Wednesday, July 31, 2013

What I Wore Wednesday - Travel Edition

I'm just going to put it out there... I hate it when people travel in sweatpants and/or gym clothes. Don't take it personal, I used to do it too. But now I know better... there's no need to dress like a slob kabob while traveling! 

This is what I'm talking about....

B. Spears is the Queen of traveling like a slob kabob

I may shun sweats and gym wear, but I still like to be comfy while I travel though, so I target target pieces in my wardrobe that are deceptively comfy & use accessories to dress up the look. 

tee - Disney World // boyfriend jeans - LOFT // belt - J.Crew
watch - Coach // bangle - Gap // flipflops - Old Navy

I wore the outfit above to road trip to my parents' house last weekend. My boyfriend jeans & vintage tee are amazingly comfortable, as are my cheap flip-flops. Worn on their own it's borderline slob kabob status. But, when I throw on my neon belt, gold watch, and a bangle it dresses things up & makes it look pulled together. 

Want travel style inspiration? Check out my Pinterest board here

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Falling Off the Wagon...

It happens to the best of us - we fall off the wagon. None of us mean to do it. It's a slow & steady creep.  You miss one run, then another. You eat a piece of cake on Monday, then an ice cream cone on Tuesday. Next thing you know, your pants feel a little tighter & your runs feel like crap. You've fallen off the wagon. 

I am no stranger to this. Since losing weight through Weight Watchers in 2006, my weight has fluctuated by about ten pounds. My highest being the summer of 2010 (at 136 lbs.) and my lowest being right after my half marathon (at 123 lbs.)  When it piles on, it's subtle. When I shed it, it's subtle. No one usually notices as much as I do, and if they do, they are kind enough to keep their mouths shut. I've learned a few things about the creep, and thankfully, how to prevent it. 

Wear Fitted Clothing 
The first step to preventing the creep is to be aware of it at an early stage. You want to know the second your skinny jeans are a little too tight, the faster you do damage control, the better. That means you can't live in sweatpants or maxi dresses - put pants on at least once a week. 

Food Journal 
Whenever I feel that I'm spinning out of control, I take a week & write down everything I'm eating. It takes me right back to my WW roots, and usually just the fact that I'm writing it down keeps me from overeating. You can do it in an app like My Fitness Pal or you can go old school & do it on paper. Just write it down so that you have a visual of what you ate! And remember, no one is judging you, this is helping you help yourself... so don't cheat - every M&M counts! 

Increase Your Exercise
Find ways to up your daily exercise. Every little step counts! Take the stairs. Park in the farthest parking spot you can find. Walk the dog instead of watching Game of Thrones. Just get up & get moving! 

Stay Away from Pushers
I can't stand food pushers, and unfortunately some of my family members are guilty of this. If I say no, I mean no. My willpower is fragile enough without someone dangling a cupcake in front of my face and saying, "You're so skinny, a cupcake won't kill you." Ugh. Stay away from people & situations like this - it's easier said than done, but it makes all the difference in the world. 

Drink Water, Not Booze
Booze is the reason that I got back up to 136. I was living in Eric's frat house for the summer & drank far more than normal. Cutting out alcohol is always a huge difference maker for me. Same goes for soda - but I don't really care for that anyways. When it comes to weight loss, water is king. Start sipping. 

Today I'm linking up with... 

Mal Smiles
Monday, July 29, 2013

Ella is 1!

Today is going to be short & sweet because it is Miss Ella's birthday! I know it's all in my head, but I swear she just looks older today. We spent the entire weekend celebrating & today she is totally engrossed in playing with her new toys. We're headed out for a zoo date with her boyfriend this afternoon & are having a cookout in our backyard tonight.

Ella in her Cozy Coupe from her Aunt Brittany 

with my sister in our party outfits... 

Ella's delicious birthday cake! I ate one too many slices of it. (Yes, I said slices, plural.)  

The dessert table at Ella's party, including the banner that I made for her! 

chillin' with my Minnie Margarita! 

Ella's presents... 
family photo with her cake! 
my attempt to get Ella to take a picture with her cake... 

devouring her cupcake! 

It was a fantastic party & I'm so glad that I didn't go totally overboard with it. She really just wanted to play with the balloons & gift bags. It was more about family & friends than candy bags & presents. I hope that all of her future birthdays are that way... I'll be back tomorrow to talk about how I'm working off all of that cake! 

Happy Birthday Miss Ella! 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sunday Social - Food Edition

Today I'm linking up with Neeley & Ashley for The Sunday Social! They're talking about one of my favorite things... FOOD! So while I chow down on leftovers from Ella's birthday party last night, read up on my faves! 

If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Chicken fingers. I love them. I already eat them almost daily in some way, shape, or form. 

What’s your guilty pleasure/comfort food?
Macaroni & Cheese! My grandpa made the absolute best mac & cheese, but Babs makes a close second. I keep a frozen batch stashed in the freezer in case of a no good, very bad day. 

What’s the weirdest/craziest thing you’ve ever eaten?
Ummm.... I eat like a five year old, so I don't really have an answer to this. However, my father-in-law likes to eat fried crickets & is always trying to trick me into eating them. I never have... as far as I know. 

What foods do you avoid at all costs?
Mayonaise - ugh, just typing it makes me want to gag. Rumor has it that Holly eats it straight from the packet. If this is true, I strongly encourage that she go get her head examined. 

What meal reminds you of your childhood?
Hot dogs & Kraft Mac and Cheese, with a can of Mt. Dew of course. (Former fat girl here!) 

Share one of your favorite recipes and the story behind it.
Here is the recipe for my favorite boneless wings... we eat this at least once a week in our house. My mother in law found the recipe on Pinterest & made them for us last Christmas. I've since made them for countless get togethers & we eat them on salads all of the time. Make a batch today & eat up! 

Buffalo Chicken Salad! 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

My Picks from J.Crew's Summer Sale

The blog world is abuzz about the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, but I'm going to talk about a sale that I am just as in love with today - The J.Crew Summer Sale. The best part of the sale? If you use the code "STYLE40" at the checkout, you'll receive an extra 40% off the sale price. That means huge deals! 

Pick 1: Nolita Jean Jacket 
On Sale for $98 - With Code $58

Pick 2: Classic Link Necklace
On Sale for $135 - With Code $81

Pick 3: Toothpick Jean in Cone Distressed Denim 
On Sale for $108 - With Code $65

Pick 4: Classic Medium Bangle 
On Sale for $16 - With Code $9

Pick 5: Stripe Silk Popover
On Sale for $69 - With Code $41

Pick 6: Biennial Medium Satchel 
On Sale for $159 - With Code $95

Pick 7: Collection Mixed Stripe Sweater
On Sale for $100 - With Code $60

Pick 8: Collection Cashmere Stripe Short
On Sale for $80 - With Code $48 

Pick 9: Collection Cashmere Popover Hoodie 
On Sale for $189 - With Code $113

Pick 10: Silk Trim Maxi Dress
On Sale for $88 - With Code $52

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Lake Livin'

Nothing epitomizes a summer weekend in Upstate NY like a day at the lake. We spent our Saturday at a friend's lake house and this is what I wore... 

Essentially, this whole outfit is from Gap. I love the graphic tank & my mom bought it too.  It's perfectly slouchy & easy to wear. (Pssstttt... it's on sale right now too!) I also brought along my new bag - featured here - and it was just the right size for my swim suit, sunscreen, shades, and wallet - with plenty of room to spare! The cut-offs are a lake essential. It's probably the one place I don't get self-conscious about them being too short for a mom! Overall, I loved everything about this outfit! 

Now about the hat... I don't normally do hats. This one isn't mine. I borrowed it from my mom's closet to test it out & I think I like it. What do you guys think? 

Today I'm linking up with... 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Life Lately...

I realized yesterday that a lot has been happening lately that I've been sharing on Twitter but not on the blog. So lets catch up...

Ella is walking! 

Ella started really walking about two weeks ago :) She still prefers to crawl, I think because she's so much faster at it. If she's motivated enough though, she can walk. I see her getting more comfortable with it every day & I'm so glad that I get to be at home with her to experience it. #teacherperk

I'm back to coaching! 

Cheer camp is this week, which means I'm back to the chaos of coaching. I love coaching. I love my girls. I love winning. But... coaching with Ella is getting harder & harder. She isn't as familiar with my new team (her babysitters moved up to JV) and she wants to be with me every second. That just isn't possible - both for my sanity & for safety, so we have some brainstorming to do on how to keep her entertained during practices. 

Ella got sick (boo)!

Ugh, this was awful. Taking her to the doctor & having to sit in the sick waiting room sucked. She had to have blood drawn. They had to take a urine sample - which is a huge ordeal with a baby. We were there for two hours & found out she has an infection. She's almost finished with her antibiotics, but she's going to have follow up tests & scans. All a little too scary for my taste... 

I've been scoring deals left & right! 

this is just what I found yesterday on our spur of the moment mall trip... 

On a lighter note... I've been scoring deals like whoa lately! Yesterday I got two pairs of jeans & a peplum top for $57... at J.Crew! That's unheard of people! It was part of my summer plan to shop the sale racks often & it has been paying off big time! 

I've been losing weight & I have no clue how... 

So... I haven't stepped on the scale, but I can tell from my clothes that I've lost weight. For instance, I bought size 2 jeans at Loft & 27's at J.Crew. I'm normally a 4, so buying a size 2 is always fun. The 27's are my normal size, but they're looser than normal. I haven't been exercising as intensely as normal, so its puzzling to me. Granted, I spend my day chasing after Ella and carrying her around, but I don't know if that's enough for me to lose weight. Maybe it's because I'm eating more meals at home? Again, I don't know because some days I feel like I'm eating nonstop. I'll try to pay more attention over the next week or so & get to the bottom of this. 

What have you been up to lately? 
Monday, July 22, 2013

Sale Shopping, Lake Living, and My Roadtrip with Babs

Babs & I took off on our adventure to my parents' house in Saratoga Springs on Thursday afternoon. Let me just say, I love driving her minivan. The woman hates driving & immediately hands over the keys when she pulls in the driveway. Some people are probably shuddering in horror, but I was born to drive a minivan. 

dancing to T. Swift at the rest stop

The ride was pretty uneventful, except for our stop at the world's worst Starbucks ever. I've had horrible customer service before... but this was beyond. They overcharged us, then got our orders wrong. When I asked for it to be fixed - they yelled at me! Let's just say that we drank Dunkin' the rest of the weekend. It's going to take a lot for me to ever stop there again.

We spent Thursday evening running a few errands & dining at Chili's. I've never had a problem with Ella at a restaurant before, but apparently my time has come. She was crazy. I'm talking random screams - not angry, just excited. She was grabbing everything in sight. Dancing in her high chair. Luckily, there weren't many people seated around us - otherwise I would've been on edge the whole time. Oh wait, I was definitely on edge the whole time. 

On Friday morning we woke up to get ready for what we thought was going to be a Babs/Ella/Bri shopping trip. But around 8:30 a.m. I got a text from my mom that said she was taking the afternoon off to come with us! Woot! Woot! I love shopping with my mom! So, Babs & I hit up Dunkin' then headed to Target and Kohl's to do some bargain hunting while we waited for my mom. 

I should let you know that Babs is the queen of deal hunting. She has unlimited patience and will browse every single clearance rack in a store if you let her. She ended up finding my cousin an awesome chair for his dorm room, my other cousin an awesome maxi dress, and buying herself a new swimsuit. All of this was less than $100 combined. 

Once my mom was out of work, we headed to Halfmoon Sandwich Shop for lunch. I absolutely love this place. They have the most delicious paninis and subs. They also have chocolate fudge brownies, which I shared with Babs. 

Ella at Lunch
Finally, we headed to the mall! The highlight was absolutely Gap's sale on sale items. I cleaned up! I got two running tanks, a tank top, and a new bag. Ella got two pairs of shorts, three tops, two hats, and two pairs of shoes. And... keep in mind that I spent less than $50! 

The best part of Friday was after dinner when we took Ella to get ice cream. OMG - she loved it! I asked for a baby cone - but it was huge. I kept thinking she'd get sick of it, but she didn't. I then decided that she might just get sick in general, but thankfully she didn't. (Side note - I had a cake batter flurry! So good!) 

This post is getting really long... so let's sum up Saturday like this: 

  1. Golf cart ride to count bunnies - 5 total 
  2. Breakfast at Lakeside Farms where Ella had her first Apple Cider Donut. She loved it just as much as I do! 
  3. Head to the lake! 
my outfit for the lake - details on Wednesday! 

Ella playing on the deck... 


with my fish of a daughter who is pouting because she
doesn't want to get out of the water... 

And Sunday was just us driving home & passing out in front of the tv. 

recliner + big screen = lazy Sunday

Awesome weekend. How was yours?!
Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sunday Social

Today I'm linking up with Neely & Ashley for The Sunday Social because discussing one of the great loves of my life... television! That isn't meant to make me sound lazy, just know I love TV & love to have it on while I'm doing just about anything. 

What was your favorite TV show as a kid? 
I loved Full House & Boy Meets World. I also watched anything on Nickelodeon - Salute Your Shorts, Doug, Legends of the Hidden Temple... 

What is your current favorite TV to watch?
I love The New Girl, Modern Family, and Nashville. Those are 3 shows that I make sure to keep up with. I used to be a total Gleek, but I lost interest when the original cast graduated. 

What is one reality show you'd never do?
I could never be on any cooking related reality show. I'd loose miserably & that'd just be embarrassing.  

What is one reality show you'd love to do?
I'm pretty sure I'd kick ass on Dancing with the Stars. If only they'd waive that pesky celebrity requirement... 
Who is the TV character you feel you're most like? 
I'm a lot like Rachel from Glee. I was overly driven & optimistic in high school and grew up a lot in college. I also envision grand musical numbers in my head on a regular basis. 

Who is the TV character you'd most like to date? 
Hmm... I'd have to pick Phil from Modern Family because I think he's the best husband & father. 


We're leaving my parents' house in Saratoga today & heading back home. It's always bittersweet when I leave because we have such a good time but right now, I really miss my hubs. I'll be sharing all of our weekend adventures tomorrow! 
Thursday, July 18, 2013

My Crazy Aunt Babs

It's about time that I introduced you to someone extremely important in my life - my crazy Aunt Babs... 

She hasn't always been Babs, growing up she was just plain old Aunt Barb. But as I got older, she became my best friend, and after a drunken night she became Babs. I don't think she expected the whole family to start calling her that, but it has stuck & I'm sure that Ella will grow up to know her as Aunt Babs. 

Like I said, Babs is my best friend. If I'm looking for an adventure, I call Babs. If I've had a rotten day, I text Babs. If I need someone to bury the body, I knock on Babs' door (you don't want an electronic record of that sort of thing.) We've done everything together; from traveling to coaching and shopping to party planning, we always have a good time. 

When I graduated college & got my first job, my parents decided to move five hours away. That left me living alone in our childhood home in the middle of the boondocks. Thank God for Babs! She would have me over for dinner & was always willing to send my cousins over to kill things. We basically spent those two years joint at the hip because we were coaching cheerleading together - a sport that we both take extremely seriously.

at my Bachelorette party

Two summers ago, I got married & then celebrated by spending eight weeks teaching summer school. At the end of it all, I just wanted to get away, but Eric had just started a new job & he couldn't get time off for a honeymoon. So, I went on a honeymoon with Babs instead. Where did two grown adult women go for a good time? Disney, duh! 

Last year, I convinced my mom & dad that I needed a "nanny" for our beach vacation, so we brought along Babs... not the best nanny since she got hammered at Margaritaville (see first picture), but we had a great time! 

Today we're headed off to my parents' house in Saratoga Springs for a weekend adventure. I know my mom got a little nervous when I told her I was bringing Babs with us, you just never know what the two of us might decide to do. It should be a low key weekend of shopping & playing with Ella, but who knows... 
Wednesday, July 17, 2013


It's been a few weeks since I participated in "What I Wore Wednesday." I swear I've been getting dressed daily, although I have been spending a lot of time in a bathing suit lately. My looks are obviously less polished than they are during the school year, but as promised, I haven't resorted to gym shorts and t-shirts (yet). Here are a few of my favorite looks from the past two weeks... 

I wore this outfit for a festival on Sunday. The top was a clearance find at Old Navy for $8! It's such a fun piece & I'll be able to transition it into fall easily. Also, these are the shorts that Shafer has been raving about. I got them on sale for $30 at the Gap. I would suggest going up a size, as they have stretch but are short. I am so glad I tried the on in store!

shorts - Gap // tank - Old Navy // watch - Coach // earrings - Marc Jacobs

This outfit was for a bridal shower on Saturday. It was a hot day & I wasn't I the mood for a dress, so I opted for my lace shorts instead. They were perfect for the laid back event. 

lace shorts - Kiki La Rue // sandals - AE // tank - Target 

I wore this out to dinner on a random weeknight. Nothing extraordinary about it, but it's proof that I managed to get showered & dressed on a weekday...

shorts - AE // tee - Forever 21 // watch - Forever 21 // necklace - Tulipwood Lane 

I threw this outfit on in a mad rush yesterday morning as I ran out the door to get Ella to the doctor. I hate it when I see people at appointments in sweats, so I made sure to pull it together. I was glad I did too because we ended up going to the pharmacy & grocery store after our appointment! 

shorts - Target // tee - Gap // watch - Forever 21 // necklace - Tulipwood Lane

This is an up close shot of an outfit from last week. I loved the combination of cobalt blue with black & gold. It was a great outfit for running errands with Ella without looking like a frumpy soccer mom. 

shorts - J.Crew // tank - Gap // watch - Coach // belt - J.Crew

Last outfit of the day was just thrown on for a day around the house. I found the soft, vintagey tee at Target for $6. It's comfy in a major way! I also have on my rolled boyfriend shorts that I don't wear enough... I'm making it my mission to pull them out more often! 

shorts - Gap // tee - Target // watch - Forever 21 // sandals - AE 

Today I'm linking up with... 

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