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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

DIY Elbow Patches

By: Danie

So I have said this before and I will say it again its so hard to find cute baby boy clothes! Little touches can make a big difference on a plain ol' onesie, a bow tie, felt cut outs or elbow patches?? Yes, elbow patches! Who would have thought these elbow patches would be so much fun?

This is a really easy DIY that I just threw together. I wanted to sew the patches on with embroidery thread {thicker than normal thread} but I just didnt have the time to do it. However if you are going to tackle this, I think that would be a nice finishing touch.

  • Long Sleeve Onesie {I dyed mine, FYI- the Tulip brand at walmart is great I don't like Rit brand}
  • Fabric
  • Fabric Tac
  • Scissors
  • Backing {I used felt but you can use interfacing}
  • Cardboard is optional if you want to make a pattern
First you will need to cut out an oval pattern, if you want to go that route. To make the fabric easier to cut and sturdier you will need to fabric tac it to the felt. From there trace two of the patterns on the felt side and cut out. Finally you will fabric tac the ovals to the shirt, remember you want to do this on the back side of the sleeves where his or her elbows will be. Just a little tip, get the fabric tac right on the edge but not on the fabric- its unforgiving if you get it on fabric that will show.

Cutest little dude or dudette that you ever did see. I may pair Mikey's with some home made suspenders and courderoys.

"I love when momma dresses me up!"

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tuesday Shoesday - Gray Suede Boots

by: Ashley

Morning lovelies!!!

We're baaaaack! So sorry for the absence of posting yesterday.  We were slacking a bit after loading up on some amazing food last week.  But we're back today and the focus is on my must have boot for the winter season: the Gray Suede boot.  And to help you guys with your budget.... these pieces are TOTALLY AFFORDABLE!

Outfit created with the help of Polyvore! You can check out this set by clicking here.

Happy Tuesday Shoesday!!! 

(Oh and those Miss Me jeggings are called Ashley... that might have influenced me a little in including them in today's outfit)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Friday Fitness - My Wedding Fitness Goals

by: Ashley

Happy “Day-After-Turkey-Day”

Are you guys laying around miserable after stuffing your faces full of turkey, potatoes, rolls, and delicious desserts? Or are you out burning the calories with some fierce Black Friday shopping?

Yesterday, I ran in a Turkey Trot 5K. It was about 45 degrees and I had to get up at 6 AM but I loved every minute of it. What better way to start a day that is usually just for eating than by getting your butt in high gear?

So today I wanted to bring the blog back to our normal Friday Fitness. Next month will be focused on Christmas here on the blog so we might not do another Fitness post until January :(

But today I want to talk about fitness from a Bride-to-Be perspective. It seems like everyone assumes that a Bride-to-be wants to lose weight before her wedding. I don’t think this is true for every bride. I admit that I want to lose 10-15 pounds, but it’s the same 10-15 pounds that I wanted to lose before I was engaged. Now I just have a deadline to my goal.

So to make myself accountable, I’m going to put it ALL out there for you guys.

Current Weight: 144
Goal Weight: 130

Current Hip Measurement: 41 inches
Goal Hip Measurement: 36 inches

Current Waist Measurement: 27 inches
Goal Waist Measurement: 25 inches

Ok, the hardest goal to meet will be the hips (seriously – I want to lose 5 inches!!!) but the dress I picked is REALLY form fitting and that makes me a little nervous. I feel beautiful in it, but I want everyone else to see me that way too!

So I have just over 6 months to reach these goals. And this month will be a struggle since I’m surrounded by sweets during the Holidays. But with support from friends and family and most importantly my fiancĂ©, I’m confident that I can do it. I’m going to work hard so that in January on my 5 month mark I can report back results to you guys and hopefully have some tips on what worked for me and what didn’t.

And for any fitness and nutrition gurus out there – give me some tips that will help me lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

My Dapper Little Darling

By: Danie

With it being the holidays I decided to get crafty and make something for everyone. It seemed like a piece of cake when I was searching on pinterest for some ideas {everything looks so easy on pinterest though}. Being a beginner sewer I also had the tiny obstacle of learning how to sew... who better to be my model than little baby Mikey :) Well before my little peanut was born I realized all the cute stuff was for girls and that is a bummer, occasionally I will see something awesome for a little boy but really your choices are limited {especially if you are working with a budget}. This worked out ok for me because I needed to practice my sewing skills and I really wanted to make some cute outfits for the little dude.

My first project was the bow tie- something simple and cute. It was boarderline excessive the way I scoured the internet for an awesome bow tie BUT I found it! The tutorial I found is from Shwin & Shwin, two amazing sisters that are sewing geniuses. So amazing that I follow them by email... I can count on one finger how many blogs I follow by email. Without further ado, my dapper son......

This was such an easy and quick way to make a great outfit and it would be a fabulous one of a kind gift for a baby shower. I used items that I had on hand, old shirt, felt and plain onesie. The brown is the felt, I thought that the stiff fabric would hold up a little better.

A few tips if you are going to attempt this- multiple layers of felt gets hard to sew so keep that in mind and I also suggest hot glueing the bowtie to a bar pin this will give you the freedom to put it on different onesies {babies grow like weeeds} and not have to throw it in the washer.

Keep an eye out for some more awesome baby boy outfits!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Turkey Day Threads

By: Danie

The day of giving thanks is upon us and some are worrying about what to cook and others what to wear. Well I am making that delish pumpkin cheesecake concoction that Ashley posted about on Monday! So really I am just concerned about what fabulous stretchy outfit I am going to wear on Thursday. I needed something that was going to be somewhat warm {it's brrrrrry cold here, in the 50s right now- please dont judge I grew up in beautiful WARM Jamiaca}. I also needed something that was going to take me from dinner to shopping! This will be my first year out in the middle of the night shopping!?! No I didn't hit my little head on the pavement..... or did I? My love has kindly agreed to head out with me to buy a few electronics that I have been holding off on all year and we get to enjoy each others company.

Turkey Day Threads

Those Jessica Simpson boots totally inspired me, they are so trendy and affordable. They caught my eye this weekend at the mall and they have been on my mind ever since. Can you tell I'm in love??

Have an amazing Tuesday Shoesday!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving Treats

Happy Thanksgiving Week!! I know some of you all are probably taking the whole week off to relax with family and friends {and then there are others of us who have to work} but either way its a time to be thankful for what we have.  So to help you make the most of the week, here are two delectable desert ideas!!
I found this recipe last year on the All Recipes site, but here are my suggestions for a few modifications:
I love dark chocolate so I use the Hershey's dark chocolate cocoa powder.  Also, I make more crust than the recipe calls for - I use two of the sleeves of graham crackers from the box and 1/2 cup each of sugar and cocoa powder.  And I end up needing about two sticks of butter to moisten the crust enough to stick to the pan.  
This was a HUGE hit last year, and mom specifically asked me to make it again this year!

This next recipe I have not tried yet - but it looks so freakin' amazing!! My mouth is watering looking at the pictures!
Picture from Our Best Bites blog posting
You can find the directions over at the Our Best Bites blog but just check out the ingredients!!! How can you go wrong with toffee and cheesecake??
2 cups cinnamon graham crackers
1 stick butter
 2 8-oz packages cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
5 eggs
1 bag toffee bits
1 15-oz can pumpkin
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie seasoning
1/8 teaspoon salt
whipped cream for topping

My family and I are celebrating Thanksgiving today actually - so that means I don't have to wait too long to sink my teeth into that delicious chocolate chip cheesecake!!! :) 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Always Say I Love You

by Ashley

Today's post was supposed to be a fitness post, but my heart is off somewhere else and I need to talk about it.  A close friend of mine received a call today that we all dread.  The call was from her mom, her dad is in the hospital with serious injuries.  Hearing this brought back so many memories.  I was the one receiving this call over two years ago at 4:30 in the morning.  Anytime someone calls that time in the morning it's not going to be good news.  I'm sorry I couldn't bring you a happier post today but this is important to me to say.

Please don't ever put off or procrastinate spending time with family.  The year my dad passed away we took family photos, which we hadn't done since I was in high school.  Those are now photos that we treasure.  My family also took a vacation to the Ozarks, which I missed out on due to my work schedule.  I should have tried harder to make it.  That's a memory they cherish of dad that I will never have.  The week before he passed away, I went to Miami with him. It was just a father-daughter trip and looking back I would have hated myself if I missed out on that too.  So don't make excuses about why you can't hang out with family.  There are some memories you can never get back. 
From "Be Happy, Love Life"

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't miss my dad.  And it gets harder thinking about all the things he won't be here for. Like watching my little brother graduate and walk the stage.  Or giving me away at my wedding.  Or meeting all of his future grand-babies. 
  From "Dates to Diapers"

All I want is to see my dad again just to let him know how much I love him, and I hope that as he looks down on me from Heaven he is proud of the woman I have become. 

So, please don't hesitate to tell your parents, siblings, or friends how much you love them and cherish each memory that comes along. 

And please keep your thoughts and prayers with my friend and her dad.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hunt for the Perfect Coat

By: Danie

While hunting for the perfect coat, I decided the first place to start was a budget. You realize quite quickly that coats get EX.PEN.SIVE. no joke. Not sure about the rest of you but this gal has got growing boys to feed! Its so hard to give yourself a spending cap for something that you need and needs to be good quality {especially when you really only purchase coats once in a blue moon, literally}. My budget to some might be exuberant but really this will be my coat for the next 5-10 years so $200 is my number. Here is the list of what I was looking for:

1. Trendy
2. Well made- i.e. lining, heavy fabric, well stitched seams
3. Vibrant color {I have only really had a black coat, can you blame me?}
4. Flattering Fit { I'm a tad bit top heavy..... BAHHH HAHA, ok I'm REALLY top heavy}

I am going to let you guys in on a secret, shopping for a coat in November/December is the worst time because its all picked over and to top it off everything is soo over priced. Best time to shop for coats is the end of the season, yes it is picked over but guess what you will pay a fraction of the price and wont find your $200 coat for $50 at Ross or TJ Maxx.

What's wrong with all the coats out there! 

I felt so unsatisfied in my somewhat fruitless search. It came down to the four contenders above. Not sure what a great buy a cape is- I would purchase one on sale but not sure if it is a good fit for a cold climate?? Feel free to fill us in on the effectiveness of a cape style coat.

Pretty sure that me reading a book about the Scottish Highlands had something to do with the tartan-esque cape and maybe even the petticoat looking Steve Madden coat. Really the best option, I felt was the Jessica Simpson coat... it doesn't look like much in the photo but it has a great berry color and the slight V is great for my top.

Have you been coat shopping? Give us the low down!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

DIY Holiday Wreaths

Thanksgiving is in a week, Christmas is right around the corner and my front door looks so bare and sad..  We took a little time out this weekend to make a wreath to jazz up that door! With all the home made wreaths and easy wreath how tos on Pinterest it just seemed like a must do this year. Enjoy our little tutorials!

Winter Wonderland Wreath

First you will need to gather supplies- wreath, yarn, fabric tac, glue gun, felt, cardboard
{A few little tips I got my wreath from the goodwill for $2 and we used a cereal box for the cardboard}

Unfortunately, this part takes the most time- it took me an hour and a half {my wreath is pretty large though}. Also if you want your wreath to be thicker you have to wrap a lot more or put batting around it.

For the flower I chose to do something a little more intricate because I only wanted to do a couple flowers. You can find the instructional here. Really it wasn't that hard once I got the hang of it and the end result is really worth it, for a more finished look I used buttons in the middle of my flowers.

Blue Dahlia Wreath
{Of course I didn't have any way to put it up on the door but I'll figure that out later}

Fantastically Fall Wreath
Here's another variation on a wreath.  Supplies are similar: 1 pound of yarn, 5 sheets of Felt (the pre-cut sheets at the craft store), Hot Glue Gun and Glue Sticks, and a Straw Wreath with the Plastic Wrap still in tact.
1. It helped to roll the yarn into a ball. This adds extra time but made it easier to wrap the wreath. Wrapping the wreath took HOURS but it was worth it. There's a learning curve to figuring out the most comfortable way to hold it. You want the yarn to be very tight and to not show any gaps.

2. After the wreath is wrapped, you can create the flowers. They only took me about an hour. I cut 14 (4 inch) red circles and 10 (4 inch) orange circles. I cut 3 (2 inch) brown circles (these were the base of the flower). I used an OLFA tool to cut the felt (made it so easy!).

3. To make the petals, fold the circle in half and then in threes to create an "S" shape. Hold glue the insides of the petals together at the corner.

4. Glue the petals down onto the brown base.

5. Glue the base of the flower onto the wreath. And that's it! I took me about 3 days (not continuously working) to complete this.

I love that how the looks of the wreath changes with either the type of flower you create or the colors you use.  I think this would be great for any holiday and not just the winter holidays - just think of the AWESOMENESS you could create for Easter or 4th of July.

If you want more detail on the flowers, I found The Fickle Pickle blog had a very helpful tutorial.  Instead of the button in the middle though, I just added two petals of the opposite color.  I hot glued the points of the flowers together to give them that round shape. I'm thinking of adding more flowers all the way around the edge or some type of embellishment around them to make them really stand out.  

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Oh Tuesday Shoesday, How I've Missed You!

By: Danie

Happy Tuesday!
Really I mean, happy one day closer to Friday ;)

Holiday parties are right around the corner! I know my company's party is actually in less than a month and usually I wait until the last minute to get my outfit together. So I took the liberty of making this tuesday shoesday a think tank for my holiday outfit. Initially I was thinking a great pair of boots with some leggings but I saw these shoes at Guess {P.S. they are actually on sale for $49.95} and felt so inspired.

Olive Green Goodness

I love everything about this outfit, although it would not be ideal if it were extremely cold out but you can tweek to your climate. Metallics are a great option for making your outfit pop and those peacock earrings don't hurt either! Sometimes we just grab the go to LBD {little black dress} but it's extremely refreshing to step out in something different.
Give your LBD a break and spice it up this year!
 {I will be taking my advice this year and rockin some color}

What's Peacocking??
{I'm a hugh Parks and Rec fan..really I have been dying for an excuse to post this clip}

Zip jacket
$105 -

$110 -

Oasis envelope clutch bag
$36 -

Peacock feather jewelry
$5 -

Mood jewelry
£16 -

Monday, November 14, 2011

Healthy Living

by: Ashley

Since we started this blog, this is the first time I've taken the lead on the "Healthy Living" post and I am nervous because I'm not really sure what to write.  I'm not exactly obsessed with "organic" or "natural" but over the past few months I've taken baby steps.  I try not to eat out as often (left overs make AWESOME lunches) and I read the ingredients in my processed foods to try to find the ones with stuff I can actually pronounce.  Maybe this blog can help me journalize my path towards healthy living - so let's start from with the basics.
I'm pretty good on the exercise, I hit the gym, run, or cycle at least three times a week.  Depending on my goals at the time, I may exercise more vigorously than other times, but with my wedding coming up in 7 months, I will definitely be hitting that gym more frequently (but that is for a whole other post!).

The "Eating Better" could use some work.  I stumbled upon a pretty awesome blog that I want to incorporate into my diet. It's called "Oh She Glows" and it's a vegan recipe blog.  I was really surprised that a lot of the vegan recipes actually appealed to my taste buds. Like this one below:

Now those of you who know me, know that I'm not giving up meat. But it won't hurt to throw in some new dishes or side dishes that have a healthy kick to them.

The last two items work together and also feed off of working out and eating right.  When I have a really good week in the gym, I feel like a rockstar at work and socially.

With the holidays coming up - it's probably a great time to think about eating healthy and ramping up the workouts. Why wait until the New Year's? While everyone else is just getting started on January 1 I'll already be rokin' a hot body in 2012 :)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Running on Love

by: Ashley

Woo Hoo - It's MARATHON weekend!!! My friends in San Antonio are carb loading and resting those legs to get ready for Sunday's 13.1 or 26.2 mile run! (Rock 'n Roll San Antonio) When I was brainstorming about what I could write the Friday before the marathon, I thought about providing inspirational words, or ideas about what to eat the days before, or my own experiences training for and running the half marathon.

But something totally amazing happened and I have to share! So I'm going to turn the pages a little bit and talk to you about my one of my best friends.  We met freshman year of college.  When I met her, she was in a lot of pain - her mom died from breast cancer just a few years prior.  Losing a parent hurts, no matter what age you are. It makes you question things. It makes you angry. It makes you sad. You feel incomplete like there is literally a hole in your heart.  The pain was still fresh in her.  The pain doesn't go away, and I won't even say than it lessens, but those sharp edges become a little more dull, and the pain becomes something you can live with.  And the one thing that helps the most is having a strong circle of friends and family to lean on, to talk and cry with, and most of all to give you something to smile and laugh about.

My friend met her now husband in college as well and they started dating sophomore year.  As with any couple, they've had their ups and downs.  But no one would doubt their love for a second.  Part of their struggle in the beginning of their relationship was a result of the pain and hurt that my friend was still dealing with concerning the loss of her mom.  She had walls put up all around her and he was trying his best to get behind them.  And it wasn't always the easiest task, but in the end love won, and they ended up together.  I said it at their wedding and I'll say it again, they are the true example that when something is meant to happen, it will.  But I digress - I just wanted you to understand the beautiful relationship and why I was so touched by what my friend's hubby did for her. 

He never knew her mom. But he knows that she must have been an amazing woman because he can see it in his wife.  So he surprised his wife with something so touching that I got goosebumps and started tearing up when she told me. This Sunday when he runs the 1/2 marathon he will be running in honor of his wife's mom.  And not only will he be doing this in spirit, but he made a custom bib. I didn't even know that  you could do this!  And I just couldn't get over how sweet of a husband he is! So of course I had to get the information so I could share it with you guys.  The website is :

HonorBibs are customized back bibs made out of Tyvek® or seed paper to honor those you love and make a difference in this world. At least 10% of each HonorBib sold is donated to charity.

Each HonorBib only costs $10 - and better yet, at least 10% of the proceeds go to charity! I am so excited about this.

HonorBibs can be keepsakes in a frame or scrapbook, pinned to the back of a shirt, worn on a race belt, taped to a mirror for inspiration and planted in the ground to grow wildflowers*.

I lost my dad about two years ago, and being able to make a keepsake bib makes me want to run another half marathon... or maybe even a full. Because running for the man that made me who I am today would certainly help me get through 26.2 miles of pain!

If you are looking for inspiration to run a marathon check out HonorBib - what better reason to test your strength over 26 miles then to do for love and in memory of someone that meant something to you, someone who you wish could be there to see you cross the finish line. 

P.S. Happy Veterans Day!! My life has been touched by many who risk their lives to give us our freedom. My thoughts and prayers are with you all!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Miss Me Jeans make me Miss My Money

by: Ashley

Ok - I know the title is... cheesy (to say the least).  But just bear with me as I take you through my mindset. I have never spent more than $40 on a pair of jeans. Except the time that I bought NY and Company jeans for $60 but they were buy one get one... so in my mind I was spending only $30 per pair.  It's not that I don't value jeans. I actually really love jeans. But I shop relatively often, which means I will be homeless if I don't find ways to stretch my money.

Well we all know the golden rule when shopping: DON'T EVER TRY ON SOMETHING YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO PURCHASE.

If you don't want to spend money, don't try it on. Because I guarantee you, that when you put on that item it will be the most GLAMOROUS / FANTASTIC / ROCK-YOUR-WORLD piece of apparel you have ever slipped on.

So here it is. I had been complaining for months that I don't like any of my jeans.  They make my hips look wide, or they give me a muffin top, or they make my butt look flat.  I knew I needed jeans, but figured I hate trying them on when they never seem to fit right.  But there I was at the department store when I saw these:

Source: via Ashley on Pinterest

Aren't they GA-GA-Gorgeous!? I didn't want to try them on (due to the price), but I was desperately in need for jeans.  So I did... and the rest is history.... I fell in love with they way they cup the curves (in a good way).

Do I regret it? NOT AT ALL.  $120 is worth a pair of jeans that you can feel comfortable and confident in.

What apparel items do you guys invest in? I think the only other items I've spent over $100 on are winter coats and suede boots...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

T-Shirt Mania

by Ashley

Happy Wednesday lovelies! Today I have a quick and easy tip to share with you about refashioning t-shirts.  Earlier this year when the DALLAS MAVERICKS won the championship, I was lucky enough to get to attend a couple of the playoff games.  During those games, they gave away playoff t-shirts to everyone in attendance! Awesome right...well...that t-shirt was an X-Large. But no problem because with a pair of scissors and some creativity you can turn any t-shirt into a FASHION statement.

I turned the Mavericks t-shirt into a halter.  I cut down the neck to give it a slight v-neck.  I cut the sleeves completely off, and I cut out the back of the shirt a little more than half way.  How deep you cut everything is completely up to you and depends on how much skin you are willing to show.
Then I cut a slit down the middle of the back.  And cut 2 inch strips to tie the shirt back together (to make it fit the waist).

Sorry I don't have more pictures. I made this shirt before we started the blog! But let me know if you have any questions.   And it looks a little scandalous but you can always wear a bandeau top underneath to minimize the visible skin.

Here's one more that's really quick and simple. Take a t-shirt that is slightly big on you (not XLarge big), I bought a men's medium.  Cut around the collar about 2 to 3 inches creating a large scoop neck.  And that's it.  Start small and trim the cut more as you go so you don't do too much.

See how the shirt falls off the shoulder? I was wearing an orange tank top underneath, and I knotted the bottom of the shirt in the back to make it tight around the waist.  Oh...and I decided I should introduce you all to my fiance :) Isn't he adorable?!?

I have LOTS more ideas for shirts and I can't wait to try them! I'll definitely take more instructive photos on the next set of shirts.

And - in case you're wondering - those gorgeous earrings are $3.80 from Forever 21.

Let me know if you guys have any other tricks for making a large t-shirt fit or refashioning it into something trendy.

Hope you have a gorgeous Wednesday!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Wedgetastic Tuesday Shoesday

By: Danie

Happy Tuesday!
Especially happy because I get to tell you why I luuuurve wedges.

There is something nice about a shoe that is amazingly versatile. You can dress them up or down, whether you're a stay at home mom or a working girl wedges afford you comfort and style. Before I was a mom they were always my go to. After you become a mom feeling polished doesn't come as easily as it had in the past, so having that one "thing" that you can throw on so that you feel and look like you are fashion fierce just makes you feel good!

Wedgetastic II

These plum wedges by Steve Madden are even better in person, the plum color is vibrant and different. Sometimes I get stuck in that revolving door of black and brown shoes... not even realizing that I am "blanding" myself to death! Black will always be classic dont get me wrong but having a shoe that is functional and pops is nice every now and then too. :)

Sam Edelman

More wedges to feast your eyes on..

Steve Madden

Naughty Monkey