Saturday, November 30, 2013

6 Recipes to Try.

One of my favorite parts of the holidays, delicious desserts! I have a huge sweet tooth, I could eat these sweets for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I don't, but I could.

The other day, my chiropractor suggested that I may have a gluten intolerance and that I should try cutting it out of my diet for a week and see what happens. While I totally agree and would love to do that, its next to impossible, especially during the month of December... I have already started stocking up on baking supplies (most of which all probably contain gluten) and there is NO WAY I can miss out on all of these holiday sweets that I would like to start baking. Impossible.

06. Peppermint Shortbread Bar Cookies.

Anyways, I must end this post ASAP because looking at the above photos is making me really hungry! What are some of your favorite holiday desserts to bake? 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Taking Stock..

I stumbled upon this post idea from the day book, who originally got the idea from meet me at mikes blog. I am still somewhat in this silly funk and thought it would be fun to share bits of what's been going on in my life.  

Making : a delicious cup of hot cocoa. yumm!
Cooking : more apple strudel muffins, i am addicted to them.
Drinking : pepsi. so much for kicking my bad habit, soda pop!
Reading: the happiness project.
Wanting: to sleep for a few days straight..
Looking: forward to december, except for the turning thirty part.
Playing: a few of my favorite songs on repeat.
Wasting: lots of time siting on my laptop, not accomplishing much.
Sewing: ahaha, yeah, i don't sew.
Wishing: that i was more motivated these days.
Enjoying: all my television shows.
Waiting: for a movie to finish so i can go to bed.
Liking: way too many things.
Wondering: if a certain somebody will do the one thing i asked for, for my birthday.
Loving: my amazing boyfriend.
Hoping: that that certain somebody does it.
Marvelling: at how people manage to juggle this work-life-balance.
Needing: a good night's sleep (no waking up at 4 am)
Smelling: cinnamon
Wearing: my pajamas (t-shirt and sweat pants)
Following: my 4 simple goals plan, so far, so good.
Noticing: the lack of snow outside. i want snow dammit!
Knowing: everything always happens for a reason!
Thinking: about how busy december is going to be.
Feeling: a little overwhelmed these days.
Bookmarking: way too many recipes.
Opening: way too many emails in my inbox.
Giggling: over this video. this kid is hilarious!
Feeling: ready for bed. zzzzz

If you want to join in the fun, there is a blank list here for you to copy and paste into your own blog post!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Music // What I'm Listening To.

This is the last time I'm asking you this,
Put my name at the top of your list,
This is the last time I'm asking you why,
You break my heart in the blink of an eye, eye, eye.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Finding Inspiration.

For the past week or so I have been in a funk. I think? I'm really not sure. Maybe I am coming down with something, or maybe it's because I will be turning 30 in less than one month. Either way, I haven't been feeling quite myself. 

I have had zero motivation and/or inspiration. I have hardly touched my blog this week (mainly because I have been too tired to turn my computer on), and its been awhile since I shared a photo on instagram. It kind of bothers me that I am not feeling inspired to blog, take photos, etc.

So, the million dollar question, where do you find inspiration? 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Lately. And Some Links.

I forgot what it's like to work five, 8 hour days in a row.. work, eat, sleep and repeat!

I finally have two days off and I can't wait. I am tired. So very, very tired! As much as I would love to spend the next two days doing nothing, I need to get my shit together for the holidays.

I found out the other day that my boyfriend will be staying home for Christmas this year (I am beyond excited to spend it with him!) and I have a feeling that December is going to be a busy month with work. So, I must get ahead of the game and start my planning and shopping now!

Anyways, onto more exciting things - a few links I have been loving this week!

+ This YouTube video, Spock vs Spock, sooo funny! 

+ 4 Clever Things You Can Do with Facebook Photo Albums.

+ Smile.

+ I am kinda loving this DIY idea, might have to give it a try next summer.

+ Great read, very inspiring - Negative Beliefs Harm your Health.

+ I love finding new potato recipes, this one looks so yummy.

+ I am participating in a fantastic giveaway over at Sunny with a Chance of Sprinkles. 

+ I am also participating in another giveaway, hosted by Organized Chaos

Hope everyone is having a great week!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Music // What I'm Listening To.

Maybe your head is not where your heart is
I'll sleep alone tonight
And if our bones can stand to be apart
Then I'll leave it your head and your heart
Then I'll leave it to

Your head and your heart
Your head and your heart
Your head and your heart

I walk along this road
But you're the one I love
I can't believe the thrill
I don't know what to feel

Saturday, November 16, 2013

For Bloggers // Auto-Sizing Photos.

Earlier this week, an amazing new website for bloggers was launched by one of my favorite bloggers, Dana from the Wonder Forest. If you haven't had the opportunity to visit her new website, I Can Build a Blog, you should! It's a fantastic resource for those wanting to learn more about building a blog.

Today, thanks to Dana's new website, I learned a VERY, VERY valuable trick about auto-sizing the photos in my blog posts...! I'm banging my head against the table for not realizing this much earlier in my blogging days because this trick is really quite simple and will make my life a lot easier down the road.

With my current blog layout, the width of my blog posts are approximately 650px. I personally like it when the width of my images align pretty closely to that of my post text. Up until today, when editing my photos in my photo editor, I would save them to have a width of 640px. 

I learned that if I decided to re-design my blog layout and increase the width of my blog posts to 700px, for example, and wanted to increase the size of my images, I would have a lot of work ahead of me. The issue? My images are all saved to a width 640px. To resize them, I would have to go into each individual post, plus they would look stretched because the original size of the image was only 640px.  

Because of this helpful post on I Can Build a Blog website, I am changing how I edit and save my blog post images...!

Going forward, all images that I save to my Web Picasa will have a width of 800px. Also, by ensuring the default size of my images is set to "original" in each blog post (this step is every important), and by adding a few lines of css to my blog's template, the width of every image in every blog post will automatically be set to 640px. If I decide to change that size to 650px in a week's time, all I have to do is edit the css and the width of all images are now 650px.! Easy peasy.

... and that is why I love css! It is infinitely editable, giving you the flexibility of changing the look of your blog (font, font color, background, etc) in mere seconds.

To learn how to properly auto-size your blog's photos, check out I Can Build a Blog website. If you aren't already doing this with your blog's images, I recommend you start, like yesterday!

Friday, November 15, 2013

6 Recipes to Try.

These days I am all about meal planning. I don't always stick to my plan, but its always a huge help to know there there is food in the house that can make a tasty meal, especially when I don't have the time or energy to run to the grocery store after work.

Today I discovered my new favorite recipes website (I have a lot of them!) - The Crepes of Wrath. I probably pinned over 100 recipes from their site this afternoon. I was honestly drooling the entire time.

I may not have time next week to make all these tasty dishes because I am working a lot, but I do hope to try at least two of them. I'm thinking the mexican rice because we are planning to have tacos one night, and rice with my tacos would be a tasty treat. The second recipe I will more than likely try is the smashed potatoes because, well, we just love potatoes! I could eat them every day for the rest of my life! So good! What are some of your favorite recipes that are on your upcoming meal plan?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

4 Simple Goals...Update #1!

At the end of October, I set 4 simple goals for myself. To be honest, I set some really simple goals for myself and I had thought maybe I would fly through them. Ha, ha, ha, in my dreams!

Where I stand as of today: 

1. Drink more water every day.

I have been drinking more water than normal, but I should be drinking a lot more. However, I have made it a point to only drink water before I got to bed, no soda pop. 

2. Practice my iphoneography.

I have been playing around a bit and have taken some pretty sweet photos lately (you can check them out on my instagram), but would like to spend some more time on this goal. I do have a great book sitting on my bedroom floor that I need to read. 

3. Try a new slow cooker meal.

Not yet, hopefully soon. We have whole chicken sitting in the freezer waiting to be cooked. I suspect we'll probably end up doing it in the slow cooker. What I would really like to try is a butter chicken recipe in the slow cooker!! Any suggestions?

4. Finish reading the The Happiness Project

So close, but still so far. I have managed to read through an entire chapter. One step at a time, right?! 

Anyways ... that's my progress so far. Hopefully my next update will be how I have finished reading my book and have made a delicious butter chicken dinner in the slow cooker! 

How are your goals coming along? 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Three Things.

01. We may have put our Christmas tree up last week...! This year, I decided I wanted a bigger tree, so we bought a new one because it was on sale.  No, its not decorated yet.. okay, maybe there are a few bobbles on it, but that's it. I wanted to test it and make sure all the lights all worked. Jolly Jingle quite likes hanging out in the tree too!

02. I just baked some more apple strudel muffins. I am addicted. They are seriously so amazingly delicious. I could eat 2 - 3 of them a day. For the most part, they are quite simple to make. The only annoying part is taking off the apple skin and shredding the apples into little bits. This time, I somehow convinced the boyfriend to shred the apples. Made the entire process go a lot quicker. 

03. I also decided to make a few more changes to my blog design. Again. It's never ending. The header is back to what I had the other month, and I made a few adjustments to the side bar. I really wish I would just make up my mind. I am also in the process of creating a new blog design for the lovely Deanne at Hot Mess Mama blog. 

Music // What I'm Listening To.

I was young so I forgot
Which was my place and which was not
Thought I had a good shot
I took it right in my eye

Look ahead, look behind
Take another, I don't mind
I, oh, I, oh

Follow the signs right back to you
Back to you, back to you
I know they wind right back to you
Back to you

Monday, November 11, 2013

Lest We Forget.

Today we remember and honor those who have dedicated their lives to military service for their country. The 21 gun salute echoed throughout the sky this morning and was followed by a flyover in honour of fallen soldiers. 

Both my grandpa (photo below) and grandma served their countries in World War II - he was a soldier and she was a nurse. Both were fortunate to survive the war. They passed away almost ten years ago and every year, on this day, November 11th, I always think about them. 

Sunday, November 10, 2013


It's been a long, but good week.! 

This week was my first week working at only one employer. Part of me misses having afternoon's off, but a bigger part of me is thrilled to have more than one day off each week.

Initially I was worried that maybe I made the wrong decision, but looking back on this past week, I am very happy with the decision I have made. I love my job and the people I work with. I also think that working where I am at, may open a few new doors down the road, and that is huge. 

Linking up with the Totally Awesome Blog Hop.

Friday, November 8, 2013

A Giveaway!

I am super excited to join up with some lovely ladies for a fun giveaway hosted by amazing Shana from Organized Chaos. Good luck!!
As Organized Chaos continues to grow, I continue to stretch my comfort zone. I write on more personal topics, reach out to more readers and bloggers alike, and now....Organized Chaos is proud to present the very first ever giveaway hosted by.....Organized Chaos! These lovely ladies stepped up to the picture and decided to join me in giving a "Sponsors Choice Giveaway" Each blogger decided what they wanted to throw into the pot. So, we've got a lot of ad space up for grabs and an Etsy gift card to The Paper Sonnet. Meet your wonderful sponsors:
Caravan Sonnet
Rebecca @ Caravan Sonnet
Life Unpublished
Chelsea @ life unpublished
The Albrechts Blog
Lauren @ The Albrechts Blog
Living La Vida Holoka
Jessica @ Living La Vida Holoka
Colorful Commotion
Stevie @ colorful commotion
Head over and check all these wonderful ladies out! Such a big thank you to each and everyone of you!
Okay...without further ado...the giveaway! a Rafflecopter giveaway

Lately in Photos. And Some Links.

+ I have been stopping by my parents house more often to visit this handsome guy. I really do miss seeing him every day. 

+ Did you check out the freebies I shared the other day from Creative Market? I am LOVING the 28 Photography Actions. I edited this above photo that my boyfriend's sister took of us with one of the actions.

+ Lately, I have started eating broccoli. WHAT?! If you recall, broccoli and I don't like each other. Things changed after I had the stomach flu, my stomach changed. Or maybe my mind changed. Either way, I started liking foods that I hated before. The boyfriend is thrilled because our dinner menu is growing!

+ The apple strudel muffins that I have been making have been such a hit that I am planning to change things up and make these banana crumb muffins. They look so delicious!

+ Last month I shared the health benefits of hot cocoa, today I finally found classic hot chocolate recipe that you can enjoy without having to sacrifice your clean eating plan.

+ 4 Simple Goals Wallpaper - a great reminder of the goals you are working on this month.

+ Must read: 39 Life Lessons I've Learned in 39 Years.

+ Loving this song from Twin Forks. Yes, another song from my new favorite tv show, Reign.

Happy Friday! Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

I am not perfect.

I am far from perfect.  

I will openly admit that there are a number of blogs that I enjoy reading where I often find myself feeling a little envious of the lives the bloggers behind these blogs live. Envious of the places they have traveled, the fabulous clothes they wear, and the perfect families they have. 

It's so easy to find yourself feeling envious and to start comparing yourself, your life and your blog to theirs. It's also very easy to get down on ourselves when our self esteem and confidence runs low. 

Yes, I know that comparing is never fair, and that the comparison trap can be very dangerous. With that said, I find it very interesting how blogs have the ability to portray this 'perfect life.' 

I am somewhat careful as to what parts of my life I choose to share and not share on my blog. For me, it's not that I have anything to hide; but as a blogger, sharing bits and pieces of my life on the internet, there are some things that you don't always want to put out there. I guess you could also say it's also a safety thing - once its out there, anyone can see it. 

I may not be perfect, I do not live a perfect life, and I have faults and weaknesses, but that's okay. Life is good and I am okay being imperfect. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight // Meet Audrey.

Popping by to feature one of my awesome sponsors for the past month! Everyone, meet Audrey from AUDREY.ISMS. Audrey's blog is a mix of her personal concerns, reviews, how-to's, travel and much more!

The more I read Audrey's blog, the more I learn how talented she is! She works from home as a full-time blogger, freelancer, project manager and mobile app builder. I honestly wish I had her discipline to work from home and to do all that she does! You can read more about her and why she blogs, here.

Here are a few of her favorite posts:

Don't forget to show her some social media love...!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Music // What I'm Listening To.

You turn, turn, turn, turning me on

Like a slow fire burn 

Know that it's wrong

Still I run, run, run, run right into you

Yeah, I run, run, run, run right into you

Linking up with Tuesday Tunes.

Monday, November 4, 2013

For Bloggers // Creative Market.

I know many of you have (hopefully) heard of Creative Market ... but in case you haven't, I wanted to share this amazing website with you, again! Not only can you purchase some pretty sweet design content from this site, but each week, they offer free goods, and who doesn't heart free downloads?! 

This week's freebies are pretty sweet! So sweet that I wanted to share them with you all so you can grab them before they are gone. 

You're welcome! ;) 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Elf on the Shelf.

Yes, I bought an Elf on the Shelf today. Yes, I am almost thirty years old. No, I do not have any children. And yes, I realize Elf on the Shelf is meant for children. Oh, and we have named him JJ, also known as Jolly Jingle. 

This is the first year that I will be in my own home for Christmas and I really want to step-up my holiday decorations (bigger christmas tree, a lot more decorations, and an elf on the shelf). Why Elf on the Shelf? Two reasons.

1. The boyfriend I are always playing little jokes, etc. on each other and I thought JJ might be kind of fun during the holidays. 

2. Last Christmas, I kept seeing all these really great instagram photos of Elf on the Shelf and I too wanted to take some. 

Anyways, that's all I got. The truth is, I'm really just a big kid at heart. 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

TV // My Latest Obsession.

I made the mistake of watching a new television show the other night. As you may recall, I already have too many shows that I am currently watching, but after watching the previews for this one, I had to see what it was all about. Reign - have you watched it yet? It's only three episodes in and I am hooked! This is not good because I already have too many shows (The Big Bang Theory, The Crazy Ones, Grey's Anatomy and Scandal) on a Thursday night to watch.

While the show kind of reminds me of Gossip Girl (it's a bit darker tho), it also kind of reminds me a little bit of  a Game of Thrones like show (but not quite). Regardless, I am obsessed! The show also has some really great songs! For starters, I absolutely love the show's theme song by The Lumineers.

Have you started watching this show? What do you think of it? 

Happy, happy weekend friends!! :)

Friday, November 1, 2013


+ Someday, I will keep a blog design longer than a month, or two. Speaking of which, what do you all think? A little more white, a little less black. I kinda like it! But knowing me, I will probably change it up again soon, sigh.

+ Someday, I will quit my job (or take a few months off) and travel around Europe and a few warm, tropical places. I have family in Wales that I would love to visit again, and Darcy's brother lives in London. I also would love to go Thailand, Bahamas, and a bunch of other warm places. I think it would be a fun/eye opening experience!

+ Someday, I will stop making excuses and exercise every day (or every other day). I really need get on this sooner than later. My posture is horrible, my back and neck always hurt. If it weren't for the chiropractor and message therapy, I would be a miserable person.

+ Someday, I will learn to be more patient. Its funny because some say I am very patient with a few people in my life (almost too patient), but when it comes to day-to-day stuff, I am far from patient.

+ Someday, I will figure out what the hell I want to do with my life and start doing it. The other day, my step-dad kept asking me where I saw myself in five-years - I couldn't answer his question because I honestly didn't know. Sooner than later, I know that I want to get married, start a family and start doing something (career wise) that I enjoy, am passionate about and that earns me a lot more money than I am currently making. I have never really been one to plan out my life, so its tough to say exactly where I see myself.

Linking up with Someday I will.