happy birthday, luke

Happy 2nd Birthday, Lukie Bear!
May your terrible two's be good to the cutest little boy in the world.
I love you so much.

friday funnies


tobi wish list

One of my lovely readers led me to TOBI. A big thank you to that reader! Low prices and sweet threads. I am a big fan, especially of their cardigans and jackets. I made up a new wish list...of course!


what i'm lovin' wednesday

1. Vintage Life Co.
My lovely friend, Dominique, sent me my custom tee that I had been been eagerly eye-balling. This girl has got talent. I've mentioned her here and you can buy her goodies here.

2. Breakfast in Bed
While I love breakfast in bed, I love surprising Boyfriend with it even more. I made his favorite: chocolate chip waffles and whipped cream. Served with a Star Wars cup, naturally.

3. Mini Golf
Boyfriend and I had date night at Cracker Jax. We played mini golf (He's not happy that I won!) and plenty of arcade games. It's so fun to be a kid again.


crazy for kale

I've recently been turned onto kale. The green goodness is full of amazing benefits for your body. Just take a look above. You'd be crazy not to try it out. I have had a few yummy kale salads before, and now I've embarked on kale smoothies.  My lovely ladies at Tone It Up provided an easy and tasty recipe to start out with. Check it out...

  • 2 cup kale (rinsed + de-stemmed)
  • 1 cup ice
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (other non-dairy milks will work as well)
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 6 fresh strawberries
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • Flax seeds (optional-to garnish)
  • Throw all ingredients into the blender and blend away!
  • Serve it in a cup, wine glass, mason jar!
  • Sprinkle with flax seeds
[image and recipe via Tone It Up]



1. Hangin' in the house
2. Miniature golf
3. Making my preschoolers' portfolios
4. Boyfriend brought me home pistachio gelato on my cheat day
5. Banana and oatmeal pancakes
6. Always smiling
7. DIY daisy nails


sunday spark

"Comparison is the thief of joy."
-Theodore Roosevelt

[click on image for source]


what defines us?

I don't believe in perfect. Not everything lines up in the exact, appropriate way that we wish it to. We can only accept the hiccups and the disorder. We don't have to understand it, we just have to accept it. When we do, we are that much closer to finding happiness.

For me, at this ripe age of twenty-four, is when I finally get it. I get the inner and outer workings of it all. It took awhile to get here. It took a few wrong turns. A handful of failed relationships. Some tarnished friendships. A struggle with weight. Career contemplations.

It took life.

I don't think we realize how strong or beautiful we really are until we go through a few of life's lessons. What makes us realize our self-worth is how we approach these, overcome, and venture on. It's not that life is cruel. Life throws us only the things it knows we can handle and grow from.

It's not without reflection. Looking back on who you were, and realizing who you are now is part of the journey to loving yourself. You realize how much you've grown. You settle into the person you've become and with that, comes contentedness. You gain confidence. You gain love for yourself, and for those around you.

When I look back, I see that a few wrong turns actually turned out to be the right ones. That handful of failed relationships led me to the "forever" one. Those tarnished friendships actually left me surrounded with positive, supportive, healthy, and loving influences. That struggle with weight taught me to treat my body right. Those career contemplations led me in a new direction that I couldn't be happier with.

I'm sure life has more in store for me. Things I won't see coming. Hard circumstances. It always does. It's important to remind yourself that these circumstances are actually blessings in disguise. Necessary chaos. All of it leads you to become stronger and wiser, if you let it.

[click on image for source]


friday funnies

Boyfriend and I have been watching quite a few scary movies on our nights in, which is basically every night. No complaints here. We pick a movie, snuggle up on the couch, and he watches me with pure amusement as I suffer from panic attacks. These consist of flailing my arms around, unnecessary loud screaming, and looking over my shoulders...just in case.

These movies have made me a little paranoid. Not just me, though! Boyfriend is too. He's been scouring the web for the best deal on baseball bats...youth baseball bats. Yeah, that little kid bat is going to do a number on the mass murderer.

When something topple over in one of the bedrooms the other day, I clutched a remote as I tiptoed to find the ghost. Because obviously a remote is going to work wonders on a transparent creature.

To top it all off, while we were sleeping one night, the doorbell rang at 1:30 AM. I held tightly to the sheets and sent terrified Boyfriend to the door. All I kept thinking of was The Strangers. I was just waiting for someone to say, "Is Tamara home?" Instead of opening the door, Boyfriend closed all the curtains, killed the lights, and climbed back into bed. Fine by me. We still wonder who would be calling on us so late.

I think we will keep up this routine until Halloween rolls around, if it doesn't keep us up all night.

[click on image for source]


pad thai - clean style

I've been really getting into the whole "clean eating" lifestyle lately, but I'm still getting over my urges for certain dishes. Like Thai food, for instance. I love those spicy noodles, but haven't attempted to whip them up myself. I found a recipe on Eat Clean Diet that will satisfy my craving and leave me feeling guilt free.

• 8 oz / 224 g rice noodles or brown rice noodles, flat
• (Enough hot boiled water to cover noodles*)
• 1 Tbsp / 15 ml canola oil
• 2 cloves garlic, passed through a garlic press
• 2 cups / 480 ml shredded Savoy cabbage
• 2 thick carrots, peeled and cut into thin slices
• 5 egg whites, lightly beaten
• 3 cups / 710 ml bean sprouts
• 1 cup / 240 ml julienned green zucchini
• 1 cup / 240 ml chopped green onions
• ¼ cup / 60 ml fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish

*Reserve 2 Tbsp / 30 ml noodle water
• 3 Tbsp / 45 ml rice wine vinegar or rice vinegar
• ¼ cup / 60 ml low-sodium tomato paste
• 2 Tbsp / 30 ml reserved noodle water
• 2 Tbsp / 30 ml unsulfured molasses
• 2 Tbsp / 30 ml low-sodium soy sauce or tamari

Cover the rice noodles with boiling water in a ceramic bowl. Cover and let stand for 20 minutes to soften noodles. Drain, reserving 2 Tbsp / 30 ml noodle water.

In a small bowl, whisk together all sauce ingredients. Set aside.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Stir in garlic, cabbage and carrot. Stir-fry for 5 minutes. Make a well in the middle of the pan and scramble the egg whites. Add noodles and sauce and cook for 5 minutes. Add bean sprouts, zucchini and green onions and cook a little longer to heat through. Remove from heat and serve. Garnish each dish with chopped cilantro.  

[image and recipe via Eat Clean Diet


what i'm lovin' wednesday

1. Charlie's 5th Birthday
My little pup really enjoyed her special day. She ate up a yummy pup-pie, wore a pretty bow, and had her own burnin' candle.
2. Ray-Bans
I'm obsessed with my new over-sized wayfarers. The small ones just don't suit my face, so these are the best bet!

3. The Format
I've missed listening to them. They were one of my favorites in high school and freshman year of college. It's always fun to reminisce while listening.


asos wish list

Here's another wish list! ASOS is another one of my favorite online stores. I added a few things I would like for the cooler weather that's coming our way. It's always fun to browse, and the outfits they put together give me inspiration for my own closet.

[images via ASOS]


happy 5th birthday

My little pup is five years old today. I swear she's stayed the same size since I got her. She has the biggest heart, a whole lot of energy, and hundreds of kisses to give away. She definitely is my best friend.

Today she's going to be spoiled with lots of attention, a birthday "pup pie," and tons of playtime with her best friend, Nugget. Sounds like a perfect special day. She certainly deserves it!

Love you, Charlie!


frame wall

Boyfriend and I have been filling some walls in our new home with artwork and pictures. While a lot of the pieces consist of some cool twist on Star Wars (Boyfriend's doing), which I actually really appreciate, one of my favorite walls is our frame wall. We set it up in our living room with some of our favorite photos that make up our life. I think frame walls are unique, personal, and bring a little more "artsy" of a feel to a room.

Here are some more that I like...

[via Highly Frameable]
[via Just Photo Frames]

[via Decoration Ideas Depot]
[via Mural Wall]
[via Black and Bleu Designs]

[via Camille Styles]

Ours is still my favorite though!


friday funnies

These letters to this 8-year-old kid asking for dating advice are hilar.
What a stud!

Hey Lucas,
There's a girl I'm digging on and I'm not sure if she's married. While I think she's vaguely referenced a "hubby" and I've seen her with some guy, she's not wearing a ring. Any ideas for how I can find out?
-Single in San Fran

Dear Single,
The best way to find out if a couple is married is introduce them to a child. When I spy on my parents from the staircase, they never talk to each other. But the moment they see me they get really chatty! They say fun things like "We're locked into this til he's 18." Hope that helps!

Dear Lucas,
I feel like my job is hurting my libido. Any tips on staying strong in bed while weak at work?
-Overworked in Oregon

Dear Overworked,
Eating? Eating makes you stronger and being strong in bed is very important. One time I saw my parents wrestling in bed and my Dad was winning. But I think the rules were different because my Mom kept telling him to pull her hair. It's like she's playing for the other team!


Dear Lucas,
I've been with my boyfriend for almost eight years and I'm getting antsy. When can I expect him to propose?
-Ready in Rye

Dear Ready,
If you've known him as long as you say you have, that means you've known him your entire life and he's probably your brother. Marrying your brother seems fun because you already have the same family. I wish I had a sibling. Every time I ask my Mom for one, she says "It's not my fault you have no friends" and then laughs and walks away. She's always laughing, even when nobody is around. Sometimes her laughs turn into tears. Being a grown-up seems so fun!


Dear Lucas,
My boyfriend and I have been together a while and things are starting to wane. I just don't think we have enough in common. Is that going to be a problem in the long run? Then again, things are still great in the sack, if you know what I mean.
-Conflicted in Carolina

Dear Conflicted
I do not know what you mean. Please tell me.


Dear Lucas,
Oh, right. You're just a kid. I don't know if I feel comfortable going into details.
-Still Conflicted in Carolina

Dear Still Conflicted,
I'm a licensed sex therapist. I can't help you until you fully open up.


Dear Lucas,
You're right. Opening up is actually a problem I've always had, so let's just do this, right? The thing is that despite all our issues, my boyfriend never fails to get me off. All I want to do is screw his brains out. And it's clouding my assessment of the relationship as a whole. Even thinking about it gets me horny.
-Even More Conflicted

Dear "Conflicted,"
Lord knows I may not be the world's best mom, but I do know that what you are doing and saying to my child is disgusting and punishable by law. This is the last correspondence you will ever have with my child.
-Lucas's Mother

P.S. What's your boyfriend's name and address? I'll personally pay him a visit.

[via Funny or Die]


cap'n crunch chicken

I've played chef all week. It's been fun cooking up a little storm in the kitchen. Last night I decided to try Cap'n Crunch Chicken. My family and I used to eat it at Planet Hollywood, and then my mom began making it at home. It was one of my favorites. So I decided to bring it to life again with some Creole Mustard sauce and grilled asparagus. Here is the recipe...

2 cups Cap'n Crunch cereal
1 1/2 cups corn flakes
1 egg
1 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 lbs chicken breasts, cut in 1-oz tenders

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Crush the two cereals and set aside. Beat the egg with milk and set aside.
Stir together the flour, onion and garlic powders and black pepper. Also, set aside.
Dip the chicken pieces in the seasoned flour. Move around to coat well, then shake off the excess flour. Dip in the egg wash, coating well, then dip in the cereal mixture, coating well.
Place on a lightly greased baking sheet and pop in the oven for an hour.

For the Creole Mustard sauce...
Mix together:
2 tablespoons of dijon mustard
3 tablespoons of mayo
1 teaspoon of yellow mustard
1 teaspoon of creamy horse radish
1 teaspoon of honey

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