Friday, January 31, 2014

Five on Friday

Today does not feel like Friday today at all! Students have been out of school since Tuesday afternoon and we are on a three hour delay today. The joys of bad weather in the south. The snow has been beautiful so I'm not going to complain too much. Here is a few things that are on my mind this Friday.

1. Around Christmas I began searching for a new perfume. I got a sample box from Sephora that allowed me to sample tons of fragrances to help me decide on the perfect one. I fell in love with Chloe perfume. The scent lasts all day and has wonderful floral notes. I also just saw it made Allure's list of top ten romantic scents. Check out the list here. I always enjoy being reinforced when someone else likes the same thing I do. So I'm glad to see I made a good choice!

2. Pinterest has a new "interest" page. Based on your activity on Pinterest it complies your favorite topics and shares thinks it thinks you made me interested in. I think it is neat and rather creepy at the same time. My page is heavily fitness related along with lots of recipes and a few fashion links. I was proud to see the school psychologist and behavior links on their too! 

3. Due to already missing school three days this month, a makeup day has been planned for this Saturday. I am dreading spending my Saturday morning writing reports and reviewing files. My plans for a long run Saturday morning followed by breakfast at the farmer's market will have to be postponed until next weekend. Or I just might play hooky... we will see! 

4. I was able to get in two early morning workouts this week. I did not make it to the local gym due to the weather. Thankfully I have a large selection of DVDs to work out at home. My favorites currently are the Beach Babe workouts by Tone it Up and  Killer Buns and Thighs by Jillian Michaels.

5. I picked up a new hairbrush from my salon last time I got my haircut. It is a de-tangling brush for wet or dry hair. This has been a lifesaver for my thick long hair. I am always fighting with knots after my runs or a workout and this little brush has eliminated the breaking of my hair when I try to brush it. I would highly recommend it to anyone with long or thick hair. They carry a very similar one at Target you can check it out here!

What has been your favorite thing this week? Mine was watching the snow fall Tuesday night. 


Thursday, January 30, 2014

A Photo an hour

Today I am excited to share with y'all a deeper glimpse into my daily life. I am always interested/nosy to see what other lives are like. So, I thought it would be fun to share a glimpse into mine. I documented my day last Tuesday which turned out to be not a typical day due to the snow! I got this idea from Steph at Southern Mess who is holding a link-up today for A Photo an Hour. Here we go....

6 am
Rise and Shine! Getting ready for work in a hurry this morning. In love with Benefit's makeup kits. I'm a bit of a Benefit junkie right now. It makes getting ready so easy since I don't have to think about the steps!

7:30 am
Early school Response to Intervention (RTI) meeting at the middle school. I love RTI but early morning meeting times almost take a lot of the joy out of it.

Working against a tight deadline so pulling a student to work with right when they get into homeroom. Thankful that most of the middle school kiddos have been extra nice so far this year. A joy of working for state- this test kit is super old. I even have scoring software on a floppy disk.

IQ test scoring time!

Multitasking at it's finest. Writing reports, checking e-mail and stalking the latest weather forecast.

11am- 12pm
Working in the file room to review student files and planning for the next few week's meetings. I do a lot of digging through files and records to help teachers understand previous evaluations for interventions and classroom modifications. Not going to bore you will multiple pics of my computer screen :) I did get a chance to go talk to some teachers and observe a student during this time too.

Early release due to snow on the horizon. My job requires a lot of travel between schools and this crate was the best investment. You never know when you may need to to an IQ test or evaluate someone's reading level on the fly. Feeling super nerdy that I match my test kit.

*If you want to know what a full day of work looks like. Just add 2 more meetings, another testing session and a few more hours sitting in front of my computer. It's not a glamorous job but I love what I do!*

Kroger stop on the way home. Impulse by of his and hers sodas since we don't keep them in the house. Also, I don't believe the latest Yoplait commercials. Chobani is so much better and natural. Scored these on sale  $10 for 10.

Time to hit the gym. The run with my running group was canceled because of the weather. A quick solo run on the treadmill to keep up with my mileage.

Joe came home early due to the weather. Watching Ellen and getting the stare down from Charlie while he continues to work.

Making dinner. We had sweet and sour chicken with quiona. I start to get hungry around 5:30 every evening. I try to hold off on eating until 6pm. Like tonight, that doesn't always happen. I am a huge fan of the early bird special.

Enjoying an after dinner treat while catching up on our favorite shows. Addicted to The Following. I'm glad to see it back for a second season.

That's all folks! Hope you enjoyed a snapshot into my life currently. :)


Monday, January 27, 2014

Food & Fitness: January 27- February 2

Food: Here is what on the menu this week! For breakfast, I made some more delicious egg white muffins. These have been great for on the go when I'm running out the door to work. Next time I'm planning on adding cheese and sausage for Joe. At lunch, I have been enjoying Sweet Kale Salad Mix that I snagged from Costco with grilled chicken. I love this mix and it is a great alternative to spinach or romaine. On Sundays, I have started planning and preparing 3-4 recipes for dinner. The other days of the week typically consist of remixing leftovers, grabbing something quick from the freezer or going out to dinner. I like not assigning a certain day to each meal so I don't feel confined to the schedule and can change things up. Also, it's great to already have all the ingredients in the apartment in case Joe gets to help with preparing dinner when I'm stuck at work. 

Dinner Recipes 

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake

Fitness: This week marks the fourth week of marathon training. I crazily braved cold temperature in the teens Saturday morning to get in my long run. I met up with my running group at Fleet Feet Raleigh and explored 10 miles of downtown including State's campus and Cameron Village. I am so thankful I was running with a mentor, if not I would have been so lost!  We tackled several monstrous hills during our run. By the end of our run, my FitBit determined we climbed the equivalent of 90 flights of stairs.  I'm surprised I could sit afterwards!

One thing I am trying to get better about in my workouts is completing them before work.  Before our wedding, I worked out in the morning regularly. It was so great to get it out of the way and not have to worry about squeezing it in after work. Now, I rarely exercise before work unless you count climbing the stairs to take Charlie outside. My favorite fitness blog, Tone it Up, emphasizes the importance of  a early morning cardio session to help boost your metabolism and get the day started on the right foot. I also found this great graphic that shows additional benefits of morning workouts. 

My goal is to start getting up early two days a week and hitting the gym before work. If I can't make it to the gym, then I can always work out at home with free weights.  

Monday: 4 miles w. Arms & Abs Strength Training
Tuesday: Total Body Strength & Hill Workout 
Wednesday: Spin Class
Thursday: 5 miles w. Upper Body Strength
Friday: Spin Class w. Legs & Total Body Strength   
Saturday: 12 miles
Sunday: Rest Day

What is one healthy thing you try and do for yourself ?


Friday, January 24, 2014

Five on Friday

Happy happy Friday y'all! Today I am talking all things Monogrammed. As most girls in the south, I love a good monogram. So, I wanted to share a few of my favorite monogrammed items!

1. Monogrammed Necklaces- I adore unique necklaces. I can't think of anything more individual than a personalized necklace. I have a script monogram necklace that I wear almost daily. My other favorite necklace is a gold charm necklace with my initials. I also gave these necklaces to my  bridesmaids. I love that every time I wear it, it reminds me of out wedding day. Both are from my favorite accessory store in Raleigh Charlotte's.  

2. Coffee Mug- Most mornings you can find me enjoying a cup of coffee or tea at work while trying to wake up. I have had this mug from Marley Lilly for about 3 years and still get tons of complements. An added bonus is that if I ever leave it in a meeting they always know who to return it to! 

3. Wooden wall art- A wooden monogram is a great alternative to a wreath on your front door. I have also placed mine within a wreath to add extra dimension.  Also, if your feeling extra crafty, you could change the color with a bit of spray paint based on the holiday!

4. Monogrammed Sheets- These sheets are currently on my wish list once we sell our home in Wilmington. Crisp monogram really pops against the white sheets. I love the idea of changing accent pillows of throws based on the season. I girl can dream right? 

5. Fleece Pullover- I have several of these in different styles and colors. They are my go to when I want to be comfy but still put together. The  fleece jacket is my go to when headed to the gym.  Mine are all half zips 

Monograms, yay or nay? If yes, share your favorite things! Hope y'all stay warm this Friday! 


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Workout Wednesday

Back again for another workout Wednesday. We experienced our first flurries last night in our new hometown along with rain and lots of black ice. Early this morning my school system finally made the call and decided on  an optional teacher workday. The first thing we did? Go outside and celebrate of course! Sadly, there was no snow for Charlie to play in. 

I'm sure you have heard lately the temperature has been all over the place in NC. Monday was almost 60 degrees and I was able to enjoy a run outside in a t-shirt and crops. Today, it is going to be slightly above freezing and you will not catch me outside unless it sprinting to my car. Ah, the wonderful crazy weather of the south!

Needless to say, I am still spending a lot of my runs and workouts inside this week. I did snag an cute running jacket on clearance from Lululemon that will keep me warm when I venture outside again on Thursday.

As I mentioned last week, losing these extra 20 pounds is going to be hard work for me. I feel like my body has gotten used to the extra pounds and has plateaued. I am down one pound from last week making my total weight loss 4 pounds. I skipped a few workouts last week and had a few extra servings this weekend so I am okay with the outcome. 

I have been sharing a lot of my workouts and meals on Instagram if your interested in following along!

What's your favorite gym workout? I love Spin Class and Les Mills Body Attack.


Monday, January 20, 2014

Fitness: January 20- 25

Today I am thankful for another long weekend. Working in the school system has it's perks, one of them is long weekends and spring break. This weekend we headed home to Wilmington to celebrate my grandmother's and dad's birthday. It was nice to get away and see friends and family.

Of course with celebrations, there was lots of rich food, drinks and desserts. I had to pass on them this time around which I got some strange looks due to my love of all thinks dessert related. I know it will all be worth it in the end!

I am on day 8 on the Advocare 24 Day challenge. The plan has great tips on how to make the most of your cleanse and really focus on getting the proper nutrition through your food. Here are 10 tips that can help you make healthy choices even if your not doing a cleanse.

Also, eating every 2-3 three hours helps keep your metabolism high and keeps you feeling full. I find that if I eat a small breakfast, mid morning snack and then a bigger lunch it keeps me satisfied and I don't snack as much at night.

Along with focusing on my eating, I am keeping up my cardio with marathon training! Today is week three of marathon training. Chances for snow this weekend is going to make some of these runs very interesting! I am going to start trying to work out in the morning at my gym to up my strength training. I have been awful at working out in the morning. Hopefully, getting to a class will help!

Weekly Workouts
Sunday: Rest Day
Monday: Upper Body/HIIT Intervals & 4 miles 
Tuesday: Body Pump & 3 miles 
Wednesday: HIIT Intervals 
Thursday: Body Pump & 6 miles
Friday: Rest Day
Sunday: 10 miles


Friday, January 17, 2014

Five On Friday

Oh happy day! Today marks the start of a three day weekend. I know many teachers who are counting down the hours to end of the school day with me!  Work is quite ridiculous right now with lots of deadlines and assessments looming in the next three weeks. I can't wait to catch my breath and slow down for a bit this weekend. 

Of course, Friday means linking up for Five on Friday. Below are a few things that have been making my week.  

1. Neutrogenea Lip Color Stick in Honey- I have slowly been growing my lipstick collection over the past two years. These sticks are a wonderful smooth texture and have a great color. The Honey color has been my go to for the past few weeks. 

2. Avocado Egg Salad Wrap- I have always been skeptical about egg salad. I love hard boiled eggs and deviled eggs. This recipe is something I could make for lunch to spice up my  salads! 

3. Energizing Dry Shampoo by L'Oreal Paris. I am a huge advocate for dry shampoo. Not washing my hair daily has helped extend the life of my color and cut down my time getting ready. I have tried tons of different dry shampoos and this one is by favorite dug store brand! It gives body to my hair and absorbs the grease from the day before. 

4. Pandora The Lumineers Station- I have been jamming out at work lately to The Lumineers station. I love their soothing voices and catchy tunes. Mumford and Sons and the Avett Brothers also pop up on this station as well.

5. Hair Appointment- Today after work, I am heading to get my hair cut and colored at Blo Salon. My color has just started to grow out so this appointment is right on time. We are working on going gradually lighter each appointment. My hair inspiration right now is Lauren Conrad. I have loved her since the Laguna Beach days.

Hope everyone has a relaxing Friday! 



Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Workout Wednesday

Happy happy Wednesday everyone! This work week I have been slammed so I am beyond thrilled to make it to the halfway mark.

First lets start with a little update on my weight loss! I have still basing my meals off of the guide I shared last week. I am six days into the Advocare 24 day Challenge. If your interested about what Advocare is you can read all about it here. It is a vitamin regmine that helps supplement your weight loss efforts. I did not buy all the recommended products as I thought many were unnecessary and cost way to much! I am using their Cleanse and MNS packages then using my own omega 3 pills and protein shakes.

I am happily down 3 pounds from my starting weight on January 1st! I can already tell this weight loss is going to be a slow and steady progress. The main thing that has changed since starting the challenge is saying no to late night sweets. I have the biggest sweet tooth. I'm talking feel the need to have dessert after lunch and dinner daily. I believe that dessert in moderation is perfectly fine. However, mine has gotten out of control and has caused major weight gain on my 5'2 frame!

Boombalities= True Love

I have been alternating running outside and treadmill runs frequently right now due to the unpredictable NC temperature. I love running outside the scenery and fresh air rejuvenates me. But the treadmill is a different story. On the treadmill, I have to constantly change the resistance and speed to keep me from getting bored. The more challenging the pace the quicker the time goes by. I have made this little routine based on my interval runs.

You can change the pace to your current fitness level and repeat for a extra sweaty workout.