Monday, April 27, 2015

Life Lately.

Happy Monday Friends.  Sorry for the lack of post Friday but I was traveling and could not get my act together beforehand between packing and taking care of my kids.  Life has been busy lately in a good way:)  Get ready for picture overload today.

I finally tried the Butcher and Bee house salad last week and it was so delicious.  Local friends check it out!  I paired it with a side of their homemade hummus which is always so good.

I stopped in my favorite entertaining store Open Door Shop last week and was in terrafirma heaven.  These serving pieces are my favorites.  They are dishwasher safe and I love all the fun patterns. You probably recognize them from some of my recipe posts.

Sweet Frances Moon has become obsessed with showing off her belly.  Every time we ask her to smile for a picture she shows her belly.  This could be a bad thing in 15 years....

New favorite outfit on repeat. I wore it 3 times last week.

I stopped in Old Navy this week to return a few things and found these fabulous shoes.
Sold out online so check your stores!

One of the things I love most about Sterling is his honesty. He recently told me " Mom I love you, but when you put me in time out I love you a lot less."
This is his best attempt at Blue Steel ( and how excited are we for Zoolander 2??)

Thursday I headed to Dallas for a blogger conference.  I flew out with my girl Caycee.
I got brave towards the end of the flight and looked out the window.  The layers and layers of clouds were just gorgeous.

This was my second year going to Dallas for the Reward Style Conference and it is always a fabulous weekend.  Best part is meeting up with friends from across the US that we only get to see once a year.
Night one was a roof top pool party.
Pictured with me | Cassie, Caycee, Courtney, Megan

Saturday was filled with meetings during the day.
I carried this purse all weekend and starting today Gigi New York is offering free personalization for Mothers Day:)
 Lunch with my mommy blogger friends
Carly, Sheaffer, Cassie, Courtney, Caycee and Megan.

Friday night was a fun party at the eye garden (minus the torrential rain)

Saturday we got lucky enough to spend some time at the pool.  After pouring rain for two days it was welcome.  This was my favorite day because I was able to relax and have lots fun girl talk by the pool.

Finally got the chance to wear my black one piece.
I apparently need to find a good two piece though because I was the only one in a one piece!

That night RS hosted a fabulous party at the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.  It was such a cool idea to host a party here. 
Complete with fireworks!

I have been loving all of Mara Hoffman's fun prints for Summer so I wore one of her maxi dresses that night.

The best part of the weekend is always connecting with blogger friends.  Courtney and I have emailed and been friends for years and finally got to meet in person and that was such a treat.  She is stunning in person and has a heart of gold. 

I came home to a girl who used to be Mama's girl and now is all about Daddy.  Not gonna lie it hurt my feelings a bit but made me super happy they bonded. 

Nothing better than coming home to these sweet faces.  I know time apart is good but man did I miss them.

You can shop some of my favorite pieces from the weekend below.


Thursday, April 23, 2015

Losing the Last of the Baby Weight

 That right there is my inspiration body.  I look at it often for encouragement to run or not have seconds.  I mean her body is amazing.  Does my body look like this?  Nah not even close but it provides me with some killer inspiration.

Today's topic is a reader request.  I have actually gotten several emails about this, so I wanted to take the time and write about it.
  I always welcome suggestions so shoot me an email if there is a particular topic you would like me to write about.

Today we shall discuss losing the last of the baby weight and how hard it is.  I am proud to say I finally lost those last 4-5 lbs I was struggling with a few months back.  I actually weigh less now than I did when I got married.  But it took time to get to this point and it was not easy.   I have reached my goal weight but I will be honest I still don't feel totally comfortable in a bikini, my stomach is saggy and I have cellulite.  I do however love my body saggy tummy and all, it housed two healthy babies for 9 months each and that is damn incredible.  What our bodies do is a true miracle.  I will most likely never look exactly like I looked before I had my kids (I know my belly button won't) but this is the new normal and I am ok with that.

The first thing I want to say is truly give your body nine months to get back to normal.  It took you nine months to gain that weight and for your body to expand so it takes time to get back to your pre-baby body.  I remember even when I lost weight my hips and shoulders were still too big to fit in many of my clothes- it takes time for it all to shrink back.  A lot of weight will come off in the beginning and then you will hit a plateau, that holds true for most women.  Don't get discouraged and compare yourself to others or celebrities who seem to bounce back a few weeks after delivery,  that ain't real life.   Your body housed a baby for nine months it will take time to get back to what feels normal for you.  I would say it probably was around when Frances turned one that I hit my goal weight and felt really good about my body.

For me (and remember everyone is different) my weight loss comes more from what I eat than exercise.  I weigh more when I workout more because I end up eating more.  Like right now I am up 2-3 lbs because I have been running more.  I always tend to gain a few pounds when I start exercising more but then it evens off and my body looks way better and tighter.  The initial weight gain is from muscle so don't let it freak you out.  I love to workout for the mental aspect mainly.  I am much happier and I have so much more energy when I work out.  Just last night before I went to bed I told Matt I was feeling so much better since I started exercising more.

I am no expert in this field but wanted to share a few things that worked for me.

ONE | You don't have to workout everyday but when you do workout make it count.  Sweat.  When I workout I workout hard.  Running for me and my body is what works best and burns the most calories and tones me.  It is a full body workout.  Yoga is great too but I have a hard time fitting in time for a class.  Running is easy because I can walk out my door while everyone is still sleeping and be done in 30-40 minutes. I aim to burn around 500 calories when I exercise.

TWO | Make time for exercise.  I go thru phases where a get in a rut and in a bad mood from not working out.  A few weeks ago I thought to myself you are the problem, get your act together.  Now I make it a priority and every other day I wake up at 6:20 and run.  Personally if I don't workout first thing in the morning I will blow it off and make an excuse.  Plus it is a great start to my day and I don't have it hanging over my head all day.  I feel energized and ready to tackle the day.

THREE| Hot lemon water first thing in the morning.  This flushes out your body and helps you digest food easier.  I have stuck with this and really look forward to my water first thing in the morning.  I drink this before my coffee and before I eat anything.

FOUR | Avoid processed foods.  You all know I love food and I would never diet but I do try and avoid eating too many processed foods. Of course if the kids are eating goldfish I eat a few but otherwise I try to stick to fairly clean meals.

FIVE | Eat grapefruit.  I don't know if this a myth but I read somewhere grapefruit ups your metabolism.  I swear when I started eating it in the mornings I lost my last few pounds.

SIX | Try not to weigh everyday it will just drive you crazy.  I weigh about twice a week and sometimes only once a week.  I do feel like it is important to weigh once a week to keep yourself in check.  If I am up a few pounds, I cut back on my eating.  It is a good wake-up call.

SEVEN | Squeeze in exercise when you can.  For me if I don't work out very first thing in the morning I will not get it done.  But often times on days I don't work out, I still try to do squats and leg lifts before bed.  Every little thing helps

SEVEN |Make a new playlist every few weeks.  New music really motivates me to exercise. 
Here is my current one and I have to say Work B**ch is an excellent motivator (gotta love Britney).

EIGHT | Cut back on alcohol- we all know this is hard with small children. I try to have a few days (let's be real two days a week and sometimes that is only one day but I always make that one day happen) with not a drop of alcohol.  It saves so many calories.

As far as meals go here is a typical day of what I eat (this is actually what I ate Tuesday)
Snacks included some crispy peas and two dark chocolate and sea salt squares. 
I only drink water and unsweetened green tea during the day.
I really try not to snack too much.

Bread toasted with peanut butter, sliced banana and honey. I also have a cup of hot lemon water and 1 cup decaf coffee.

Veggie sandwich from Atlanta Bread Company + small bag of chips

Tuscan Chicken Cakes  + 2 glasses of Rose

There is honestly no quick fix to lose the weight it just takes time.  But exercise and eating clean does help.
I have shared this quote before and I love it.  It relates to so many aspects of life from being pregnant, to having kids and losing the baby weight.  I tell myself this often.

Good luck to all you struggling to lose the last few pounds I know it is hard but it will happen!
Stay confident and love your body!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

I have been wanting to try and recreate my own stuffed spaghetti squash since having it for lunch at Butcher and Bee a few weeks ago.   I have only cooked spaghetti squash one other time and I don't know why but it intimidated me.  However it simply could not be easier to roast.   After cooking it this time and seeing how easy and delicious it is, I will be cooking this more frequently.

You could use any sort of veggie topping you want.  I kept mine pretty simple with just greens, mushrooms and goat cheese.  Even my kids ate this- shocker.  I only made two halves one for me and Matt because I figured they would snub their noses at the greens. Well Sterling gobbled up the greens and mushrooms on top and Frances ate the plain noodles.  I am always happy when my kids branch out and try new things.  I drizzled ours with pesto for some extra flavor and it really made the flavor pop.  You could even add fresh grated Parmesan as well.  So many different toppings options.

|| S T U F F E D  S P A G H E T T I   S Q U A S H ||

- 1 spaghetti squash 
- 1 box sliced baby bellas
- 1 bag mixed spinach and arugula
- pesto
- goat cheese
- olive oil

Cut the spaghetti squash in half and scoop out all the seeds.   Brush both sides (the flesh side not skin side) with olive oil and salt and pepper.  Place them face down on a baking tray (you want the skin side up).  Roast at 350 degrees about 40-45 minutes until you can easily prick through the skin with a knife.  Remove from oven and let cool.   
Meanwhile heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet and add baby mushrooms.  Saute a few minutes until they shrink some.  Add in fresh spinach and arugula and cook just a minute until greens are slightly wilted.  
Take a fork and run it over the flesh of the squash making it into thin noodles.   Leave in shell.  Scoop on mushroom and greens mix and season all with salt and pepper.  Drizzle with pesto and add crumbled goat cheese.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The One Jumpsuit You Need.

A good jumpsuit (aka romper) is hard to find.  I finally found one I absolutely love.  The best part is it can easily be dressed up or dressed down.  I am showing a dressier look but it is equally cute with flip-flops for a more casual look.  It is super comfortable too.
The shoulders and waist have adorable tassel ties. 
This runs on the larger side, I am wearing a size XS.

I of course fell in love with the embroidery on this clutch and its under $70!  The perfect little clutch for Summer.  It is a great size too, you can fit quite a bit inside it.

The shoes are beyond comfortable and a great nude that goes with everything.
On sale + extra 30% off with code TIMETOSHOP.
They also come in black and red.

The romper also comes in a beautiful hunter green, but I thought I would get more wear out of the black.   

The necklace is designed by Gunner and Lux.  They were sweet enough to send me one and I wear it often.  I like that it is adjustable so you can make it shorter or longer.

I am wearing my favorite everyday earrings that were just reduced!

The romper comes in a floral print as well.

I loved this strapless version so much I just ordered it too.  Perfect for pool lounging this Summer. (30% off  with code TIMETOSHOP)

Don't miss out Piperlime just announced extra 40% off all sale.  Selections and sizes are limited, so shop early.  Use code SALEONSALE
A few of my favorites:

You can shop my look below.
Photo Credit | Rick Dean Photography

Monday, April 20, 2015

Scenes From Our Weekend

We had a lovely weekend and I hope y'all did too.

My friend English hosted a trunk show down here this weekend and Frances Moon and I met her for a quick lunch to catch up.  I picked out this necklace from her new collection.  How gorgeous is it?

Friday we met up with my parents for Happy Hour.  They were down here with two other couples for the weekend.

Frances had her first Popsicle and its safe to say it was a hit. Wearing all white was not the best move but thank goodness for bleach.

Saturday morning Sterling was supposed to have a soccer game but because of all the rain it was canceled.  Since we were up anyways we headed to our favorite bagel spot- Bagel Nation for a delicious breakfast. I like the bacon, egg and cheese with a side of jalapeno cheddar cream cheese.

Saturday we worked around the house and then headed to a cookout that night.  I made my new favorite side dish | Asparagus Bundles with Prosciutto.   The recipe is in the new Ina Garten cookbook.

My sister in law had a bubble machine Frances was obsessed with.

Sunday I took the kids to church and rocked my JCrew dress.  Loving it so much I kind of want the navy now.

Had to snap a shot of these two angels after church.  This is one of our favorite doors as we walk to church, such a pretty color.

Don't forget the Saks Friends and Family Sale started yesterday.  You can take 30% off even sale stuff.
Use code FRNFAM for 30% off and code FREESHIP for free shipping.  
I wanted to highlight a few of my favorites that are part of the sale.

I love this blouse. The pattern is so gorgeous in person.

I ordered these sandals during the early preview FF and really love the rose gold.

These two Equipment items are also part of the sale.  I mentioned the dress last week, and I bought the blouse last year and wore it often.

Lots of great stuff.  A few of my other favorites.

Ended the weekend with my loves outside before the storm hit last night!