Thursday Thoughts #6 – 11.03.16

Hey friends!  Happy Thursday!

So…have you ever just had the feeling that you should do something but you’re not sure why?  I mean, it would be just as easy not to do it but something just tells you to do it?  I had one of those moments yesterday.  Lee was off and we had dinner plans for when I got home from work because I didn’t have to teach after work.  About halfway through my morning, I thought, “I should check my calendar to make sure I’m not supposed to teach.”  I didn’t.  I taught last Wednesday and I do ever other Wednesday so I shouldn’t have been on for last night.  Again, I thought, “I should just check the calendar.”

This time…I did.  And, to my surprise, my name was next to the 5:40pm class.
What the…!?
Oh well.  Good thing I checked, right!?

I told my husband and we just decided to switch up our plans a little.  I live almost an hour away from where I teach so he was just going to take me and wait for me and then we would do dinner afterwards.  That plan, definitely, worked for me!

In keeping with my Thursday thoughts, here are some highlights from the night!

**I was super thankful that he decided to go with me!  When I teach, I’m gone for at least three hours so it was nice to spend most of that time together instead of apart.  I know.  It’s sappy but I love the hubs!!


**We went to a great sushi place!  I was craving it!  Lee, of course, got a chicken dish but I was happy with my roll action!


**There was a Starbucks right next to the restaurant.  It is no mystery what we had for dessert…I don’t care that it was almost 8pm; coffee any time of the day works for me!!


**I got the best fortune.  Sometimes, the smallest message can speak volumes.


**And…here are some pictures of Jet and Rosie on Halloween and my parents’ cat, Shiner, in a box…because who doesn’t love fun pictures of animals!?

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I hope you all have a great Thursday!  This week has flown by and I’m hoping that the weekend doesn’t do the same! 

Share a thought for today!
When is the last time you forgot to be somewhere?

Happy Halloween!!

Good morning!  Happy Halloween!

(bringing home a new Halloween decoration earlier this month)

Are you a Halloween person?  I am, for sure!  It’s always been one of my favorite holidays and I have always loved getting to pick out a costume every year and, as I got older, finding things to DIY my costumes!  When I was growing up, my favorite costume was Jem…80’s friends, tell me you’re with me on that!?  Anyway, Halloween is always super fun and, for me, kicks off the best time of year…November and December bring birthdays, holidays, and all kinds of fun stuff like that!

In the past few years, my friends and I would always have costume-making parties and spend a few nights, together, before our annual Halloween party, working on our costumes and helping each other.  Without fail, each year brings some type of crisis – not enough material, ordered costumes not fitting, sewing snafus, and, well, you get the picture…

…this year, plans were a little different and Lee and I weren’t even sure we were going to make it to the party.  We didn’t plan a costume because he was going to have to work that evening.  However, he ended up taking the day off so, with a week to go, we had to decide on costumes.

Our first choice was to be Chip and Jo Gaines from Fixer Upper because it was going to be ‘easy’ and I already own almost every piece of clothing that Joanna wears on the show, so, my part was simple.  However, Lee’s wasn’t going to be as simple so I hopped online and ordered him a Magnolia Farms shirt and hat and crossed my fingers that it would be here on time.  Fast forward to Friday evening, when my package had not arrived yet.  So…here we were, 24 hours away from our party with no costumes.  I went to bed stressed and woke up the same way.  I just thought about not going to the party.  There was no way I was going without a costume.

Thankfully, my BFF, April (who is on our costume-making committee…haha!) suggested that we be skeletons, which, by the way, are my favorite things ever, so the idea was brilliant!  We had an idea and all we had to do was to find the parts!  We ran around all morning and afternoon grabbing the essentials and, all I had to DIY was our shirts and our makeup.  Simple!


I found a rib template online, traced it onto paper, traced it onto our t-shirts and started cutting.  Things were going great until…the scissors slipped.  Yes, I was trying to push them through four layers of fabric and I should have known better but, we don’t need to dwell on that.  I had sliced the pad of my finger almost completely off.  Ouch.  Lee thought I needed stitches and, even though my finger was killing me, all I was worried about how long a trip to the ER would take and who the heck was going to finish our costumes!?  So, after some applied pressure and trip to our neighbors for a second opinion, we decided that stitches weren’t necessary and cutting resumed.

In the end, our costumes turned out great and my finger is cleanly wrapped and doing well!!


I always say that it wouldn’t be Halloween without some type of costume crisis…and, this year, proved to be no different!!  But, in the end, we have fun and have great memories to look back on and laugh about…and this one was definitely a memorable one!

I hope you all have a fun and spooky day!  Boo!!

Do you like to dress up?
Do you DIY your costumes?
Share any funny Halloween story!

Thursday Thoughts #5

Hi Thursday!

Has this week flown by for anyone else or is just me?  I, seriously, feel like it was just the weekend but I’m guessing that’s because I had the day off from work on Tuesday so, of course, that day went so fast that it feels like it didn’t even happen!

Today, I’m just going to pick right up with the Thursday Thoughts series like my blog never even disappeared!  If you’re unfamiliar with the series, it’s pretty much just a chance to talk about some of the million things that are constantly running through my head.  So, let’s get to it.

**Summer is officially gone and I’m cold.  The picture below is how I worked out Tuesday evening.  In my Uggs.  It was just an upper torso day and I couldn’t bring myself to take off my boots after I made it out to my garage. 


**I’m dealing with the cold by drinking as many hot beverages as I can.  I should, probably, just buy some stock in the Starbucks company…it’s where all my money goes, anyway.


**Speaking of cold, it’s been soup week around here.  On Tuesday, I made a chunky turkey chili and, tonight, I’m planning on a big pot of minestrone to take us through the weekend.  Seriously, when did I become that person?  You know….the one who is always cold?!


**The leaves in our yard are insane.  They don’t even belong to us.  Our neighbor has a huge tree next to our garage and I swear all of the leaves go in our yard and nowhere else.  And, that picture?  That all happened in one day!  It must have been a windy one!


**Doughnuts and friends make the world go ‘round.  Last Friday, at work, we had doughnuts and I was working in the same area as my WBFF (work BFF) so it was a pretty awesome day.  Maybe we’ll have to recreate that tomorrow…mainly the doughnut part.


So, apparently, this was the “cold edition” of Thursday Thoughts because, basically, that is all I talked about.  Well, that and doughnuts.

I hope all have a fabulous Thursday!!  If you need me, I’m sure I’ll be around somewhere being cold.

Share a random thought with me!
Do you like cold weather?
What is your favorite doughnut?
Blueberry glazed for me!

That Time My Blog Disappeared

Hey friends!

So, if you come here to visit every so often, you may have noticed that there was no blog here.  Like, no blog at all.

Well, I couldn’t figure out what happened and, when I visited my hosting site, I discovered that my renewal had gone to an old credit card that had expired.  I’m pretty good with changing my information and couldn’t figure out how that wasn’t changed or why I never saw that there was a problem with that charge.  Anyway, by the time I tried to fix it, my hosting had expired, just like my credit card, and, in way, so did my blog.  It was gone.  I worked with my hosting service and renewed my hosting and, as much as we tried to get my blog back, it was unable to be recovered.  Total fail.

I wasn’t sure where to begin to get back to where I was so I just jumped in and restarted everything again.  I set up my hosting, got a new theme, updated my plug-ins and settings, and, thankfully, because I wrote my posts in Windows Live Writer, I was able to access them back to when I rebranded my blog back in August.  I had to reload all the pictures into the posts but, in the grand scheme of things, that was a piece of cake!  After meal planning Sunday morning, I spent most of the rest of the day redoing everything and I’m happy to say I’m almost back to where I was when it disappeared.


I’m still working on a few things like my pages, including my About Me page, but things are progressing!  My posts are back on schedule and everything seems to be running okay…fingers crossed that it stays that way!!

Thanks for stopping by and, definitely, come back again!  I promise there will be a blog here!

Have a beautiful day!

October, We Love You

Good morning! 

So, I have been a little absent around here because, in addition to being super busy and crazy, I have been suffering through some tech issues that I just couldn’t get resolved!  For some reason, I have been unable to upload photos to my blog posts.  I’ve never had it happen before and I couldn’t figure out what was wrong…and, I figured that you didn’t want to read posts without having pictures to look at!  However, after some investigating, we are back in business!  I know technology is supposed to make our lives easier but I swear it must makes me do more work!

Anyway, I guess September is over (how did that happen!?) and we are getting into October full swing!  I kicked off this month like any normal person would do by spending time at a fall festival and visiting an apple orchard.  If that doesn’t scream “October” then I don’t know what does! 

Every year, my parents and I (and, sometimes, my husband when he’s not working) head to a nearby town called Bedford for their Fall Foliage Festival.  It takes place over two weekends and has everything a fall festival should have…local crafters, handmade goods, delicious food, live music, and all things apple and pumpkin. We always head up early before everything starts to grab breakfast before walking around the town.  Here are some of my favorite things from yesterday…

Breakfast at The Green Harvest Co.; a local cafe that is so adorable!


My 7 Grain Warm Bowl that I get every year.  So filling and comforting during the chilly mornings!


A Caramel Apple latte that was amazing.


A new Arnold Palmer drawing to add to our golf collection (the fact that he’s gone hurts my heart).


My true weakness during this time of year…a caramel apple with nuts.


…and Rascal.  He wasn’t at the fall festival but he was at the coffee shop that my mom and visited on Saturday morning.  He wanted to share our banana muffin with us so we, happily, obliged!  I just wanted to share his photo because he was the sweetest pup! 


I hope your October is off to an amazing start!  Enjoy the month because, if September is any indication, it will be gone before we know it! 

What fall activities to you like to do?
What is your favorite month during the year?
Do you have any annual family traditions?

Thursday Thoughts #4

Hello!  How is your week going!?

I always say that short weeks after a holiday weekend seem like the longest weeks but I’m not feeling like that this week so that’s, definitely, a plus!  I hope you all had a great weekend and enjoyed it if it was a long one for you.  I unplugged for the past few days, which, I think, is totally necessary, sometimes!  However, I’m back today to share those random thoughts I love to throw at you on Thursdays! 

As I say…let’s get to it! 

**When I’m out, I’ll send pictures of things I want to buy to my husband.  When he tells me to buy them, I tell him that I don’t need it and that we need to save money.  I’m sure that being married to me is exhausting. 


**My parents have the most beautiful and perfect sunflower at their house.  I love seeing it every time I stop to visit. 


**If we didn’t have digital cameras and smart phones, we couldn’t retake disastrous photos like this one…(which takes me back to middle school, with disposable cameras, when you didn’t know what you had until you developed them!)…


**Pop2K is the best radio station.  I swear all I do in my car is take pictures of songs on the radio and send them to my friends! 


**There was a fair in town last week.  Of course, I had to stop by to pick up a caramel apple.  I just can’t resist.


**I used to be the worst at drinking water.  Like, the worst.  Now, I’m a drinking water champ and I’m never without my water bottle (and my cold-brew coffee)!  I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks!


**My mom and I had lunch at Ligonier Tavern, one of our favorite restaurants.  We always get their hummus plate as an app and got a southwestern avocado hummus, which was amazing.  Oh, and those focaccia breadsticks!?  I can’t get enough!


**This picture of my hubs with our BFF’s son, Colton, melts my heart!  Such cuties!! 


I hope you have an amazing Thursday!  Spread some love and enjoy your day!

Share a random thought with me!
What kind of music do you listen to?
Do you have a favorite appetizer?

Healthy BBQ Habits

So, I’m going to be totally cliché here and say, “Where the heck has August gone!?” 

I mean, for real.  This weekend is Labor Day and I swear I was just celebrating Memorial Day and the 4th of July.  I just can’t wrap my head around it! 

That being said, while I’m sad that the summer is coming to a close, I am looking forward to another weekend that I get to spend with my family and friends doing what we do best when we get together…having a party!  I’m sure there are many of you out there with the same plans for the weekend that will include grilling out, swimming, playing fun yard games, and closing the night out with a bonfire!  Outdoor BBQ’s are always a good time and the perfect reason to gather your favorite people together! 


My outdoor parties always include the basics:  hot dogs, hamburgers, baked beans, cold salads, finger-food appetizers, and kid-friendly and adult-only beverages.  And, even though I love these basic essentials, I am always looking at ways that I can put a healthy spin on my favorites and, today, I want to share some of those tips with you!   Most of them are super easy and just require a little thought and planning when it comes to ingredients! 

  • Substitute ground turkey or chicken for your burgers.
  • Grill chicken breasts along with your burgers for a second option.
  • Ditch the canned baked beans and make your own.  A lot of canned options can contain extra sodium and preservatives that we don’t need and many recipes can be thrown in a slow cooker to make your life easy! 
  • Try using grains in your cold salads instead of pasta or potatoes.  I like to use quinoa, couscous, and bulgur, and, if I want to use a pasta, I always make sure it is whole-grain.  Also, use vinegar/olive oil-based dressings or yogurt instead of ones that use mayonnaise or sour cream.
  • Make salads that consist of vegetables or fruit like a three-bean salad, a watermelon with feta and mint salad, or a shaved beet and carrot salad.  Pinterest is my best friend when looking up new ideas!  
  • Add more to the grill than your meat!  Throw some chopped up veggies in a grilling basket or grill some corn on the cob.  Cooking vegetables in foil packets is, also, quick, easy, and mess-free!
  • For beverages, try serving light spritzer-type drinks with a carbonated water and clear liquor if you’re serving for adults.  Also, a fruit sangria is always a great option, as well!  Oh, and, as always, have a lot of water on hand!


Finally, for my last tip, I will share one of my new favorite things…

Chobani Meze Dips


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I, recently, found these dips at my local grocery store and couldn’t wait to try them!  They are made with Greek yogurt, real vegetables, and only natural ingredients.  With only 25 caloriies per serving, they contain 80% less fat and 65% fewer calories than the leading hummus.  They come in four flavors that include Roasted Red Pepper, Three Pepper Salsa, Chili Lime, and Smoked Onion and Parmesan.  So far, the Chili Lime is my favorite but they are all super yummy! 

I have served these dips at a few summer get-togethers and they are always a hit with my guests!  I like to serve them with plenty of raw vegetables, whole-wheat crackers, or pita chips.  Setting these dips out with some healthy dipper choices is a great way to get your healthy BBQ started!  I highly recommend adding these to your next summer BBQ…which, I hope is this upcoming weekend so you don’t have to wait long to give them a try! 


Here’s to Happy and Healthy BBQ’ing, friends!!

Share a healthy BBQ/party tip!
What is your favorite BBQ/picnic food?

Thursday Thoughts #3

Hi!  Happy Thursday to you! 

Today, for Thursday Thoughts, I don’t have the random list of craziness that is, usually, running through my head.  I am going to head in a different direction and share some positive thoughts that I think need to be shared and remembered every once in awhile.  There is so much negativity floating around and it’s important to always put our best face forward and just try to spread the love and optimism that everyone needs. 

So…with that said…always remember…




















Have a beautiful day and ignore that negativity!  Living each day with an optimistic attitude can make all the difference in the world! 

How do you deal with negativity when you encounter it?
Share your positivity mantra!

Grocery Haul Favorites

Good morning! 

My post is going up a little later than usual because, when I sat down to write it, none of the keys on my keyboard were working.  Like, not one.  I tried the very advanced fix of restarting the computer but that didn’t help so I just shut it down and walked away before my temper got too bad.  I came back a few minutes later, rebooted, and, thankfully, I can type again.  I don’t even want to know what was wrong…I’m just glad I’m up and running! 

Sunday morning, the hubs and I went out for our usual breakfast date and then picked up some essential groceries for the week.  Today, let’s take a look at some of the stuff that we got that I’m particularly loving!

**Quartet of hummus – this is perfect for people, like me, who can’t make decisions and will stand in front of the hummus for ten minutes deciding which kind to get!


**Blue Diamond crackers – perfect for that crunch craving that sneaks up every now and then!


**Blue Diamond Almond Cashew Blend – I love my almond milk and I love my cashew milk so what could be better than a combo of both!?


**Simply Nature Sprouted 7-Grain Bread – I’m always looking for a good whole-grain bread and I’m really loving this one!


**Broccoli Slaw – Guys, I use this for everything!  I use it to make salads, I use it to top my tacos, and I use it as a base for veggie bowls!  And, the best part is no chopping!!


**Pumpkin Spice Crunch Special K – I’m not ready for summer to be over but I’m always ready to inhale some delicious cereal!


Alright, so, there you have it!  I have the day off today so I’m going to do some work around the house until my hubs wakes up (he worked night shift last night) and then we might hit up the golf course and grab some lunch! 

Have a fabulous day!

Tell me something you’ve picked up at the store, lately, that you love!
Are you ready for pumpkin spice season?

Weekend Recap

Hey, hey!  Good morning, afternoon, or evening…depending on when you’re reading this! 

This weekend, I really no plans but felt like I moved non-stop and can’t even tell you where the days went! 

On Friday, I had to work until noon but, then, the hubs and I planned a day date with golfing and lunch and night date with dinner drinks out with friends.  Every time I’m on the golf course I ask myself what the heck I’m doing on the golf course.  Golf is that tough game that makes you realize that even though you know what to do, chances are, you aren’t going to be able to, actually, do it.  Talk about a mood killer!  Anyway, we spent some time on the course, grabbed a quick lunch, headed home to relax for a bit and shower and, then, headed our for dinner and drinks at our favorite brewery

The blueberry ale gets me every time.  I can never pass it up.  Even if it wasn’t delicious, I would order just to stare at the beautiful color. 


The evening ended with some drinks with friends…and there may have been some dancing.  But, I’ll never tell. 

Saturday morning, I woke up with the sun because I wanted to get a jump start on my day!  I headed out to my back porch after making myself some breakfast and sat down to do some work.  I worked on the blog, I did some work for some challenge groups I have coming up, and I did some online shopping.  I, then, moved on to the yard…I cut the grass, trimmed, and weeded the flower beds.  I got a lot done but I’m pretty sure that I lost every ounce of moisture in my body. 

It was HOT and I was sweaty!!


After that, I headed inside to cool off in the AC with some Hydrate.  I was pretty sure I needed some electrolyte replacement! 


I ended up dozing off and, when I woke up, had a killer headache.  I don’t know if it was the heat or slight dehydration but, because of it, I was out for the rest of the night.  I tried to nap it away but ended up just relaxing for the rest of the night and heading to bed early.  At least I was productive in the first half of the day! 

Sunday, I woke up the hubs up early (even though he worked part of the night) so we could have a breakfast date and get some groceries for the week!  He was super excited to go with me!  Insert eye roll here.  We hit up a breakfast buffet, two grocery stores, and, of course, Starbucks…

…and, I tried a new-to-me drink! 


I have been tempted to try their Iced Coconut Milk Mocha Macchiato forever but, because I don’t like coconut milk, I always hesitated.  But, the picture of it made it look SO good.  Yesterday, I gave in and ordered it!  I was a little unsure of how I felt about it during the first couple of sips but, after all the flavors swirled together, I was in love.  It was really yummy and I’ll definitely be getting one again as a treat! 

On a funny note: we came home from the store, I cleaned the kitchen, and, then, sat down at the dining room table to write out some cards.  I opened my planner, caught a glimpse of the date, and, immediately, realized that we had a birthday party that day at 2pm.  I looked at the clock and it was 1:43!!!  I yelled upstairs to Lee that he had to get ready because I had to be at a party in ten minutes!  Luckily, it was only two streets over and for the son of our BFFs.  I, obviously, didn’t have a gift to take but we plan on getting together on Colton’s real birthday this week so we’ll just give him one then!  I think he still had a blast at his Mickey/Paw Patrol party! 


I felt like a hot mess yesterday!  Somehow, I lost an entire weekend in August!  I was, seriously, thinking that next weekend was the 20th!  Where did this month go!?  We do have a wedding on Saturday so I’m hoping that I’ll remember all this week and not ten minutes before the ceremony!! 

I hope you all had an amazing weekend and are keeping better track of your time than I am!!

Have you ever forgotten about a party/function?
What was your favorite thing from this past weekend?