March 24, 2013

Sunday Fashion Post: Loving solids

I've decided that at the beginning of each week I will do a fashion post of my favorite outfit from the week before. This week, we went out to get mexican food with some good friends from church. Excuse to dress up? Maybe not. But I take full advantage of every time I feel up to thinking of a new way to arrange my wardrobe into an outfit I haven't worn before. 

Don't you just LOVE pairing old with new and coming up with different and interesting outfit? I do. Being a nurse has its downfalls. One, it's exhausting. Two, uniform must be worn at all times. Usually I think of that as a plus, because the last thing I want to do in the morning when I am tired is pick out an outfit. Lately, though, I've noticed that I barely get to wear the clothes I do have in my closet, however few they are. 

When it comes to buying items of clothing, I pretty much always go with solids. Here is a way to make them look good (or at least I think so!) The only thing I would change is maybe doing a printed flat (leopard, maybe?) or wedge. 

Also, if you notice my hair looking exceptionally nice in these pics, it is because I got a haircut! (well a trim, really)...


a little silliness to start off your week-slash-end your week-end! 


March 18, 2013

Passion tea lemonade {pinned it, did it}

While surfing on Pinterest when I should be doing other things (like ALWAYS), I found this "recipe" for light Iced Passion Tea Lemonade. If there's one tea I could drink every day, it would be this: Tazo Passion Tea. Love it. I first fell in love with it when I got an iced version at Starbucks, so when I saw a recipe combining that with lemonade, I couldn't resist! 

So here's the deal, I did it a little different than the original recipe tells you to do...

1. Boil 4 cups water 
2. Brew Passion Tea concentrate for 15-20 minutes, using 8 packets of tea to 4 cups of boiling water
3. Refrigerate tea concentrate for about 2 hours
4. Combine tea concentrate, ice, and light lemonade (I put one part tea to one part lemonade, but I would even like it better with more lemonade)
5. Add splenda or your favorite sweetener to taste (usually one packet per 24oz serving)

FYI this took about 20 takes to get a semi-decent picture (thanks Joseph for being a champ with this!)

Questions of the night:

-What is your favorite tea? 

-Iced or hot? 

To all you May-book-ians

My May book came in the mail today!!! Those of you who own a May book, or have owned several know exactly how I feel. If you have OCD tendencies like I do, you probably desperately want to feel the way I feel...drumroll please......

TAH DAH! This is probably the prettiest agenda book I have ever owned in my life, and boy do I love it! Since my sister and both of my sisters-in-law are getting married this year, I thought it would help me to organize my to-do's into a book I can carry with me wherever I go. The May book is the perfect size for that. It will even fit in my cross-body purse that is smaller than a piece of printer paper. The cover is canvas, so it is very durable, and the pages are literally stitched together, which makes it hard to tear open. 

I got the idea to buy a May book from my friend Cait over at Southern Curls & Pearls. Her post about her May book (which can be found HERE) inspired me to order my very own...

Here's a look inside my book!

It looks like, from Cait's post, that the 2013 May book is a little different from her 2012 version when it comes to the week-by-week pages, but I find it very easy to use and SO convenient.

My favorite part of buying this May book was saving 40% on it right away! The code I used is no longer active, but if you Google "may book coupon codes", you should find some sort of discount. With my 40% off coupon, my May book came to $18 including shipping. That is definitely cheaper than a Vera Bradley agenda book, which is what I used to buy. 

Question of the night:

-What agenda books have you used in the past, what has worked and what hasn't worked? 

- A 

Grocery night = taco salad night!

I feel like taco salad is something that almost EVERYONE loves. Whether you're a vegetarian or not, you can pretty much do taco salad any way. J and I love Mexican food, and Mexican and South American restaurants. So much so that we go to the same restaurant in Birmingham with some friends almost every single Thursday night to get some of that food! 

Since today was grocery and errands day, I saw some ground beef on sale at Wal-Mart and went for it! All i needed was tomato, avocado, and lettuce (which we would buy anyway) and I was ready. It doesn't hurt that it only takes about 5 minutes to cook the ground beef. 

The progression of pretty to ugly when it comes to taco salad fascinates me. It starts out as this beautiful creation, but if you really want to enjoy every bite, you have to mix it together into this ugly mess. It almost parallels life in that sense. Sometimes the ugly, messy parts of life are the most enjoyable (sometimes not while you're experiencing those parts, though). But it's the ugly mixed with the great and pretty that make life, 


Question of the Night: 

- Do you use a taco seasoning packet when you make taco salad, or make your own taco seasoning? 

- Do you have any good taco seasoning combos to share? 

Have a great Monday night everyone! 

- A

March 17, 2013


Busy life. For some reason that I can't say right now, things have been very busy lately. Well, other than 3 weddings coming up, my brother graduating from high school and my sister (who is getting married in June) graduating from college? Hehe. Anyway, here's to a productive Sunday afternoon and some neon running shoes!

March 11, 2013

Carpet Cleaning Review (Rug Doctor)

So last week was busy. My busy week at work ended with an all-nighter during the time change Saturday night. Not too much fun, I tell you! But for some more exciting news, I steam cleaned our carpets Saturday afternoon, and I wanted to document it so I could tell whether the carpet cleaner I rented made a difference. Here is my review. 


good view of the entire living room...not too bad from far away...

the entry-way gets worse as you get closer 

dexter's favorite spot to pee when he was a pup!

Good pic of the full entryway

This is over where Dexter's crate is. Also a favorite potty spot for him as a puppy.

Another shot of this same spot

So. What to do? I ended up renting a Rug Doctor from my local Publix for $24.99 for 24 hours. It was a pretty good deal. I also had to buy the actual carpet cleaning solution. I got a 48oz bottle of the Pet stain removal cleaner for $14.99

It was actually pretty easy to use. There was a set of picture directions on the machine itself, and I looked up some instructions on that were pretty self-explanatory. The only thing I didn't know from the instructions I looked up was the drying time. 

I knew I was going to have to go over the entry-way twice because of how dirty it was to begin with, so I did that piece first, then cleaned the rest of the living room floor, and then the area where Dexter's crate had been. I then opened the patio doors (good thing it felt FANTASTIC outside on Saturday!) and cranked the overhead fan up full blast and hung out in my bedroom for a few hours to let the carpet dry. 

All in all, one cleaning took about 3-4 hours to dry. Not too long. I then completed a second cleaning on both the entry-way and the trouble spot next to Dexter's crate. I ended up leaving the apartment to have dinner at a friend's house, then proceeded to get called into work for an all-night surgery. The next morning when I got home from work, the carpets looked GREAT! Here are the after photos I got (one set before I put the furniture back, and one set with furniture in it's place). 



still a little trouble spot left where the crate goes


Pretty great, huh? I thought it was awesome for about $40.00 total (rug doctor and cleaning solution). Here is a side-by-side of before and after...

Until next time...

- A

March 5, 2013

White Chocolate Snickerdoodles...mmm

Today I am feeling like eating all of the desserts. This recipe has become my go-to when I have to make something quick to take to an event or a friend's house. I got the base of this recipe by googling, but I kind of made the rest up as I went, and everyone LOVES it! I took some of these to a friend's house a few weeks ago and the whole bag was gone in about 15 minutes. That either says something about my friends, or that these cookies are dang good! 


3/4 cup brown sugar 
1/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda 
1/2 tsp salt 
1 package vanilla pudding mix, dry 
1 12oz bag white chocolate chips 
1 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup cinnamon-sugar mixture in small bowl (Just a few spoonfuls of sugar and a few shakes of cinnamon until it's like you like it!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In one large bowl, cream butter and sugars with electric mixer. Once mixed well, add one egg at a time, then vanilla. In a medium bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, soda, salt, cinnamon, pudding mix). Gradually mix dry ingredients into wet until thoroughly combined. Fold in white chocolate chips. 

Spoon out tablespoon-fuls and roll in cinnamon sugar mixture, then place on greased cookie sheet (I use a Silpat). Bake at 350 for 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Makes about 36 2-inch cookies. Enjoy:)

Seriously, try not to eat them all in one sitting, SO addicting! 


March 2, 2013

Chevron Obsession

There are a couple projects around the apartment that I have neglected to share, and pretty much all of them involve chevron pattern. It's ridiculous. I cannot get enough of this stuff! As you can see by my blog background, it is my favorite thing right now, and I don't care who knows it!

My first project involves showing off our college diplomas in the newly organized office (You can see the progress here, here and finally, here). Joseph finally got his diploma the last time we visited his parents' house, and I have had mine since graduation almost 2 years ago (time flies!). I found some clear glass display frames from Hobby Lobby (for half-off, of course). 

The first thing I did was search for free printables to use as background for the frames. After doing a simple google search, I found an amazing blog called Mel Stampz (you can visit her blog here). She has many free printables in many patterns that you can download anytime you want. The paper I chose was a simple chevron pattern (link to the paper I downloaded is here). I printed the pomegranate color for myself (really crimson, ROLL TIDE!) and the coffee and cream color for J. 

Next, I had to be a little creative, because my printer only takes regular 8.5x11 inch paper and the frames were 12x16 inches. Basically, I printed 2 pages of each type of paper, then glued them to the back of the frame to cover as much of the background as possible. I don't have step-by-step pictures, but I think it's simple enough. So here's some before and after pics for you...

Before (with my diploma hanging boringly by itself) -- SO lonely :(

Close-up of Joseph's Diploma (as you can see, I couldn't cover the whole background, but it looks pretty good, I think!)

Close-up of mine!

After - - SO much better looking! 

There are a few other projects I did with some chevron influences, and I got the free printables for them from fotoblossom HERE. And here are my pictures! 

Giraffe print my sister gave me for my birthday last year 
with grey and white chevron background and a thrifted frame. 
Goes above my bedside table (LOVE GIRAFFES!).

Here's the whole picture above my bedside table, cute huh? 

Colorful chevron print with one of our wedding 
picture and a thrifted picture frame. 

Hopefully you will not judge me for using too much chevron, and I hope you will use these free printable rather than buying paper! 

- A

Lazy Saturday

Top:kohls//Tank:TJMAXX//Jeans:Plato's Closet//Boots:Belk sale

Apologies for the terrible picture quality, especially since it is my first fashion post, but I just had to share this great find from Plato's Closet. Though you can't see them very well, I got these Citizen's of Humanity jeans for $20! Not to mention the ankle boots from Belk for $30. 

In other news, today is one of the laziest Saturdays I've had in awhile. Even though it took me two hours to get our coffee maker to work this morning, I am FINALLY drinking some coffee! So while today is devoted to laundry and coffee and watching Netflix on the couch, I hope all of you have more productive days today...

- A