Saturday, January 30

Feel Good Friday | Currently...

Eating // Clean & Portioned! Time to lock it down for month 2 of the 22 Minute Hard Corps test group!
Drinking // Nettle and Peppermint tea. My time in Denver last week re-ignited my tea obsession.
Practicing // Self control. Because I'm serious this year about getting in the best shape of my life.
Mastering // The moves in the more advanced workouts of 22MHC. Feeling stronger every day!
Learning // All about all natural beauty products. I'm trying to ditch all the chemicals.
Trying // To become a morning workout person. It's not going well.
Watching // Season 3 of Blacklist. I'm legit OBSESSED.
Reading // Women Who Run With the Wolves
Remembering // What my life was like a year ago. It's crazy how much can change if you want it to!
Wearing // My favorite retired yoga pants by Athleta. *weeps*
Working // On self care in 2016. Gotta fill the vessel first so it can pour out!
Traveling // No trips planned until the Beachbody cruise I get to go on for free in March!
Wanting // To help as many women as possible build full time businesses in 2016!
Quoting // "You cannot make everyone happy, you are not a jar of nutella."

images: top left (mine), middle right (mine), bottom left (no source found but it's what I want for my next tattoo)

Thursday, January 28

Wednesday, January 27

How To Create a Sacred Space in a Busy House

how to take care of yourself for new and busy moms

For this week's Wellness Wednesday I wanted to talk about how I create a Sacred Space in our busy house. I posted recently on my instagram a shot of my morning routine of lighting some candles and setting intentions and a few of you asked me about it so I thought I'd share ways you can incorporate some serenity into your world, even if you don't have a ton of extra space!

Self care is something we don't strive to become better at. And as women (and, cough, moms, cough) we usually let self care come in last on a long list of daily to-do's. Take care of the kids, the house, your relationships, manage your friendships, your finances, your Facebook for heavens sake. But take care of ourselves? We just can't find the time. Or we're too tired from all the other crap we did that day. Ya hear what I'm saying?

So this year I'm calling bullshit on myself (Because heaven knows we all MAKE time for the things we want to. I'm looking at you To Make a Murderer marathoners!) and making a priority to take better care of the self that I am. One of the simple ways that I'm making it a priority every day is to have a what I call a "SERENITY SWITCH" that happens in our house every morning and evening.

Let's talk about our evening routine, because it's the most doable no matter what your daily schedule is like! At night when our son goes to bed we make him pick up all his toys. We make him take any of his dirty dishes to the sink. And then after he's tucked away I spend about 5 minutes flipping the switch in our living room to make it serene and relaxing. For me that means cleaning up clutter, wiping down any messes our 3 year old left on our coffee table, brewing tea or making my recharge drink (BCAA's to help those muscles heal overnight!), and lighting candles, incense, or diffusing oils. I also dim our main living room lights to a warmer and softer setting.

It might sound silly but it makes a huge difference! The space instantly opens up and all at the same time feels cozy. It feels like adults live here again and we aren't tripping over dinosaurs and hiding in corners of the sofa that aren't overrun by toys and kid stuff. I believe it's important to feel like a person and not just a mom at the end of the day.

I promise you, you'll feel a difference. And who knows where it will lead you? Maybe you'll sleep better. Maybe your stress levels will go way down. Maybe you'll feel more rejuvenated the next day. Maybe you'll connect more with your spouse. Why not give it a try?

Here's my top 3 tips for helping you flip the Serenity Switch in your home...

1. GATHER THE TROOPS - if you live with others, share with them that you need this and enlist their help to clean up the clutter. Make kids put their stuff away before bed or help with the cleaning. Ask your spouse or roommate to pick up their shit too. It will take 5 minutes if everyone pitches in!
2. CLEAN THE CLUTTER - clutter is the number one factor in my feeling overwhelmed at home. When everything is in it's place, or at least sorted into piles somewhere else, I can relax. Sweep like a tornado through your living space and de-clutter. No mercy.
3. SET THE MOOD - aromatherapy, candles, incense, low light, twinkle lights. You get the idea. (This is actually a bit scientific. It falls into line with our natural Circadian Rhythms which helps us to relax when it's time to relax and be alert when it's time to be alert. Insert the *More You Know* jingle here.)

Tell me... how do you relax at home? 

Saturday, January 23

The Weekend Collection | Wolf Moon, Tom Brady, and Condoms... oh my!

What are you up to this weekend friends??? I'm off to Colorado for the playoff game, exploring Denver, snowball fights, and mountain time. While I'm flying the friendly skies, enjoy some of the best things I found on the internet recently! Then come back Monday to start a new week with a fresh brewed Coffee Cup Chat

➳ Why Morticia Adams is a feminist queen. (I might have a sight Addams Family obsession)

➳  This weekend's full moon is called the Wolf Moon. And it should bring with it some wild woman positive vibes. Finally.

➳ Danielle LaPorte explains a new way to look back at your last year. I'm totally trying this.

➳  This dad built a magical tree into his daughter's room and it's the coolest most in depth project I've ever seen!

➳  This article on the Love Your Body Challenge is incredibly poignant! A bunch of fitness babes with incredible bodies share un-retouched and not-so-flattering angles to show you that we are all just human. 

"The truth is, while you might be comparing your abs to mine, I'm probably comparing my legs to yours."  
- Neghar Fonooni, total #bodygoals babe 

➳  Hilarious. And eye-opening. Could you eat like Tom Brady for a day? This writer could not. HA!

➳ smoothie recipe for every day of the month! Booyah! Jackpot.

➳ I'm not sure I understand, but Lulu says they are making workout pants that can hug you.

➳ Do you eat all day long? This article says Americans only stop eating when they sleep. Fascinating!

➳ Did you see that you an rent a glass igloo to watch the Northern Lights?! Bucket list!
As a woman who would gladly choose eyeliner over any other makeup type, this article from the New York Times on eyeliner symbolism makes me smile. 
"With a pencil and a simple black stroke, you can step out of youth and into experience, or out of hiding and into battle."

➳ All about self-sabotage. Goodness gracious if I don't see this every day in my line of work!

➳ Social media famous Instagram model, Essena Oneil, re-captioned her old instagram photos to tell the real story behind her social media fame. She got a lot of flack over it and I get it. "Oh a hot, popular girl tells people theres more to life than looks." is a tired trend. But she's got some good points in there.

➳  Netflix and Chill is now a condom brand. Remember... Netflix and chill is just one "D" away from Netflix and child. BAHAHAHA.

➳ Jessica Harrison paints tattoos on vintage ceramic figurines and the result is breathtaking!


Friday, January 22

Feel Good Friday | Our Trip To Stone Mountain

fulltime family rv adventures

It's Friday! And that feels good. So I wanted to share some fun stuff with you today. You might remember, we bought an RV. And we took it on an inaugural trip to Stone Mountain, Georgia via Savannah. It was the quintessential inaugural trip. Lots of things went wrong. I had approximately 1 and a half emotional breakdowns, and it was also one of the most wonderful weekends of our life! 

We arrived to the South Savannah KOA at sunset. Not exactly as early as we were hoping but still with enough light that we could see. It was our first time ever checking into a campsite and hooking everything up. Everyone was super sweet and we were lucky to snag what is called a "pull through" spot which means you can drive into it and out of it without ever having to back up! 
We had a few minutes before it got totally dark to explore. Everything was was beautifully amber and the campsite had a river that ran all along the left side. 

RV life is kind of like tent camping because when the sun goes down, everything gets pretty dark. There were not lots of people sitting outside at this RV park so we decided to make sure of the twinkle lights I hung and relax a bit before heading out to dinner! 
 This is where everything took a turn. We headed out to dinner, which was good. But we were exhausted. On the way back, in the pitch black, in the middle of a not-so-great part of town our truck ran out of gas. The gas indicator was reading that was still had gas left but we were absolutely out. It wasn't until after this happened that we realized that the indicator did not account for us towing the RV all day and because of that had gotten "off". I won't go into all the details, but it was pretty stressful. A dually F450 is not an easy automobile to push when it's out of gas. Two rounds of adding gas in by cans and we still couldn't get it to start. Luckily, after some finagling and begging the car gods to spare us (with a tired kid in the back seat) the truck started and we were able to get to a gas station and back to the RV site. We thought we were out of the woods but...
The South Savannah KOA is all kinds of dreamy in the morning! Light flooded into our windows, swans were filling the lake shaking out their feathers against the rising sun. The air was crisp and cool and gorgeous. We took our dog for a walk and checked out all the other RV's in the park. Nate made coffee in the aeropress that he had roasted before we left. 
We realized late at night before bed that something was wrong with both our power and our water. (Yes, we realized this after having come back from a scary truck situation.) Luckily, the South Savannah KOA had an RV repair man they recommended and he came out that next morning even though he had other appointments. (He totally had mercy on us newbies!) We had been assured from the dealership that our RV was in perfect working order. Unfortunately that was not the case. Our water pipes were reversed and the valves were not working correctly so not only could we not get hot water, we had no pressure and it was leaking into one of the storage areas underneath our RV. Our converter was also busted so we couldn't get full power (aka lights, cooking, air conditioning). Luckily, everything was able to be fixed enough that we could carry on with our trip. Even though we were pretty upset about the fact that it ate up all our time in Savannah and we didn't get to go into town, and that it cost us a few hundred dollars in repairs, AND that the RV dealership lied to us so blatantly, we were happy to have it all working and to get on the road again toward Stone Mountain! 
We left with more than enough time to make it to the mountain before sunset. Purposefully. Because our spot at Stone Mountain was one we had to back into. And it would be the very first time we'd ever backed into a spot in the RV. Unfortunately we hit the worst traffic we've ever been in on the way and a 4 hour drive turned into an 8.5 hour drive. We arrived after dark. 
Cadence is such an incredible road tripper. He napped through most the traffic (so boring I guess) and was super excited when we got to the Stone Mountain Campground. We, on the other hand were frazzled messes. I was so stressed out I had to take two shots of whiskey after we got the RV backed into it's spot and all set up. Luckily for us... this was the end of our bad luck streak. I guess the RV gods figured we were properly initiated and if we hadn't give up yet we should be allowed to pass! HA!
The Stone Mountain Campground was incredible! It was like an amusement park. Totally different from the South Savannah Campground. You could tell this was a destination spot. It was cold and we woke up so excited to go look around and see what everything looked like! From the end of our row you could see a gorgeous view of stone mountain! I loved our spot and the entire campground and we took our morning slow... snuggling in bed, going on a few walks, and enjoying some breakfast smoothies! As we walked around we saw lots of people sitting outside chatting with neighbors, kids playing, and lots of people out walking. It was so charming! 
How about all the heart eyes for this photo I took. This is a keeper right here. This moment reminded us of why we wanted to do this. Why we spent the money, why we pushed through the first two days, why we had been so excited to have this special time as a family. 
Does anyone with kids out there ever see something in a photo and just get completely blown away by how much of a whole complete person they are? Like this... he has cuticles. For some reason that is the strangest thing for me to comprehend. Like... we made a human with cuticles. Anyways...
We decided to go hike Stone Mountain. We went about halfway up and found an incredible lookout spot. The next day we took the gondola to the top! I can't even begin to put into words how fun it was to watch Cadence get to play in nature. We really can't do this in Florida in the same way as it's usually too hot and way too buggy to hike and explore. So this was extra special for us! 
Cadence was a full on mountain man! Here he is pretending to be a lion while I do headstands on the rocks. HAHA! 
And here is is running back and forth and calling us "slow pokes" when we weren't keeping up with him! 
We were able to meet up with friends in Atlanta and go out for a double date, and then took all the kids to the Christmas park at Stone Mountain which was incredible! Thousands of twinkle lights, a parade, Santa, a carole sing-a-long train ride, and hot cocoa! It was beyond awesome! I'm thinking we should make it an annual tradition! 
I was so sad to leave. I would have been perfectly content to move into the Stone Mountain campground! It was so beautiful and festive and everyone there was so nice and welcoming and friendly! We will definitely be returning next holiday season! Oddly enough, we made it all the way from Atlanta back home to Orlando in about 9 hours! We decided to drive straight through and hit no traffic! The RV gods smiled upon and and hopefully the keep doing so! 


Thursday, January 21

Thursday Truth | Who You Were In July...

 "The human body essentially recreates itself every six months. Nearly every cell of hair and skin and bone dies and another is directed to its former place. 
You are not who you were in July.

* Donald Miller, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years


Monday, January 11

Personal | Roar For Four! A DIY Jurassic Dinosaur Birthday Party

All growing up, my mom would plan the best themed birthday parties for me. There was a Barbie dolls one (before the cake molds were something you could go buy at the local craft store, she made a Barbie dress cake herself!), a detective one (with cassette tape spy-message style invitations!), a breakfast heist where all my friends showed up in PJ's and one by one we heisted each person and took everyone out for a breakfast birthday party... and lots more. If Pinterest had existed when I was young, my mother would have ruled it! 

So it's no surprise that birthdays for our son are kind of a big deal with themes and decorations to me. His first birthday was "survivor' themed (mostly just because his father and I survived that year and our son was too little to have much sway during the theme ideas family meeting), his second was airplane themed and at his favorite park. His third we took the grandparents with us to Disney World. But this year... for four, it was time to up the ante. 

He had been telling me for about 6 months that he wanted a dinosaur party. But I figured he'd forget or grow out of it by the time his birthday came. Nope. He had told everyone... his grandparents, his babysitter, his teachers... everyone knew he was having a dinosaur party. 

So a dinosaur party I was compelled to throw. 

I can't take much credit for this party. Most the ideas were my four year olds. He wanted a dinosaur party. He wanted Jurassic World dinosaurs and logos.  He wanted a chocolate and vanilla AND strawberry cake. (I still don't know where that idea came from!) He wanted a bounce house. But not just any bounce house... a dinosaur bounce house with a slide. (Thank heavens that exists and was available to rent locally! HA!)

I will say the idea to play the Jurrasic Park soundtrack was my idea. And the kids flipped out over it and thought it was so cool. The amber jello idea was mine too. And it was a smashing success. Who'd have thought 3 and 4 year olds would have loved peach jello so much? Go figure.

The party was simple, I think the decor turned out great, everyone had tons of fun, the kids bounced out all their energy (mom win!), and our son had a blast! The things we needed were so easy to find... jello, bugles, pretzels, a pallet, some ferns pulled off the bush behind our house, some burlap from the fabric store... easy peasy. And it looked awesome! If your little one is as OBSESSED with dinosaurs as ours is, I fully encourage you to try a dino party! Here's some photos of how it all turned out! Happy 4th birthday Bubs! 


 Pro tip: sprinkle a little cinnamon into the footprints to make them look "muddy"

 For "amber" jello i used peach jello and added a drop or two of yellow food coloring.
this shirt was such a hit! it's from BigTimeTeez on Etsy

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