Monday, December 30, 2013

2014 in one word

I've seen other people select a word for the year and it never really made sense to me why you would want to do this. I've never been big on resolutions either, by May I've forgotten what I said to begin with. For some reason, this year is different. I feel like a lot is going on in my life and I keep coming back to to a few basic things. I could use some balance in my life, but do I really want to spend an entire year focusing on "balance"? What about "family"? I mean that's a good word, I love my family and want to spend time with my family. But it still isn't what I need in my life.

The past few weeks my friend has been out of work a lot and attending some doctor's appointments. I assumed it was for her back and didn't get around to asking her what was up. She finally came to me and told me she was diagnosed with breast cancer. It hit me like a ton of bricks. Early last year my step mom was also diagnosed with breast cancer and made a full recovery thanks to early detection. (My friend will be ok too, she caught it really early) My step dad died of cancer, same with my Grandma. I feel like it grabs hold of everyone you know, no matter what their circumstances are.

It just made me think ... you've got to live the life you've been given. You only get one life. You only get this one chance to live your best life possible.


That was it, my word for 2014.
I'm going to live my life. I'm going to focus on whatever I need to each month and continue to live my life in the best way I possibly can. Whether that means finding a new job (which I desperately want to do) or spending more time with my family. I'm going to live in the moment and take chances that I may not have otherwise taken.

I only get one chance, so this year I'm going to live.

Linking up for Funday Monday

Thursday, December 26, 2013

My year in books

I set a goal this year to read more books, in fact I set a goal on Goodreads to read 30 books this year. As you might remember I hit my goal by early August and decided to up my goal to 45 books and what do you know? I hit that goal before the end of October! I didn't go back and reset my goal but I did continue to read to see how many books I might end up reading. Well, I think it's safe to say that I won't be finishing any more books this year so my final total for the year is 64 books! That's more than twice my original goal for the year. The means I've read 19,856 pages. Well actually more than that because three books I read, I decided to read them all over again because I was rushed to get through them the first time and really wanted to look back on some things. Of course I read some winners and some losers, but not too many losers ... here they are ... all 64 of them!

Here are my favorites from the year:

And on a more personal, real life level I enjoyed Born to Run and The Total Money Makeover

And here are the ones I wish I would've left on the shelf:

  • Girls in White Dresses
  • The Matchmaker Meets Her Match
  • My Fair Lazy
  • Friends Like Us

Overall, I read a lot of Sophie Kinsella and Jill Mansell this year. I stuck to mostly chick lit with a few curve balls thrown in. I'm not sure what next year will bring. Maybe more books on bettering myself? My to-read list stands at 35, but I'm always looking for new books to add to the list. Leave me a comment with any suggestions for 2014. 

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Hair Envy

I don't do much with my hair. It's either up or down. Sometimes I go wild and crazy and put it half up. It won't curl, it's stick straight and it's fine. Very fine. So my options are very limited as to what I can do with it. Hair is one of those great debates with women. Nobody likes theirs, they want their friends hair or a celebrity's hair. If you have curly, you want straight. If you have straight, you want curly. 
Here's what I did the last time I got my hair done. The "new do" on the right had zero volume and the side part wouldn't stay so I ended up with a lopsided hair cut because it wanted to part down the middle.
I never had a problem with my hair being stick straight until I realized it wouldn't do anything else beside be stick straight. I don't have the option to curl mine, it just won't stay. Ok let me be honest, it will stay for about 20 minutes and then it's flat as can be. I can't do the fun "scrunchy" look when my hair is wet and apply some moose and expect it to stay. I can't do the "beach hair" because I would just look like there was an oil slick on top of my head. So yes I'm complaining about my hair. And I'm sure some of you reading this are thinking "I'd kill for straight hair" but think ... right now you have options. My only option is straight hair that sticks to my face. Look through my 30x30 pictures to see how lifeless my hair really is. It's tragic.

I finally broke down and scheduled a hair appointment for Friday. I need something new to happen on top of my head. I already know I'm going for some highlights because sadly damaging my hair with color is the only way to get some volume out of it. But the cut ... uh ... well I'm just not sure. I have great ideas for what I want my hair to be but I can't make any of them work because of it's flatness. Oh I can't do bangs, I just can't. Here's what my hair aspires to be ...
Fun hair with some volume but not much maintenance {pin}
Ability to style without everything falling flat {pin}
How about a sock bun and head wrap, heck I'd even just take one! {pin}
Big romantic curls for a dressed up look {pin}

So help a flat haired girl out. What do I do with this mess of mine? Friday morning is rapidly approaching and I need some ideas!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Lately I've been

I'm doing well with my workouts and eating healthy snacks. I seriously can't eat enough Cuties. And I made the BEST protein smoothie this week. Strawberry Banana Chocolate Protein Smoothie -- oh yum! It actually made the grueling Plyometrics workout worth it.
The weather outside has turned frightful. Yes -1 ... that's not even a real temperature to me. Make it stop!
I treated myself to a Skinny Peppermint Mocha this week, only 100 calories for a tall. It was snowing, I was cold and I deserved it.
This shirt is the best. I looked long and hard for these for the whole family and I'm so happy that I'm finally a proud owner of one! Now to finish up my Christmas shopping this weekend, visit Santa, check out Christmas lights and stay next to the fire. I'm really looking forward to this weekend!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Deck the halls (& yourself!)

Decorate for Christmas

1. Creating ornaments with the kids -- this year we are making all our own decorations for the tree.
2. Pretty lights on the trees and the houses around the neighborhoods -- we love driving around looking at Christmas lights
3. Attempting to take family photos to spread the holiday cheer that hopefully don't turn awkward -- please note that's not my actual family :)
4. Don't forget to decorate yourself with awesome Christmas shirts -- I got mine here and absolutely LOVE it!

Maybe my kids have turned me into a Christmas softy but for some reason this year I'm liking Christmas more than years before. Maybe it's the way their faces light up when they talk about Santa or the way they squeal with excitement when we look at Christmas lights. Whatever it is I have softened to the idea of Christmas. So this year I will proudly wear my filthy animal t-shirt and sing Christmas songs with my kids. Christmas is beginning to mean a bit more to me thanks to those little girls.

*Linking up with Let it Be Beautiful

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Excuses don't burn calories

Believe it or not this has been happening the last two days at my house. P90X has entered our home and I'm making it my mission to make sure it stays. Will it stay for 90 days? I'm not sure but getting into better shape is absolutely happening. I've gone on "get fit" binges before and I've always been disappointed with the results. So this time I'm setting smaller goals that don't have to do with the scale (even though pounds off the scale would be really nice!). Here they are for all the world to see:

  • Increase flexibility -- I want to be able to touch my toes either standing or sitting or both
  • Cut back on sugar -- I have a major sweet tooth, I need to learn how to curb this. I'm not going crazy and cutting out all sugar 
  • Control my portions -- I had gotten really good at this and have since fallen off the wagon, it's time to hop back on. I don't need to eat the entire plate of nachos (even if I think I want to)
  • Drink more water -- enough said. Get the water in the body, all day, every day.

Today I'm feeling sore. I'm just glad it's not sorry. Any tips or motivation for me to stick to my goals? I really want this to work this time. I'm all in.

Monday, December 2, 2013

30x30: Days 25-30

I made it to the end! Now I owe an explanation on one day, and trust me you'll forgive me for not taking a photo because you will be too busy laughing at why there is no photo. So without further ado ... the remaining photos!

Day 25: White tank top, black cardigan, floral scarf and beige trousers
Day 26: Now let me explain. I wore my grey & pink striped shirt with grey scarf to work. After my meeting which was right before lunchtime I walk into the bathroom to find a large wet spot on my shirt that looks like I might have been lactating for the last 3 hours. And let's just put out there that I'm definitely not! Come to find out my "Very Sexy" bra from Victoria's Secret has a gel/oil filled 'push up' section and it burst in the middle of my meeting. So I was covered in this oily slime from my exploded bra. Embarrassed doesn't even begin to cover my feelings. So there you go ... no photo for today but hopefully you have a smile on your face now :)
Day 27: Red striped shirt with dark wash bootcut jeans
Day 28: Heart sweater and light wash skinny jeans
Day 29: Grey t-shirt with cargo pants
Day 30: Teal 1/4 sleeve shirt with floral scarf and light wash skinny jeans

And here it is all together. 30 days with 30 pieces (minus 2 days because well you can read about those above and here).