Tuesday, October 31, 2017

My 4 Favorite Crockpot Recipes

'Tis the season for crockpot meals!  With the temps getting cooler, it's so nice to come home, open the door and smell the yummy meal that is cooking away in your crockpot.  There is just something so warm and cozy about it!  Honestly, I love my crock-pot any time of the year, but there is just something about fall and the cooler temps that make it even better.  I am always on the hunt for some good crockpot meals, and I have rounded up four of my favorites to share.  



1.  Beef & Noodles.  Not only is this one of my favorite crockpot recipes, but it is one of my favorite recipes in general.  It's comfort food at its best!  Perfect for those chilly days where you need something hearty and warm.



2.  Andrea's Pulled Pork from Mix & Match Mama.  This recipe is SO easy and SO good.  It makes a ton, and you can do so much with it.  Pulled pork sandwiches, tacos, rice bowls, quesadillas...really the list goes on!  I highly suggest making leftovers into a quesadilla - that's one of my favorite ways to have this pulled pork and do not skimp on the pickles.  I would have never thought to put pulled pork and pickles together, but it is simply delicious!



3.  Shredded Buffalo Chicken.  Another recipe that is too dang easy and too dang good.  It can also be used to build a multitude of meals, too!


Chicken Fajita Bowls

4.  Healthy Chicken Fajita Bowls from Turquoise and Teale.  Who doesn't like Mexican food?  Super simple and delicious.  It makes a ton, too, so you will have lots to go around.


If you have a favorite crockpot recipe, please share!  I am always looking for new ones to try, especially ones that are a bit more on the healthy side.

Linking up with Lindsay and Whitney.  

Monday, October 30, 2017

Weekend Recap

Another weekend has gone by way too fast!  How did we get to Monday already?

Last week was super busy at work, not to mention I started a new workout program, so it was a bit of an intense week.  I got into work early Friday morning and to give you a little insight on the toll the week was taking on me and my mind set, here is a funny story.  I got to my car, when I couldn't remember if I had unplugged my straightener.  Not an unusual thought for me, and normally I just give myself a little talk like, yes you did unplug it, you are being paranoid, bla bla bla.  Well since the day was going to be stressful at work, I didn't want to add this on, so I decided to go check.  Usually I can just open the door and see it unplugged, but when I opened the door this time, I couldn't see anything on my bathroom counter.  Which is unusual, because my hair is pretty much the last thing I do before I head out the door, so I always leave it on the counter to cool.  I actually come into the apartment, check the bathroom, only to realize I didn't even use my straightener this morning because I wore my hair up!  What in the world was I thinking?!  The day was a bit bumpy, as you can probably tell with how it started, but we finally got to 2:00 and things were looking up.  The week called for a happy hour AND ice cream, so I indulged in both after work.  

Saturday morning I didn't set an alarm, which was super nice.  I got in a morning walk - it was chilly!  By the time I was done, though, I was pretty warm since I had bundled up so much.  The leaves have finally changed, so it was a super pretty walk.  I tried the Jimmy Johns 'unwich' for lunch, which basically is just the sandwich in a lettuce wrap.  It was a tiny bit messy to eat, but was really good!  I had probably one of the fastest grocery trips ever, which was pretty nice.  I love when I can just get in and out.  I cleaned the rest of the day and watched a few Christmas movies on Hallmark.  The December Bride is probably one of my favorites from last year, I would highly suggest that one if you haven't seen it yet!  


I was excited to go to church on Sunday since I had missed the previous week and it was also our celebration, but unfortunately I woke up super early with a bad stomach ache.  Luckily I never got sick, but I was pretty much down for the count the entire day.  Some days it's nice to just rest, but I was getting super stir crazy yesterday.  TV didn't sound good, books didn't sound good - it was one of those type days.  

It's a new week though, and almost Halloween to boot.  My nephew is going to be Jack Frost and my sister in law made the cutest costume for him.  We saw a part of it while visiting last weekend, so I cannot wait to see how it all comes together!

Hope you all have a great Monday!

Linking up with Biana.
  

Friday, October 27, 2017

Friday Favorites: The End of October

Happy Friday!  I cannot believe that we are upon the last weekend in October.  Where in the world has the time gone?  

1.  Roasted Broccoli.  I am a huge fan of roasted veggies.  I love the flavor, and it's so easy.  For me, I just toss whatever veggie with olive oil, kosher salt, pepper and garlic powder and then roast.  Yum.  I tried broccoli for the first time this week and absolutely loved it.  Broccoli isn't one of my favorite veggies, but it is definitely up there now.  I love the flavor of the seasonings with the broccoli and it's even better in my opinion when you roast til you get some 'burnt' spots.  If you need to change up the way you are making broccoli, or just need a new veggie to add to your repertoire, I highly suggest roasted broccoli!

2.  Calson Knit Blazer.  I picked this up way back in July from the Nordstrom Anniversary sale and finally wore it for the first time this week.  I originally purchased it to wear more on Fridays with jeans, since the material is a bit more casual, but I paired it with black pants, and an ivory blouse on Wednesday and thought it looked really nice together.  Not too casual at all!  And, I cannot tell you how comfort it is.  You almost feel like you are wearing a cozy sweatshirt.  Perfect for those workplaces that are always freezing.  Now I am just wishing I had purchased it in more colors!

3.  Vote for Jovi!  One of my friends has the cutest dog, Jovi.  She's in a contest on Facebook, so if you have a few extra minutes, I (and my friend!) would so apprecaite if you could go and 'like' her picture, shown below.  Just click on the link here and like her photo!




4.  Cuisinart Premier Series 7-Cup Food Processor.  I get the best hand me downs from my mom, and this food processor is no exception.  I needed one to make a specific recipe, and when I was talking to my mom about buying one, she remembered she had this in a closet at home that hadn't been used in ages.  She gave it to me while we were in Indy last weekend, and I plan on testing it out this weekend.

5.  Femme Fit.  I signed up for Femme Fit's 21 Day Total Transformation program last week and actually started it this week.  The program is through an app, and one that you can do at home or at your local gym.  You are given a meal plan, and if you use My Fitness Pal app, it then syncs with the Femme Fit app, so your trainer knows how you are doing - not just on your workouts, but your eating, too.  As I write this, it's only been 4 days, but so far so good!  

Hope you all have a great weekend!    

Linking up with AndreaErikaApril, and Katie.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

My Thoughts on LipSense

Back in August, I decided to give LipSense a try.  It had been on my radar for awhile, but I was waiting til I could see it in person.  My friend has this wonderful boutique back home, Charmed, and another girl I went to high school with has a display in the store where she sells her LipSense.  It was great because I could see the colors in person and try a few testers she had.  I went for it and bought a starter set which included the gloss, a color (Caramel Apple) and the remover.  Included in my purchase was a little Tips & Tricks sheet that told you how to apply and what to expect (i.e. what any tingling met, if your lips got really dry, that type of thing).  Super handy!


I started wearing it pretty religiously.  I had heard from my friend that if you are an avid Chapstick wearer (like me!), then your lips would probably get dry and cracked at first.  This was your lips getting used to the new formula and once you got passed this stage, then you would have even better and smoother lips.  And if your lips got dry, to reapply the gloss.  I did experience this and while it wasn't my favorite thing in the world, it passed and I could feel like my lips were better overall!  I also loved the fact that it really does stay put.  By the end of the work day I would sometimes need a little more at my water line, but that wasn't everyday and even with a little bit of wear, I still felt like it looked really nice.  It doesn't get on things, which is great, although I do not understand when people wipe their finger across to show no smudge, because if I were to do that, I would have gloss all over my finger.  Maybe I just wear a lot of gloss?

I did feel there were a few cons.  First, it is a bit pricey.  I know some people spend a lot on lipsticks, but I do not.  Most of what I wore before was just from the drugstore, or freebies.  I get that you are paying for the quality and the staying power, but I still wish it were a little less.  Which brings me to my next con - variety.  At $20 a pop, I am not going to buy a whole slew of colors at once that I can pick and chose from depending on my outfit, mood, etc.  I picked Caramel Apple for my first and while I love it, I find myself wishing for something that is a bit less bright and more neutral.  I haven't made it back home to get a different one and I am a bit nervous about making a purchase sight unseen.  Not to mention, the inventory is constantly changing and I don't think you can have a specific color ordered for you, because it all depends on what your distributor gets.  I think...I don't really know all the ins and outs, it's just kind of what I have noticed on social media, and kind of what my friend told me at her store.  Also, I felt like I HAD to wear LipSense all the time because I didn't want to stop, then start again and have to go through the whole acclimating process.  I actually did stop, but have since started again and luckily, getting used to it wasn't too bad.

Overall, if you want a staying color, I would suggest LipSense.  It definitely lives up to the hype in that regard.  Although, I will say that I have also heard Sephora makes a long-last lip stain that is less than LipSense - has anyone had any experience with that?!

For me personally, I will probably make another LipSense purchase next time I am home and able to check out the colors.  If you would break it down, I think the cost is totally justifiable when you consider how long it lasts (both the container and the actual product).  I still have plenty of color left, and while my gloss is on the low side, I have worn that (even without the color) every day since I purchased it.  So, even though I do think there are some cons, I feel that the pros (staying color, softer lips) out weigh the cons for me.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on LipSense (or that Sephora stain I mentioned earlier)!

Linking up with Annie.     

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

What's Up Wednesday: October 2017




I am linking up with my usual Wednesday girls - Jessi and Jenn for What's Hap-pinning Wednesday and Shay for What's Up Wednesday.  I said this last month, but I feel like we just did this post for September!  Where does the time go?!

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that any clicks/purchases may result in a few cents of commission at no additional cost to you.

What I'm eating this week...I started a new workout program and am trying to adhere to the suggested meal plan.  I always struggle with meal plans because I love to cook and try new recipes, but I have a hard time figuring out if they 'fit' within the plan.  I decided to go the easy route this week and breakfast is Greek yogurt (with lots of cinnamon stirred in there), and then lunch and dinner are some combination of grilled chicken, a turkey burger, salad or broccoli.  With dinner I also have been including some type of carb, like butternut squash. 


What I'm reminiscing about...nothing really!  This is the same answer as last month, but it still rings true this month!

What I'm loving...the cooler weather!  I have actually been able to wear some fall fashion!

What I've been up to...this month seemed like a bit of a blur.  I feel like I spent the first part of the month recovering from Laurie & Emily's Great Adventure (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3).  I wasn't feeling the best, but luckily it never turned into anything big and I was able to enjoy a trivia night at church.  I am participating in another weight loss challenge at work, and that kicked off on the 16th.  My brother's birthday was last Friday, so it was to Indy last week, which I shared about on Monday.  As far the rest of the month, work is going to be pretty busy the next few days, and I know I will be ready to relax come Friday at 4:00.  My Halloween plans consist of watching Hocus Pocus - I have had it on my DVR for seriously 2 years now (if not longer!) and have yet to watch it.    
What I'm dreading...how fast the holiday season is going to fly by.  I love this time of year and wish things would just slow down a bit!

What I'm working on...my fitness.  Hoping this time I can hit my goals once and for all and just maintain.


What I'm excited about...all the fun to come with the holiday season!


What I'm watching...the list is just too long!  I love having a full DVR with all new shows, not to mention Hallmark Christmas movies will be starting soon!   


What I'm reading...The Handmaid's Tale.

What I'm listening to...I don't listen to music a whole lot, just because I am not in my car often and when I am at home, I usually have the news on if I am not watching a show.  However, the trip to Indy I found a great oldies station that lasted for the majority of the drive.  Although some of the 'oldies' weren't all that old, but I guess now they are?!


What I'm wearing...my October work wear for the week post was last week, which you can see here.  Outside of work, I have been able to break out my Hunter boots a few times due to the rain when running errands.  I have had my boots for 3 years now, a little bit longer, and the novelty of them has yet to wear off!  



What I'm doing this weekend...hoping checking a few of my October goals off my list.  I have been slacking on those!

What I'm looking forward to next month...decorating for Christmas (2016 decor, 2016 Mom's decor, 2015 decor), Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday - just the whole holiday season in general!  It's the best time of the year!


What is my favorite Thanksgiving side...dumplings!  One of these days I need to share the recipe with you all.  They are the best!  

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Show & Tell Tuesday: Favorite Holiday


Picking my favorite holiday was a no brainer for me.  Thanksgiving.  That is by far my very favorite holiday.  10 years ago, I probably would have said Christmas, maybe even less than that, but I have come to the realization that I just love Thanksgiving.  I love the time of year it falls in - fall.  The food is amazing - turkey, gravy, dumplings, mashed potatoes, broccoli cheese and rice casserole, sauerkraut, rolls...the list goes on and on!  I have lots of memories of my grandpa bringing around some morsels after he carved the turkey for us to snack on before dinner was actually ready.  Which is a perfect example of why, to me, Thanksgiving also equals family.  I talk about my family quite a bit, so this is probably no surprise to anyone, but I love all being together and visiting and catching up and again...eating lots of good food.  On top of all that, Thanksgiving kicks off the best time of year - the holiday season.  My mom and I always do Black Friday shopping, which is such a fun tradition of ours.  And of course, Small Business Saturday (as if we didn't get in enough shopping the day before).  The next few weeks are always just a blur of enjoying all that the Christmas season brings - lots of family time, decorating, baking, Christmas parties, finding the perfect gifts for everyone on your list, driving around looking at Christmas lights, peppermint mochas, hot chocolate, Hallmark Countdown to Christmas, and of course the real reason for the season.  I am super excited to have found my church and to experience my first Christmas season there.  So, as you can see, I have lots of love for Thanksgiving.  For all those reasons above and I am sure lots more than I just cannot fully express into words!

Such a fun post idea!  I am excited to see what everyone else shares - especially those whose opinions differ from me.  I am sure I can gain a little more appreciation for the other holidays after reading posts on why they are a favorite!  


...and 2016 Show & Tell Tuesday posts below.


Linking up with AndreaLindsay and Whitney.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Weekend Recap: My Brother's Birthday!

This past Friday was my brother's birthday!  To celebrate him, we all headed to Indy for a super fun weekend.  Since this time of year is busy for me at work, we waited until Saturday morning to head up that way.  Luckily for us, the drive was uneventful.  The plan once we got there was to enjoy a late lunch and then hang out until a hockey game that evening.  Lunch was super delicious - hamburgers with all the fixings, kidney bean salad, chopped salad, 'Oprah' fries (the baked fries from Oprah's cookbook), chips and raw veggies.  Yum!  I am hungry just thinking about it.  My brother's dessert of choice were pumpkin cookies from our hometown bakery.  Since I am a bit difficult and don't really care for those, I instead had an apple with caramel sauce - works for me!  The day was absolutely gorgeous so shortly after lunch we headed outside to play with Jack and enjoy the nice weather.  I have mentioned this before, but my sister in law became a realtor this summer (check out her YouTube channel here!).  Her agency hosted an event at the Indy Fuel game Saturday, and we got to attend as her guests.  I haven't been to a sporting event in awhile, so I was excited to go.  I feel like live games are always so fun!  It did not disappoint and we had a lot of fun.  The day was a long one, so we left before the end of the game, but the Fuel won!  The next morning we all had breakfast together, before heading out.  






It felt like a super quick visit, but it was so nice to all be together.  I am thankful the holidays are right around the corner because that means even more time together!

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Linking up with Biana.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Friday Favorites

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that any clicks/purchases may result in a few cents of commission at no additional cost to you.


1.  Essie Gel Couture Nail Polish in At the Barre.  I have been on the hunt for a nude / beige / brown nail polish from Essie's gel line.  While I have a ton of regular polishes in those shades, I mostly just use the gel line for my finger nails because it really does last so much longer.  I found this color and I think it is my new favorite for fall.  It's such a pretty nude and is super subtle - I feel like it has a very classic look, which is what I was looking for.  It looks a little peachy / pinky online, but trust me when I say it is definitely a beige color. 

2.  Capital Gaines by Chip Gaines.  I pre-ordered Chip's new book and finally got it in the mail this week.  I was a big fan of The Magnolia Story, and I shared with you how much my mom and I absolutely loved our trip to Waco here, so you know I just had to get this book.  When I first got it, I quickly read the Foreward (written by Joanna) and then Chip's note and contemplated reading on instead of finishing the current book I was reading.  I resisted and now that I am finished with my other book, I am ready to read!  I will be sure to report back next month when I share my October book review.  

3.  I asked for recommendations on how to season turkey burgers in yesterday's post and I got a couple good ideas I am planning on trying.  First, from Sarah - she suggested using Montreal Steak Seasoning, BBQ sauce and Panko.  I love Montreal Steak Seasoning for beef burgers, so I am sure it will be just as tasty with turkey.  Second, Amanda suggested using Lipton soup mixes.  Once I read that I remember one of my friends saying that is how her dad makes burgers - such a good idea!  If you have any other suggestions, please feel free to leave them below!  

4.  I shared the below picture on instagram this week from my work wear of the week post and I think it was one of my favorite outfits I wore last week.  While I love it, I am a bit sad that today's outfit is looking the same because it is back in the 80's...luckily fall will be back on Sunday.  I cannot wait!  



5.  The Essential Planner from Peacock Paper & Gifts.  I have mentioned Kelsey's planners before, but wanted to bring attention to them again!  If you are like me, you love planners, and while there are some good ones out there, they aren't necessarily as all encompassing as you want.  They may have the majority of things you need to keep yourself organized, but I feel like there is always one or two things missing.  Enter The Essential Planner.  Kelsey worked super hard on creating a product that I think we will all find truly essential to our lives.  There is a page for your budget, for your meal planning, a spot to put reminders on who you need cards / gifts for that month...really the list goes on and on.  It's all these little things that she has thought to include that I think adds up to a really great planner...and it all is available for a super good price.  I have spent some money on planners in the past, and I think that this planner gives you more, at a lower price point (daily - $36, weekly $30).  And to make it even more reasonable, Kelsey is offering a 20% off discount code, EMILY20, to anyone who may be reading this and interested in getting a planner for themselves or for someone else as a gift.  I personally chose to go with the weekly planner in the navy dot, and also got the same one for one of my friends.


Linking up with AndreaErikaApril, and Katie.
    

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Recipe Round Up: September 2017

I did a really bad job of tracking if I made anything new last month, but the one recipe I remembered and jot down is definitely worth mentioning...and perfect for the season.



Pumpkin Spice Latte Bundt Cake from Mix & Match Mama.  I honestly don't think I have ever made a bundt cake prior to this.  I had the pan, because that is what we use to make monkey bread, but never a bundt cake.  I had book club coming up and wanted to make something new and seasonal for fall.  I knew Shay had a ton of bundt cakes to choose from, so I checked them out and settled on the Pumpkin Spice Latte Bundt cake.  It was super easy to make, and came out beautifully.  I was a bit nervous, because every time I try to make banana bread, it is never done in the middle and I was worried that this would be the same case for a bundt cake since I had never attempted one before.  There was no need to worry!  I followed the directors to a T and it came out perfectly and so very pretty.  If you don't want something too sweet, I think you could eat the cake as is, without the frosting, or sprinkled with a little powdered sugar.  I was doing the whole thing, so I whipped up the icing once I got home before I needed to head out to book club.  I think you could halve the icing recipe, because I put a good amount on the cake and still had a ton leftover!  Also, I added in a bit of extra cinnamon to counteract some of the super sweetness of the frosting.  Verdict?  Everyone loved it.  It was DELICIOUS.  I am definitely going to plan on making this again, although for my personal tastes, I will pair it with the frosting from my mom's pumpkin squares.  To me, cream cheese frosting and these flavors just go together!  Although I may add a bit of cinnamon.  Either way - I highly suggest making this.  One of the girls from book club took some for her family and then I brought the rest to work and it was gone by the end of the week.  

That's all I have for this recipe round up, but I was hoping that you all could help me out a bit.  I am looking for a good season mix for turkey burgers.  Just straight up seasonings, like garlic powder, onion powder - that type of thing.  Any suggestions would be much appreciated!

Linking up with Annie

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Work Wear for the Week Vol. 9

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that any clicks/purchases may result in a few cents of commission at no additional cost to you.

Sharing another week of work wear with you all today!  All the outfits are below are what I wore last week to work.

Monday - One of my go to looks when I just do not want to think about pulling together and whole outfit.


Dress - Tahari (also really like this Tahari dress, too!) | Shoes - Calvin Klein | Earrings - Kendra Scott

Tuesday - Another go to look!  I love wearing this to work because it is comfy, yet still put together.


Sweater - Banana Republic (old) | Pants - Loft | Shoes - Calvin Klein | Earrings - Kendra Scott | Belt - Express (old - similar)

Wednesday - My very favorite dress!  Every time I wear this I get a compliment!


Dress - Eliza J (different color - on sale!) | Shoes - Calvin Klein | Necklace - Kendra Scott (old)

Thursday - I love to bring this top out in fall.  The colors are just so perfect for the season!


Top - Halogen (old - this top is the same brand and I love the floral prints!) | Pants - Loft | Shoes - Calvin Klein | Earrings - Kendra Scott

Friday - This is my 'it's fall, but it's also 80+ degrees outside'.


Top - Loft (old) | Jeans - NYJD | Booties - Vince Camuto (on sale!) | Earrings & Necklace - Kendra Scott

Linking up with The Blended BlogJenn and Jessi.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Aunt Becky's Chocolate Chip Cookies

My Aunt Becky passed along this cookie recipe to my mom years ago and they have been one of my favorites ever since.  They are super easy to make.  I used to make them all the time when I lived at home throughout the years.  They were something I turned to making when I was upset over a boy, or just bored.  I have some funny memories associate with these cookies, too!  I remember once the flour mixture going everywhere, because I just dumped it all into the mixer and just turned it on.  Or another time when I dumped a bag of chocolate chips in, only to realize that the bag was one of those big ones, and had double the amount!  Whoops! 

I made these cookies for trivia night this past weekend and only came home with two.  I've made them for all kinds of people - family, friends, co-workers, parties / outings and  I have yet to find a person who does not like them.  I think it's all due to the secret ingredient...hot chocolate!  It's key when making these!



Aunt Becky's Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 stick butter flavored Crisco
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
2 Tablespoons milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 3/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 package hot chocolate mix (I use Swiss Miss)
1 package Hershey's semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Mix butter flavored Crisco, brown sugar, egg, milk and vanilla until creamy.  In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking soda and hot chocolate mix.  With your mixer on low, slowly add in the flour mixture.  Once fully combined, stir in chocolate chips.  Bake at 375 degrees for 9-10 minutes.  Cool for about 3 minutes, then transfer to wax paper or a wire rack to fully cool before storing in an air tight container.  This yielded me a little over 3 dozen cookies.



It had been awhile since I last made these and I do not know why, because I was reminded at just how darn good they are!  I promise if you try them, you will not be disappointed!

Linking up with Erika, Ashley,  The Blended BlogLindsay and Whitney.       
    

Monday, October 16, 2017

Weekend Recap: The Middle of October

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It's been awhile since I have done a weekend recap!  Mainly because there were link ups I wanted to participate in, but also because there wasn't much to share - the past few weekends have been pretty darn low key and uneventful.  This weekend was a full one, so let's get to it.

I ended up only have to work a little later than normal on Friday, which was definitely nice!  I didn't do much at all that evening, other than stop at the library to pick up some books I had on hold, and then catch up on shows.  And check my mail, which was a good idea, because I had some goodies in there!  The fall candle from Magnolia Market (thanks, Mom!) and a new sweater from Nordstrom that I have been eyeing for awhile.  

Saturday I was up early to do some grocery shopping.  I was participating in a trivia night that evening, so I wanted to make some yummy things to take.  Grocery shopping first thing Saturday morning is ideal - the store was relatively empty and everything was fully stocked.  Funny story about my trip, though.  I called my mom on my way to the store because I couldn't remember what kind of chocolate chips I needed for the recipe I was making.  So my mom tells me, I do my grocery shopping and literally as I am putting the groceries into my car, I realize I didn't even buy any chocolate chips.  Back into the store it was - thank goodness I hadn't left yet!  I would have been super annoyed with myself.  I took a walk while it was still a little cool before  I indugled in a pumpkin bagel and a PSL.  After that it was time to bake some cookies!  I made my Aunt Becky's chocolate chip cookies which are so delicious - recipe will be coming to the blog soon!  I wanted something sweet and something not sweet for the trivia night, so I made Bachlorette Party Dip, which is always delicious.  It was just such a nice and relaxing morning / afternoon.  I had some time to kill before trivia night so I decided to go through my shoes.  I got rid of 4 pairs and have about 6 that I need to decide on.  Odds are most of those will be out, too.  Some I really love still, but they are looking a bit worn and I think it's time to just let go.  The trivia night I attened was at my church.  One of my friends went with me and then we were on a team with a girl from church and her friends.  We were the 'young' table, and I am sad to say that we got last.  They had an option to 'rent a teen' and we were joking that we need to 'rent a senior' for our table to help with some of the questions that were before our times.  It was super funny - one of the guys at my table, who was a last minute replacement for someone else, ended up being an intern at the company I work at!  Just goes to show how small of a world it can be sometimes!

I had high hopes to go for another walk Sunday morning but when I got up it was raining...and dark.  Instead I watched RHOC before getting ready for church.  Sunday school and church were good - we sang the best song during worship called 10,000 Reasons.  I am admittedly a bit more traditional when it comes to music at church, but I absolutely loved this song!  After church I went out to lunch for a few of the ladies before running some errands.  I was on the hunt for a mug for my boss for Boss's Day and had no luck whatsoever.  I did however pick up a new fall candle.  I jumped the B&BW fall candle train and grabbed Leaves since it was $10 off 3-wick candles.  I now understand the hype - it smells so good!  Something I noticed when I was out - there are SO MANY Christmas items out already.  Hallmark, World Market, Bath & Body Works...what in the world?!  We aren't even past Halloween yet!  It's only half way through October.  I could not believe it.  I gave up on the mug search and headed home to spend some more time in the kitchen.  This time I made my mom's homemade Chicken Noodle Soup and Mix & Match Mama's Spinach and Swiss Meatballs.  I had been craving soup since I wasn't feeling well last week, so now I have some to eat on this week, as well as a few portions in the freezer for next time!  The meatballs were delicious, as always, and I plan on using those for lunches this week.  Side note - when I made the meatballs I didn't have red onion, so I just used dried minced onion, about 2 Tablespoons and I left out the dijion mustard.  It was a super productive afternoon / night in that sense, which is always nice when starting a new work week.  As I write this, I am ending the night with Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders and painting my nails.

Hope you all had a great weekend and a great Monday!

Linking up with Biana.        

Friday, October 13, 2017

Friday Favorites...Fail

Hey all!  Happy Friday!  I have no Friday Favorites post for you today, hence the 'fail' in the title of today's post.  This week has just been an off one.  I haven't been feeling the best, which throws everything out of wack a bit.  Since I haven't been feeling good, I haven't made it to the gym, which is a bummer because I was on such a roll last week - being consistent, feeling good - all that!  In addition to feeling a bit blah, work started getting busy on Wednesday.  I actually don't mind being busy at work like it has been the past few days.  I love being super productive and the day just flies on by.  That being said, I am tired.  My brain is tired.  The idea of having to think of 5 things to talk about for todays post was just not happening yesterday.  My mind was literally blank!  So instead, I came home after working late, had a wonderful homecooked meal, watched RHONJ and then decided to write this quick post before heading to bed.

I'm headed to a trivia night at church this weekend which should be a lot of fun, so wish us all luck!  I am terrible at these things, but always enjoy participating, especially when it's for a great cause.  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Girl Chat: Favorite Halloween Costumes

It's Friday Eve - thank goodness!  Just one more day away from the weekend.  For today's Girl Chat, we are sharing our favorite Halloween costumes.  This is going to be a bit of a repeat, because I shared these pictures last year.  I love them, though, so I am going to share again!

Growing up, we always had homemade costumes.  My mom was super creative and came up with some really great ideas.  The base of almost all of our costumes was a sweatsuit or sweatshirt, as you can see in the pictures below.  From there, my mom created awesome costumes.  Probably only one of the fails (and I think this was my idea, possibly taken from the American Girl magazine) was the birthday present costume.  Looking at it now I am kind of like whatttt, not to mention I remember it being a pain to take on and off and just walk around in, haha!  Still clever, though!  I have mentioned before that the Care Bear costume was one of my favorites, although I do love the princess one - I think that was pre school and my 'gown' was actually a nightgown.  The pumpkin costume is classic and one that I feel like any age can wear.  And as you can see below - I have wore it twice!  In one of my old positions at work, we used to dress up for Halloween and I thought a pumpkin costume would be cute and work appropriate.  With the help of my mom (of course), I made a pumpkin shirt, added in some string at the bottom to make it a bubble, and had a cute little headband that became the pumpkin stem.










I haven't dressed up in a couple years now, but I am looking forward to hopefully one day doing whole family costumes and getting back into the spirit of things.  And you can bet that most of my kids' costumes will start with a sweatsuit (or a t shirt and shorts considering how warm it has been lately!).    


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