Thursday, June 30, 2022

Air Fryer Lemony Roasted Carrots

 Hello there friends! It's been awhile since I've added a recipe to the blog, and I figured I needed to get back into it. It's not like I've stopped cooking-- I've just stopped taking pictures of the food. Time to remedy that. 😉 Today I am getting back into the swing of things with a recipe the kids loved so much they asked me to make it again the following night. You'll see no complaints from me! 

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

What's Up Wednesday

 Well hello there! I am sad to see that June has come to a close. I love summer and it seems to be flying by-- time needs to slow down! Anyway, here's a look at what we've been up to:

What We're Eating This Week: Are ya'll familiar with Half Baked Harvest? I kept hearing about Teighan over and over from several people and then my sister brought her cookbook to the beach. After looking through every single recipe in her book-- I am obsessed! This week we are having her Charred Peppers with Marinated Feta and Tzatziki and her Chicken Fajita Tortilla Bowls (sans the chicken):
Doesn't that look delicious? The girl certainly knows how to take pictures of food!
What I'm Reminiscing About: The kids keep mentioning Disney World lately and it is bringing back memories from our trip there last December. 
We typically go every other year, but now I am trying to convince Devin we should go for just 1-2 days when we visit his grandmother over the holidays. My logic is: grandma lives in Florida, Disney is in Florida--- it makes sense, right? 😉
What I'm Loving: Did you read my post on our goal to spend 1,000 hours outside? We have been actively making it a goal to get outside as much as possible and it has been wonderful. I am amazed (but not surprised) how just a little bit of time outside can make such a big impact in several areas. One of the kids is in a bit of a funk? Lets bike down to the creek and go skip rocks. I'm feeling a little tired/sluggish? Get outside and get some sunshine. 
Our time outside has made for overall happier and healthier family, and I am LOVING it! I'll update you at the bottom of this post about how many hours we have clocked so far.
What We've Been Up To: We spent the first two weeks of June in Hilton Head, SC. After that we have been spending our mornings at camp (or playing outside), and then our afternoons at the pool. Most of the time I will pack our dinner in a cooler and we will swim until dinner time, eat at the pool, and then head home. 

One day at the pool I saw a mom pull her beach cart out of the back of her car, with all her pool stuff in it, and bring it into the pool with her. I thought that was the most genius thing I'd seen in a long time. Why do we reserve those beach carts just for the beach?? When we go to the pool I have to bring at least 3 bags (our cooler, the bag with the towels, the bag with the sunscreen/toys/swim diapers/etc.) and it is a lot to carry!! Now I just load everything into our cart and it has made my life so much easier. This was our cart yesterday on our way to the pool:
Look at all that stuff I used to be carrying in! There is one extra bag in there since we were coming from a playdate in our dry clothes, I had to pack our swimsuits. But the rest of that is all stuff we normally bring. MUCH easier with the cart! 

We got our cart at Costco a couple years ago, but this one on Amazon looks similar. If you are sick of carrying what feels like a hundred bags to the pool, I suggest bringing the cart.

What I'm Working On: My teaching license was up for renewal this year and while normally that is not a problem, since I haven't been working full time for a district anymore I was on my own to find professional development... which means I totally forgot about it and then had to find some at the 11th hour. But I did it, they're done, and my license application has been submitted for renewal. 😅 
What I'm Excited About: My two best friends and I are planning a girls weekend getaway to the mountains this fall. Our plan is to get massages and pedicures at a nearby spa, maybe go for a hike or two, eat some delicious food and catch up on sleep. It sounds like a dream! The picture above is the sunrise view from one of my favorite hiking spots in Blowing Rock, NC.

What I'm Watching/Reading: Well, since I was taking 3 online classes at lightning speed over the past 2 months, my reading for pleasure fell by the wayside. That being said I was able to squeeze in a couple books, one of them being Malibu Rising, which I loved! 
I tried to check this out at the library last summer and the waitlist was 100+ long. This summer when I went to check it out I was the only person waiting. 
As for watching, we recently watched Operation Mincemeat and Munich: The Edge of War on Netflix and both were fantastic. 
We've also started watching Keep Sweet Pray and Obey and it is both fascinating and hard to watch.

What I'm Listening To: We are on a bit of a Beach Boys kick, but otherwise its all country music!

What I'm Wearing: Oh this is fun! One of my best friends and I have started playing tennis together and while we definitely have room for growth in the tennis skills area, we are having fun getting our tennis outfits together haha!
I have a few Lulu running skirts I've been wearing, then this top (mine is old, but this is similar) and a visor
I've also been wearing this romper on repeat.

I shared both of these outfits a few weeks ago, but I've been wearing them a lot lately too:

shorts (mine are old but these are similar)/shirt
I wore this purple dress to dinner with friends a couple weeks ago and it got quite a lot of compliments! Apparently this dress plus a good fake tan just scream summer.

What I'm Doing This Weekend: We are celebrating a friend's birthday, celebrating the 4th with friends, and then I am hoping our Saturday looks a lot like this:
We are hoping to spend the day at our favorite place, the US National Whitewater Center.

What I'm Looking Forward to Next Month: Continuing to enjoy some more of our summer. 😊

1,000 Hours Outside Count: As I type this we are at 125 hours and counting! We didn't quite get as many hours in as I thought we would at the beach due to several afternoons with thunderstorms, but overall we did pretty well. Like I said, it is very eye opening how just a little bit of time in the sunshine can seem to make most things better. I know you all already know it, but nature really is so good for the soul. If you're interested but 1,000 hours seems too daunting of a task, maybe try setting a smaller goal? 50 a month? 500 a year? You might be surprised by how much you start to crave the outdoors after being cooped up for even just a few hours. 

Today I am linking up with Sheaffer and Shay for What's Up Wednesday. I'll see you back here tomorrow for a tasty and healthy surprise!

Monday, June 27, 2022

A 4th of July Charcuterie/Smorgasbord

Hello there my friends! I hope that you all had a nice weekend. Dev was out of town so the kids and I held down the fort. In the interest of keeping it "fun" with Dev being gone (and also me getting a break!), we had a 4th of July themed charcuterie board for dinner one night, while picnic-ing on the rug in front of the TV. This isn't something we normally do, so the kids were all about it! Here's a look at our board before it got demolished:
Friday, June 24, 2022

Friday Favorites

Hello hello friends and happy Friday! The last Friday in June, can you believe it? The summer is already flying by. We have been soaking up the sun this month and it has been wonderful. Here's a look at some of our recent favorites:

Monday, June 20, 2022

Summer Morning Routine

 Hello friends and happy Monday! We got home from the beach yesterday and the whole car ride home I was itching to get back into my regular routine and the swing of normal life. Our vacation was wonderful, but I think my body is ready to get back to a normal sleep schedule, healthy eating habits, and feeling productive again. 

These are my latest tips and tricks for starting the day feeling healthy, positive, and ready to conquer whatever the day brings. By no means am I suggesting I have all the answers and this is the "right" way to do a morning routine. My hope is that by sharing what works for our family, maybe you might see an idea or two that could help your morning routine go a little more smoothly too.

Each day is a little different, but here's a glimpse into what my typical morning routine looks like:

Friday, June 17, 2022

A Day in the Life of Us-- At the Beach!

 Good morning and happy Friday! We are in our final days of our beach trip and it is bittersweet. We are having so much fun here together, but at the same time, I know we have things we need to get back home to as well. Two weeks is a long time to be away! Today I am sharing "A Day in the Life of Us at the Beach", so settle in, grab your coffee, and come spend the day with us in Hilton Head, SC. 😉 We are here with my parents and my younger sister, but they claimed they were "sweaty and gross in those pictures, don't post us". So just so you know, the gang was all here.. but it was hot as heck and they didn't want sweaty pictures on the internet. I can't say I blame them. 😊

Monday, June 13, 2022

NJAM Dream Travel Locations

Good morning everyone and happy Monday! Today the Not Just a Mom ladies are sharing our dream travel locations, and this is a post that brought me a LOT of joy to write. I LOVE daydreaming about future vacations, whether I think they'll really end up happening or not. 

This is no surprise of course, but I love to travel. I love experiencing new cultures, learning how people in another country do something different from us as Americans, tasting new foods, seeing the natural beauty, etc. Honestly the list of places I want to go could be a dozen or more, but I tried to narrow it down by combining multiple stops on one trip. 

Friday, June 10, 2022

Happy Friday from the Beach! What I Pack in Our Beach Bag :)

 Hello hello friends! It has been a beautiful week around here and I am feeling awfully thankful right about now. 

Monday, June 6, 2022

Books I Read in April and May

 Hello friends! Today I want to share the books I read in April and May. I set a goal to read 40 books this year and I am a little bit behind on that goal 😬 Anyone else behind on their reading goal? I have read several fantastic books, but then it's almost like I need a week or two in between some of them because they are heavier reads. After a sad book, I need a break. I can't just jump right into the next one! Anyone else feel that way too, or is it just me? Anyway, here are the books I read in April and May. I read several really good ones. Most likely some of these will make it onto my "Top Books of 2022" list at the end of this year!

Friday, June 3, 2022

What I'm Priming: May

Good morning and happy Friday! Today I am sharing my Amazon purchases for the month of May. Hopefully you can find a thing or two that may help you as well!