Jan 29, 2016

Friday Favorites: Life Lately

Linking up with Erica for another addition of Friday Favorites!

January has been an awesome month!  We literally had every.single.weekend open!  I seriously don't thing this has happened for a few years.  Not kidding.  We spent every weekend at home just hanging out and I loved it.  This was me pretty much all weekend, haha!  And being that we are on this diet which means no alcohol, we were typically in bed by 10 and up at 5 to watch a movie.  I really enjoyed that!


Speaking of the Fast Metabolism Diet, Brad and I are on our last few days and I'm happy to say that I am down 7 pounds and Brad is down 14.  I feel great and plan on continuing with my healthy eating.

We have been super busy during the week... Mondays Alayna has dance and Rachel has volleyball, Tuesdays Emma has piano, Wednesdays Rachel has volleyball and Thursdays Alayna has volleyball.  Whew!  No wonder I have enjoyed our quiet weekends!

Speaking of volleyball, mousey is LOVING it!  And besides the fact that she is so tiny could perfectly fit in a volleyball bag, that girl can serve!!  



Oh, and Rachel was practicing setting with a head of lettuce...never a dull moment in this house I tell ya!


Last weekend my sister and nephew came down to spend the weekend, and ohhhhhh how we loved snuggling him!!  He is 4 months old and such a sweet babe.


Pure love!


Jasmine (our chocolate lab) has been up to her usual shenanigans...


And let me tell you the bodily functions she left behind almost got her kicked out of the house, ugh.

Tonight we are heading uptown for a fundraiser.  Brian Klinefelter was a St. Joe cop who was shot and killed 20 years ago today.  He was a very good friend of Brad's brother and I will never ever forget that night.  It will be so fun to see everyone and hang out.

Sunday Rachel has her first tournament, and I am so ready to get back into watching volleyball!

Happy Friday!

Jan 8, 2016

Friday Favorites


Happy January and HAPPY FRIDAY!!!


Linking up for the first time in 2016 with Andrea.

This has been a bit of a crazy week, just getting back into the groove of things after the holidays isn't so fun.

1.

First off, Brad and I decided to jump on the weight loss bandwagon this year.  Insert eye roll...haha.  I know it's so cliche, but we were in need of some serious detoxing.  Brad's sister and her husband have been doing the Fast Metabolism Diet and have had amazing results.  

bookshot

I bought the book last week and got to meal planning and prepping over the weekend.
The basic premises is that there are 3 phases each week.  The first phase you eat high glycemic, moderate protein, lowfat.  Phase 2 is high protein, high veggie, low carb and low fat.  Phase 3 is high healthy fats, moderate carbs, lowfat.  
The first couple days before starting was the worst, lol!  It was just trying to figure out how you are going to eat, once everything was planned, it was pretty easy.  The hardest part was the no caffeine, sugar or alcohol.  Ugh.  It's 28 days, not the end of the world.
Today is day 5 for me and I have lost 4 pounds.  I don't have much to lose, it was more for me to get back on my healthy eating and cutting back the sugar and alcohol.  The holidays kill me with that!  I feel REALLY good, lots of energy, sleep well and just overall feel amazing!
Brad is doing it too and I'm so proud with how he's stuck to the plan with being out of town a couple days.  Now I will say that we aren't following it to a T, we've made a few modifications.  You eat ALL THE TIME, and I never feel hungry.  The worst part is just all the prep work, which thankfully I'm used to doing already, just a bit more.  
The girls have enjoyed the recipes too which has been nice!

2.

Image result for hot tea

Since we can't have alcohol, I've been drinking a lot of this at night, gives me something to look forward to, and I love tea!  Right now I am drinking Pau D' Arco which is supposed to be a cleansing tea.

3.


I am also drinking lots of this, kombucha.  Kombucha is a probiotic drink that is so, so good for your gut.  It's low in calories and is fizzy, like pop which I love.  Getting over Diet Coke may just kill me....lol.

4.

I am very much looking forward to having a quiet weekend.  Unfortunately the sickies have hit our house and Emma and Alayna both have strep throat.  Ugh.  So this weekend is all about laying low and hanging out.  We've been running all week so that is definitely a favorite!

5.

Image result for volleyball images

Rachel started volleyball this week (and Alayna was supposed to start last night but had a 103 temp:() and I seriously cannot wait for tournaments to start!  Some of our funnest weekends are tourney weekends!

So there's a bit of what's going on in our house this first week in January!!
Happy Friday!




Dec 31, 2015

Christmas 2015

Another amazing Christmas is down in the books, and I'm not gonna lie, this momma is TIIIIRED!!
I love every part of Christmas, but it's so funny how as soon as it's over, you wanna sleep for about 480 hours straight....
Christmas Eve is always spent with Brad's family, the last couple years it's been at his sister's house which is so nice!  We go over there around 2 and everyone brings appetizers and you just snack all day long.  I love this picture of Grandma and Grandpa with all of the grandkids and great grandkids!

We stayed until about 6:30 and then headed home (the long 2 minute drive!) to do our celebrating.


We of course had to do a family selfie!


We open presents, snack a bit and then watch Christmas Vacation for the last time, it's always a sad moment when it's the last viewing...One of the funniest moments was when Brad pulled out his backpack that he got from his work and Emma said, "well of all the cheap ways to make a buck..." and we all dies.  If you haven't seen Christmas Vacation, you won't get it, so funny! 

After the movie the girls head to bed.  They always sleep in Rachel's room and watch a movie, and Brad and I get everything ready for Christmas morning.  Typically I make cinnamon rolls, but this year I ordered caramel rolls from our local diner and had Brad pick them up Christmas Eve.  They were unbaked and ready to rise, I wish I had a picture of how huge they were!

The girls actually slept in for the first time ever, and we woke them up around 7.  Everyone was thrilled with what Santa brought and it was a nice relaxing morning.

I love this picture because these two argue more than love...


We went to church at 9:30 and then to the farm for the day.  It was SO relaxing and we enjoyed lots of yummy eats and card playing.

Saturday we woke up to a snow storm which was wonderful and we had no plans which was even better!  We of course got some snow boarding and snowman making in.


Saturday night Rachel and I decided to make a big fancy meal, Beef Bourguignon.  I loved having her be my sous chef, and the meal was outstanding!


Definitely something we will make again! 


Sunday brought Christmas with my mom, her husband and my Step brother and brothers families.  It was a ton of fun!  We (ok they) played charades, and Tenzies and we ate lots of yummy food.  It was so nice to have all of us together again!  It was the perfect ending to a busy week.


I have so much to be thankful for, just last year things felt hopeless and many times I asked, "why us?"  The last few months have brought so much happiness to my family and I am just so thankful to God for answering prayers.  It was a lesson in patience for me.

I hope each of you has an amazing New Years Eve and I pray that 2016 brings you much happiness and joy!!!

Image result for happy new year images

Dec 23, 2015

Merry Christmas Eve Eve!!

I cannot believe that Christmas Eve is tomorrow!  The girls are off on Christmas break now, so I have a long list of FUN stuff for them to do...Just kidding, they will be cleaning, doing laundry and wrapping my presents, haha!  Ahh the benefits of having older children...

It has been insanely busy around here.  Rachel has had drivers ed 3 nights a week from 6-9 which means that Brad and I do rock paper scissors to see who has to pick her up.  8:30 is my typical bedtime, just sayin...
So here's a hodgepodge of what we've been up to...

Emma had an orchestra concert last Thursday, they did so well, love listening to them!


There has been lots of movie watching by the fire...


And this crazy cat who stared up into the tree for about a half hour.  (never mind the empty chip dip can, mmkay?)


I was convinced a squirrel was going to pop out, like in Christmas Vacation.


We made a gingerbread house, and so far Jasmine (the dog) has only nibbled a tiny little corner!  It's a Christmas miracle...


Sunday we made Christmas cookies...Grandma Omi's molasses cookies, cutouts and twix cookies.


Sunday afternoon Emma had a little Christmas piano recital at her teachers house.  I was SO proud of her, she has learned so much since starting this summer!


Sunday night we drove around and looked at Christmas lights.  This was probably my favorite part of Christmas this year.  We made hot chocolate, got in our jammies and drove around town while watching "Christmas Vacation".  I think it's almost funnier listening to it than watching it, haha!

We also finished up our gifts.  Emma made a "snow survival kit" for her secret santa, Alayna made a reindeer ornament and they made some candy and cookie jars for bus drivers.


I will say that I feel like we didn't "do" as much as we typically do (crafts and such), but we were together the whole time and got lots of movie/fun time in!

I pray that each of you has a most magical Christmas and are able to spend it with the ones you love.

Merry Christmas!

Dec 9, 2015

Christmas Home Tour

In case you didn't know, I loooooooove Christmas.  Love.  And there is nothing that I love more than our home decorated at Christmas!  I love all the lights and the cozy feel it has.  Thankfully my girls have inherited my love of the holidays and enjoy every aspect of Christmas just as much as I do!

Here is our 2015 Christmas home tour....

This is our front porch, we are so lucky to live out in the country and we love nothing more than sitting on our porch and enjoying the sights and sounds!



We don't have a huge foyer, but it works!  The old window is from Brad's parents farm, I have several of these old windows throughout the house.


These stockings were made by my great grandmother, love having these heirlooms ( as does my cat who attacks them daily).


We have a pretty large dining room area, it's attached to our kitchen also, and this is where we entertain and spend most of our family time. I have two trees in the dining room, this one is the homemade ornament tree.  Love looking at all the ornaments the girls have made over the years!


This tree is on the opposite side and is the candy tree.


Love how it looks at night, so cozy!


I don't do a ton of decorating in the kitchen, I like my mix match of trees behind my sink though!  I put up a couple things above the cabinets, but not near what I used to...


I love these stockings, when Brad and I first married, I stitched our names on these and also hand stitched the applique on.  As each child came, I got lazier, and started hot gluing them, haha!  Still love em!
  

Our main tree, it's a mix of golds and reds, beads and ribbons.  The tree skirt was also made by my great grandma, and the same skirt we used growing up.


Downstairs we have the Christmas village.  The kids still love playing with this.  Alayna and William (her cousin who comes after school everyday and is the same age) play with this everyday, they get the lego stuff out and pretend its their village.


This tree is our "woodsy" tree, love it!


You can see the nature theme down here (seriously, NO MORE DUCKS!)  Emma's piano and the Christmas book my Grandma used.


I love this wall because all of this is from the farm.  They tore down the old barn a few years back and I had them save the windows and door for me and created this wall.  This is by far one of my favorite things in our home.  I also have a basket of all of our Christmas books.  we try to read one every night, along with an advent book that I will post about later...


And finally our entertainment center.  The singing carolers on the left were my Grandma Trellis'.  I adore these.  There are also two music carolers on the right that were my Grandma Omi's.  Love having these treasures.


I absolutely love getting our our decorations every year and having all the memories come with it.  Our decor is a mix of newer things and lots of old things passed down.

Hope you enjoyed my holiday home tour!

Linking up with Andrea and Beth!

Dec 7, 2015

Weekend Shananigans

Can't believe that December is upon us already, before you know it it's Christmas!!!


I know, I'm excited too!  I only have a couple more gifts to buy, SO glad I am mostly done.  Some are wrapped, cards have been sent, angel tree gifts bought and wrapped.  I am feeling so much more ready this year than others.  

We had a great weekend filled with friends and family...Friday night was just Emma, Alayna and myself as Brad and Rachel went with other friends to watch the Gopher women's volleyball playoffs.  I completely forgot that our town was having their Winter Walk which was basically a tree lighting, seeing Santa and making a craft.  The businesses were all open late and a lot of them had hot cocoa or cider and cookies.  It was fun!  I didn't get a single pic though...
Saturday we hung out at home in the morning, I was able to get a 4 mile run in which felt good!  After lunch we made the horrible, terrible, no good mistake of heading into town to get a few things.  We ended up crossing quite a bit of gifts off of our list, but were certainly ready for a cocktail by the time we got home!
Saturday night we headed over to friends of ours for an evening of cards, food and fun!
The girls made these Grinch fruit kabobs, so fun!

(not my pic, here is the source)

It was a lot of fun, and so good to see our close friends and celebrate with some Christmas cheer!

Sunday we slept in and man did that feel good!  We didn't do much, however I talked most of us into taking a walk back into our woods.  We don't utilize the woods as much as we should, there is a small pond that we like to take Jazz to so she can run and swim.  We try to get back there a couple times in the warmer weather, but it was so beautiful and peaceful to be back there in the winter.  (I was wearing Rachel's snow boots, bad mom!)



Sunday was, of course, St. Nick!  St. Nick came to the farm around 6 and Alayna was SO excited to see him!  We sang some Christmas songs and then he handed out the bags.  The girls got a Christmas book, plates, ornaments and candy.  St. Nick was quite generous!


Of course Emma's highlight was holding our new baby niece/cousin, Isabel!


Rachel and her cousin Isaac, goof balls!



Linking up with: B Loved Boston