November 23, 2016

3 Things Since I've Been Away


It's been over two months since I've blogged, guys. What in the world? I feel like I have so much to catch up on. I'm not sure why it's always a little awkward hopping back into things around here. I will forever feel like I have to give some sort of explanation as to why I've been away. There is no specific reason, really. At first, it was simply because I didn't have the extra time. Then it just became a matter of not being interested in sharing anything. Well, like each time before, I began to miss this little space of mine. I'm going to jump right to it and fill y'all in on some things that have happened since I've been away. I don't have anything too momentous to share, per se. Although, there have certainly been a few changes in our lives recently. I'll keep it short and sweet :) 

1. My niece turned 16. Man, oh, man. Talk about insane. I still remember when Hannah was kickin' away in her mama's tummy. It's so hard for me to believe that she has already lived out 16 years of her life. She has quickly grown into such a beautiful and intelligent young lady. Hannah recently finished teaching herself Korean + now she's moved onto Chinese (she's thinking about moving abroad to work as an English teacher one day). Such an inspiration. To make things even more surreal, she's about to start driving! Excuse me while I have a miniature heart-attack. I couldn't be more proud to be her aunt. My nephew, Noah, isn't too far behind her either. He'll be rollin' up on 15 next month. I could go on and on about how awesome he is too. Love those kids!


2. We purchased our first car. Nothing was wrong with the car my parents bought for me when I was 17. In fact, that 11 year old Dodge Neon was still running like a champ! It served my husband and I well throughout the years. However, after realizing that my brother was in dire need of a vehicle to get to and from his new job, G and I decided it was time for us to take a leap of faith. We ended up gifting the Neon to my brother + his wife. We were really hoping to hold onto it at least until G finished up his associates degree in a couple years, but I know that we ultimately made the right choice. We picked out a silver 2015 Dodge Dart and absolutely love it! The payments aren't as much as I had thought they would be either, so God definitely worked it all out in our favor. Giving away my first car was a little tough, but I'm glad it went to my brother and we were able to help him out.


3. I decided to leave Target. Yep. After all that going back and forth about leaving or staying, I decided to bow out from the world of retail. I tried as long as I could to make the schedules work, but with my other two jobs increasing in hours, it wasn't working out any longer. I didn't want to leave and it was such a bittersweet decision. I made some pretty awesome friends / acquaintances while working there. I decided that I would put in my two week notice on October 5th. That date seemed oddly familiar to me, but I couldn't figure out why. A couple days later, as I was looking through my Instagram photos, I saw it. October 5th was my very first day at Target. How ironic. It was exactly three years from the day I had started. After seeing that, I felt more at peace about the choice I was making. I have learned so much and grown tremendously in the time that I've spent working for Target. In a way, I feel like I needed that job to get me to where I am now. I'm planning on sharing the lessons I learned later on. Saturday was officially my last day of work. I honestly don't even think that it has hit me yet. It will, eventually.


I do believe that about wraps it up!

September 8, 2016

Goals for September


We're nearly two weeks into September already, and I'm just now swooping in to share some goals for the month (oops). My work schedule has been pretty hectic the last two weeks, but the next few seem to be offering some free time. My August goals were far from crushed. In fact, I barely put a dent in them. It is what it is, but hopefully I'll get more accomplished this month!

AUGUST RECAP

(✘) Start + finish a new book.
(✔) Visit Disney at least once.
(✘) Take my gun to the shooting range.
(✘) Try to hit 10,000 steps a day.
(✔) Keep up with blogging regularly.
(✘) Go on a few family outings.
(✘) Spend at least 30 minutes a day studying HTML / CSS

➜ ➜ ➜

Start watching more sermons.
I don't go to church as often as I should. I used to watch sermons here at home whenever I'd miss a service, but I've slowly stopped doing that too. I'd like to set aside time every other day to watch Joyce Meyer (or others) + dive back into the Word.

Read as much as I can
You guys already know how I am with reading. Some months I can plow through a book or two, but most months I struggle to even finish one. So, this month, I'm simply striving to read as much as my schedule allows. I've been working my way through a couple different books, but I'm not setting a goal to finish any of them in particular (as I'm sure I'd fail).

Find a way to be more active.
The eating better thing, I've got that in the bag. So far, I'm down 11 pounds + one pant size (whoooo). But, I want to start being more active as well. I'd love to find (or create) an exercise routine I can do in the comfort of my home. I'm leaning towards Tae Bo because I've done it in the past, and I actually enjoy it. Also, once the weather grows cooler, I'm going to purchase a bicycle so I can go biking with my mama. There's a bike trail that runs along the front of our property, so I might as well put it to good use!

Visit Epcot's Food + Wine Festival.
My mama's birthday is actually next week, so we're planning on celebrating by visiting Epcot for their food + wine fest. I'm really hoping it works out, because we haven't been in five years. I've already made a list of food / drinks I want to try while we're there.

Tackle all remaining yard work.
Yard work is my nemesis. There's no denying that one. Add in the fact that we live on three acres and it's been raining for 40 days and 40 nights (ha), and you can clearly understand why there's a need to 'tackle' it all. It basically looks like we live in a freaking jungle. My brother has been coming over to help us over the past week, but there are still many areas that need serious work.

Have at least one day date or date night.
Between our crazy work schedules + G's new school schedule, we are in dire need of a date before the month draws to an end. Spending time together has always been a top priority for us. We'll probably try a new restaurant or go see a movie (or both).

Try out a new pumpkin recipe.
Hard to believe it's already pumpkin time! Baking is one of my favorite things to do around this time of year, but I'm really quite bored with pumpkin muffins / pumpkin bread. I'm thinking of making scones, cobbler, or donuts this time around.

September 6, 2016

Color Crush No. 5

I figured I'd share one more summer-esque color crush since the season seems to be quickly fleeing us. Just like the last one I shared, this photo was found while perusing the pages of StockSnap.io (my go-to for stock photos these days) as well. I'll always be a sucker for blues + greens. Seeing this seaside town makes me want to pack my bags for a tropical vacation somewhere.


August 30, 2016

An Anniversary Trip to Remember


Yeah, so I know what you're thinking. Wasn't your anniversary way back in May? Why, yes, yes it was. However, it was a toss up between sharing this little recap late or never sharing it at all. And this story is far too good to keep to myself (or at least I think so). So, back in May, G and I made plans to go to Orlando for our anniversary. We had arranged to meet our good friends, Victoria + Sean, at Disney on Monday afternoon (the day after our actual anniversary). They were celebrating too, as it was Victoria's birthday and their 10 year anniversary. Leading up to the day, it seemed as though everything was working against us and it felt like the trip wouldn't even happen. From our friends not being able to get a rental car to last minute calls into work, there were countless hurtles we were forced to jump over to make it work. But, needless to say, we all made it there.

After a couple hours at work, G and I headed to Orlando around noon and met up with Vic + Sean at Magic Kingdom just as the Festival of Fantasy parade was getting ready to begin. They were able to save us a couple spots along Main Street, U.S.A. We had only ever seen the nighttime parades, so I very much enjoyed watching this one. There were a few rain clouds hanging over us as the parade finished and we made our way to Tomorrowland. After riding a few rides, the rain decided to make its appearance. We all ran into a nearby gift shop and purchased ponchos, then found a place to grab lunch hoping it would taper off as we ate. Unfortunately, it kept coming in waves, each one more intense than the last. We were determined to make the best of it, to keep pushing forward and we rode as many rides as we could. Once we made it to Adventureland, the wind started to pick up and the rain was coming down in sheets. Drenched and weary, it was time to surrender to the weather. We said our goodbyes and parted ways. We'd planned to meet back up with them the next morning to get breakfast together and visit another park.

G and I were soaking wet by the time we made it to our hotel room around. The ponchos did a great job at keeping the upper half of our bodies dry, but did nothing from the waist down. And, of course, we didn't even think to pack an extra pair of shoes, so I placed ours on the air conditioner hoping they would be dry by morning. The rest of the evening was spent eating Chinese delivery + watching television as we were too tired to venture out for dinner. I'm not sure what time we finally dozed off, but around 1:00 in the morning, we awoke to the sound of a blaring fire alarm. Half asleep and slightly annoyed, we hurried to put our (wet) shoes on and walked outside to see what the problem was. Most of us, like the rest of us, looked dazed and confused. After a few minutes, I grabbed our car keys and told G that we should wait it out in the car. He agreed and that's where we sat for about 15-20 minutes. All of a sudden, silence. Ah, finally. I thought we'd be able to snuggle back into our bed and drift off to dreamland. Boy, was I wrong. Literally, as soon as our feet crossed the threshold of our room, the alarm kicked back in.

That was the last straw. Between everything we had to face trying to get there, to the crazy weather and finally, this, we threw up our hands and waved our little white flag of surrender. G was definitely on the same page as I was. We didn't even have to say anything to one another before we started grabbing all of our belongings from the room. I drove around, hopped out of the car and barged into to lobby in my leopard print night gown and a pair of very squeaky Vans. I told the guy manning the desk that we were checking out, not even concerned with trying to get a refund at that moment. Instead of trying to find another hotel, we drove all the way back home, in the middle of the night. After trying to be positive the entire time, that was our breaking point. I don't think I'd ever been so happy to crawl into my own bed. I texted our friends to explain what happened, then feel asleep. 

The next morning, I thought to e-mail the hotel in hopes of possibly getting a partial refund since we were only there for about four hours. The manager got back to me quickly, and, to my surprise, he informed me that they would refund the entire night. He apologized for the inconvenience. Apparently lightening had struck the alarm system causing it to malfunction. So, as you can see, it was definitely an anniversary trip to remember! And I'm sure we'll be laughing about it for years to come.