Thursday, May 31, 2012

5K!

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I did it! I ran my first race since having my son! 

Not only did I do it... I did it pushing a stroller with my little man in it! 

I am so proud of ME! 

I was afraid I wouldn't do it because I didn't really want to go alone... but I am becoming more and more content doing these kinds of things alone. I got up with the husband this morning as he got ready for work and I began to get ready for the 5K. Of course Little Man slept later than he ever does and I had to wake his sweet self up to get out of the house on time. We drove about 45 minutes and we were there. Today we ran in a Memorial Day 5K... so more close to home than others. 

I started to get intimidated for a few reasons:

1. I seemed to be the only one alone... but luckily my two year old kept me preoccupied until start time... so I didn't feel like a complete loser with no friends... :) 



2. I slowly started to realize I was the only person with a stroller... so the only person required to start at the back.



3. As we neared the start, I also realized.... There are not many people doing this run.. OMG! I am going to be the last person! 



I am not a fast runner... so I was a little intimated and embarrassed that I was going to be the last one. I started to doubt myself... but luckily Little Sis was supporting me pretty good via text over that situation. Thanks sis! 

Start Time! 

The boy and I took off... I surprised myself.. I stayed around a 5.30 the whole time. THIS made me so proud. It is quite challenging to get a good pace with the stroller... We ran one full mile solid, going good.. The second mile had about four hills.. we ran one. The other three I walked, quickly, up them.. So I walked for about 30 seconds three times... and then we kept going... We came through the finish line in less than 40 minutes which made me proud. Though it was a 5K, in all actuality it was 3.4 miles.. Thank you, new watch! :) 



I was happy and proud. I was continually passing people up during the race... I felt great. I can't wait to do another one! My little man loved his medal... In honor of Memorial Day the 'medals' they gave out were dog tags... Little man loved it and played with it for a very long time! 



-Big Sis

Also don't forget to stop by and link up to the Natually-Nifty Party!! It's open until Friday night at midnight!! 

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

WLW #11

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Do you have bad weeks? I haven't had a bad week... but I would be lying to you if I came here and pretended like I have been on track. I have had a bad holiday weekend... plain and simple. I am so happy that I still got up and ran the 5K that I had signed up for... but sometimes it is so hard to shake the fact that I am causing myself to fail momentarily... I would love to hear about your bad moments, days, weeks and how you pick yourself back up again and start...

So this week we want to hear from you all! Let us know what you do to get past a bad weekend, or to overcome holiday times without losing all sense of self-control and accomplishment.  Or share how you get yourself back in the game after messing up when you have been doing so great!

TIP OF THE DAY: 
Yesterday I pinned a story of Pinterest of this girl who had been pretty active in HS, then in college gained a lot of weight, and when she realized how out of shape she had gotten, she started to change things.  It wasn't an over-night change, but a steady change with lots of ups and downs over a course of several years before she really changed her lifestyle.  But you can see before and after pics and read about what she's doing now and it is amazing.  
One tip I got from reading her story though is to focus more on lifting weights.  Most of the time I tend to do about 85% of my workout as cardio, and only 15% on weights or strength building.  I am going to start doing more 50/50 though, and spending more time lifting.  She said not only does it burn calories, but it is also very toning.  And to push yourself while doing it....your last few reps should be VERY hard.  And you should only take about 30-60 breaks between so that you can continue burning.  Also, I do 3 times of 15 reps.  Anyways, I'll keep you updated as I start this new type of workout.  


A new thing we are starting this week with Weightloss Wednesday is that we will be pinning fitness/workout stuff to our new "Fitness Motivation" board on Pinterest! Follow us there to get motivated!!



Here's our stats for this week: 


WLW Stats for BIG SIS:(Cassey)
Starting Weight: 210
Wed. 3/21: -13lbs total 
Wed. 4/3: -16lbs total
Wed. 4/10: -22lbs total
Wed. 4/17: -25lbs total
Wed. 4/25: -29lbs total
Wed. 5/2: -32lbs total
Wed. 5/9: -34lbs total  
Wed.5/16: -34lbs total
Wed. 5/23: -37lbs total
Wed. 5/30: -36lbs total

WLW Stats for LITTLE SIS: (Brittany)
Starting Weight: 170
Wed.3/28: -3lbs total
Wed. 4/10: -6.5lbs total
Wed. 4/17: -7.5lbs total
Wed. 4/25: -7.5lbs total
Wed. 5/2: -8.5lbs total
Wed. 5/9: -10.5lbs total 
Wed.5/16: -10.5lbs total
Wed. 5/23: -10.5lbs total
Wed. 5/30: -12lbs total 





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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Naturally-Nifty #16

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It seems the the link ups are getting better and better every week. Thank you so much to those of you that are dedicated to linking up to our party each week. We hope you will continue to do so and to spread the word to your other blogging friends. I can't tell you how many of these ideas that I use or modify... I love coming here each week/day and looking through what has been shared! Thank you so much. 

Of course first.. we want to share some of our favorites of this week for you... 

1. Hani over at Craftionary shared with us some awesome ideas for Father's Day... and not only are they awesome-- there are free printables. Who doesn't love FREE? I know that I do. Running a daycare can get quite expensive so I love seeing free items that are linked up. I especially love the mustache coffee cup .. I think that is going to be a definite to-do for our Father's during daycare. I also love the letter/poem using candy. I recently saw that on pinterest and I pinned it to use for sure. Thanks Hani for linking up awesome ideas for Father's Day... you always link up such fun things!



2. Shannah over at Just Us Four shared a very yummy looking recipe. It is funny because a few days ago I posted on Facebook asking friends for a quick, simple recipe with chicken. I wanted to do something I do not normally do... but something that was yummy. Take a look at her Step-by-Step directions to making Mustard Chicken. I wish I was eating at her house... right now. The green beans look fresh out of the garden. YUMMY! This recipe is going to be a must in my home this week! Thanks for sharing.


3. Now this is a beauty. You have to check out this redo over at J House Tawk. She took an old cabinet and turned it into a show cabinet. I especially love the fact that you can have the doors on it to hide the shoes. Shoes, shoes, shoes... who doesn't have too many shoes... and that end up in places they do not need to be? This was very creative, fun, and I love the colors. Thank you for sharing with us. 



Thanks so much to everyone that linked up! And remember as part of being featured, we will be pinning these great posts to our Pinterest boards, check it out! 

We want to see any and everything that you are up to! 
From Home makeovers, craft projects, DIY, recipes, tips, kids games or crafts, or anything else you are up to!!


Just Remember....
Please SUBSCRIBE to our blog on the left sidebar!
Also, we have moved our Naturally-Nifty Party Buttons to the top tab, so take one of those and put it on your blog or add us to your linky parties tab on your blog!
And please stop by our FACEBOOK page and like us there and follow us on TWITTER



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Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Tension...when home is no long your HOME!

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So it has been a long time since I have seen my family.  
Well so that you are not confused, let me define family for you---my parents, grandmother, nieces and nephew that live back at home.
Then once I use the word home I guess there needs to be another definition---when I refer to home, I am referring to the place where I grew up, and my mother and most of my family are at. 
Then again, when I am "home," I also refer to Abilene, which is where I have lived for the past five years as my home.  
And then again, my husband, whom obviously I live with in Abilene, is also my family. 

Do you see what I mean by The TENSION! 

I am at a place in life where it is really hard to define home, and my family.
I will tell you this though, as much as I love my life and my home here in Abilene with my sweet husband of two and a half years, I also can get very homesick for my "home" that I grew up in.  And I desperately miss all of my family there!


Then, I also have this tension of how to use my time off from work.
You see, being married, I enjoy a little vacation or two with my husband, and he enjoys it too!
Plus we really enjoy going on mission trips together with our church.  This year we are even  leading a trip.
Then there is going to see our family, which I always want to do, and hate only having a short weekend for that.

So where is the balance.....? 
How do I decide where to put my vacation time? 

There is one blessing that I know not all of you have.....my parents and my in-laws live about 20minutes from each other! Which is actually such a blessing.  Although we do have to split the time when we go home, at least we don't have to plan one trip to see my family and one trip to see his, we can spend time with all of them when we go visit.

Still though, this is a very hard situation.....surely some of you understand this or have felt this :-)


It's just a hard place to be in.....I have been married for right at two and a half years, and still I am learning to get used to the tension of where my home is, and how to spend my vacation time while pleasing my husband and not missing time with our families.


This is such a random post, but I really felt like maybe a few of you could understand this! Let me know if you totally understand and feel this same tension sometimes! 


SIDENOTE: This is not a complaint :-) Just wonderings in my heart as I am finally being able to head back to my families house to visit for a short two days this weekend! I have missed them dearly and cannot wait to see them! :-) 


Don't forget to Link Up to the Naturally-Nifty Party! 
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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Weight Loss Wednesday #10

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It is so very exciting to me that we have continued with WLW blogs for 10 weeks. I look how far I have come in this time and I hope that you have done the same. We would love to hear from you about your WL challenges and successes... tips, recipes! Anything. Feedback is always awesome and when it comes to helping each other... what more can we do... so share with us how you are. I do not know who all reads this blog... but I can tell you, you guys are such a huge part in why I am becoming successful! You guys help hold me accountable. You will never know.. Thank you.


This week I reached a milestone. I hit the weight I was when I found out I was pregnant: 26 months ago. Sad to me that I let myself go for over 2 years... but so exciting that I am finding myself again. I am loving me so much... and it makes me love my husband, son, and friends even more. My husband said it to me so perfect tonight:

"This fits you. You are so much happier, goal-driven, and well just happier when you are fit and active. When you aren't you become complacent, depressed, no eagerness to do anything, and lose your joy." 

I love him so much and that he knows me so well. I only wish that food didn't have such a stronghold on me. I have really come a long ways with this and I feel great. 

I have really began to looooove working out again! My son and I have so much fun going to the gym! However, in the past two weeks it has been so beautiful outside... so I have been skipping out of the gym and either working on my garden or running in the beautiful weather. I am growing a love for running again. It feels so great! My 6 month gym membership expires on 30May. I have decided NOT to renew it.  Why? I feel like it will not be utilized to make it worth the money during the summer months. We also purchased a home gym a while back and my husband is going to move it inside and we are going to begin  using it together. My biggest worry about getting rid of the membership is the lack of strength training- but with our home gym, I will be set! :) 


With the money I will be saving, I am finally getting something I have always wanted...  I am so very excited about my newest purchase... I purchased a Garmin GPS Watch. I am so eager to get it and it should be here today!! This awesome watch not only tells time but also will tell me how many calories I have burned, my heart rate, how many miles I ran, and my pace. It will do so many other things too... but this is just the basic things that I want it for! 


I am doing my first race (since 2008) on Monday. It is Memorial Day so my daycare is closed.... and I am running a 5K. I can't wait. I am doing it alone with my little boy... I hope to find a couple more this summer to do. My schedule is just so odd... that it is hard to plan runs! 
A new thing we are starting this week with Weightloss Wednesday is that we will be pinning fitness/workout stuff to our new "Fitness Motivation" board on Pinterest! Follow us there to get motivated!! 

Here's our stats for this week: 


WLW Stats for BIG SIS:(Cassey)
Starting Weight: 210
Wed. 3/21: -13lbs total 
Wed. 4/3: -16lbs total
Wed. 4/10: -22lbs total
Wed. 4/17: -25lbs total
Wed. 4/25: -29lbs total
Wed. 5/2: -32lbs total
Wed. 5/9: -34lbs total  
Wed.5/16: -34lbs total
Wed. 5/23: -37lbs total

WLW Stats for LITTLE SIS: (Brittany)
Starting Weight: 170
Wed.3/28: -3lbs total
Wed. 4/10: -6.5lbs total
Wed. 4/17: -7.5lbs total
Wed. 4/25: -7.5lbs total
Wed. 5/2: -8.5lbs total
Wed. 5/9: -10.5lbs total 
Wed.5/16: -10.5lbs total
Wed. 5/23: -10.5lbs total


I'M STUCK!! ANY SUGGESTIONS!?!??
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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Naturally-Nifty Party #15

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Party #15 WHOA! Bring it! May is such a beautiful month for me! I love the warmth that it brings... I love being outside. I am so excited to start seeing summer link ups... We have some great blog posts about gardening and a dining room reveal. Check them out! 

But for now- get to linking... :) 

*A special request from Big Sis... if you have any awesome ideas for gifts for kids to do for Father's Day, I would love to see them*

1. Tiffany over at Home Grown Families shows us an awesome way to change your trash to treasure. I love this because I have had this planned in my head to do. I am always on the lookout for an old mirror with a unique frame... no such luck yet. I love how she changed the frame to a chalkboard. I think it is so sweet that she made it for sweet notes for her girls. Myself, I plan to make on to put on the wall in our bathroom-- in the part with just our toilet... for notes to and from my man! :) Thanks for sharing, Tiffany.


2. I am so excited that NZEcochick linked up these awesome Garden Spoon Labels. Previously I posted sharing my garden labels that I bought. However, I love these. We have added lots of new planters and plants to our garden so I believe I am about to take this awesome idea and create new labels. Yard sales, here I come. NZEcochick has a lot of awesome things on her blog.. you should go check her out. Thanks so much for linking up. 

3. Who doesn't like donuts?! What is better than making your own? I am so eager to try this recipe. Simply Sweet N' Savory linked up this week some awesome Churros. This is a unique Spanish donut recipe. This blog is amazing.... you can find almost any recipe here. Her baked goods are so amazing. We really appreciate when you share your awesome goodies with us. Friends- have a bake day and bake some of these great donuts- I am! 

Such a great tutorial over at Welcome to the Good Life. She shares her experience dying mint colored jeans, and this really inspires me to want to try this! I just need to start looking around at thrift shops for some white hands! The great thing about this post is that she shares the mistakes she made and then at the end gives you instructions and what you will need to do your own! And look her great her new mint jeans look! Doesn't it make you want to try this!!?!


Jordann over at J House Tawk shows us this awesome update she made to this old sewing machine! My favorite part about this project is that she kept the natural wood on top with a darker stain and painted the rest of the desk.  I just inherited a sewing machine desk from a garage sale that I want to paint fun like this.  My husband thinks it needs to just be re-stained though, since it is so old, we don't need to paint it. I feel like this could be the perfect compromise though! Great color choice Jordann, this looks SO GOOD! 


Vanessa over at Nifty Thrifty things shared an amazing tutorial with us of something that I think everyone could find a use for! This fantastic posts shows us how to make our own tape out of cute fabric! I am planning on doing this soon with some of the smaller scrap pieces of fabric I have! So fun, and I love the use of the crafting scissors to make the side zig-zag! You definitely need to go check this project out! 



Thanks so much to everyone that linked up! And remember as part of being featured, we will be pinning these great posts to our Pinterest boards, check it out! 

We want to see any and everything that you are up to! 
From Home makeovers, craft projects, DIY, recipes, tips, kids games or crafts, or anything else you are up to!!


Just Remember....
Please SUBSCRIBE to our blog on the left sidebar!
Also, we have moved our Naturally-Nifty Party Buttons to the top tab, so take one of those and put it on your blog or add us to your linky parties tab on your blog!
And please stop by our FACEBOOK page and like us there and follow us on TWITTER




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Monday, May 21, 2012

Dining Room Remodel Reveal!

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So if you haven't read my prior post about helping to remodel my newly married friend's dining room, you should go check that out first at Remodeling a Dining Room.

First I would like to describe the outcome of this adorable dining room as QUAINT--which I looked up and the definition fit her new dining area perfectly! 

quaint[kweynt] 
-having an old-fashioned attractiveness or charm; oddly picturesque: a quaint old house.-strange, peculiar, or unusual in an interesting, pleasing, or amusing way: a quaint sense of humor.
-skillfully or cleverly made.

Each one of these definitions is perfect for this new space.  Why don't you check it out and tell me what you think! These photos were taken at her graduation party this weekend, so it's even cuter, all decorate for a party! 













Super Cute! What do you think?? 

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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Garden Markers

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I love my garden! :)

It is so great having my own place with my own back yard where I can grow my very own garden. I was really worried about it at first.. but it has become my baby. The first things I planted were garlic, onions, and potatoes. I put them in the ground and they have grown so well. I blogged a little while back about the raised bed that we made... I love it! LOVE it! I have been wanting to make some Garden Labels for each plant but I just never found the time. I looked up several cute ideas on Pinterest, but could never get the motivation to create my own. 

So today we went to the Opening Day for our Local Farmer's Market. I was so excited... I love markets. But there was a nursery there with lots of herbs. I needed/wanted some basil so I stopped in. Wouldn't you know it- they had Garden Markers already made that I could purchase. Obviously it would have been cheaper to make them, but I didn't. However, now that I see what I bought, I know that husband and I could totally make these. 


I purchased a set of eight markers that are covered in chalk paint. It came with a stick of chalk as seen above. However, I decided I was going to just use a paint pen. Obviously to reuse these I will have to repaint with the chalk paint, but that is okay... I didn't know how well the chalk would stay on when I watered my plants or it rained.. 


So I wrote the name of each different plant that I have in our raised garden. We also have, as previously mentioned, garlic, onions, and potatoes. We are also growing some watermelon and parsley. Next year I hope to grow more herbs... and I want to put them in a raised bed as well. The main ones that I wanted this year were parsley and basil ... so that is what I am starting with. But how easy were these Garden Markers?!?! SO EASY! (yea, because I chose to be lazy and NOT make them myself)


Above you can see my garden from far away.. You can see the sticks sticking up. I knew what everything was but for some reason could not remember what my middle row was... but now I can't forget with my labels. 


I am so proud of this garden. My red chard in front is growing so well. Actually all of it is. I LOVE IT. I can't wait to start using the food from my garden. How great it will be when I need a tomato or jalapeƱo to walk right out my back door and grab it. 

It is the small things in life! :) 

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Thursday, May 17, 2012

Guest Post

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We are so excited to be able to do a Guest Post over at Newlyweds on a Budget! Jump on over there and check out Lil' Sisters Low Budget Mantel. She did an awesome job!! While you are there, go ahead and join Newlyweds on a Budget blog so you can read all about their awesome ideas! 

Don't forget to link up!


We want to see any and everything that you are up to! 
From Home makeovers, craft projects, DIY, recipes, tips, kids games or crafts, or anything else you are up to!!


Just Remember....
Please SUBSCRIBE to our blog on the left sidebar!
Also, we have moved our Naturally-Nifty Party Buttons to the top tab, so take one of those and put it on your blog or add us to your linky parties tab on your blog!
And please stop by our FACEBOOK page and like us there and follow us on TWITTER 
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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Weight Loss Wednesday #9

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Hello Friends! 
How are yall doing!??
We want to hear from you on these posts too you know, and know how your fitness challenge is going, what you are struggling with, and things you are conquering!! Let us know, we are all in this together and want to help and encourage one another.

So here's an update from me, Little Sis! 

This week has been okay, but Sunday, I went to the Texas Rangers Game with my work, and my husband joined us! We had an absolute blast! We just loving going to sporting events like that.  Meguell (my husband) and I always say that if we lived in Dallas, TX. we would definitely have to make it fit in our budget to have season tickets....our first choice would be to the Dallas Mavericks games! We just love them....good thing we don't live there though, because the prices are outrageous for season tickets, but it is just so much fun! 

Here's a few photos from our fun night! 
 Me & my man!!
 My cute Rangers outfit!!
Some of our friends there! 

Anyways, so are you wondering why the Rangers game made it a hard week? 
Well that is because we bought tickets in the all-you-can-eat section! This was my first time to do that, but it was so much fun.  And not only that, but before the game my boss wanted to take us to eat at a wonderful Mexican Restaurant, and I love Tex-Mex! My main weakness in life is chips and salsa and queso!! OMG I could live off that stuff! 
So we ate dinner and stuffed our faces then went straight to the game and had the freedom to eat more! and they had nachos, which I wanted more of event though I had just eaten chips and queso! SERIOUSLY MY WEAKNESS! :-)

Anyways, I am getting back into the swing of things though, weekends are really just more difficult though because my schedule is so different, and I have more freedom to do things like go out to eat, etc.  How have your weekends been compared to your week? Let us know what you are doing to overcome those weekend challenges, and not set yourself back every week because of the weekend. 

Here's our stats for this week: 


WLW Stats for BIG SIS:(Cassey)
Starting Weight: 210
Wed. 3/21: -13lbs total 
Wed. 4/3: -16lbs total
Wed. 4/10: -22lbs total
Wed. 4/17: -25lbs total
Wed. 4/25: -29lbs total
Wed. 5/2: -32lbs total
Wed. 5/9: -34lbs total  
Wed.5/16: -34lbs total
 (176)


WLW Stats for LITTLE SIS: (Brittany)
Starting Weight: 170
Wed.3/28: -3lbs total
Wed. 4/10: -6.5lbs total
Wed. 4/17: -7.5lbs total
Wed. 4/25: -7.5lbs total
Wed. 5/2: -8.5lbs total
Wed. 5/9: -10.5lbs total 
Wed.5/16: -10.5lbs total
 (159.5)



Also, just a little tip from me! 
Lately, I have gotten hooked on these meal bars! I have always been a meal bar kind of girl, which I get from my mom.  I used to eat Fiber One bars a lot, but after going to Africa and eating them so much last summer (because I am so picky :-) I had to find something else, and that I did.

I have recently started eating Clif Builder's Bars for breakfast, mostly every (weekday) morning at work.  So here's my routine.  I grab one on my way out the door, and as soon as I get to work I go fill up my water bottle! Then I sit at work checking my email, etc. and SLOWLY eat the bar and drink entire (really big) bottle of water, basically it is two normal sized bottles of water.  And that really kickstarts my day! I just have to make myself go slow, because these bars are so yummy....but if I go slow and drink the entire bottle throughout eating the bar I get full, and am not still hungry after.



These bars come in two flavors (that I have found), Peanut Butter and Chocolate.  I just buy a huge box with both flavors mixed from Sam's and that lasts me several weeks, maybe close to a month.  

Each bar is packed with 20 grams of protein which is awesome, and only 270 calories, which if this is your entire breakfast is not bad at all! Anyways, give it a try, or at least try drinking lots of water with breakfast! It's a great way to start the day, then continually fill your water up multiple times a day. I basically just sip water all day at work!

Also don't forget about the Naturally-Nifty Linky Party that is happening right now!! Stop by and link up & have a good time at the party! 

**Just a sidenote before we get started! We will be out some during the month of June and we are looking for some guest bloggers to feature a great post here while we are on vacation! Please email us if you are interested (you can do that by visiting our contact us tab above)

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