Friday, July 31, 2015

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday everyone! It's time for a fun link up with 
 ErikaAndrea,and Narci.  Yes, it's time for...

Here are a few of my favorite things right now...

I love all things Bath & Body Works and have been enjoying 
Endless Weekend so much lately.  When I popped in the store over
the weekend, I found this hand soap on sale for 50% off.  Obviously
it needed to come home with me, and I've been enjoying it every
day since. Win!

Another favorite lately is this fun summer scent.
I picked up the shower gel and the body lotion and every
time I use it the smell almost transports you to the islands!

Most of my Bath & Body favorites come from their fall collections,
but I am embracing summer and enjoying this scent a lot right now.

If it is possible to fall in love with a cup, then this is the cup
that will be THE ONE!

I have an odd attraction to tumblers, and have plenty of them, but
this one has changed all of that. I would be willing to part with
all my beloved tumblers if necessary because this one is just so
awesome. Thank you Yeti for making the cup of my dreams, lol.

It holds 30 oz of water, and keeps your ice from melting for HOURS.
Not even kidding. I wake up in the morning and my water is still
ice cold. 

It will also keep hot drinks hot, but thanks to our 98 degree temperatures
lately, I haven't had the need (or desire) to test how it works on hot drinks.

Click here for more info about this tumbler, or to get your own.
They are also available in sporting goods stores.

I mentioned in this post that I have been craving all things Kendra Scott
lately. Her jewelry is so beautiful, and if you walk into a store, you just might 
mistake it for paradise. Last week, I added two new items to my tiny little Kendra 

Elisa Gold Pendant Necklace in Slate

I also bought these earring to go with the necklace.

Dani Gold Earrings in Slate

The Dani earrings are my new favorite! They are the most perfect size ever.
This style earring comes in the Danielle, the Elle, the Dani, and the Lee.

The Danielle's are the largest in this style, going down to the Lee being the

I have two pair of the Elle, but now that I bought the Dani earrings, I will
probably always stick with them. They are light enough that I don't even
feel them in my ears, but still large enough to be what I would consider
"statement" earrings. 

Girls and their jewelry, am I right?

That wraps up another fun Friday Favorites post!
Be sure to visit the link up to read more.

Wishing you a HAPPY FRIDAY!

Do you love Kendra Scott jewelry?

What are your favorites this week?

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Three Things Thursday

Happy Thursday to you! This week is almost to an end and so is July.
I can hardly believe that Saturday will be August 1st and school will
be starting back soon after that. My baby girl is going to be a JUNIOR
in high school. Still don't know how this happened so quickly!

Before I get all nostalgic and weepy on you over my baby growing up so 
quickly, I want to share three things I'm loving this week!

I am loving this coffee so much right now. I found it last weekend
and really need to stop back by and pick up another couple of packs.

My body doesn't tolerate caffeine well, so I feel best when I drink decaf coffee.
I especially love flavored coffees, but they are really, really hard to find. When
I luck up and find a flavored decaf coffee, I try to stock up. Going back to Target
for more of this yummy flavor is at the top of my to do list, for sure.

Miss S and I are going to visit my parents today. I love that we can 
drop in and visit them more during the summer. It's always so nice to
spend time with them and they sure spoil us when we visit.

I am absolutely loving Periscope. 

It is twitter's live streaming app and you can read more about it here
and here and probably plenty of other places too.

It is so much fun. It's one thing to read blog posts written by your favorite
bloggers, and to read articles written by your favorite people, but it is a whole
new ballgame being able to watch them, hear them, and communicate with
them live and in real time. So very cool!

I follow about 50 people on Periscope, but two of my favorites right now 
would have to be Healthy Diva and Jamie Eason.

They are both happy, positive, and encouraging and it's hard to come away
from one of their broadcasts without a smile on your face.

Trust me. Get the app and look them up!

I'm going to try to share a link from Healthy Diva on Periscope. The broadcasts are
only available for 24 hours on the app, so I'm not sure if it will play or not.

Fingers crossed that by sharing the link, it will somehow work for more than
24 hours. Her encouraging, real message is one that I could benefit from hearing

Well, there you have it. That's what I'm loving lately. Enjoy your day
and I'll see you tomorrow for a Friday Favorites link up.

One last thing before I go....

- bonus Thursday goodness -

These cute pillow covers are on sale right now at PB Teen. Miss S is over her
phase of "all things monogrammed" but I think these are just adorable!

Have you tried Periscope yet?

How often do you visit your parents?

If you're a coffee drinker, do you prefer plain or flavored?

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

What's Up Wednesday {Reality Check}

Is anyone else out there finding it hard to believe that this coming Saturday will be 
August 1st? We officially have only 13 days left for summer vacation.

If that doesn't blow your mind enough, think about the fact that we are already 
210 days into 2015.

That means we have 155 days left before we will be ringing in 2016.

Wow, so much to think about.  Definitely a wake up call and a reality check.

One of my goals for 2015 was to live more from intention, and less from habit.
I find myself looking ahead (or even behind) rather than focusing on and enjoying
the 'right now' in life.

I also planned to develop and follow a consistent exercise schedule. That one is
a struggle too. Some weeks I do great at exercising four to five times, other weeks
I exercise two to three times. I'm a personal trainer and a health coach for heaven's 
sake! Why do I struggle with this? 

I am setting a goal for August, to recommit to these two goals and make some
progress in these two areas in the next 155 days. I want to be proud of myself
when December 31st rolls around!

How are you doing with achieving the goals that you set for 2015?

Can you believe that summer vacation is almost over?

What do you need to focus on to finish strong in 2015?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Another Quickie Workout

If you have 30 minutes, you have time for an awesome full body workout!

I'm feeling extremely tired and unmotivated today so most likely this is the workout 
I'll be doing. I didn't sleep well last night and am feeling it today, but surely I can get 
psyched up for a 30 minute workout. I know that I will feel so much better after 
working out.

Also, I'm still working on my "Live Simply" mantra for the week. I am learning that
organizing, and de-cluttering are a process. Definitely not something that can be done
in a day or even a week. I'm pretty sure it will need to be an ongoing project for
several weeks, maybe even months.

Let's call it a work in progress!

Have a great Tuesday! 

Monday, July 27, 2015

Marvelous Monday Mantra { Live Simply }

Happy Monday everyone!

Miss S is back from her trip to the beach and all is right in my world.
I did have a brief moment of realization this morning that I will no longer
be driving her to school. Yes, when school starts back in a few weeks, she will be
driving herself to school. For the first time in 11 years, I won't be taking her to school.
My first thoughts were to feel like she doesn't need me, but thankfully I quickly shot
that thought out of my head and realized that this not only is this an exciting chapter
in her life, but it is a normal part of  growing  up. I am happy for her because I know
she is going into some of the most fun years of her life.

Well that was not where I intended to go with this blog post at all.
I intended to talk about my mantra for the week...

" Live SIMPLY "

I have formed a theory recently about vacations. This makes total sense in my
head, so hopefully I can type it out and have it make sense here too.

I believe that one thing that makes vacations so relaxing is that not only are
you escaping the stresses and responsibilities of the real world for a few days,
you are also escaping the "junk" in your life that holds you back. The junk
that keeps you from feeling successful, the junk that makes you feel tied down,
and the junk that makes you feel stressed. Well, my theory is that a lot of the
junk that keeps me from feeling free, and happy, and relaxed, and successful is

Think about it, when you go on vacation, you only pack what you really need. 
You pack the essentials. 

Think about how much junk that you own, that you don't take with you.
Think about this.... If you can live without it for 5 days, or 10 days, or however
long your vacation is, do you really, really need it in your home?

Do we need the 10 (or more) coffee mugs that we own, or could we keep two
or three of our favorites?

Do we need the 6 - 10 (or more) lipsticks that we have stored in our bathroom,
or could we keep our favorite for each season?

Do you see where I am going with this? 

My plan this week is to walk into each room and really think about the 
things that I own. I'm a girl that loves her stuff, but do I love it more than
feeling relaxed and calm in my space?

I'm going to take a hard look at some of my "stuff," some of my "junk,"
and see if keeping it is worth sacrificing my calm, and my peace of mind.

I want to live in a home that is relaxing and a safe haven, not one that is a source of 
stress. One that I can't wait to go on vacation to get away from.

I love these thoughts...

Now for our short little weekend recap....

Friday night we got Miss S home from the beach and no one wanted to
think about cooking. I had been craving buffalo chicken pizza for several
days so ordering pizza seemed like the best thing to do.

Saturday Hubby did so much work in our yard. He cut down a tree, prepped
an area that we want to make into a patio, cut the grass, and also made a new 
flower bed. I have no idea how he did all of that in this ridiculous heat. I am
so thankful that he is able to do the things he does despite the 96 degree weather.

Miss S had breakfast and a shopping day with a friend, then later in the afternoon went
to Target with me. We picked up a few random things, plus got her school supplies.

This is Miss S goofing off in the school supply section acting like she wants
a Minion backpack and lunch box. I can promise you those times are long gone!

Teenagers today will ONLY carry a North Face backpack or a Patagonia backpack!

Also on Saturday, I spent time watching Katie on periscope. I love her blog, but 
seeing her in person is even better. She is the cutest, happiest, funniest person! If
you are not on periscope, do yourself a favor and join now! She will seriously
make your day with her positive attitude and authentic personality.

Sunday was church, lunch with friends, and a quick nap. It was a great
mix of fun times and lazy moments!

Guess I better get my workout on, and then get started with my de-cluttering.

I'm linking up with Katie for 

Have a MARVELOUS Monday!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Friday Favorites { Fit to the Core }

Happy Friday to you! I'm especially happy on this Friday because my baby
girl is coming home from the beach today! She has been away since last Friday
and I am so excited to be getting her back at home this afternoon. I know she has 
had a wonderful, wonderful week, but this momma (and her daddy too) sure missed her!

Even the fur babies have moped around this week wondering where their sister is!

Well friends, it is time for Friday Favorites!

For today's favorites,  I want to be a good personal training momma and share 
with you four of my favorite core strengthening exercises.

I won't get technical, but your "core" includes more muscles than just your "abs."

Your core also includes your obliques, glutes, hips, thighs, hamstrings and back muscles.

After I experienced a muscle related back injury in May 2013, I have learned SO much
about these muscles and why they don't need to be overlooked. There are so many benefits 
to having a strong core. A strong core can help prevent back pain, can help with postural 
imbalances, and can improve not only your athletic performance, but your day to day life.

I now include these core exercises in my regular workouts. I try to do these exercises three 
to four times per week. This certainly is not the only way to strengthen your core, 
these exercises are simply my own personal favorites at this time in my life.

{ My Favorite Core Exercises: }

1.  Plank 

  • Modified {Beginner} -  
                          begin on knees, holding for 5 - 10 seconds. Repeat as many times as


  • Intermediate 
                          hold for 20 - 30 seconds. Repeat as many times as possible.


  • More advanced
                        hold for 30 - 90 seconds.  Repeat as many times as possible.


Once you have mastered the more advanced version of the plank, there are many other

ways to make the plank more difficult. For today's post we will stick to the three main

variations of the traditional plank.

2.  Side Plank

  • Modified {Beginner} -  
                          begin with knees bent , holding for 5 - 10 seconds. Repeat as many times as


  • Intermediate 
                          hold for 20 - 30 seconds. Repeat as many times as possible.


  • More advanced
                        hold for 30 - 90 seconds.  Repeat as many times as possible.


There are also many ways to make the side plank more difficult. Again, for today's post we

will stick to the three main variations of the side plank.

3.  Glute Bridge

  • Beginner to Intermediate
                           Hold in raised position for 15 - 30 seconds. Repeat 3 - 5 times.


  • More advanced
                          Raise your hips so your body forms a straight line from your shoulders
                          to your knees. Brace your abs and lift your right knee toward your chest.
                          Hold for 2 - 3 seconds, then lower your right foot. Repeat with the other


4.  Quadruped to Bird Dog

  • Beginner
                    Begin on hands and knees with your palms flat on the floor and shoulder-width
                    apart. Relax your core so that your lower back and abdomen are in their natural
                    positions. Without allowing your lower back to rise or round, brace your abs as if
                    you were about to be punched in the gut. Hold your abs tight for 5 to 10 seconds.
                    That's one repetition.


  • Intermediate to more advanced
                           Begin Quadruped exercise. Next, brace your abs, and raise your right arm
                           and left leg until they're in line with your body. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds.
                           Return to the starting position. Repeat on other side. Continue to alternate
                           back and forth. Keep your hips and lower back still, even as you switch sides.


Links for more core info:

The Best Core Exercises

Core Strength Training - Not Just About Your Abs

 7 Moves For a Stronger Core

Be sure to add some of these exercises to your fitness routine. There is so much more
to having a healthy body than just abs. Don't make the mistake of neglecting the 
other muscles in your core.

I'm linking up my Friday Favorites with ErikaAndrea,and Narci.  Hop over to their 
blogs to check out their favorites, plus more awesome link ups.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Hopeful Thursday

It doesn't take big things to make me happy. There are many, many small things
that will put a smile on my face.

This morning's email from Kirkland's did exactly that.

This email gives me hope that my favorite season is getting closer and closer!
I absolutely love fall. I mean love it! Pumpkin everything, cooler weather,
and the changes in the leaves makes me so happy. I also love decorating my
house for fall. I may even have more fall decor that Christmas decor. 

Yesterday I mentioned that I had BIG plans to finally tackle organizing my 
scrapbook room/office. I headed out to find storage containers and baskets and
completely struck out. I tried to shop near my house, but came up empty-handed.
Today, I am hopeful that Target will not disappoint. If Target doesn't have what I 
need, I can try World Market, Home Depot, or Lowe's. I'd sure like to get this task 
started today. Fingers crossed.

Hubby made my day yesterday by getting me the cup that I've been wanting.

Yeti Rambler 30 oz.

I love 30oz cups (or larger) and this one has been on my wish list for
several weeks. It has a 5 year warranty and guarantees to keep your ice cold
for hours in the summer and your coffee hot for hours in the winter.

Super excited by my cup, and so thankful for my Hubby that loves me and does
sweet little things to keep a smile on my face.

My baby girl will be home from the beach tomorrow! I am hopeful that she
will spend at least a little time at home with us this weekend! She loves spending
time with her friends (I totally get that,) but I love spending time with her too.
I have really, really missed her this week!

Tell me...

What are you hopeful about today?

What is your favorite season?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

Oh my goodness where is my motivation this morning? So much I need to do, but so
little "get up and go" this morning. I know I need to get moving, or I will just feel worse
by the end of the day.

Does anyone else struggle with wanting to be productive but feeling unmotivated at
the same time? So frustrating sometimes and takes a lot of mental convincing. The mind
is a funny thing!

I really want/need to tackle organizing my craft room/office today. But, I'm dragging my
feet because I will have to round up some storage bins, baskets, etc. before I can
really accomplish anything. So, it's the rounding up the organizational items that
is holding me back. 

Before I tackle that task, I want to share a quick What's Up Wednesday.

 I've been absolutely loving salads this week.

They make the perfect meal in this ridiculously hot weather. Crisp, cool, salads
for the win!

I need to get started on my CEU's for my personal training renewal. As a trainer,
I'm required to complete 20 CEU's every two years. Last time I re-certified I took 
courses on working with older adults, staying injury free, and on healing issues in 
the lower back. This time I'm thinking of studying more about nutrition, weight 
management, and also a bit more on preventing sports injuries, and shoulder and 
knee problems. After experiencing a few injuries myself, I am 100% on board with 
exercise safety. I want my clients to work hard and get results all while staying 
safe and injury free!

Speaking of pain, unfortunately my left knee has decided to bother me again.

It will flare up from time to time (for no apparent reason) so I am going back
to my old faithful pain prevention duo.

When I take these two supplements regularly I hardly ever have joint issues. For some silly
reason, I haven't taken these in months and now my knee is reminding me that it's time
to start again.

I plan to give my knee a little rest today, and will do yoga and core work
rather than cardio today. If it still feels a little off tomorrow, I will substitute a
bike ride for my 5K walk/jog day.

Guess it's time for me to get started with my organizing. I know I will feel so much
better when it's done!

Have a great Wednesday!

What's up with you today?

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