Where Have You Been?

I’ve obviously been slacking on my blogging game lately! My mind has gone from being overwhelmed with school after 10 days of Spring Break to being overwhelmed with wanting to go home for Easter! Couldn’t be happier that I will be back in the 901 tomorrow.

Luckily, things around here have been pretty productive! The last two days this  week I managed to get my booty off the couch and onto the hamster wheel for the first two days of Couch to 5k! It feels way better to get my heart pumping (& get the fit bit saying 10,000) than to sit on the couch all afternoon, but that sure is hard to be reminded of while I’m on the couch!

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Also, been trying to keep this dude organized aka a full time job! He’s gone from just starting photography around November to booking engagement shoots, business projects (for the Wall Street Journal, what?!!), and multiple weddings! I’ve become the employed assistant since I tend to be more of the planner type.

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My Mary Kay business has taken off & I am having so much fun! Just in the past week I’ve had 5 orders placed. And I was able to place my first big order thanks to Mom & Nana! I decided to use my birthday money as a sort of investment to get all stocked with awesome MK products to sell (& use myself too!) Thrilled to open the box when it arrives Thursday & share with ya’ll!

Did you catch that? My birthday is in 26 days.. I’ll be twenty! What on earth? Twenty year olds have it all together… Or so I thought! I feel like that number is way older than I feel!

What happened to being 2 & Baby Bop cakes?

What happened to being 2 & Baby Bop cakes?

There is so much jam packed into these last 5 weeks of school! I can hardly get a steady hold on the fact that in 20 class days I will be saying goodbye to Starkville & hello to Memphis! I can hardly contain my excitement. With summer comes sunshine, swimming, a Virginia trip, a florida trip, & lots of relaxin!

Please take a second to pray for this sweet little dude, Knox. He’s just over 2 years old and we spent lots of last summer together hittin up Target and snugglin’ Marley.

If you follow me on instagram, you already saw that he is at LeBonheur after having a few seizures yesterday for unknown reasons.

Pray for comfort for his momma and peace and healing for his little body. Thank you!

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Expect a vlog tomorrow on my favorite products… Not just makeup, but dishwashing detergent, nail polish, & more!

See ya then. xoxo.

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sweet gratitude, II

I am beyond grateful for:

The first day of spring and promise of summer to follow,

The first day of spring and promise of summer to follow,

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An incredible dinner and night of Bachelor fun with friends, Mitchell’s aunt, and cousin’s wife and her sister,

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big breakfasts that stuff tummys for long road trips,

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quiet time with my parents, the Word, and grande Blondes,

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the return of my favorite show, Mitchell lending me his iPad,

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words of wisdom from EmilyLey.com,

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intense card games and laughs with close friends,

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& a friend who gracious let me do her over with all my Mary Kay!

“give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you..”

1 Thessalonians 5:18

From The Happiness Project: Gratitude is important to happiness. Studies show that consistently grateful people are happier and more satisfied with their lives; they even feel more physically healthy and spend more time exercising. Gratitude brings freedom from envy, because when you are grateful for what you have, you are not consumed with wanting something different or something more. That, in turn, makes it easier to live within your means and also to be generous to others.

Remember to pause this week, and be grateful whether the circumstances seem great or just tough!

Finding the Fit Bit

Off and on for many years, I have heard about the “FitBit” & loved the idea of what it can accomplish. It is a smll gadget that throughout the day, tracks steps taken (like a pedometer), calories burned, and mileage~ right up this girls alley!

I always assumed it would be overly expensive so I never checked into it. But while we were in Destin last week, we got to talking about Spencer’s mom having one and I got excited to check into it.

The FitBit Zip tracks mileage, calories, and steps for $60 while the FitBit One tracks all of that + sleep for $100! I love the idea of both but decided to go with the Fit Bit Zip for price & I have used the iPhone app– Sleep Cycle to track sleep! It is super cool. You lay your phone in the bed with you and it keeps track of your movement in order to interpret which sleep zones you’re in, how many “REM cycles” etc. Check it out!

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I was so thrilled to start using the Fit Bit last Thursday! It has been better than I even expected. I wear it on my hip from when I wake up until I get in bed each night. It has made me so much more aware of how much I move and how many calories I’m burning.

It is really helping me to get more exercise throughout the day! Pretty often now I’m telling Mitchell, “let’s walk there to get my steps up!” It’s like a competition. The fitbit website gave me the goal of 10,000 steps a day & I love reaching it and even hope to bump that up as more movement becomes a habit in my life!

The last week has looked like this:

Thursday      8,047

Friday            9,822

Saturday       10,882

Sunday           5,641

Monday          8,033

Tuesday        12,425

& today, Wednesday

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for a total of 68,691 steps & 30.25 miles since starting!

One goal I have is to make my days more consistent!

Almost everyday, it has pushed me to take a walk with Marley or drag Mitchell out for a walk to and from campus. 🙂 So that’s something to celebrate! Anything is better than all that couch sitting I had grown accustomed to! Today, I went with Whitney and Max for a 2 mile walk in Sanderson! So fun.

The Struggle

I have never understood that “The Struggle is Real” saying. But I am hear to tell you THE STRUGGLE IS REAL.

Everyone is struggling with something.

Pride

Laziness

Anorexia

Organization

Self Discipline

School

Divorce

Depression

Anger

Resentment

I think this is such an important thing to realize. When I envy other people and crazily think, “if I were like them, everything would be perfect.” I have to remind myself, no life is without struggles.

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It took me a long time to realize that the struggle is part of the story. Without the valley, there can be no mountain.

I am a lover of fresh starts… new days, blank notebooks, August of every school year, January 1st, tanks of gas with zero miles. I constantly feel the urge to “start over” when I fall. However, in time, I have realized I cannot start over. I can never, on my own, wipe my slate clean. My story is my story.. ups & DOWNS included.

What are you struggling with?

Would you dare to just embrace it and know that

the Lord is working for our good (Romans 8:28)?

sweet gratitude

Although not our first instinct, gratitude can change perspective.

From The Happiness Project: Gratitude is important to happiness. Studies show that consistently grateful people are happier and more satisfied with their lives; they even feel more physically healthy and spend more time exercising. (woo hoo!) Gratitude brings freedom from envy, because when you are grateful for what you have, you are not consumed with wanting something different or something more. That, in turn, makes it easier to live within your means and also to be generous to others.

This passage inspired me to stop, or at least slow down, and be thankful for all I have. So once a week, I plan to share it with you!

This week, I am grateful for:

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THIS TYPE OF MOMMA

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CHILDHOOD MEMORIES & DESTIN TRIPS

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READING TIME & PUPPY SNUGGLES

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HOT COFFEE, LEMON POPPYSEED ANYTHING, & BEING PRODUCTIVE

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COOL PINTEREST FINDS

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OCCASIONAL MOTIVATION TO ACTUALLY GET READY

“give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you..”

1 Thessalonians 5:18

A Different Kind of Morning

Not the peaceful, quiet morning I wrote about yesterday…

Today the leap out of bed came at 3:30. Yes, am. We were ready to get in the car! Destination… Destin, Florida.

The bags are packed. Assignments turned in. Worries left behind. We are ready for sun, sand, and lots of laughter!

Whitney, Spencer, Mitchell and I are on our way to the coast for 6 days!!! I have a few blog posts scheduled for you so keep an eye out for those. Then, come Thursday, I’ll update you on all the sunny fun!

PLUS Thursday I will have my Mary Kay stuff in hand & quickly become a business woman!!

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If you want to keep up with me between now and then, or schedule a FREE makeover for when I’m back, check out the above! Twitter, Facebook, Instagram..

Until next time…

March, September, and everything in between!

Early Mornings

Ever wake up before the sun?

I know… it stinks, you’re tired, your eyes won’t open, it is cold, you can’t even see… just. one. more. minute. I almost always beg.

When I fight the urge to stay under the abundance of fluffy white linens, I end up thanking myself God for it.

My ideal morning has me arising in the darkness, quietly tip toe ing around the house to get just ready enough, grabbing every belonging in my house it seems and heading across town to a coffeehouse. My living room will work too, but that never requires more than PJs which means my eyes are more likely to assume they can slack off on the job.

Preferably, Starbucks would not be my destination, although it absolutely suffices.

For early, quiet mornings, it has got to be the town’s best kept secret… A “hipster” atmosphere makes it that much better.

I have fallen in love with the ease of parking with only 3 other cars in the lot… the way the barista’s whisper before 9 am.. the clicking of the keyboard or turning of old wrinkled pages.. the way my pen runs across a blank page… the promise of new mercies, not yet tainted… It’s warms my soul. It is when I start my day early, in communication with my great God (in all truth, coffee is of no importance) that my storm of a day is less tragic. I am aware of my fresh start, that my sins of yesterday are forgiven, thrown to the side. For this, I keep coming back for more.

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via Pinterest

Starkville’s newest addition called 929… hits my idea of morning perfection on the head. It is located on Main Street, adding to the unmatchable atmosphere. You use unmatching mugs and check out at a counter made of old wood, beautifully battered. I just love their details.

via 929 Coffee Bar on Facebook

via 929 Coffee Bar on Facebook

via 929 Coffee Bar on Facebook

via 929 Coffee Bar on Facebook

I’d relate the hours of say 6-9 am to the calm before the storm. You can check your email, but there will hardly ever be more than the 3 am LOFT, Banana Republic, and Coach sale notifications. No teachers asking for homework assignments, yet. But when I close my Bible, leave that place, get in my car, and venture out into the world, onto campus, wherever my day takes me, I will never be in the same state I was in, until tomorrow morning.

Double Time

I have noticed in studying the Word recently that many verses are repeated, almost word for word. I love to find them; specifically because I feel that anything recurring must be important!

One passage I recall is Luke 6:46-49 says, “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord’ and do not do what I say? I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built. But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”

Matthew 7: 24-27 states, “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man building a house on rock. The rain came down, the streams rose and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall. But everyone who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built a house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Whether it is an actual recurring verse or just seeing something twice, I cannot ignore it after the second time!! 

Today, it was Ephesians 2. Rachel at bible study asked what we would say if someone asked us why we are Christians/what the Gospel is? and I was convicted. I can give you a “sunday school” answer, or phrase it in my own, lacking words. But I can hardly think of an exact scripture to share. I am nothing without God!

She encouraged us to memorize Ephesians 2, a condensed passage laid out perfectly for explaining to someone who didn’t grow up in church or has no knowledge of our Lord and Savior. I made note of this and planned to look back later…

Once I got home, I started to look at Multiplymovement.com, a study focused on making disciples from a book by Francis Chan. Not two paragraphs from the beginning it says EPHESIANS 2. 

Okay, Okay, I cannot ignore it. 

I encourage you to read Ephesians 2 as well. Would you be ready if someone approached you about the word of God today? I know I am unprepared. Luckily, I think God would intercede and speak through me, but I must memorize scripture so that I am able to speak His words, not mine. 

We are called to memorize. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All scripture is God breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

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from Pinterest

Our only way to fight satan is with scripture. 

“…take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.” EPHESIANS 6:16

Heritage Red

A few months ago, after seeing a need for affordable rental homes in Collierville, my parents bought a house!

While checking it out, I saw a random old desk in the shed. It was pushed into the back corner adorned with lots of random junk so I only saw a quick glance of the front of it, but I knew I had to have it!

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The previous owner left it there & my parents said it was all mine! Months passed…. and finally this weekend we went to get it!

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It turned out even better than I remembered or expected! It is especially deep (atleast 3 feet!!) which makes for lots of workspace. Also, it is made of oak… great quality. And so heavy!!

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My dad and I picked up 3 bottles of spray paint from Home Depot in “Heritage Red” and immediately got to sprucing this baby up!

[This method known as the “impatient-must-complete-project-today” version. Always my first choice!]

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We chose “Heritage Red” to avoid the bright, stop sign red while still matching this part of my room

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A good coat and a couple hours in the sun left me with
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A new/old desk I absolutely adore

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that matches my $25 loveseat perfectly!

I can hardly wait to introduce them!! (The loveseat is in Starkville/Desk in Collierville) Come on May!!

 

“Copy Cat” Las Delicias Guacamole

Fresh, Healthy, Delicious, Stick to your Ribs DIP!

Guacamole is in itself incredible. Las Delicias in Memphis takes it a step further. This family owned, authentic Mexican Restaurant is infamous around the 901. With little to no decoration and located on a street corner in a questionable part of town, the environment is definitely not what brings people in! It’s the food. They know how to do mexican food! And at a good price!

via totallymemphis.com

via totallymemphis.com

My family goes almost every weekend (you think I’m exaggerating!) and Mitchell and I are always sure to make it a priority when we are home!

We start out with guacamole and cheese dip. The guac is to die for. It’s very chunky and requires a spoon to pile a helping on each chip… You have got to have it. If you’re in Memphis, or within 50 miles, GO! And if not… do what we do. Fake it til you make it.

No recipe involved. All it takes is avocado, tomato, and onion chopped. Toss the chunks (Avocado-measuring about a square inch/Tomatos & onions diced small) in your most festive bowl… dust with cilantro if you’ve got it…spritz with some fresh lemon and lime too!

20130227-DSC_8727 20130227-DSC_8729Then proceed to the couch… bowl in hand with a huge bag of chips the table with a portion controlled amount on your plate!

(To that I say- GOOD LUCK!)

You’ll be saying holy guacamole by the 2nd bite!

via tenfeetoffbeale.com

via tenfeetoffbeale.com