Nashville Weekend

Happy MONDAY! I am so excited to think about this being the last full week of work before Thanksgiving! I don’t teach next Wednesday night and I am off on Thanksgiving and Black Friday so I am looking forward to eating lots of good food, spending time with family and friends, shopping and napping.
But before I delve any more into what’s to come, I want to recap my weekend in Nashville. Ryan and I decided to get some Christmas shopping done early (for ourselves and others) and Ryan was needing to update his wardrobe some before the holidays and super cold weather, so we decided to make an adventure and travel to Nashville!
We only shopped at Opry Mills Mall, but when they have everything you need, why go anywhere else?
We snagged a lot of great deals and even got Christmas shopping done for a few people.

I snagged these pink Nike’s and I LOVE them. We also got some new clothes for work, (we both have to dress business casual/business professional), some shoes and some camping materials.

Before we headed home (my feet were killing me!) we grabbed some fresh-baked cookies and cranked up Spotify to prepare for the insane traffic.

After the two-hour drive home, we stopped at Applebee’s and shared several small appetizers plates, picked up Murphy and headed home to watch Sunday Night Football.

All in all, it was a great weekend and ready productive!

What was a highlight of your weekend?
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Long runs, relaxation and party prep

This weekend was about long runs, relaxation and prepping for our Halloween party on Saturday. It was such a great weekend, I had a hard time getting out of bed this morning.

BUT! I only work four days this week and then it’s Halloween party time! We are throwing a party Saturday night and attending one Sunday afternoon.

I got in a little under 5 miles on Saturday (which is long for me right now!) and on Sunday I did an awesome P90x video.

I took a nap on Sunday, watched lots of football, attended a baby shower for a friend from high school and watched the season premiere of The Walking Dead.

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Any TWD fans out there? What did you think of last night’s episode?!

As far as party prep goes, we bought a ton of food, extra tables, fake spiders, 200+ feet of cobwebs and more! I love any and all holidays and decorating is part of the fun! I’m still deciding between two costumes and Ryan is joining the fun and bought a superhero shirt to wear! (I’ll that that over not dressing up at all)

And that was my weekend. Uneventful for most, but perfect for me.

I’ll leave you with this hilarious picture of Murphy with a feather on his nose. Enjoy.

Monday with Murphy 

I love sunny days with Murphy. He has all the energy in the world and would play fetch all day, every day if we let him. On Monday I spent almost my entire lunch break playing fetch with Murphy and his favorite red ball. Yay for being able to come home for lunch!

Someone was not very good at catch today. I love taking a burst of photos because I catch some of Murphy’s funniest moments.

Exact representation of how I felt today. It was busy, a mess and all around chaos. Here’s to a less hectic tomorrow!

But I am thankful for a pup who loves my unconditionally and listens to me rant about my work day. As long as he gets a treat and a belly rub, he is happy.
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Friday Favorites v.70

Can you all believe this is my 70th Friday Favorites post?! That’s crazy to me! These are some of my favorite posts to write because they are always such a happy roundup from my week.

So let’s get it started!

1. Some weeks are so up and down with work and blogging and I feel like I’m treading enough water to keep my head above water. Anyone else feel this way? I wish I knew how to get more traffic to my blog, but I don’t have a lot of money to go to a domain name + I don’t have a ton of time to constantly promote my stuff and get my name + blog name out there. While I do like having the blog as an online journal, I do wish I had more readers and people to connect with.

2. Porta Potty Challenge. I feel like this is something I would have done in high school with my cross country team.

3. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and with it just a couple weeks away, I have scouring Pinterest for ideas. This article is 12 costume ideas to make out of a big shirt. I love it! So simple but cute.

4. With all of the craziness that is my life (full-time job, part-time college teaching job, running, meal planning, social life and more) I love feeling like I have all my sh*t together. I’ve raved about my Simplified Planner before, but I want to bring it up again if any of you are looking to buy a Christmas present for someone who needs to organization in their life (you included)!
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5. Best girl squad movies.

6. Does anyone have any recommendations for super cute fall booties? I’ve been eyeing several pairs online, but I have to try on shoes before I buy. Any suggestions or sites with free shipping and return? Trying to dress cute is harder than it looks.

7. This is a super interesting insight on what a triathlete eats in a week. Triathlife with Jesse Thomas: I Eat A Lot And That’s OK. 

8.  Murphy and his toy mouse, Mick.

My Fitbit Flex — an oldie, but a goodie

In 2014 I bought my first Fitbit. It was the Fitbit Flex and I bought it with the hopes that it would remind me to move more during my 8-5 desk job. While I go through spurts of wearing/not wearing it, right now I pulled it back out of hiding and am wearing it again.

To be honest, I’ve fallen off the wagon. My runs have gotten shorter, I was eating more and not moving a lot during my work day.

 

I know it sounds like a glorified pedometer, but it’s so much more than that.
So here goes my unofficial (and super late) review of the Fitbit Flex!
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First off, they have several colors to choose from, but the default colors are black, blue, and green. If you want a different color such as red, pink, purple, teal, etc., then you have to purchase those bands separately. I chose black so it would match almost anything. I also like how it’s not big and clunky so no one knows I am wearing a piece of a technology.

I actually think they have more colors to chose from now and they are several different versions of Fitbits. I’ve mentioned this on here before, but I am debating on whether to get the Fitbit Ionic watch or an Apple Watch. But for now, my old Flex will do the job.
Screen Shot 2017-10-04 at 9.14.31 AM.pngTo start with, the Fitbit is super simple to setup. You click here fitbit.com/setup and it gives you step by step instructions on how to charge it, how to track, and how to change your daily goals like steps taken, water intake, etc.

It has lights to show you how close to your goal you are. So at anytime throughout the day, all I have to do is double tap the band and it shows me how close to my goal I am.

My main goal has been to reach 12,000 steps a day. The Fitbit Flex starts you off with 10,000 steps since that’s the recommended amount from the American Heart Association, but I wanted to try for something a little harder.

The band is also waterproof and Fitbit users are encouraged to wear it in the shower, out for a run in the rain and all over the place.

I was also curious to see how my numbers stacked up with me having an 8-5 office job where I am at a computer for most of the day.

My first full day of using the Fitbit this week was Monday, and I didn’t reach my goal of 12,000. I was barely over 9,500. Not good. This is a good visual reminder that I need to move more!

AND the thing is I ran almost 2 miles when I got home. That shows you how little I can move throughout the day. I am basically chained to my desk from 7:30 a.m. 5:10ish p.m. when I go home.

I love getting periodic updates on my activity level throughout the day. While it’s discouraging to see how much I don’t move at work, it gives me more motivation to make sure I do something active when I get off. I’ve also tried to incorporate laps around the office or a quick walk around the block during the day to increase my steps.

On days where I don’t workout or do something active for at least 30-45 minutes, I don’t even come close to my goals. Days where I make sure to run, play tennis or walk in the park, I hit my goal easily.

The Fitbit Flex also tracks your sleep pattern. You can start a sleep mode when go to bed and wake it up when you do. It monitors how long it takes you to fall asleep, the periods of restlessness and actual sleep time.

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So while I know this won’t magically help me lose weight or get faster, maybe it will at least encourage and remind me to move more at work.

Have you tried the Fitbit or other similar products? Let me know what you think!

All opinions are my own.

Final STL trip of 2017

I had most of this post typed up this morning, but as I went to finish this post, all I could think about was the people in Vegas and those are hurting and have lost loved ones.

I am sad for our country and this world, but I know this is not my permanent home. God has built a kingdom for me in heaven. My heart, thoughts and prayers goes out to everyone affected by this tragedy.

***

Whew! I need another weekend to recover from this weekend! While it was so much fun to get away for a few days, I am wiped!

But let’s backup to Friday. I took the day off from work so I could clean the house, run some errands and pack for out trip to St. Louis. While I got everything done my to-do list, I was exhausted by the time Ryan got home from work. We decided to keep the evening low-key, so we took a new board game to my parent’s house and spent the evening with my mom and brother (who came home from college this weekendto watch Murphy while Ryan and I took our trip).

Saturday morning, me and Ryan and my mom and dad hit the road pretty early. The three-ish hour drive from Owensboro to STL went by pretty fast before I knew it we were at Busch Stadium in one of their clubhouses getting ready for the game!

The clubhouse seats are a little pricey, but are definitely the best deal. It opens about three hours before the game starts and has a buffet with all kinds of food and desserts and an unlimited open bar.

This was my parent’s first MLB game, so it was fun to introduce them to something that Ryan and I love so much! The cherry on top was that the Cardinals rallied on Saturday to win the game! 

The cards lost on Sunday, and they are out of the playoffs, so it was their last game of the year. Out of 162 games, Ryan and I got to attend five of them at Busch Stadium. We are already excited for the 2018 season! We can’t wait to be back at Busch. We also hoping to travel to other stadiums this year to watch the Cards play.

The drive back home was long and tiring and we were all more than ready to hit the hay when got home. I’m now about halfway through my work day and I am definitely ready for some more caffeine.

Find the ‘me’ in time

Isn’t that the reason most of us don’t work out/work out enough? I feel guilty for taking an hour or so for myself.

But you know what. I NEED IT.

I need the time to decompress and get out all of my stress. While sometimes running + working out feels like an obligation, most of the time, I look forward my time outside or in the gym.

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So today I encourage you to find the ‘me’ in time. Whether its running or reading a book, enjoying a glass of wine or watching your guilty pleasure tv show, I want you stop, take a deep breath and recharge.

The Real Neat Blog Awards

A big thank you to Liberty for nominating me for The Real Neat Blog Award. Be sure to check out her blog, Life in Liberty.

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I know these blog questionnaires can be silly, but what the heck. I love learning about you all and it was fun to answer some random questions.

1. What’s your most memorable moment so far this year?
There’ve been several! Our annual trip to STL, getting my teaching job, paying off my car and so many more. I love doing life with Ryan and Murphy.

2. Is there anything you wish you could have learnt earlier?
Get rid of the friends who don’t care about you. I rather have a small circle of friends that have my back, then a bunch of fake friends.

3. If you had a chance to live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Ireland!

4. What motivates you?
My drive to be better, my husband, my future family.

5. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for body positivity, but if you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?
I don’t know if this really counts, but I really really wish I knew how to do hair. I know how to use a straightener and a wand, but that’s about it. I wish I could braid my hair, curl it with a straightner, etc.

6. What’s your biggest fear?
I have always had this fear since I was a little kid (I probably started watching Law & Order and CSI wayyy too early) but I am always afraid of someone breaking into my home at night. I triple check all my locks before going to bed.

7. What would your perfect day look like?
I wake up and run around the park before the sun is shining and too hot. Coming home to breakfast, then spending the day with Ryan and Murphy. Hiking, swimming, grilling out, playing board games with family and friends. Just being present with those I love most.

The rules are as followed: Put the award logo on your blog, thank the people who nominated you, linking to their blogs, answer 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you, nominate any number of bloggers you like, linking to their blogs, let them know you nominated them (by commenting on their blog, etc). Then simply, ask your nominees 7 questions.

My nominees are: Tammi, Jenna and Constance.

My questions for you all:
1. Since you all are all runners — what is your favorite race distance?
2. Favorite song on the radio right now?
3. What accomplishment are you most proud of?
4. Do you read the newspaper?
5. Favorite social media app?
6. Wine or beer?
7. Favorite way to workout (besides running)

I loved answering your questions, Liberty.
Nominees, I look forward to reading your answers soon!

Friday Favorites v. 62

FRIDAY FRIDAY, gotta get down on Friday. I am so happy for the weekend. Since we traveled and Ryan worked last weekend, I feel like we haven’t spent any time together lately. I am super pumped for date night tomorrow and being lazy together on Sunday.

Before I get into the work day, I want to share some of my favorites from this week with you all.

1. Just a few of the crazy moments from #London2017 Track & Field World Championships. I’ve been following a long on Twitter and even more craziness (like an unfair DQ) have happened since this orignal article was posted.

2. I love these spirit tassel earrings from Draper James. Now I’m just torn on whether to get UK Blue for basketball season or Crimson for Alabama football?! Maybe I’ll just get them both?!

3. On Wednesday I woke up super early for no good reason, so I decided to take advantage of the extra time and headed to Panera for some breakfast and blogging. I got a post up and several posts drafted and had a delicious everything bagel + cream cheese, a water and a latte.

I love having some time in the mornings to myself to accomplish some things before the work day begins.
4. Wednesday was also the first day of school around here, and while I am not in school anymore, I still love the hustle and bustle and excitement that comes with a new school year.

* I am actually teaching a mass communications at a local college one night a week for the fall semester, so I am excited to be back in the classroom.

5. I saw these super cute tumblers on Emily Ley’s Instastories and screenshot it for future reference. I wish they had a KY design, but Ashley Brooke Designs has lots of other cute ones to choose from!
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6. Tuesday I hit the trails at a local park for some trail running and it was awesome + therapeutic. The best kind of running.

7. I have been trying to have more of a grateful, open heart lately and I really think it has helped my mindset.

8. Murphy got another hedgehog toy since he demolished his last one, and for some reason he is a lot more gentle with Larry (every toy has a name). I’m a total #dogmom and I love it.
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