July 31, 2013



Do you know what today is?

You're welcome...
For that.
And also for this...

May you all have a Channing All Over Your Tatum kinda hump day. That is all.

July 30, 2013

A Healthy Obsession



(When I say "y'all" twice in a row, you know shizz is about to get real serious.)

If you've read this blog for any amount of time, you know I'm extremely passionate about leading a healthy lifestyle. So much so that I even designated an entire tab (right about here) designated to healthy living. You would also know that I am all about simplicity...from DIY projects, to my outfits, to recipes, to my meals...the simpler, the better. I mean, honestly, who has time for anything other than blogging, working out, drinking and watching The Bachelorette these days?

Moving right along...

Like I said, I'm all about simplicity. Especially when it comes to my meals. Specifically when it comes to breakfast. More specifically the kind of breakfast that I don't have time to cook.

That being said, I have read a bazillion and one nutrition fact labels on a bazillion and two protein bars and for the most part, all I ever find is crap, crap and more crap. Sucralose this, evaporated cane juice that...blah, blah, blah.

There are, however, a few exceptions, like Larabars and JayBars, that are actually not filled with junk, but I've been there, done that and it's time for something new. I've worn out just about all of Larabar's good flavors and I think JayBars are close to $3/bar. Not to mention, I believe they have around 10g of sugar per bar. Mmmm...thanks but no thanks.

Alas...I have found the mother of all protein bars. Like THE MOTHER.
Did you just hear angels sing? Because I most definitely did!

Welcome QuestBars into your healthy little lives!

I am, however, here to tell you that there are two lines of QuestBars so don't be confused: the 99.95% natural line and the 100% natural line. The difference? The 99.95% line is sweetened with sucralose (artificial sweetener...no bueno) whereas the 100% line is sweetened with stevia and erythritol. (All natural sweeteners! Happy dance! Happy dance!!)

Yes. That's 160 calories, 5g fat, 17g fiber, 1g of sugar (which is most likely natural sugar from the nuts), and 20g (YES! 20g!) of protein! (The angels sing again!)

Take my word and stick with the flavors that are in the 100% line! Also take my word for it and go by the cinnamon roll and chocolate chip cookie dough flavors in bulk. Life changing. I promise!

Ok so where can you find? Here and here. Thank me later. ;)

Now go. Run. And be healthy, my little luvahs!

July 29, 2013

I'm THAT Dog Mom

Last Thursday we rang in Oakley's half birthday and don't think for a second that we didn't celebrate it with sprinkle filled treats! Around these parts, we celebrate darn near everything with treats! Why not?!

6 months. Whoa. I never thought I'd see the day. Better yet, I didn't think she would either! ;) The fact that we both made it out of the bitey, poopey, yappey, full-blown puppy stages alive is a miracle in and of itself. You think I'm kidding?

Okay...so maybe I do miss her being tiny enough for me to pick her up and hold her with one arm and squish her whenever I want to but honestly, she's a LOT of work! A LOT! Don't get me wrong now. She's worth it in more ways then I could ever know so excuse me while I get all sappy for a moment but I never thought I could love a four-legged, furry, sassy, strong, HUGE, yet, beautiful, sweet, snuggly furchild as much as I do Miss Oakley. She's my girl. That's for sure. :) And she puts up with me. We're a good combo and Beau is just lucky he gets to deal with us. ;)

She has a terrible life, I tell ya...

Age: 6 months and 4 days (I'm a few days behind...forgive me.)
Weight: 69.8 pounds and growing daily...
Height: 23 inches

  • Her mom (duh) Ok kidding...
  • Going on LONG walks these days and running with me! At last! A dog I can RUN with!
  • Hunting for birds and bugs.
  • Meeting new friends. Her newest BFF is a Springer Spaniel named Sophie. :)
  • Snuggling - if her head isn't ON yours, she (and you) won't be getting any sleep.
  • Being underneath our bed, even though she barely fits anymore. She's gonna get stuck one of these days...
  • Rides in the golf cart. This is becoming a nightly occasion for her...ok...and us! ;)
  • Taking her fish oil...finally!
  • Her new food - Fromm Family all natural puppy food. If you're looking for a really good, holistic dog food, Fromm is excellent and Oakley devours it it minutes! Find it here.
Happy half birthday Oakie Bear!
Thanks for turning me into one of those crazy, obsessed dog moms. ;)

July 26, 2013

Fridays Call for Happy Things (& Also Spanish)

uno. Duck Dynasty...making bath time fun again since 2013. (Adorable Phil & Miss Kay loofahs from the one and only, Shay)
dos. Morning strolls with my girl
tres. Serene view of the lake on my run
cuatro. My new found love in the form of liquid courage. AKA: Oyster Bay sauvignon blanc. (Don't let the screwtop fool ya. If you like white wines with a hint of grapefruit, you're in for a real treat!)
cinco. Chocolate chip cookie dough QuestBars. Another new found love of mine. Obsessed is an understatement. These are the absolute best protein bars I think I've EVER laid eyes on!
seis. Less than 80 days 'til our trip to Atlantis! And also my motivation for getting these thunder thighs to the gym on a daily basis.
siete. Following Instagram staff members on Instagram. (What? You don't stalk Instagram employees?) This chick "Khiesti" is adorable! She literally plays with her food and snaps pics like it's her J-O-B and I'm as fascinated as ever with her!
ocho. Snuggles with my precious nieces. All baby girls are almost EIGHT pounds already and are changing daily! I can't even handle the cuteness. They are THE best snugglebugs in all the land!
nueve. Closing on my aunt's new house for her this morning! I somehow managed to convince her to not only move from Dallas to Houston but to move INTO our neighborhood! No lie-if I through a rock really hard, I could hit her house. I'm so excited to have family so close by!
diez. Hearing that Katie and Erica's surprise trip to visit me has inspired other bloggers to do the same! My heart is SO happy for these three amigas!
I sure do hope your Friday is fully of happiness! Now go out and enjoy your weekend, wouldya?!

July 25, 2013

Office Space

Working from home 3 days per week definitely has it's perks; you know...waking up and stumbling into a room right down the hall from your bedroom, zero traffic to fight, a full coffee pot at your disposal, and being able to join in on conference calls all in the comfort of your jammies (or workout clothes, if you're anything like me), to name a few. 

That being said, I've always and forever been a huge fan of totally decking out your office. I mean, if you're going to spend more time at your desk than you do in your bed, you might as well enjoy every bit of it, right? I went ALL out on when decorating my bedroom and I'm only in there 7 hours max per day. Why would I NOT do the same to my office? 

Point being...whether you work from home, in a cube, or you have a lush corner office on the penthouse floor at an oil and gas company, I inspire you to spice up your office space (and your life, if you're having a good time.) Ten points to the person who can guess that song! ;)

While I still have quite a ways to go when it comes to putting the finishing touches on the office (ahem...and the rest of our house) we've made a lot of progress lately and I feel the need to document such a thing so you'll just have to deal with it, k?

Office space essentials:

A darling coffee mug...as if coffee in and of itself isn't enough to make me happy in the morning.

 Candles. Specifically the kind that come in adorable mason jars. (Thanks, Katie!)

Inspirational books and LOTS of them. The 4 books stacked vertically are definitely some of the best I've read to date. 

DIY shelves made out of nothing more than a couple of "L" brackets & screws. 
Serves two purposes. 1) gives a few of your books homes 2) makes an awesome decorative shelf

A daybed. Because let's be honest, I'll always be naptime's biggest fan.

 The newest Lilly agenda. Obsessed doesn't even begin to explain my love for this mumbo jumbo 8.5" x 11" mother of all planners. It's beautiful, really. (Full photo tour here.)

 The colors. The tabs. The stickers. The tiny little details on every single page. Le sigh...I can't wait to fill mine up with important dates and events to come! Get yours here!

 Little bits of happy
(Notebook: Target - "Beautiful Mess" hand towel: gift from Anthro)

 Big, fat, clumsy puppy paws that hide perfectly under your desk chair. :)

The latest issue of Success mag

A lil' greenery

And the most precious, furry co-worker you ever did see. 
Definitely an essential in my office. Definitely.

What are some of your of your office space essentials?! 

July 23, 2013

Sorry For Partying

Actually no. I'm not.

I'm not sorry for partying in the video you'll find below.

You see, THE one and only Erica from Young and Fabulous videotaped just about our entire 4th of July trip to the Frio River and I'm not gonna lie...the footage you're about to preview sums up the whole damn trip. Now you'll know why we didn't have many pics to show in the recap I posted here. :)

I hope you enjoy this as much as we do! In the meantime, I'll be sulking and wondering WHY on God's green Earth are Texas, Ohio and Massachusetts are SO gosh darn far away from each other? :/

The 5 minute mark steals my heart again and again and again and again. I still can't get over the fact that these girls came from miiillllees away to surprise me so we could all be reunited.

Frio River 2K14...get ready for it...

July 18, 2013

Throwin' It Back {Young Love Style}

If by "throwin' it back" you think I'm talking about a glass of vino, you are correct but it's not even 10am and apparently boozing at work is "frowned upon". Say wha?

If you also think by "throwin' it back" you think I'm referring to "Throwback Thursday", you are even more correct.

And by "throwback" I mean, baby pictures of Beau and I. Circa 2006, to be exact. Holy whoa-we're getting old!

Before you enjoy, please disregard all chipmunk cheeks, mmmkay?
Disney World 2006
If I remember this trip correctly, this was the one where we went with his parents and they were nice enough to let us share their room with them. Broke  college kids = free hotel room. We had only been dating for a short while (mayyyybe 6 months) and were still considered "kids" which resulted in me sleeping with his mom (my now mother-in-law) and Beau sleeping on a rollaway cot. Oh the joys of dating! 
Halloween 2007
Beau and his friend James insisted on being Thing 1 & Thing 2 which consisted of a full face of makeup for the boys. Yours truly was the makeup artist and this was also the day the makeup titles "guyliner" (aka: eyeliner) and "manscara" (aka: mascara) were born. I went as a "Sexy Cowgirl Sheriff...whatever that means.)
Rodeo 2008
Well, hello extremely fat, yet tan, face!
Carnival Cruise 2008
The first, and most likely, the last cruise we'll ever take together. We both decided cruises really aren't our "thing". Especially those of the Carnival kind.
UH Football 2008

Puerto Rico 2008

Our graduation gift from his parents :)

St. Thomas 2009 for our friend Jon & Meagan's wedding

Scissor Biscuits softball/drinking team 2010

"The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly and lie about your age." -Lucille Ball

Happy Friday eve, kiddos!

July 16, 2013

FREE Pancakes for Everyone (A Recipe)

Ok so I lied.

No free pancakes for everyone today but because you asked for the recipe a gazillion times on yesterday's post and on Instagram over the weekend, I bring you what I call "FREE Pancakes". Technically they're not "free" because you've gotta go buy all the stuff to make them but since they're literally free of everything, I though the name was fitting.

And by "free of everything" I really mean everything: gluten, dairy, eggs & sugar.

The first batch I made over the weekend included 80% dark chocolate chips and were uh-may-zing. I kid you not. BUT-they were SO rich and way to sweet for me to eat over and over again. If you're a dark chocolate nut, toss 'em in your mix and you'll think you've died and gone to heaven. Literally.

*makes about 8 six-inch pancakes
  • 1 C almond flour (or coconut flour or gluten-free oat flour)
  • 1/2 C unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/4 t sea salt
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 1/2 T olive oil
  • 1/3 C unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/8 C water
  • 1/4 C dark chocolate chips (optional)
  • In a medium-size mixing bowl, mix together all ingredients to make batter.
  • Scoop out about 1/3 C pancake batter and pour onto a hot griddle or skillet. (Don't forget to spray it with olive oil or cooking spray to prevent sticking!)
  • Once they start to bubble on top, flip those babies and cook until golden brown on both sides. Careful! Don't flip them too early!
  • Top with a little Earth Balance soy-free, dairy-free spread. Drizzle a little sugar-free syrup on top
  • And then...

You are oh-so-welcome!

July 15, 2013

Oh hey, Monday...

Oakley's face pretty much says it all.

We've got a 101% chance of thunderstorms for just about the entire week and get this...we may or may not be getting a cool front! 89 degrees...oh yay! Hey-it's better than the 104 we've been experiencing lately so along with every Texan in America (as my girl Kristen would say "If you're not Texan, you're not American!), I will gladly take it!
Currently outside my office.

Anywho-enough about me. More about my weekend. It was a good one. One that included sleeping in, no alarm clocks, pancakes (multiple times), long walks with our Oakie girl, wine-induced golf cart rides around the hood with our neighbor friends and baby snuggling. LOTS of baby snuggling...which was definitely the highlight of my Sunday afternoon. Seriously-I just wanna hold all 3 nieces, all at the same time, all day long. Professional baby snuggler in my future? I think yes! ;)

one. Oaks FINALLY getting in the lakes in our neighborhood! We've only been "gently" pushing her in for 4 months now...
two. Gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free dark chocolate chip pancakes. (Recipe coming tomorrow!)
three. My husband's idea of "putting the pillowcases on". Apparently "king size" and "standard" size" are the same thing in a man's world. Who knew?!
four. Oakie sitting pretty for her fish oil. I have tried HUNDREDS of times to give her these little things and she finally likes them and even thinks they're treats. I'm really learning this whole "trick your children into doing what you want" thing!
five. Sunday morning in my kitchen which means...coffee and more pancakes!
six. Snuggles with my ever so precious niece, Taylor.
seven. Beau + Samantha (Swoon! Are they not adorable?!)
eight. Finally working on my office which makes that window pane the fourth official thing we've "hung" in our new house. Baby steps, people. Baby steps.
nine. New bookshelf for "said" office. Sure, I still have 119 books that need a home and I'm sure I'll change it 183 times before it's just right but it's a step in the right direction.

Don't forget to come back manana for the most simple, healthy pancake recipe in all the land! I promise...it will be a household staple! :)

July 11, 2013

The Evolution of a Blogger

1. So uhhh...what's this whole blog thing all about? Googles: "What is a blog?"

2. Creates very first Blogger account.

3.Signs into "said" Blogger account and is greeted with the empty white screen of death.

4. Panic ensues.

5. Logs out immediately.

6. Logs back into Blogger account after a solid week of "intense brainstorming" and starts putting together her very first blog post.

7. Starts typing...

8. Delete. Delete. Delete.

9. Back to brainstorming...

10. Whatdya know?! First "epic" blog post written followed by emailing, Facebooking, Tweeting and Instagramming the link out to everyone and their dog.

11. Refreshes post 548 times throughout the day to see if she has any comments yet.

12. Sees none other than a big ugly goose egg next to "Comments". Well....shiiiit...now what??

13. Back to the drawing board she goes and comes out with (what she assumes to be) the greatest blog post of all time.

14. Refreshes screen 549 times...still. no. comments. What gives?!

15. Starts following, reading and commenting on other blogs and FINALLY...her very first follower. A follower!!!!

16. Celebrations ensue.

17. And then...a COMMENT! A real life freaking comment! What now!? Do I play it off as something "normal" and not reply back? Do I reply back like an eager beaver? Decisions. Decisions.

18. She learns to reply to all commenters and thinks she's really got this whole blog thing figured out. Yessssss....

19. Decides to fork up the moolah for a "professional" blog design because afterall, WTF is HTML?? Professional design = professional blogger, right??

20. After finding her footing and writing some really great content, she starts to really pick up some legit traction! Comments, replies, followers, and then...

21. Some sweet soul from another state (say....Ohio....just for an example) emails her and tells her how much she admires her, how beautiful her hair is and how she SO looks forward to reading her blog every single morning. They find 19 more things in common, like her 2nd toe sticks out further than the big toe and she just so happens to be left handed, too.

22. BAM! Blogger BFFs!

23. Continues to create some really good content with actual substance and decides to get "real" one day. You know...no more fluff.

25. WHACK. First rude anonymous comment. Oh no! What have I done to deserve this?

26. Ignores rude anon commenter and goes on with her life. Good girl. :)

27. WRITER'S BLOCK HITS. What in the hell am I supposed to write about today?? This week?? What if I can never think of anything else to write ever again and my blog dies a slow blog death??

28. Stella gets her groove back and then one day, out of nowhere, she gets an email about her very first product review. Free schtuff?? Heck ya!!

29. 2nd rude anonymous comment. She has officially made it.

30. Starts becoming inundated with comments, emails, product reviews, etc and wonders how on earth ANYONE has time for this on top of a real job, a family and, well, a social life.

31. WRITER'S BLOCK. Again??? I think I should really just give up this whole blogging thing...

32. Plans very first trip to meet blogger BFF because afterall, it was fate that they meet.

33. Continues writing...wondering where on earth she's going with this blog thing of hers. Here she is putting her entire life on the World Wide Web. Her "real life" friends thinks she's cray cray and who the hay is reading anyways?! Aha! Google Analytics!

34. Really starts to wonder if she should continue writing FOR FREE...or make this thing a side business. I mean, if you're going to get paid for writing what you're already writing, it just makes sense. Doesn't it?

35. Starts getting paid REAL money for putting every little detail of her life on the internet. Winning! Someone wants to pay me for being awesome? I'll take it.

36. Gets an email from a friend who said she got an email from a friend who said your blog may or may not be all over GOMI. Well...eff. Whatevs. Climbs a bridges and gets over it. #hatersgonhate

37. WRITER'S BLOCK. How the HELL do Living in Yellow, The Daily Tay and The Daybook have THAT much stuff to write about on a daily basis??!! Sometimes even MULTIPLE times a day??!! And HOW are the so witty all the damn time?? Oh ya...because they're legit bloggers.

38. Googles "How to become a real blogger like Sydney from The Daybook".

...and now you know the current state of me and my blog...

Happy Thursday, friends!

July 9, 2013

Soak It Up {My 4th of July Weekend}

Just when you think your 4th of July weekend will consist of none other than a few relaxing days on the glorious Frio River with just you, your husband and your dog...

(Oh. And a drink in your hand...)

2 of your absolute favorite bloggers turned BFFs get on a plane and fly their happy butts to Texas...

1 of your (other) incredible blogger love muffins (you should ALL know who I'm talking about by now;) ) also loads up with her hubby and makes a little road trip to the Texas Hill Country...

And your real life best friend and her fiance pop up outta no-freakin-where to join "said few relaxing  days on the glorious Frio River"...


If you follow me on the ol' Insta or read Friday's post...you are all well aware of the events that took place this past week/weekend.

But for those of you who don't, and for myself who needs to relive all these moments all over again...I gots some 'splainin' to do so lemme take it from the top.

Here we go:

Tuesday night: Here I am having dinner, enjoying a few drinks at the new World of Beers with good friends, sporting my new Marley Lilly monogram tank (which, by the way, I'm mildly obsessed with)...minding my own business. No big deal, right?


BAM. Katie appears. As in...Keep Calm & Carry On Katie from Ohio

Wednesday afternoon: Road trip to the Frio River, pit stop in San Antonio to take Katie by the Alamo and to enjoy a few drinks on The Riverwalk and...

BAM. Ashley appears. As in...my real life ((but blogless)) BFF...Ashley!

Wednesday night: Dinner on The Riverwalk. Drinks are a flowin' and...

DOUBLE BAM: Shay (as in SO SHAY), DDHP (as in, well THE DDHP) and Erica , who is absolutely terrified of flying, and her main squeeze, Kurt, show up...once again...out of frickin' nowhere. (Video footage here!)

What in the WHAT?

If you think my mind was blown...you're wrong.
Times that by eleventy billion and yes. You're exactly right. Well...you're close.
If you think I proceeded to question them all at least 100 times about "which blogger was showing up next?"...you're also right.

While I would LOVE to sit here and overwhelm you with an abundance of obnoxious photos of the absolute incredible time we all had together, I'm not. 

There was just something about the entire weekend that left me feeling so completely happy. So content. And so full of joy that taking a million and one photos of every move we made, every piece of fried food we shoved in our pieholes, every inappropriate conversations we held, every strand of hair I teased on Katie's head, every angle of Erica shakin' her little Boston hiney, every time Shay would make the most hysterical facial expressions, or every time Ashley would force me to drink more of her mango vodka...they just weren't at the top of my to-do list this weekend.

Instead I decided to live in and love and soak up every single moment. So soak it up I did.

Ok fine. I did manage to snag quite a few iPhone photos...

Oh-and we also may or may not have successfully pulled off the Harlem Shake in Wal-Mart.

But really...I'd be lying out of my teeth if I said this past weekend, other than my wedding weekend (of course) was the most epic...EP-IC...weekend of my life.

How these girls and my husband kept such a HUGE secret from little ol' nosey me is really beyond me. I'm still baffled. And beyond shocked. But feeling ever so lucky. Lucky to have met such incredible souls from this little blogging world of ours. Lucky to have made real life friends and relationships from fabulous women behind a little ol' computer monitor. Lucky to have a loving and supporting husband who was behind this entire thing...

...and to think they flew and drove in from all parts of the country to see such a priceless expression on my face STILL has me pinching myself.

So cheers.
...to moments.
...to surprises.
...to memories.
...to a very happy heart.
...and to some of the best friends a girl could ever ask for!


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