updates and sleeping in. I have avoided rushing at all costs, I know things will rush at me in high speed tomorrow, but until then, peace.

I purchased a heart rate monitor last week and have enjoyed reading up on training with that and how to use it to increase my endurance.

I came across this blog post which I absolutely loved, simple but real 

I prepared and baked my first whole chicken. I picked up a Pampered Chef deep dish baker at a thrift store and about a week later found the stoneware baking bowl that goes with it at a garage sale (woohoo!). I knew if I didn't attempt a chicken soon, the two pieces would sit un-used in the cupboard, I'm hoping now that I have seen how easy, healthy, and yummy it was, I will attempt it more often :) As I type the broth is on the stove simmering away, again sooo much simpler than I would have imagined, just takes doing it once to figure things out.

As strange as it sounds, I have been reading a lot about vaccines lately.  The more physical therapy experience I gain, the more interested I become in working in pediatrics after graduation. I have enjoyed reading and researching Down's Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy (strange I know) and how physical therapy can play a big role in improving the quality of life of those children.  The Lord has given me a huge heart for children (and adults) with special needs.

I empathize with the parents of the children I work with. While they are some of the sweetest kids in the world, it can get exhausting, especially when the child's parents are older. 

I begin to wonder if there are factors that negatively affect a child's neurological development after birth that we are yet to draw the connection between.  I read this article and continue to research what the scientific evidence says about vaccinations.  Dr Mercola is one of my go to resources for health information, this is posted on his website. I am still looking into his statements as well.

This was not meant to become a political debate on vaccines by any means, just a quick mention of thing that have been on my mind.

Finally, saw this yesterday and it got me to thinking, when my husband and I started dating, I was the "get up and go" in our relationship, by far. I still am in some areas, but I definitely feel like he's gaining on me in the "making friends/mingling is fun" category. Which is awesome, because I see that and love how he has become more confident and outgoing in the few years we have been together. We both have, I have become more confident embracing my introverted side, he has embraced his extroverted side, and somehow we continue to balance each other out perfectly, funny how the Lord works things. :)

Anyways, happy Wednesday :)

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

...And I Burned a Bag of Chocolate

Last week was suuuuper crazy, Mid-term of clinical, In-service presentation, and headed to the beach with my middle seester for the weekend!

So, I wanted to make a sweet to serve at my in-service because that's what most people do, I decided to try chocolate dipped Oreos.

In hindsight, I had too much going on... I was an emotional basket case because I was nervous and...

...I burned the chocolate. Trust me, due to my emotions running high, it was quite possibly my most traumatic kitchen fail yet.

Add "to master chocolate dipped Oreos" to the bucket list, because I love Oreos and how cute are these for pretty much every single occasion???

Someday... :)

Monday, July 15, 2013

Just Looking for Something New :)

I have put high-lights in my hair twice in my life, once professionally and once via boxed mix.
Neither went well.

Perhaps its this awful hint of gray that haunts me daily or just wanting to mix it up a little bit, but I've been wanting to try something new...

From here, here, here, and here

And then I come back to, I love how brunettes who stay brunettes look, like Katie Holmes or Courtney Cox, always look great with beautiful dark hair, why mess with something not broken (a little boring, but not broken).

From here, here, here, and here

I can't decide, it would be fun to try, but a pretty pricey & time consuming for just dabbling if it does or doesn't work out...
Things are quickly stacking up against the coloring, but I'll still dream for a little bit :)

Maybe I'll stick to tri training and shoe shopping :P