Friday, April 26, 2013

Life as of lately

I got my grill on with an interpretation of this recipe that I pinned
A worked on her Earth Day project, a clock made from a serving tray lid, egg carton and straws
Some caffeine was needed for a Saturday morning pick-me-up before cleaning the house
I ran for two miles. Working my way up to 6 for my Sept. run
I indulged my chocolate craving with some good for your candy from Unreal - you must try it!
*Linking up with Life Rearranged

Friday, April 19, 2013

Do you have a brilliant smile?

I've tried those white strips (eww slimy!) and the professional whitening just isn't in the budget. I've been trying to whiten my teeth forever with no such luck. When I got my Sugar 'n Spice VoxBox I was thrilled to see the Colgate Optic White products. Don't they just look like they'd make your teeth sparkle?
Well they really do! So much so that my DH even started using them so he could have some pearly whites just like me. In just 5 days you really will see a whiter smile. I was skeptical but I'm officially sold on the Optic White line of products. What are you doing still reading this, get to the store (Walgreens, Target, Rite Aid, CVS, even your grocery store!) and get you some whiter teeth this week!

*I received these products complimentary from Influenster but all thoughts are my own. And my new brilliant  white teeth are mine too :) As always, if you need an invite to Influenster just shoot an email and I'll hook you up.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Just keep running

In the words of my friend Dori -- Just keep swimming running is my new motto. My lack of motivation lately is absurd. Our "spring" weather has been really crappy this year so I've only been out for a run twice and the first one was with A so that hardly counts as a real workout. I really need to commit to getting fit (and losing a few pounds in the process) this year. My family history is full of heart disease, high blood pressure and very high cholesterol. At 26 I've already tested high (not sky high, but still high) for cholesterol. This is scary. I certainly don't want to take medicine for the rest of my life to keep that under control. My dad has taken meds for the past 15+ years to keep his under control. I don't want that to me be. I have zero self-control. Ooh chocolate! Ooh a Starbucks! Ooh let me get the nachos! I'm out of control. I need to get my life in check.

I have no time for a gym membership, nor do I see the need for a monthly membership to go running. That's why I chose to run in the first place, it's free! It only requires me, shoes and some sidewalk/road/paths which are easily accessible where I live. I've decided I want to step it up this year and run the Fort4Fitness 10k race in September. I've never done more than a 4 mile race. 5k races are my comfort zone. I can do them and still challenge myself to beat my previous time. But I wonder ... can I do more? Can I really do a 10k race? I think I can!

Here's my race plan for the year, I'll update as I sign up for more!
June 15 - Diva Dash (5k) SEE HOW I DID!
Aug. 24 - Color Me Rad (5k fun run) SEE HOW I DID!
Sept. 28 - Fort4Fitness (10k) SEE HOW I DID!
Oct. 20 - Trail Blazer (5k)

So on top of running I need a food plan. A "flab to fab" plan if you will. Not consuming 10lbs of chocolate a week might be a nice start. Or maybe I shouldn't eat nachos twice a week. My love of chocolate, cheese and Diet Coke might just be my downfall. I'm going to start by drinking more water, eating more vegetables and fruits and by eating less processed foods. I'm not a fast food fan (aside from the Diet Coke at McDonald's, I swear they put crack in there!) so that won't be hard to stay away from. I already cook with just about zero salt so that's no issue. My constant snacking and snacking on unhealthy foods is my issue. It's going to be hard change but I'm determined. I'm going to keep pinning my healthy inspirations (food and exercise) in hopes that something sticks with me!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Sugar 'n Spice VoxBox

My long awaited Sugar 'n Spice VoxBox is here and was filled with amazing products to try.
1. Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer - Is it just Indiana or does this "spring" weather suck? My skin is so ready for warm weather and I've been working to keep my hands from drying out. Since there's no chance of wearing anything but pants I haven't bothered to notice how dry my legs are too. This spray dries very fast so you don't have to deal with slimy legs when you are trying to put on pants. It's a keeper.

2. BelVita - I've heard of these but never tried them. I got the brown sugar version which tasted good. However, there is no way I could use this as a breakfast supplement. It worked fine for my morning snack at work but when lunchtime rolled around I was ready to eat again. Maybe I'm just a hungry girl. I could see these as a nice snack alternative but certainly not as a meal. And I'm ok with eating cookies for breakfast :)

3. Colgate Optic White Toothpaste, Toothbrush and Mouth Wash - I'm not loyal to any specific toothpaste brand. I buy what's on sale and usually the Optic White items are not the lowest priced buy so I haven't used them yet. I was actually looking for a new mouth wash so this came at the perfect time. I have to say I was impressed. I'm on day 5 and I actually have noticed a whiter smile. The toothbrush has a large head on it and isn't very comfortable to use but the toothpaste and mouth wash are winners. I wish the mouth wash did more than just whiten teeth, it should have some anti-cavity properties to it.

4. Nectresse - This all natural sugar alternative from Splenda is pretty awesome. I used it in my morning chai and didn't notice a difference in taste. I'm not sure I'd use it as an alternative in baking being that you'd need 20+ packets to make something. It does have a slightly fruity taste and smell to it but it doesn't bother me.

5. Dickinson's Witch Hazel - I'm not going to lie, when I heard this was coming in the box it took me back to my postpartum days. Anyone with kids knows what I'm talking about. Witch hazel calms things down, down there after pushing out a baby. Ok enough details about that ... These wipes are perfect for traveling, camping or post-workouts at the gym. I was happy to find out that Dickinson's also offers face wash and pore perfecting toner. I have very sensitive skin so trying new things on my face is always scary.

What will you try? Of course if you'd like to join Influenster to try out cool products like this, send me an email and I'll get you an invite.

*I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own and I certainly wouldn't lie to you.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Bathroom Makeover

Back in August I got a little crazy in the bathroom. I decided to rip the wallpaper off the walls because it was ugly. I was so happy to see it go. But then something happened ... or didn't happen. Nothing happened to the bathroom, no paint went up, no new fixtures went in, nothing. Our main bathroom in the house has been in disrepair since August. It looked bad, like real bad. J's birthday party was the first weekend of March and that meant my Dad and Step-mom were coming to town to stay with us. Which also meant that my super-handy Dad would have to see my disaster of a bathroom. I couldn't let that happen. By the time all this sank in we had less than a week to get it together. We need to hang new wallpaper, paint the wallpaper and cabinets, replace the towel bar and add a second one, replace the toilet paper holder, get a new shower curtain and rod and do something with the medicine cabinet and the cabinet above the toilet. It was quite the task considering both DH and I work full-time and had less than a week to make it happen. We seem to work best under pressure though so we were up for the challenge. Let's start with the before pictures ...
The wallpaper was terrible. It was peely and a peach/beige that was not my style at all. The only thing I liked in the room was the shower curtain. The medicine cabinet above the vanity was bulky and old and the cabinet above the toilet was big and ugly. The dark wood matched nothing else in the whole house. It all had to go.
We tore down the wallpaper and replaced it with new paintable wallpaper with a texture. This covered many of the imperfections in the walls. We chose a dark cobalt blue for the walls and the vanity cabinets were painted white. New hardware was added in a brushed nickel. The ugly medicine cabinet was replaced with a new silver framed mirror. The cabinet above the toilet was ripped down and a new around the toilet standing cabinet was added. We did lose some storage space by taking out the medicine cabinet mirror but I love our new bigger mirror so much better that I don't even care. We previously only had one towel bar so we added another lower hanging bar for the kids and swapped in a double hanging bar for DH and me. The blue, white and brushed chrome look is perfect for our tiny bathroom. We are are all in love.

Here's the breakdown --
Mirror: Target, $30
Shower curtain: Bed, Bath & Beyond, $30
Free standing toilet cabinet: Target, $30
Wall color: Brillant Blue 
Paintable wallpaper: Menards 

Monday, April 1, 2013

Birthday Tea

For J's 3rd birthday we had a tea party. It was so much fun to put together and to watch the kids enjoying their "tea".

Flowers in teapots
A selection of tea cups and saucers
Fabric teapots, cups and tea bags for the kids to take home
Cupcakes served in cups
Mini bundt cakes
Heart shaped ice cubes added to our "tea" (lemonade) to change the color and flavor

Time to blow out the candles
The birthday girl enjoying her tea