Friday, November 29, 2013

Friday Faves: Fall is almost over

I know that fall is almost over, but I can't help but post on my favorite fall things (we do have 3 weeks left of fall). I love just about everything about fall: pumpkin everything, dark nail polish, Burberry Brit, s'mores, skinny jeans, football and boots.

 There's nothing better than the crunching sound of leaves beneath your feet...seriously people!
I know that Halloween has come and gone, but roasted pumpkin seeds rank up on my list of my favorite fall things (I may have eaten an entire pumpkin worth of seeds by myself).
Speaking of pumpkins...nothing better than pumpkin picking with kiddos (I know this pic is dated, but I just love it so much).

 And did somebody say FOOTBALL?! We are a little UGA football obsessed in our house!
 Dare I say dark hair? Yes, this happened this fall! Holy cow!

Burberry - Brit Eau de Parfum 
My favorite scent of the season: Burberry just screams fall to me!

Gelish Elegant Wish Gel Nail Polish .5oz 
And what color am I wearing on my nails? I love Gelish Elegant Wish! It's the perfect wine color. I also like browns and dark blues on my nails, but this one is a little more work appropriate. Buy it here.

And if there was any doubt what my favorite taste of the season is (BTW it's still available in most Starbucks...just ask for it!)

Finally I'll leave you with this beautiful view of fall: my parents live on a small lake and it's gorgeous this time of year!


Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thrifty Thursday: Cardigans

Y'all, I love cardigans...mainly because I love wearing dresses and winter is not going to stop me. So when I heard that Target had their cardigans 40% off, I just had to check it out. So I scooped up these:

 I can't wait to wear this one with a skirt and tights!
 I'll be wearing this with the dress I bought for Christmas card pictures!
I feel like I'm always needing a black cardigan to throw on. This one is great because those little studs aren't silver or gold so you can wear it with all kinds of things. You can dress it up for the office or wear it with jeans!

These are all marked down to $14.99 and will keep me nice and warm through the winter! I love how Target is taking a J.Crew approach to cardigans for so much cheaper (don't get me wrong, I own several J.Crew cardigans that I love).


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Workout Wednesday: Running clothes

I know that it's getting colder out and most of my running clothes are summery, but I haven't quite found my favorite winter clothes and you can find the summer ones that I'm posting on sale now that it's colder out. There will definitely be a follow-up to this post when I figure out what I'm wearing in the winter.

Pro Compression Marathon ( socks are amazing. I swear by these suckers when I'm running farther than a few miles. The website describes these socks as: "Experience maximum benefit with the Marathon full-length, graduated compression sock. Compression technology helps improve blood flow, resulting in better, more consistent performance with less fatigue and faster, more efficient recovery. In addition to improving vascular performance, Marathon compression socks provide support to critical muscles and tendons, helping reduce inflammation and soreness.

They're pretty much amazing and look pretty darn cool too :)
I'm kind of obsessed with this Under Armour Tech Short Sleeve V-Neck shirt. I have it in several colors and I swear they are the most comfortable running shirts ever. They definitely wick away sweat and keep you nice and cool on a run. I actually bought a ton of Target running shirts when I first started running and will never go back to them after buying this one. You can find it here:
Under Armour Sonic Capris ( are great. I don't love running in capris (I'd much rather run in a pair of shorts, see below) but these are great. I always size down with these because I find that they tend to loosen up as you run. These have a small pocket on the back (perfect size for a Gu) but no pocket in the front if you're looking for something for your phone.
I cannot describe to you how much I love these shorts. They are my absolute favorite and I feel like I own them in every.single.color. Seriously! I bought these Under Armour Get Set Go Shorts ( on whim because I didn't want to wear super short and tight shorts. These shorts are short, but aren't so tight that you feel like you need to pull them down during a run. I seriously try to justify wearing these as often as I can (if it's 40 degrees or more, I'm in shorts). I really don't love running in capris/pants because I love these shorts that much. In fact, I ran the half (that started out at 40 degrees) in these shorts.
Finally, my all time favorite shoes are these Mizuno Wave Elixir ( shoes. They are lightweight and insanely comfortable. They're good for me because I have narrow heels and they don't slip and slide. The website describes them as: "Dominate the asphalt with the Mizuno® Wave Elixir 8 running shoe. Underfoot comfort and control are delivered by a combination of Dynamotion Fit and a light-weight midsole that will not disappoint. With these key features, your feet experience less stress, great stability and optimal energy return, keeping you one step ahead of the competition. The X-10™ carbon rubber outsole maintains steady contact with the road throughout your run."

We have a great running store in town that watches how you run and then helps you choose the best shoe depending on many different factors. Remember that when you're buying running shoes that everyone runs differently.

Here's to lots of fun runs!


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tuesday Thankfulness: Thanksgiving

How could I not make Thankful Tuesday about Thanksgiving? As I feel every year, I have so much to be thankful for. As I look back over my list that I wrote two years ago (the reason I started this blog), I notice that I am still so thankful for all of those things. I am thankful for health, a wonderful family, food on my table (though I don't always cook the best meals), freedom, religion, a warm house...and so much more. I hope that E can understand through us as his parents that he has so much to be thankful for (even when he doesn't get the toy he wants or a sucker). Every night before he goes to sleep I ask him to name the people he is thankful for. Sometimes this list goes on and on, and some nights it's really short...but I want him to always remember that he has more than he could ever need or want (something that a lot of people don't have). And ultimately he should be thankful for a God that loves him and parents that love him more than anything else in the world.

E opened his card from his Nannie and Poppie. Though we aren't in Florida celebrating with them this year, he was so excited to get a card from them (he literally ripped it open in the car). Thanksgiving reminds us that we love those that are near and those that are far.
Last Thanksgiving we spent in Florida. This is Jon's sweet grandmother who is in her 90s (a lady never should reveal another lady's age ;)). We were so thankful to spend the day with Jon's huge family!

So I hope dear friends, that your Thanksgiving is blessed...that it's filled with great joy and the reminder of many blessings. As you look around the table, thank God that you are with the people you love the most and that you have given much to be grateful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 25, 2013

Menu Monday: Chicken and Dumplings

Welcome back to Menu Monday. Last week, I made one of my favorite fall/winter/cold weather soups. I'm from the South, so chicken and dumplings is something I've been eating forever. It's hearty, it's warm and it reminds me of being a kid and just eating the dumplings (I still do that). I always make homemade cornbread to go with it (maybe I'll share that recipe sometime).

The best part about chicken and dumplings? It's easy! My recipe is one I made up (I started by using a recipe and over the years have changed it to what I like/enjoy). My recipe isn't a straight and forward one, so feel free to sprinkle more/less than I have below.

  • Package of chicken breast (You can use a whole chicken or chicken thighs, etc. but I only like white meat)
  • Bay leaf
  • Seasoned salt/pepper (to your desired tasting)
  • Garlic powder (about a tablespoon)
  • Celery salt (about a teaspoon)
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 3 celery stalks
  • 2 carrots (optional)
  • cream of celery soup
  • a splash of red wine (optional)
  • 2 cups of milk (I like at least 2%)
  • Bisquick OR
  • Sifter full of self-rising flour (about 5 cups)
  • 1/2 cup of Crisco
  • approximately 1/2 cup of buttermilk
Using thawed chicken breast, I put it into the water (a full stock pot, not boiling yet). I bring the chicken and all of the ingredients (except for cream of celery soup, red wine and milk) to a boil. I boil for approximately 45-1 hour until the chicken basically falls apart. Your broth should be reduced about halfway down. If it is not, continue to let it boil a little more until it reduces.

Pull the chicken out of the pot and shred. Return the shredded chicken back to the pot and reduce the heat. Stir in the cream of celery soup until it is dissolved.

Pour in the milk and splash of red wine and let it slowly heat up.

Your soup is done...wait to make the dumplings until right before serving!

To make the dumplings either follow the directions on the Bisquick box OR

Sift your flour and create a hole in the middle of the flour. Fill the hole with your 1/2 cup of Crisco and 1/2 cup of buttermilk. Mix the ingredients in the hole (not all of the flour yet) together. Mix until the warmth from your hands breaks down the Crisco (basically you are making biscuit dough).

Slowly bring in flour to make the mixture not sticky. The more flour you add, the more you will have to knead the dough as in bread making. When you finally get the dough to be pretty solid, you can pinch pieces of your dough into your soup (bring your soup to a rolling boil and let the dough "cook" for approximately 5-10 minutes).

Your dough doesn't have to be pretty, it's going in soup and no one will know what it looked like. You will probably not use all of your flour either...don't worry about that!

If that sounds too difficult, use promises to taste just as good (and takes a lot of the leg work out of this dinner).

Fix some cornbread or rolls...a salad if you want...and dinner is served!


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sunday Snapshots

Last Sunday was the last day of the BOGO Holiday beverages at Starbucks ( and so of course I had to make a Starbucks run and get a Peppermint Mocha and a Gingerbread Latte. I didn't drink both of them in the same day, but they sure were delicious!
Monday was such a gorgeous day...and by gorgeous, I mean GORGEOUS! E and I ran our morning errands and then had a picnic. He loves having picnics because he doesn't have to sit still for too long. We then split a Popsicle!
Though he looks miserable in this picture, I swear he wasn't. Since Monday was so nice and I didn't get to run, I took E and Milly on a wagon ride around the neighborhood. It was a great workout!
On Wednesday I got a call from the dentist's office asking if I could swap my appointment from Thursday to Wednesday. In a panic, I said "If I can bring my 2.5 year old." They said it would be fine, but I still wasn't convinced. Y'all, I love the dentist...I look forward to it and could go every single day...well E is the same way I guess. He threw a fit because they were working on my teeth and he wanted them to look at his teeth. He was a great sport and the dentist and hygienist were so sweet to look in his mouth (even though he won't go for his first appointment until he is 3). He left with a new toothbrush (that he wanted to use right away), stickers and some dinosaurs. He cried when we got in the car because he wanted "my teeth...more."
My favorite soul food restaurant is closing down, so I feel like I have to go every week (wishing day) until they do close. I planned a date with some co-workers and it was so good. I think I ran an extra mile that night for all of the calories I consumed.
Last night was the last UGA game ( at home of the season. We had a great group for a chili tailgate. It was pretty darn cold, but fun to stand in the stadium one last time this season (and I ran into some fabulous friends from high school).

Have a wonderful Sunday! I'll be back for Menu Mondays tomorrow!


Friday, November 22, 2013

Friday Faves: Fall faves

I don't know that I would consider myself uber trendy, but I do like to dress semi-stylish and try to keep up with some of the trends. Some of my favorite pieces for this fall/winter are staples that you can mix and match with anything.
Y'all, I can't explain how much I love J.Crew's colored cords (found here: I swear, I would buy them in every color. They are so comfy and you can mix and match them with anything. I probably have 10 pairs (all different colors) and I'd seriously wear them everyday. You can dress them up (I've totally worn the black and cream colored pairs to work) or down (I literally wear them to run errands, to go to dinner, etc. etc. etc.). These pink ones are my fav, because let's be serious...I love anything pink :)
I never thought I could pull off jean leggings, but when I found them on super sale at Gap, (and saw one of my cute friends wear them while she was in town) I thought...I could wear those. So I have a pair (or two) and love them. They aren't for everyone, but I love that you can wear them with literally any shoe. You can find them here:

Living in the South doesn't leave a lot of options for outerwear, (it rarely gets below 20 degrees) but an awesome puffer vest is so fun and practical. This Gap dot vest goes with a simple t-shirt or button up and keeps you nice and warm. You can find this awesome vest here:
I love a comfy plaid shirt that I can throw on to run errands (or cozy up with my little boy). This Old Navy plaid shirt is so comfortable and warm. Similar top found here:
I am a shoe girl. I've literally told people that when I die, you better bury me in high heels. When I was pregnant with E, I wore heels literally until the day he was born. I will be 100 years old and wearing heels. These shoes may look high, but they are my most comfortable booties. I'll tell you a secret, Target shoes are a great deal, are always fashionable and are insanely comfortable. AND these match everything.On clearance here:
Last but certainly not least, these AMAZING leopard booties are MINE (all MINE) and I've worn them 100 times already this season. Grab them here:

Hope you enjoy my faves!


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Thrifty Thursday: Chambray

Welcome to Thrifty Thursday! My husband should be writing these blog posts because he loves a good deal. I guess he's rubbed off on me a little here's to hoping I can continue Thrifty Thursdays (because everyone likes to save a little more money). My theory is, the more I save, the more I can get.

Chambray is huge this year (as it was last year) looks like it's not going anywhere, but that doesn't mean you want to spend a fortune on a chambray shirt. As a part-time stay-at-home mom, I get filthy dirty when E and I are playing. He and I spend time rolling around in the leaves and tackling in the grass. I also hate ironing, so these chambray shirts are wear and wash :) I love a chambray shirt that I can throw on with skinny pants or leggings. A big chunky necklace looks amazing with it.

I got this amazing chambray shirt at Kohls ( this past weekend. It was on super clearance and I had a 15% off coupon. Let's just say I spent a whopping $9 for this shirt (originally $44). What I love most about this shirt is that it's fitted and it hits at a great length to wear with leggings or tighter pants. 

Here's the polka dot chambray with my mint green Gap jeans ( and Target flats ( (and of course a Starbucks in hand).

I also got this chambray shirt from Kohls ( for $9. In my opinion, it doesn't look anything like this picture. It's not washed out at all (maybe it's different in the stores?). It's definitely shorter than the first one I showed you, but super cute with the sleeves rolled up and a bright pair of pants. The hearts on it make it super feminine.

This Gap ( one is similar to one I found at our new Gap outlet on sale for $14. It's a little baggier than I would normally wear, but so comfortable. It's super soft and feels like you're wearing a t-shirt. I'll be honest though, the thing I hate most about this shirt is that you have to iron it. YUCK :)

Cheers to wearing chambray,


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Wednesday Workouts: I like to move it move it...

Running? What is this ridiculousness?  Oh, gosh, I can't even imagine myself running a year ago. I'm pretty sure the only running I would have done was out of complete necessity. Now running is a complete necessity. I can't imagine my life without running. This is how I felt about dance and I felt this emptiness when I stopped dancing. I wouldn't say that hole from dancing is filled because I don't think it ever will be. You see, when you dance for so long and become so passionate about something, you will always feel empty when you think about that thing. Gosh I miss dancing...but that's besides the point.

Y'all this quote from is so me. I still don't know if I would consider myself a runner. My best friend told me after I ran the half marathon, that if I kept running after that, then I was a runner. So...I guess I'm a runner :) I can't begin to explain to you how much I hated running before I started running...hated, loathed...wanted to vomit every time I thought about running. Running was one of those things that I was never good at. It uses totally different muscles than dance and just seemed so boring. And then I started. I realized that it wasn't about being good at it, but it was about disciplining yourself, competing with yourself and telling yourself that you can do it.

My husband thinks I'm crazy, but when you run 'long' distances, you have these crazy conversations in your head. Like when I was running the half marathon, I got really emotional around mile 10 (I had never run farther than 10 miles). I had to literally tell myself over and over that I couldn't get emotional, that I still had 3 more miles to go (I probably used way more profanities than that). I also have these "I think I can, I think I can" moments in my head. I think I can run farther, I think I can run faster...and then it becomes "I know I can."

Running has become therapeutic to me. I find that I have become happier with myself since I started running (I'm not saying that I was this awfully depressed person before). I have found that I am capable of a lot for than I ever thought possible (I know that's cheesy, but it's so true). I'll be the first to tell you that I don't think running is hard (per se). As a dancer, I think dance is way harder (go ahead and throw tomatoes at me). Dance requires way more skills than running. I am 100% positive that marathon runners and elite runners have skills...but it's a little different than dance ;). I guess what I'm saying is that I never thought I would be able to run farther than 2 miles (I never had run farther than 2 miles) and my body proved to me that I could do it. After so many horrible injuries in my life, I never thought I would be able to cross the finish line after running 13.1 miles, but I did.

Cheers to many more runs (and lots more blog posts on running).


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Tuesday Thankfulness: Being a boy mom...

I feel very Carrie Bradshaw with my laptop on my lap and coffee in hand (no cigarettes and no crazy  column to write). I thought I'd start by writing about one of the most important people in my life because he's easy to write about. Mr. E. E is 2.5 years old and all boy. Before I found out that E was a boy, someone told me that she really didn't see me as a "boy mom" because I was so girly and what would I do with a boy. I don't resent her for saying that, but now I can't see myself as anything except for a "boy mom"...I mean what on Earth would I do with a girl (braid her hair? paint her fingernails? OHH, dress her in Lilly Pulitzer!)?

This is E and me tailgating before a UGA game (this is also me with my new brown hair! I still don't know what to think about being a brunette...).

Boys are like the most amazing gift that God could ever give someone. E is the most affectionate kid I've ever met (I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a very touchy feely person). He is a mama's boy through and through (and he can stay this way for as long as both shall live). Let's be honest, I'd do anything for him. There's nothing I love more than going on adventures with him, pretending that we are airplanes (or firetrucks or pirates), playing in the dirt and splashing in big muddy puddles.

This is E in a nutshell...wild, crazy and ALL boy! He has my sense of humor and outgoing personality times 1,000!

Mondays and Fridays are the best...those are my days where I don't go into the office, so E and I spend our time running errands, playing and lunch-dating. When we aren't running around, he's completely satisfied with curling up on the couch and cuddling (I love those times).

One thing I've learned about being a boy mom? You have to be go with the flow. I am type A through and through, but man have I lightened up. One of my best friends told me that she was worried about me being too strict and too tight-laced before I had E. She told me the other day that she's incredibly proud of how laid back I am (Drop your popsicle on the ground? I'll lick the dirt off and you can eat it. Fall down and scratch up your knees? I won't even tell you that your leg is gushing blood...just brush it off and get up).

Even though he's a boy, he's going to dress in Jon Jons and colored cords until he's potty-trained and totally objecting).

It's true what they say, God gives you exactly what you need...


Monday, November 18, 2013

Menu Monday: Butternut Squash Risotto

I can't promise that my posts on Mondays will always be about a food/menu that I love, but I'm going to try. I love cooking and it doesn't always end up being super creative because I have a 2.5 year old that rarely let's me stay in the kitchen for more than 30 minutes.

If you follow me on Instagram, you'd know that I made one of my favorite fall dishes a couple of weeks ago: Butternut Squash Risotto. One of my best friends introduced me to this amazing recipe a couple of years ago and it's my go-to for a hearty, warm, fallish dish.

You can find the recipe on the website below and I swear the hardest part is slicing the butternut squash. Here's my helpful hint, if you microwave the squash, it makes the skin easier to slice.

It also makes great leftovers (which my husband is the king of) and an impressive dish when you have company over. It SCREAMS fall and you can use it as a main course (I usually make a salad and rolls to go with it) or a side dish. I can't promise that your kiddos will love it, (E doesn't seem to like anything orange) but I swear that everyone else will!


Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sunday Snapshots

My hope is that is on Sundays, I can summarize the week/weekend in photos so that you can have a sneak peek into my life.

It seems like E and I make a trip to Chick-fil-A ( every Monday. We enjoy our "date" and meeting other kids on the playground. E is still scared to go all the way up to the slide, but he made it a lot farther this trip than others. We always end our trip with Ice Dream!
My quick, but super fun story on this pic: E and I went to Marshall's (, E saw Spiderman and Hulk and wanted them so bad, but we told him that he had to wait on Santa to give them to him. Fast forward to Tuesday night (my grandma always comes over to my parents' house for dinner) and low and behold, she had a Spiderman and Hulk to give him. They weren't the same ones as the one in the store, but he had no idea and was in love!

It was COLD on Friday, but this little boy does not like to wear a jacket. I was totally mom of the year (sense the sarcasm) by letting him play outside without a jacket on (in the sprinkling rain). I was pretty much just proud that he had shoes on (I hate shoes and never wore shoes as a's a wonder I'm not sick all the time).
After coming in from the cold, E and our dog Milly (E calls her Yabby) curled up in my lap. Sometimes I wonder if they'll ever learn about personal space, but other times I cherish the fact that they want to snuggle so much. The only times it drives me nuts is after a long run or when I'm typing on my laptop (hence E is literally attached at my hip right now, trying to kiss me).
Saturday morning was a 5K for a friend from high school that lost her life way too soon. I ran my own 5k at home (since I couldn't make it to the race) and ran my fastest 3.01 so far!
During the UGA v. Auburn game, E thought it'd be fun to play the piano...let's just say his lovely music would have probably been better than watching the game :)

So just a few photos to catch up on our week :)