Lifestyle Exchange

8.29.2013

Alright friends, let's be honest...I haven't been the best of bloggers lately.
Actually I've been QUITE the slacker this week, and heck last week too.
To be honest we just haven't been that exciting, and I want to try and stay on the whole theme and mission of my blog in the first place. No adventures lately, thus no adventurous posts. I promise to step it up...after this weekend full of work!

For now, I want to share with you the sweetest Carabox I received this week from my new friend Krista who blogs over at Life Somewhere in the Middle. She is a sweet newlywed who I have loved getting to know this past month. She sure does love her hubby and it makes me happy/proud to be a newlywed. She was the perfect match for me during this month's "lifestyle" themed exchange.

Cara Box

Krsita hit is on the head, and did her homework well by sending me a Fall themed box. I guess it's no secret that I'm overwhelmingly excited about our first Fall in the North East. The event I'm most excited about it apple picking...and now I have the perfect date "kit"! Caramel apple kit, apple bread recipe, apple cider with two sweet mugs.


I also received two precious signs that will fit perfectly in our Texas/Love themed guest room.



Joe's favorite part of the package were the Reese's PB cups. Now if you know me, you know I despise Reese's...yes seriously. And guess what, Krista knew too! What she also knew was that Joe loved them and made sure to include him in the exchange this month. 
Her note was so sweet as well

"As a newlywed we've learned it's all about the husband, so I included this since you said you don't like them, but he does." How cute is she?


And currently my delicious fall apple candle is burning and make our abode that much more "Fall[ie]" can that be a word?

Thanks Krista!

Tienna was my Carabox partner who I sent a gift package to. 
Head over to The Halford's Party of Two + The Dogs, to say hi and see what I gave her!

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Dear 5 year old me

8.26.2013

As all of my teacher friends head back to school this week, it made me reflect over that time in life that I most certainly took for granted many moons ago.


Dear 5 year old me,

You see, now that you're "grown" there are a few things I'd like you to realize what you were actually missing out on. Yes, those grown ups were right and those rules actually weren't out to ruin your life...

Let's talk about naps...I would do just about anything to have those wasted minutes "rollover" into my daily routine now. How could I have wasted such precious moments of sleep? I would LOVE to just roll out my "Little Mermaid" sleeping bag in the middle of the nurses station and catch some Zzzz's.

Leftovers...my poor, poor mom. What a brat I was for turning my nose up at reheated dinners/leftovers. What the heck was I thinking? Leftovers are brilliant, and leave more couch quality time with the hubs. Our week revolves around leftovers and I don't know what I will do when I have to learn to share my leftovers with a family of greater than two.

Summer. Now I know this may come as a shock to some, but as a kid, I didn't look forward to summer. I loved school and loved being at school with my friends. Both of my parents worked so we would either be home alone (age permitting) or at "daycare" and that just brings back horrid memories so we won't go there! But I would definitely take some summer, as in work free, anytime!

What are some of the things you would bring back from your childhood?

Happy Monday, from our home to yours

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Dear Diary

8.22.2013

Did you have an actual diary growing up? I remember having a blue diary that had a lock on the outside. It was a world for my secrets about the boys I had a crush on, my questions on life and the latest life troubles in my 10 year old world. I would absolutely love to go back and read this diary to see just how simple life was.

In the spirit of the "good 'ol days" here is my Dear Diary post, circa 2013.

Dear Wilfred, I don't think you're a funny show. Joe sure does. It does make me giggle hearing him belly laugh...although I don't know if I'll ever understand the humor.
Dear Fall, I can't wait for you to be here! I'm ready for snuggling, over sized sweaters, tall boots, and pumpkin spiced lattes. Fall also means family will be here soon, and that's exactly what I need!
Dear wonky attitude, please feel free to leave whenever you'd like, sooner rather than later. I've been in a funk and I think its a mixture of too much working, and missing my family/home.
Dear 24 year old self, when did you become a 85 year old woman? The past week I have come home, taken two tylenol for my aching hip and knee, and then proceeded to fall asleep on the couch by 8:30. Seriously...
Dear Terra Nova Church, thank you for providing weekly inspiration and a great group of people we are becoming friends with. It makes this big move more enjoyable.
Dear apple picking, I CANNOT wait for you to be here...can you say definition of Fall?
Dear Remi, I'm still obsessed and thankful for your new car smell!

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Genie in the bottle: 3 wishes

8.20.2013

Remember last Tuesday I made three little wishes for the week? No?
Well this time last week I set a whopping 3 goals to have accomplished by this week, and its time to reveal the truth.


1// Conquer my dreaded ten mile run on Thursday. KT Tape will definitely be in it's near future...stay tuned for a further post on the greatness of KT Tape.
2// Read my Bible every night with Joe. We've slacked this past week and need to jump back into it.

3// Begin operation: we will have family in town in a month and the last of the clutter has got.to.go!

Results: 
  • Well I wasn't able to make it a full ten miles, but I did make it eight. I have had knee issues lately so I've turned to KT tape to help. I made a "noob" mistake and didn't apply the tape an hour before my run like suggested, and around mile five the tape fell off and the knee pain returned. Bummer... but I am aiming for a ten again this upcoming weekend. Only 26 days until race day...YIKES!
  • Joe and I improved on reading our Bible, but could continue to work on it. I've enjoyed getting to dive into the stories, some of which I have forgotten since I was young.
  • Operation de-clutter did not happen as planned. I worked this weekend and didn't get a chance to become suddenly motivated to organize...BUT I do have a wonderful husband who cleaned the kitchen top to bottom, folded laundry AND changed the sheets. I was in awe!
Wishes this week:
1// Conquer the ten mile run with correct KT tape application.
2// Stick to our new budget which only allows eating out twice during the week...I'm the worst at this!
3// Continue work on etsy shop debut...get excited!


linking with Nectar Collective
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Let's get crafty! Monogram Moss Wreath

8.16.2013


Supplies:
1. Greenery of your choice
2. 6 inch width ribbon or burlap- I just bought the whole role
3. Grapevine Wreath- This wreath is approximately 2 feet in diameter
4. Wooden Letter- "A" was used for Aslan
5. Modge Podge
6. Floral Moss- I chose the bright green, but they also had a darker variety
7. Floral Wire
8. Pliers and wire cutter

Trim greenery to desired size and attach to wreath using floral wire. Wrap tightly, use pliers if needed.
Form bow. I am bow challenged, so check out this burlap bow tutorial here.
//Seriously! I wasn't a cheer leader, dancer, or gymnast...how the heck am I supposed to know how to tie a bow?//
Attach bow to bottom of wreath with floral wire.
Paint wooden letter with mode podge and cover with as much moss as desired.
Attach Moss letter to top of wreath using floral wire.

I am particularly fond of the floral wire (can you tell?) because I don't have to ruin the wreath with glue and I will be able to use all supplies over and over again!

Ta Da!



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You should know...

8.15.2013

Catalyn is the sweet gal who blogs over at Confessions of a Northern Belle and she tagged me in a post about 6 things you should know about me. 

1. Do you like summer or winter better:
// Hmm I think this has a lot to do with when you're asking me this question...right now I'm ready for some fall/winter action. I 'm ready for scarves, boots, and hot tea every morning!

2. What is your biggest struggle in life?
// I would have to say control. When I don't have control of things in my life I become anxious and stressed. To say that a lot of things are out of my control would be an understatement so it can often be a vicious battle.

3. What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?
//Thankfully this directly relates to my biggest struggle in life. My husband ALWAYS reminds me that I am, and will never be in control and that should be soothing. Only God has control, and by giving your life to Him, you can surrender your anxieties that he may protect and shelter you from your fears.

4. What is your favorite song and why?
//Oh gosh...I am constantly singing or have a song stuck in my head. My flavor of the day, aka what is on repeat in the car, would have to be "Beautiful Things" by Gungor. Take the time to check out the lyrics. Pretty awesome if you ask me.

5. Why do you blog?
// I started blogging to keep my family up to date with what is going on in our new home far, far away from the South. Blogging has helped keep me busy instead of being gloomy about being so far away from family. It's like a life line for me.

6. What's the naughtiest thing you have ever done?
// One time in 3rd grade I forgot to bring in my cursive homework. I went to the basket where you turn it in, and took someone else's paper, erased their name, and put mine on the top...stillllll ashamed of it. And yes, I definitely got caught! And it was my good friend at the time?! Oi!

I'm tagging these lovely ladies so you may get to know them better!

Pick 6 to answer on your blog!

1. If you could pick up and move anywhere for 6 months, where would it be?
2. How long have you known your best friend?
3. What's your number one item on your Christmas list this year? Come on you know you've been thinking!
4. What accomplishment are you're most proud of?
5. Do you have a hidden talent?
6. What did you do last Friday night?
7. What is your biggest pet peeve?
8. Were you part of a "click" in high school?
9. How has blogging benefited your life?

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Weekly Wishes...on a Tuesday

8.13.2013

It's never to late to make a weekly wishes right? I mean it's only Tuesday, why not?
In order to not set myself up for full blown failure...I'll take this challenge into next week. Deal?



1// Conquer my dreaded ten mile run on Thursday. KT Tape will definitely be in it's near future...stay tuned for a further post on the greatness of KT Tape.
2// Read my Bible every night with Joe. We've slacked this past week and need to jump back into it.
3// Begin operation: we will have family in town in a month and the last of the clutter has got.to.go!

I'm only starting with three wishes for this week...you know wouldn't want to overwhelm myself or anything. Check back in next Tuesday to see what kind of progress has been made.

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Have you met Mr. Grace?

8.12.2013

Short post for today.
Yesterday in church we had an amazing sermon that focused a lot on the complacent and self righteous Christian.
It was extremely humbling and one that I will return to over, and over again. I will be sure and post the sermon link as soon as it's posted online.

A part in the sermon that really hit home, was when the pastor addressed the congregation asking us if we are
Mr./Mrs. Law or if we are Mr./Mrs. Grace?

Lets paint the picture:

Mrs. Law is the wife who has expectations of her husband (or vice versa). She expects him to be home when he says he will, take out the trash, pick up after himself, pay the bills, help around the house etc. When Mr. Law doesn't always live up to these expectations of his wife, Mrs. Law becomes resentful and bitter because Mr. Law may not be pulling his weight. Mrs. Law leaves the discipline of the children to Mr. Law, as well as the lawn, landscaping and not to mention leader of the family. Mrs. Law expects her husband to listen to her under all circumstances...I think you get the picture.

Mrs. Grace is the wife who ultimately has no expectations of her husband. She doesn't become bitter when she walks in from a hard day of work to a messy home full of clutter. She doesn't become quiet and removed when her husband doesn't arrive home on time and she doesn't even condemn him if he falls short of being a leader of the household. She assumes all chores of the household and never expects Mr. Grace to lift a finger.
Day after day, she walks through the doors to her husband with loving arms wide open and accepting of anything her spouse has to offer, say, think or feel.

How is that for some humbling self examination?

I will tell you that it's often harder to be Mrs. Grace, but what an eye opening experience and metaphor of God's grace for us, for you.
We are loved no matter our sins, trials, tabulations and control issues. It was a great sermon that helped both Joe and I reflect on our actions and understand that we need to be more Mr. /Mrs. Grace for one another.





I enjoyed it, and hope you do too! Happy Monday!
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It all started with an old astro van

8.09.2013

Seriously friends?! Is my family the only one who names their cars?
Is this another Southern catastrophe I'm walking right into?

We have always named our cars since I was little. It started off with an old Astro Van that squealed in the winter when first started...hence the name squeaker was born.
There there was:
Reggie the Regal
Ruby the Jeep Cherokee
Casper the Dodge Durango
Lilly Pearl the Infiniti
Wild Hog the Harley (dad's)
Scarlet the Honda motorcycle (mom's)
Max the Maxima
RC the old Red Car
Maggie the Mustang
and my care since I was 16, Minnie

I had no idea we had this many cars growing up until I just listed them all here...interesting

Anyway, we had an exciting start to our week because we added a new car to our Aslan family.
My poor little 2002 Nissan Sentra (Minnie) about bit the dust last week and we decided it was time to retire her for something a little safer. That was the only best car I've had and was the proud owner for 9 years...talk about MAJOR memories in that car.

I am pleased to introduce you to "Remi", my new 2013 Nissan Rogue.
I am in love and quickly forgot left my guilt behind for trading in my childhood car.




I would LOVE to hear what/if you name your cars!

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Do What?

8.05.2013

"You're from the South aren't you?"

Dang it!! I was busted again...I thought I was doing so well compared to that one time. But once again the South prevails in my blood.


So take a second and think of how you were to respond to someone if you didn't hear/understand what they said.
Maybe you're the:
"Excuse me?"
"Huh?"
"I'm sorry can you repeat yourself?"
"What?"
"Come again?"

It has been brought to my attention that I say "Do what?" which was frankly unbeknownst to be. I think I assumed I said "what?"

Either way I was caught...as I was leaving work and riding in the elevator with a couple, they asked me a question and I replied with "Do what?" as in "What did you say, I did not hear your properly". You get the picture.

Immediately the man did not repeat himself like my phrase prompted him to, but he responded with "You're from the South aren't you?"

I must have given him one of these

because he then explained to me that his friend who lives in Texas says the same thing, and that it just had to be a Southern thing. Bingo buddy...you hit the nail on the head. Once again BUSTED.

Every time someone finds out that I'm from Texas, they immediately proceed with "Where's your accent?" which will have to be a story for another time. People in the North really do think that Texas is only cowboy boots, horses and larger than life tumble weeds...I always humbly explain that is not ALL that Texas has to offer.

The accent[less] Aslans

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High Five For Friday

8.02.2013

Guess what? It's FRIDAY! Even though I will be working all this weekend, just being  Friday means something in my book!

 photo H54Fbutton-1_zpsa7aaa665.png

This Friday I'm joining in on the "High Five For Friday" link up. These are 5 highlights from life lately

        


1// In the past week I have ran a total of 14 miles which I'm thankful I have been able to keep up with!
Did you happen to see what my motivation is?
2// Joe and I started our Bible adventure. We plan on reading the entire bible in 12 months. Every night we read 3 chapters in the Old Testament and 1 in the New Testament. It's been really helpful to read together so I can remain focused and ask LOTS of questions.
3// Joe and I planned out a budget last night and thankfully it went much smoother than either of us thought. It's helpful now that we have two incomes again.
4// You may have seen some hiking pictures via my Instagram. Joe and I headed up to the Helderberg Escarpment to check out the Indian ladder trails. These were old trade routes that the Native Americans used to trade on which include underground streams and even a couple of waterfalls.
5// Last weekend we found a sweet little wine bar and restaurant that we all fell in love with.

What are you up to this weekend? Since I'm working, I'll just live vicariously through you!

T.G.I.F.
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Just between us: Novice to Novice Part I

8.01.2013

As I was huffing and puffing through my most recent run I was thinking of the multitude of tips I have learned as a novice runner. Most tips I have stumbled and tumbled through on my own, but I couldn't have made it without the support and tips from fellow runners!

So...if you're thinking of just picking up running out of the blue, here are some tips that you may be interested in reading. From novice to novice. Will I get to drop the novice once I complete my first race? Probably not because I continue to learn things about running and about my abilities every day!

This post will be broken up into a few parts so I don't overwhelm you with knowledge. Today's tips are all about the goods! Since I have jumped back on that out of control bandwagon, I have gone full force. What do I mean by full force? Oh you know a new pair of running shoes, new running socks, new running shirt, shoes laces...you catch my drift? I like to call it motivation!

Must have motivation gear:
  • Good running shoes: I fell in love with the Adidas Energy Boost. These are a neutral shoe with some great cushion. I spiced mine up with a new pair of green shoelaces!

  • Proper running socks: I cannot stress this enough! You WILL get blisters if you run long distance in cotton socks. Cotton does not wick away sweat and causes rubbing and eventual blisters. My favorite are the Asics low cut. they are soft, breathable and have the tabs on the heels to further prevent any pesky blisters

  • Running Shirts: Two words DRI FIT. Another reason to stay away from cotton. as mentioned previously cotton is awful at wicking away sweat. And when running long distances...you sweat.   Like a you know who in you know where...catch it?
  • Head bands: unless you love your locks flapping in your face and then sticking to your face, make sure you have something to hold those tresses back.
  • Cliche armband for imusic device: This seriously saved my life...I resisted for the longest time thinking I didn't need to spend the money on something I could carry. Wrong-o. I feel free without having to run with my phone and key in my hand...yes it carries a key too. I snagged a great deal from Groupon so make sure to check out the bargain stops.

Selfie featuring Dri Fit top, headband and iPhone armband

    Stay tuned as I try and figure more of this running thing out...and you better believe it I'll find some other great gear to help motivate me!

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