{miscellany monday}: july 15

Linking up with Carissa at lowercase letters for miscellany monday…excited about a new way to keep writing…it is therapeutic and I miss it. 

  • Filofax.  I mean.  Where to begin.  I saw this post from my girl Kristi on instagram about her faux filofax she snagged at a local supermarket.  After some digging, I realized that there is a whole world (literally, filofax is created in the UK and most of the obsession with it is international) of filofax obsessed folks out there.  It’s like I’ve found this new tribe of people who speak my language.  With all the changes happening in life, I needed something to help managee that so I snagged the same faux filofax at the same supermarket as MommaKristi and bam–we are off.  I’m loving it, the way it works as my wallet and organizer and that I get to decorate the pages each week.  I just need something to keep me happy in the little things during this crazy season!

    filofax love

    filofax love

  • Remember those big changes?  Well, they are here–my sweet Mama has moved to Kentucky!  She’s been here a week and things are going pretty well.  If you’re interested, I’m updating her progress here.

    Mama D

    Mama D

  • There is a Dunkin Doughnuts close to where my mom is in Lexington.  They offer $1 any sized iced drinks from 3-6pm.  Needless to say this has been my reality more than I’d like to admit. Iced Coffee. Cream. SugarFree Caramel. Delish.



  • In addition to the filofax, I got this awesome little cash wallet from A Time for Everything to help with the budget.  Absolutely love the pattern I was able to pick out and so far it’s really helping keep our cash management in control (while being stylish!)

    a time for everything!

    a time for everything!

  • We spent time in Virginia with family over the 4th before bringing my mom back to Kentucky.  We also visited some of our favorite spots in Roanoke since it’ll likely be a while before we are back to visit.  Thelma’s Chicken and Waffles, the Roanoke Farmer’s Market and a double visit to our latest Favorite, The River and Rail.  Amazing food. Amazing drinks. Amazing company.


    PS-We also had breakfast with Gangee that morning…



Five Friday Fun Facts

Preface: I have a student who has recently started helping me with some projects who loves alliteration.  I think its’ rubbed off. 

List #1: Things I’ve newly become fond of:

  1. My Tervis Tumbler that holds…
  2. My new love of spinach smoothies
  3. Camelbak water bottles–I’ve already drank 2 this morning–my bathroom breaks slowed down my morning routine!
  4. Lifting Weights.  I love that I’m becoming strong.  And I also love this shirt!
  5. My ThirtyOne Organizing Utility Tote–who knew I would love all those pockets!

List #2: Random Life Long Loves:

  1. Being a redhead and other fantastic redheads.
  2. Books.
  3. Being outside.
  4. Walking barefoot in grass.
  5. Going to baseball games.

List #3: Top Five Favorite Foods of all time:

  1. Macaroni and Cheese (especially Malone’s!)
  2. Chicken Bryan from Carrabbas
  3. Western Omelets from Fava’s (Georgetown) and the Lunchbox (Maysville)
  4. Dr. Watson from Macadoos in Virginia
  5. Anything from Salsa’s in Asheville

List #4: Random things to know about me in my childhood:

  1. I was a cheerleader in middle school–Go Sheffey Wildcats!
  2. I HATED to run when in school.  The 1 mile timed test was the death of me.
  3. I used to love country music–especially Travis Tritt and Reba McEntire (hello, redhead!)
  4. I LOVED the color purple (the color not the movie, although it’s pretty great.)
  5. I almost skipped two grade levels (3rd to 5th) based on my reading levels and social skills, but my Mom insisted that I not.  Math would have really been the death of me and I wouldn’t have wanted to graduate HS at 16.

List #5: Things that have changed since my childhood:

  1. A lot more outgoing–I was really shy when I was younger.  Much more out of my shell now, especially around new people.
  2. Love to run!
  3. Country music is the one genre I’m not a huge fan of, however, I’ve become a BIG fan of bluegrass.
  4. RED is my favorite color by a mile.
  5. I’m becoming more into fashion than I ever have been.  This definitely started when I turned 30 last May–I don’t feel 30 at all, but I didn’t want to look 30.  I still love being in jeans and a hoodie, I just feel I’m taking a bit more pride in myself (this also has something to do with being more fit and active, I’m sure)

What are the things that would be on YOUR List?  Repost on your blog and link back!

Have a wonderful weekend friends!

Don’t bite off more than you can chew…

Training for a half marathon is tough stuff.

Training for a half marathon when you’re significantly overweight is really tough.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m super stoked that I crossed that finish line.

However, there’s a bit of regret that I didn’t train quite like I’d hoped–I never really got a hydrating & fueling schedule down, I didn’t increase my speed like I’d hoped and I abandoned all other forms of physical activity in lieu of half training.

That’s both half-marathon training and half training for the half.  No morning gym session with the beau.  No Cardio Sculpt classes with work friends.  Barely getting in my training runs.

Last week was rough.  Like–really rough.  The beau and I had decided we would complete a Whole30 every quarter or so (January, April, & July, October).  Being out at a conference the week before and then just completely wiped after last Saturday’s race, there was no intentional meal planning or grocery shopping, so needless to say, our Whole30 plans for April started out as a complete failure.

We also have been talking about being more intentional with our budget and saving for a bigger vacation this summer as it’ll be the last one for a while (more on that to come), so we were going to also implement a no-spend April.

Last week also happened to be the last week of my lenten practice of saying no to that lovely thing called Java….

Let’s recap: Implement a Whole30 (no sugar, dairy or grain when we hadn’t meal planned or grocery shopped), no spending outside of groceries (which meant no meals out) and no coffee.

Looking back, I’m happy to see I simply survived last week at all!

About half way through the week we decided we just needed to give it a rest, and come up with a better plan before we could be successful.  Knowing we had a fairly low-key weekend, we had several great discussions about what needed to change, what our plan was going to be and how we could make some small changes to help us be successful on all accounts.

Biggest lesson–don’t bite off more than you can chew.  We were clearly over-zealous in our plans last week thinking we’d be on some sort of super-human high from the half-marathon that we’d be more than able to jump right on a Whole30.  Boy were we ever wrong.

Looking back, the half-marathon completion was a great feat to complete and check off my list.  But completing the half did not allow me to reach all my health goals.  I struggle (greatly) with scale and size issues (partly because I feel we as a society are so super infatuated with these things that do not really equal health–but that’s most definitely another blog for another day).  However, part of those health goals include for me do include becoming smaller and healthier to allow me to meet other goals with more success down the road (more half-marathons, perhaps a Tough Mudder, and hopefully one day, having babies).

I’m gonna get back on the blogging wagon this week (boy, have I missed you by the way) to share some of the techniques we have up our sleeve as a way to help us stay accountable. I hope that you’ll share your thoughts, tips and suggestions along the way.  This week (as many of my recent posts) will be about changes to make our lives more healthy, but in the long run, I’m looking for sustainable practices that will help every area of our life–from physical to financial, the renovation of our house, and the continual renovation of our souls.

Some of our techniques I’ll be sharing about:

  • Fuel In = Food = Eat Clean
  • Fuel Out = Movement = Do something (at least 1 thing) active each day
  • Recover = Sleep  = Down at 9pm &  Up at 5am
  • Internal Living = Balance for mind, body and soul
  • External Living = Clean yo’ house!


Book Review #1 of 2012

One of my new year’s goals last year that I was pretty fortunate to keep was to read one book a month.  Now, basically, I wanted to read 12 books in 2011.  I’m sure that I didn’t finish each month checking off the book I was reading, but I did try my hardest.  Some months I read more than one, and other months it took forever to get halfway through the one I was in.  When 2011 came to a close though, I was stoked to have read 15 book in the year!

This year I’ve kept that same goal, and started out reading something we found in the cheap-o book bin at our local big-box store.  It was $3, I believe and although I am a lover of technology, there’s just something for me that longs for the spine of a book in my hands versus a digital version.  I was able to finish the first one last night, January 31st.

It’s funny because as one of my goals this year is to make sure to read a book before I watch a movie version, I didn’t even realize this WAS a book when the movie came out.  I watched and consequently LOVED the movie.  I loved both main actresses and the storyline–well, I was hooked!  It spoke to me on several levels, I loved the back-and-forth between the characters and there’s just something about watching a movie with characters that have interests so similar to yours.  Julie and Julia is a favorite of mine.  And the book did not disappoint.

I was hopeful to purchase the original book, but when you find it on clearance, you suck it up and have Amy Adams and Meryl Streep’s face gracing a book on your shelf. A few reasons I loved the movie and consequently the book–I have so much in common with Julie Powell.  Well, not everything.  I don’t live in New York City working as a secretary for a job I hate, I don’t have cats, and I don’t live in a tiny little apartment in Long Island City and ride the subway each day to work.  What I do have however, is a love for cooking and blogging.  And having people over to cook for them.  And stories.  Making lists of things you want to do before a certain time period in your life.  Julie Powell was in her year of turning 30 when she did the experiment.  Cooking through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cuisine (MtAoFC for short as I quickly learned in the text) in a year.  Trying to balance doing  (one of the many ) things you are passionate about and love with that thing that you do from 9-5, Monday through Friday.  (Not to say I’m not passionate about my “day job”–I just have so many interests and passions it’s hard to find time to fit them all in!) I could be Julie Powell for crying out loud!

What was interesting was reading something from someone whose life is so very different from my own, yet seeing so many similarities laced throughout. Here was this woman, married to the love of her life, no kids (yet) and wanted more.  Wanted fulfillment.  Wanted to find meaning–and looked to food to find it (that’s a whole other blog for another day!)

What I learned in reading this is that even when it was crazy and impossible, she kept going.  Even when recipes looks insane with ingredients I had never even heard of, Julie kept going. When there was no water, Julie kept cooking.  When there was no electricity, Julie didn’t just keep going and just keep cooking, she hosted a flipping dinner party!  What do I do when things aren’t ideal?  Well, the last thing I think about doing is calling all my friends over for a night of laughs and good food.

Julie and Julia (the book) is quite different from the movie, but if you love cooking or just love food, it’s a great read. 


Overall Grade: B

Category: Memoir

The Good: A good story about real people with real normal lives to choose to do something bigger.  Something hard.  Something crazy and outlandish.

The Not So Good:  There is a lot of recipe talk written out.  At times it was like reading a cookbook.  I loved it.  If you aren’t a cook, you might not.  This did make things tend to drag along at times.  It literally took me the entire month to read this book.

Miscellaneous: The language was much rougher than I thought it would be.  Sweet little Julie Powell has quite a mouth on her that doesn’t come out in the movie.


I’m back! {Foodie Friday…sort of}

Yes, it’s been quite a while, but I’m back and am excited to get back into keeping everyone up to date on what’s going on in our lives.  The past two months have been pretty crazy (more on that later), but the Beau and I are hitting the reset button (literally) and are hoping for some deepening of our relationship, our health, and our home.

For a little sneak peek at what the next 30 days holds for our life, check this out:


New favorite website

So, I have always loved cooking and baking and now that I’m doing that for 2 people, I’ve been able to become a lot more creative and love being in the kitchen.

Lew found this site earlier this week and girls and boys, just GET READY…it is a virtual potluck, so I recommend you click with CAUTION because there are some delectable looking foods on this site

If you click on a photo, it will take you a blog where the recipe lies.  I’m trying to figure out how to get these recipes to my kitchen without killing so many trees.  I want to print them ALL!  If you have any suggestions on how to do this, please let me know.  I guess one day I could have a computer monitor installed into the front of one of my kitchen cabinets….sounds like a plan to me!


Homemade Bread

Lewie and I have been trying our hand at homemade bread making.  Although I haven’t priced it out entirely, I’m fairly certain that it is cheaper than buying a loaf that is quite processed and doesn’t taste nearly as good as the homemade stuff does.  We’ve spent the past few Sunday afternoons baking two loaves which EASILY last us the week or more. Last night I tried my hand at baking with Whole Wheat Flour from a local mill (another plus) and it turned out okay.  I think in the future I’ll go with a more finely ground flour.

In additional to be fiscally responsible with the bread making, there’s this whole thing about having something to do with the making of your own food–that you had a hand (no pun intended) in what is going into your body, to keep your body from expiring.  Whether it be baking your bread, picking tomatoes off your vine, or whipping up your own salsa, or pesto, or pickles–YOU had something to do with it.  It is a rewarding feeling. I think it also fuels the creative side of Lewie and I to a degree.  Maybe we’ll venture out and do some crazy breads in the future.  For now, I’ll let creativity find Lew sauteing up some lime and red-pepper chicken for our breakfast burritos (yes–I’m spoiled by a hubby who fixes a hot breakfast every morning).

I’m also happy to be learning this trade because it is something that my Mom has always been great at and known for–I’m so proud to carry on this tradition with our family.