Friday, March 29, 2013

H54F - Sweet Surprise

I was a complete space cadet and forgot to take pictures of this week's highlights. How could I do that?! It started with a great first birthday for my niece, Hadleigh. Hopefully I will get some pictures and share them, but am completely disappointed in myself for not taking a single one of my own! Worst Aunt ever! Other than that I guess this week was pretty low key. Nothing super fun happened, but sometimes those are the best. I would go to work and come home, make dinner, and catch up on our TV shows. It really doesn't get much better than that!

I did however, have a few other fun high five's I thought I'd share!
  1. This was such a surprise and definitely the highlight of my week! My sister and mom pitched in and got me an embroidery machine! I have been lusting over them, but never thought that I would get one anytime soon, much less now! I was dropping mad hints to Christopher for my birthday but now it looks like he's off the hook! Can't wait to start embroidering anything and everything I can get my hands on!
  2. Christopher got a new desk chair and Milo now thinks his old one is his. How can I say no to that face?!
  3. This was my Thirsty Thursday. I can't say no to a bottle of Loosen.
  4. As you all saw yesterday, I made this terrific pom pom necklace! Make one for yourself with my tutorial!
  5. Like I said, I was a bit of a space cadet this week so when I was stranded 20 miles from home by my work because I had no gas OR my credit card to get gas, Christopher had to come out to me to give me the card I forgot at home. So to make a bad situation bearable, we went to dinner at Il Fornaio. We had some gift cards to use, so it beat sitting in traffic!
I hope everyone had a GREAT week and are ready for a spring-like weekend. We are finally getting some good weather just in time for Easter!

Linking up with Lauren @ From My Grey Desk
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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Saw it. Pinned it. Did it - Pom Pom Necklace

I love the "Saw it. Pinned it. Did it." link up because it forces me to actually make the things I pin on Pinterest and stop pretend pinning. This week's inspiration came from Little Miss Momma for her Pom Pom Necklace. I absolutely fell in love with it and realized I needed a red one for my wardrobe!

One of the most annoying things about doing a craft off Pinterest is having to buy all the supplies. Luckily for me, this necklace didn't require much, in fact I had everything except the chain which I picked up at Michael's for a whopping $2.

Hot glue gun
Fabric (color of your choice)
Felt (something neutral)

As you can see this project doesn't require that much of either fabric so I used scraps I had laying around the house.

The first step is to cut 5 circles from the felt about 1-1.5 inches in diameter. As you can see below, they do not have to be perfect.

Next, I used a felt circle as my template for the red ones and cut about 10 at a time. I made one pom pom first and found that it took 10 for each circle. I continued to cut all 50 red circles.

Once all your circles are cut, take each individual circle and bunch it. Then glue the tip and place in the center of one of the felt circles. You will continue to do this for all 10 of the red circles you cut.

Once all your pom poms are made, you will want to arrange them on the remainder of the felt you have. Then one at a time, you will glue them bottom three down. Do NOT glue the top two yet.

Take your chain and glue it to each of the top pom poms about an inch down to make the necklace more stable. Once that is done you can glue these to the felt just as you did for the other three.  

All that is left is to trim the felt away until you get a necklace that looks just like this!

If for some reason you don't have the time or desire to make one yourself, I will be giving one lucky reader their very own pom pom necklace as a special thank you for reaching 100 followers! (Just need a few more followers before I host the giveaway!

As for now, I'm linking up with Stephanie @ Beautiful Mess and Katie @Keep Calm & Carry On for SPD! Happy Crafting!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

What To Wear - Thin Mint

I don't know if it's the fact that I ate an entire box of Girl Scout Thin Mints, or that spring is officially here (despite the chill in the air) but I'm really into mint green right now. It probably is neither of those things, but instead that mint green is one of this season's hottest colors. How can you not like it? It's cheerful, light and fresh!

I've got to tell you about the deal I got on this shirt! It's from Kohl's and was marked down from $36.99 to $24.99,then I had a 20% off coupon which brought it down to $20 AND a $10 off your purchase coupon! So I spent a whopping $10 on this super cute shirt. Gotta love Kohl's!

Along with all things mint, I'm really into these blousy sheer shirts right now (identical similar look here). They are just so easy to dress up with a pair of skinnies, jewelry and heels. Not to mention they are comfy and hide your winter gut until it's ready to make it's summer debut (after a good two month ice chip diet)!

Now if only it would get warmer, I could see myself rocking this look with some nice shorts and heels for a summer night out. Stay tuned!

It's Wednesday which means I'm linking up with Lindsay @ The Pleated Poppy for WIWW.
pleated poppy

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Week 1 Weigh In

Made it through one of the hardest weeks, in my opinion, for dieting: week one. This is the week that you go from eating whatever you want when you want it to actually counting points and making conscious decisions to eat the right thing.

This week was definitely a success. I was even away from the office most of the week, but managed to avoid temptation. I was so worried about having to eat out while in DC. Usually I will cave and eat whatever I want justifying that I was on my feet at a tradeshow all day and deserved it. Then this came to mind:


I'm such a picky eater (not liking many fruits and vegetables) that dieting for me is all about portion control. It also means to chose smarter from the menu instead of ye ol' faithful chicken tenders and French fries. (Yes I'm aware I eat like a five year old, don't judge.)

So here it goes, the scale says I'm down 3 lbs and that is more than I could have hoped for! Every pound lost is one step closer to getting where I want to be.

Since week one is traditionally the hardest week for me because I suffer withdrawl from the things I love, sugar, soda, and fatty foods I decided to not start a work out regiment until week two. Now that I have the eating thing down I can start running and lifting weights again.

All-in-all I'm happy with how this week went and hope for some big numbers again for week two!

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Fish Extender Experience

I promise this will be the last time you have to hear about Fish Extenders (at least until I go on another Disney cruise)! But ever since I've been back, I've had people asking me how it went. And I must say, my experience was WONDERFUL! I couldn't have asked for a better group of people to be associated with for my first time!

 If you have kids and are going on a Disney cruise, then this is a MUST! We don't have kids, but even my husband (who didn't understand what I was doing this when we started) was getting into it. Nearly every time we came back to our cabin we had gifts waiting for us and it was so much fun to see what everyone else did. So much creativity!

Here is a quick glimpse of everything we received. I still can't believe the thought and time that was put in to each and every one of these gifts!

This Minnie Mouse pot holder was hand made! Above it are coffee cup sleeves that resemble Mickey's outfit.

We got a collection of bookmarks and CDs as well as notebooks. Another thoughtful and useful gift was the laminated index card that served as a quick reference guide for main areas of the ship. SUPER helpful for first time cruisers for sure!

Here are some trading pins, flashlights, key chains, tissues, sanitizer and a variety of other useful things that I actually ended up using while on board!

We decorated our door with this awesome dry erase board and magnets. I was bad and forgot to get a picture of our door on the last day of the cruise with everything on it!

We got three awesome pre-made scrapbooks that are only missing our pictures from the week. Talk about making it easy on us to document the trip. I thought this was a GREAT idea!

My only regret would be not having the means to properly thank everyone. Contact information such as an email address would have been nice to be able to send personal notes back. Hopefully some people will read this and see how truly grateful I am for all the goodies we got!

What did I give? In case you missed it from previous posts, here is what made!

Girls - Hair bows
Boys - Styrofoam planes (not pictured but similar here)
Men - Embroidered cozies
Women - Key chains

Happy Monday everyone! I'm linking up with Molly @ still being Molly for YOLO Monday's!

Friday, March 22, 2013

High Five for Some Down Time!

I have been on the go since my vacation 3 weeks ago! I am so excited for a weekend at HOME! After the cruise, I went straight to Vegas for work for a few days, came home for a few days and then went to Richmond for the weekend. I came back only to spend 2 days in DC for a trade show for work. It is finally Friday and I am not going anywhere this weekend. Couldn't be happier! (Not to mention my house is clean so I don't even have chores to worry about this weekend.)

So here we go! Some High Fives from the week!
  1. While in Richmond we got to see our nephew, Jacob. He is 4 months old and super sweet!
  2. I kept getting lost every time I got in my car to drive around DC this week (not part of the high five), but at one point this was my view and I couldn't resist in snapping a quick picture!
  3. Since I was traveling for work I got to try a new (to me) restaurant, Acqua Al 2. I have probably never had such good authentic Italian food! I highly recommend going if you are in DC, San Diego, or Italy (those are the only locations).
  4. Since I leave then come back, Milo has been extremely affectionate. The other days he felt the need to nap on me. Precious!
  5. Of course, what is St. Patty's Day without green beer?!
Can't wait to read and hear about your weekend and high fives for the week!

Linking up with Lauren @ From My Grey Desk for H54F!
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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Getting Skinny

Here we go again! I do these "fresh start" posts periodically as an attempt to hold myself accountable (which was this blog's original purpose), but fail every time. This weekend marked three years since I started Weight Watchers for the first time in hopes to lose weight for my wedding. After three years what do I have to show for all that? Absolutely NOTHING. I am right where I was when I started, can you believe it?! How you ask? During those three years I managed to lose nearly 30 lbs and gain every last pound back.

So I got to thinking.  How was I successful three years ago? Weight Watchers. I followed the points system religiously and began running. It was that simple. Simple in the fact that I CAN do this because I HAVE done this. Not simple in that it takes a whole lot of willpower and commitment.

The cruise has come and gone, but summer is quickly approaching and with that so is another birthday. I have exactly three months (before I turn 27 and I want to start that year off right!). Not to mention I can't afford for my summer wardrobe to not fit!) So let it be written: I WILL do this...again., but not without your help. I need to be held accountable. Leave me messages asking about my progress as a friendly reminder to stay on track and I will post my weigh-ins every Tuesday (like I was trying to do before) with no excuses. DEAL?

If you too are looking for a fresh start, join me! The more the merrier!

Yesterday was my first day counting points again and I quickly realized how much I have been eating lately. I came home from work with just 8 points left and felt like I resisted temptation all day. I managed to not go out to dinner (my weakness because I despise cooking) and made tacos. I should have only had two but somehow my brain told my stomach we were still hungry. So three tacos later I was 8 points over for the day. Leave it to me to screw up day one.

I'm not dwelling on this because I did well during the day and drank over 100oz of water and didn't eat anything I shouldn't have (until dinner of course). I thought of today as a practice day/reality check.

Here is today's official weigh in - Never thought I would see those numbers again.

Friday, March 15, 2013


So happy to have a short work week in the office after all that traveling. Don't get me wrong, the cruise was my vacation and Vegas was fun but only having about 6 hours in between the two was exhausting! I'm finally getting caught up on unpacking and laundry. Maybe next week I can get back into a work out routine! (We've all heard that before!)

I had so many things to high five about over the last few weeks, but wanted to try and share some things I haven't shared yet.
  1. This is my second time flying into Vegas and you really can't beat the view. I'm so used to flying on the east coast over water that this mountain view was truly breathtaking.
  2. I know this photo was on yesterday's post, but it was so nice to get my HDR editing software (Photomatix) up and running on my new computer! Gave me some inspiration to take more HDR pictures!
  3. Can't beat a good view of the Vegas strip. Again, I've only been twice so it still amazes me.
  4. This was the last night of our cruise and I FINALLY got a picture with Minnie in her cruise outfit! LOVE!
  5. Coming home to Milo is the best part about being home. He usually doesn't snuggle with me, but the other day after work, all he wanted to do was nap next to me in my arms. (Yes, I'm aware I sound like a crazy cat lady - sorry that I'm not sorry)
I literally just realized St. Patrick's day is Sunday and I have no plans! Must find an Irish Pub and drink a beer at the very least. Good luck to all my friends who are running any races this weekend! I'm going to be back out there soon!

Linking up with Lauren @ From My Grey Desk for H54F!
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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Our Disney Fantasy Cruise

I am finally getting back to reality this week from vacation and a quick work trip to Vegas. I apologize for the lack of posting this week. As promised, I am going to dedicate this post to pictures of our trip! We had such a great time and would recommend a Disney cruise to anyone and everyone, whether you have kids or not.

These first few photos are some HDR (High Dynamic Range) photos that I took while on the trip. What is HDR you ask? The easiest way to explain it is that I take 3 quick pictures of the same object at 3 different exposure settings (my camera allows me to auto set up my exposures. I use -2, 0 and 2). Then you upload them to an editing software (I use Photomatix) and it will layer the 3 photos on top of each other to give it a real nice enhanced effect. I will post a tutorial maybe later, but for now here are some of my favorite HDR photos I did real fast. Please note: I am by no means a professional photographer and do not put these pictures up claiming I am. This is just a fun hobby.

I forgot to take an HDR photo of the Fantasy ship so this is from our last cruise on the Disney Dream.
Isn't she adorable?! I LOVED that this was the main lobby statue!
The lobby bar was a perfect subject for an HDR photo because of the lighting.
Castaway Cay is Disney's private island.
We went to see the Mayan ruins in Costa Maya and they were truly amazing. I don't think I've ever seen something that old!

Now on to some other photos from our trip. These aren't even close to all of them, but figured it was a good sampling of our trip!
 Large portholes big enough to sit in and nap or read a book are everywhere on this ship! Even some rooms have them!
 This deck always reminded me of the scene from Titanic where Rose takes a stroll on the deck to ask about the life boats. I love the design of Disney ships because they model them after the Transatlantic ships like Titanic with the large portholes and wooden deck chairs.
 In Costa Maya they fly the Mexican flag and then the Disney Cruise Line flag.
I couldn't get a good picture with Ariel for the life of me! This blurry one will just have to do. 

Me and the boss.
On the Mayan Ruins in Costa Maya! 

 Christopher taking a rest during our tour of the ruins.
 The Aqua Duck is the only water roller coaster on a cruise ship. I road it 6 times!
 The top deck at night is so pretty all lit up!
 At the start of dinner one night we were told to draw little characters. During dessert they animated them to music and made them a cartoon! Mine is the 3rd one from the left!

 I love these giant lizards!

 Our cabana while we were at the private beach as part of our excursion.
 Disney is the ONLY cruise ship that does fireworks! Of course they do! Pictures don't do it justice.
 Found Jack Sparrow on Castaway Cay!
That's all I have for now, but feel free to leave comments with any questions you may have. I will try to post about the FE gifts we got next week. It was definitely a success and I would recommend it to anyone, but especially if you have kids. It's super exciting to find treats every time you go to your cabin.