Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Best Salsa Around

I have to tell you a secret.

I love salsa. Love it. I put it on everything…chips, tacos, enchiladas, and even on my spoon. Well, I guess that isn't much of a secret. But I could eat salsa all day long!

I have a salsa recipe that is not only super simple…it tastes amazing! I bring it into work every once in awhile, and it has become a favorite. It seems like people can smell it from across the office, and they always come running. 

So here is the recipe. Now I want to give you a heads-up…when I make this, I just kind of guess on how much to use. I don't really have specifics, but I swear you can't mess it up!

What you will need:
  • Can of Corn - drained
  • Can of Black Beans - drained and rinsed (you have to rinse them well…otherwise they have a weird film on them!)
  • One jalapeño - deseeded (unless you like the heat!)
  • Handful of cilantro
  • 6 roma tomatoes
  • 1 small onion
  • Salt & Pepper
1. Chop up the tomatoes, onions, and jalapeño into bite size pieces. I have found that roma tomatoes work best for this recipe.
2. Roughly chop the cilantro and add to the tomatoes and onions.
3. Add the can of corn and can of black beans. Mix up well.
4. I add a little bit of salt and pepper now, but it really doesn't need much.
5. Refrigerate for at least an hour, but it honestly tastes better with time. I like to leave it overnight!
6. Serve with your favorite chips. I love the tomtits organic white corn chips!!

 Linking up with the following lovely ladies for Tuesday Talks!!
 Becky at BYBMG | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Michelle at Grammie Time | Pinterest | Instagram 

Monday, April 4, 2016

Weekend in Review

Happy Monday!
I hope you all had a great weekend. It was absolutely beautiful here in Montana under the Big Sky!! I think it was in the 60s/70s all weekend which I am totally ok with.

The beautiful weather has made me want to take my exercise outside. I try to walk my dogs at least three times a week, but this weekend we went every day! I found some harnesses on clearance at PetSmart for less than $2 each!! They make going for walks so much better as the leash doesn't pull on their necks. 

Sunday was my Grandma's 77th birthday! We celebrated by taking her to a cute little restaurant in a tiny town about 20 miles away. It is called the Big Bull Bar, and they have the most amazing food. Seriously, the burgers were the size of my head, and they came with a mountain of french fries.

My grandma is seriously the greatest lady in the world. She is full of spice and spunk which makes her a blast to be around. I love that she is still as feisty as ever, and she doesn't take flack from anyone. I am lucky to have her in my life, and I loved that I got to spend the afternoon with her.

While we were at dinner, my little sister mentioned that there were two guys up at the bar who had just ridden up on their horses. They just tied their horses up to the fence post, and then they went into the bar for a drink and some dinner. We came out to see the two horses tied up. 

This is just a typical part of living in Montana, and I love it! I mean where else in the world can you just ride your horse up to the bar?!? I also learned that you can get a DUI if you are drunk while riding a horse…like I said before, only in Montana!

Tell me below…
Did you do anything fun for your birthday?
What is your favorite thing about where you live?

Linking up with Biana.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Friday Favorites #5

Did you like the Hunger Games? Or were you more of a Divergent Fan?

{And when I ask that, I mean the books not the movies!! Although, I did enjoy the movies for these series, the books are a million times better!}

I'm mixing it up this Friday Favorites post to share with you a few of my favorite book series. Many of these are similar to the popular Hunger Games and Divergent series.

  • The Maze Runner by James Daschner - Now many have probably seen the movies (The Maze Runner & The Scorch Trials), but the books are so great. I read all three books in a matter of days. James Daschner really fits the dystopian society theme, but he does it in such a unique way

  • Selected by Kiara Cass - This might be one of my favorite series of all time. Think of The Bachelor meets the Hunger Games. It tells the story of a society where the prince must find a wife through a sort of reality-tv competition. There is so much more to this story including family secrets, dictatorship, and a struggle with being in the lime light.

  • Matched by Allie Condie - Again, this is more geared towards girls. In the Society, everything is watched very closely and monitored at all times. When you turn 17 you are matched with your future spouse. But when Cassia is matched, an error happens, and someone else's face shows up on her screen.

  • Miss Peregrine's School for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs - I have heard rumors that this is going to be made into a movie, and if so, I can't wait! The premise of this book is so cool. The author found a series of trick photographs, and he used them as a guide to writing the book. This story follows a group of peculiar children who all have secret talents, and they must fight to keep their people alive. 

  • Seven Deadly Sins by Robin Wasserman - This isn't necessarily like the other books, but it is a fun series to read. There are seven books in all, and each one focuses on one of the deadly sins. The story focuses on a group of high school students with your typical players: the Alpha girl, the athlete, the brooding bad guy, the best friend, and the smart shy girl.

Tell me…

What are some of your favorite books?
Do you like reading young adult literature?
Would you rather read a single novel or a series?

Linking up with Tiff and Erika,

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Confessional Thursday {#1}

There is something cathartic about just spilling your random thoughts. So today I am linking up with Jessica from The Newly for Confessional Thursday.

I Confess...

I had to look up the word cathartic...at first I typed lethargic, and I knew that wasn't the word I was looking for. Don't mind that I have an English degree.

I have decided that I am a people pleaser/peace maker. I have also decided that it is both my best and worst quality. I think an entire blog post will be coming about that.

I am finally biting the bullet and buying some quinoa tonight to try. I think I will try this recipe. Best part is that it is 21 day fix approved.

I love playing Monopoly at Safeway. I have gone out of my way to shop there recently because I want to get more of the game pieces.

I have been watching Lifetime's Mother/Daughter Experiment. It is outrageous and ridiculous, and I can't help but watch it.

I love rereading series. I have a couple of recommendations that I will be posting in the next few days.

I just don't understand these pom pom shoes that are becoming popular. They remind me of a little kids art project.

I love to try foundations. I can't seem to go into a sephora or ultra without finding a new foundation to try. But for the first time ever, I have purchased the same foundation twice in a row. The Maybelline Fit Me! Dewy + Smooth Foundation is only $5.99, and it is turning out to be my favorite.

I got my niece-to-be (due in just 1 month!!!) this swimsuit from target. So cute. She is going to Hawaii in August for a wedding, and she will look adorable in it, I'm sure!

Well, that's all I got. See you tomorrow, folks :)

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Taking Back My Health

Today I am linking up with Jessi from Jessi's Design for "What's Hap-pinning Wednesdays." I kind of sat for a few minutes trying to think what was new and worthwhile to share, and I realized that I am excited to start my 2nd round of 21 Day Fix by Beachbody on Thursday!!

I did the 21 day fix back in January, and while I didn't follow the program perfectly, I still saw some great results! I know I lost weight and inches; I just wish I would have measured so I know my progress. This time around I am doing all my measurements so I can see my success.

The basics of the program are this:

  • 30 minute workouts that can be done at home with minimal equipment (hand weights and a yoga mat)
  • Food containers that help you figure out what to eat and how much of it
  • A serving of Shakeology each day!
  • An easy to follow meal plan with tons of recipes
  • Accountability and support through an online Facebook group

I love how easy it is to do without keeping track of calories or macros. The workouts are fun, and they only last 30 minutes!! No excuses not to get them done!

However, the main reason I am posting about this and taking on this 21 day journey is to create a new lifestyle for myself. I realized as I sit down tonight that my eating today consisted of a bag of cheetos, probably over a liter of dr. pepper, a small container of chow mien, and a hersheys bar. Seriously. I can't keep living this way, and I know my body does not run the way it should!

I am looking to create a lifestyle change and not just a quick diet. I want to find a way to not only lose weight but also feel comfortable in my own skin. It's time for me to take back my health!

If you are interested in joining me, feel free to send me an email at whit.mclaughlin@gmail.com. I would love to discuss what Beachbody program might work best for you!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

You know you are from Montana when...

1. You have experienced wearing both shorts and having it snow on the same day.
   this has happened on more than one occasion. i don't know how many times a day i have to switch from the a/c to heat in my car. they say if you don't like the weather wait ten minutes.

2. You know the mascots and colors of all the other teams in your division.
    there are only about 10 or so teams per division in high schools. you tend to know all the players on the other teams. even being out of high school for five plus years i can still name all the other teams and their colors.

3. You schedule your trips based on the college events happening.
   most of the main towns in Montana have one college, and it isn't crazy to plan your trips based on what events are going on. i would never go to Missoula during Cat/Griz games or Butte when Mulletfest is going on (yes, Mulletfest is a real thing!). too many college kids getting crazy!

4. You have been to a high school sports event even though you don't know anyone who is playing personally.
   my dad and i like to go watch basketball games in the winter when there isn't much else to do. most of the time i don't even know any of the kids, but it is still a fun event to attend. this isn't an uncommon occurrence.

5. You have an "account" at one of the local stores.
   we had a little convenience store up the street from my parents house when I was growing up. we had an account there where we would buy things throughout the month and then my parents would just pay it at the end of the month. this was nice because my parents could send us to grab a thing or two without having to give us their debit cards. lots of little stores in montana do this.

6. You or someone you know has hit wildlife while driving. This isn't limited to just deer…wolves, coyotes, big-horn sheep, and even a cow.
   my dad and his brothers hit a cow one time driving home late at night. the cow got out of the field, and it was dark outside. they didn't see the cow until it was too late. you don't hear that happening just anywhere.

7. You have never experienced a snow day even though there are days where you get upwards of two feet of snow.
    i have never had a snow day. i was always so jealous of hearing about others getting snow days. there have been days when we have gotten close to three feet of snow. but nope, no snow day for montana.

8. You have left your car running with the doors unlocked to run into the store.
   i did this this morning. it just kind of cracks me up because i realize there are many big cities where you would never do this. i do it all the time.

9. The Dairy Queen is closed from November to March.
   i always hear jeff foxworthy joke about this, and i'm sure people think this is a joke. but this is completely true where i live. i think it is true for a lot of montana towns. they just don't get enough business in the winter to keep the place open.

10. You have honestly seen some of the most beautiful scenery in the world.
    i really think that i live in the most beautiful state in the country. between glacier national park and yellowstone national park and everywhere in between, montana has picture perfect scenery. the lakes, the woods, the wildlife, and even the small towns are worth driving around to see.

I have always said that God used His greatest imagination for Montana. It really truly is the last best place!

linking up with Michelle

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Prayer Works

My aunt had emergency surgery a week ago, on Monday. She had a staph infection in her hip, and the doctor had to go in and remove her hip replacement in order to remove the infection.

The doctor who performed the surgery is actually a member of our church. He is a great Christian man who is known to be extremely meticulous in his work. My aunt went into surgery, and she had been in there for a few hours when my mom got a call from our youth pastor.

He was just calling to check in with my mom about an upcoming ski trip, and he was shocked to hear she was sitting in the waiting room at the hospital. He immediately jumped up and drove up to the hospital to wait with her in the waiting room. When he got there, it was my mom, my great-aunt, and my grandma.

They chatted for a few minutes, and then Gezer, my youth pastor, asked if he could pray for the surgery. He said he felt led to pray, and he was hoping the others would join him. They of course said yes, and he prayed.

Now, my great-aunt and my grandma are not religious people. My grandma goes to church every so often, but my great-aunt rarely goes. They bowed their heads to pray with him out of respect, and they thanked him when he was done.

Just an hour or so later, the doctor finally came back with news of the surgery. He said that because her hip replacement had been done 14 years ago, the technology had greatly changed. He really struggled to get the hip ball replacement to come out. He said he used all his tools, and he thought he was going to have to stitch her back up and try again the next day with different tools.

He then looked up and asked "did you all pray for me while I was in there?" My great-aunt and grandma sort of looked up in surprise, and Gezer said "Yeah, we did pray for you."

The doctor then looks at all of them and said "I knew you did. I could feel it." You see he was just about to give up, when he felt God leading him to try one more time. He attempted to remove the hip ball one more time, and at that point, it just popped out; no problem.

I don't care where you are in your walk with God or what your views on prayer are. I know it works. I know that prayer is powerful. It's our one direct line to the God of the whole universe. I know I don't utilize it the way I should, but after this powerful reminder, I know that I will never take my prayers for granted.

Monday, February 8, 2016

The Monday Blues

Do you ever get the Monday Blues? Or is that just me?!?! I often feel like the weekend just flies by, and come Monday I am never quite ready to go back to work. I have compiled a list of things I do to make my Mondays better and more enjoyable.

1) Take some time on Sunday to prepare for the upcoming week. For me, this means meal planning and prepping, putting everything into my planner for the week, getting any laundry done, and doing a quick sweep-clean of my house.

Doing those few things on Sunday make Monday go so much smoother. I feel like I can wake up Monday morning, and I don't stress about all the little things because they are already taken care of.

I also try and take the last few minutes on Friday afternoon to make sure I have everything wrapped up for Monday. Believe me, there is nothing worse than heading into the office knowing you have a project looming over your head. Your weekend and your Monday will go much better if you just get it done on Friday.

2) Spend a few minutes in the morning doing something for you. For many, enjoying a cup of coffee is the best way to start Monday. However, I am not a coffee drinker. I like to take a few minutes in the morning to watch a fun youtube video (makeup and hair tutorials are my favorites) or spend a few minutes playing with my dogs.

I think that spending a little quality time on yourself makes Mondays more bearable.

3) Listen to positive, uplifting music in the morning. I don't typically listen to music while I am getting ready, but I do listen to it on the commute to work. My favorite station is K-Love Christian Radio. I always feel more refreshed, clam, and relaxed when I start my morning with positive music versus listening to the local hits station. Find a radio station or Pandora station that works best for you!

4) Get a workout in!! Exercise is the best antidepressant there is. Take some time on Monday to get a good sweat session in. I love doing the Beachbody workouts, but find what works best for you. Maybe you enjoy a hot yoga session, or perhaps you love a good spin cycle. Whatever it is, do it! Never miss a Monday.

5) Treat yourself. You made it through a Monday. Give yourself some credit because sometimes Mondays are just plain hard.

Tell me Ladies,

What are some of your tips to make it through Mondays?
What kind of workouts do you enjoy best?

Thursday, February 4, 2016

30 Day Challenge

I feel like I have been a broken record over the last few weeks, but I just can't help it! I have been listening to Christian Radio exclusively since the beginning of the year, and I can't even begin to tell you the impact it has had on my life.

I have found some amazing Christian songs, and I get overjoyed every time I hear a new song. I swear that they only play songs that relate to my life and what is going on that day. It is amazing how God uses something like music to have such an impact.

Like I have said in past posts, I listen to K-Love Radio. It has contemporary music plus a mix of news, verses, and even short little sermons. They have a challenge where they encourage you to listen to only Christian radio for 30 days, and then look back to see if had a positive impact on your life.

Well I can attest to this challenge being worth it! I know it sounds so silly, but it really has changed me. Here are my top five reasons for listening to Christian music:

1) It starts your day with encouragement, positivity, and peace.

I am a firm believer that music impacts your mood. If you constantly listen to sad, depressing or angry music, you will start to have those same feelings. The same goes for if you listen to positive, encouraging music. It just helps to lighten your mood and start your day on the right track.

2) It is filled with words of wisdom and Biblical truths that relate to your everyday life.

I have found so many songs that seem to speak directly to me. I constantly find myself writing down phrases or lyrics that I find to impact my heart. Not only do they relate to me, but they give me peace and often times a new perspective on situations in my own life.

3) Christian music gives you the chance to worship God.

As you sing along to these songs, or even just listen to them, you are worshipping God. We are to spend our days on earth praising God and sharing His truth. I think of the fifteen minutes it takes me to get work as a fifteen minute praise and prayer session. By listening to Christian music, I am able to spend a few minutes praising God for who He is and what He has done for me.

"Sing unto Him, sing psalms to Him, talk of all his wondrous works." I Chronicles 16:9

4) God requires us to keep our minds and spirits pure.

In 2 Corinthians 7:1 it says, " Let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God."

God demands us to stay away from anything that will contaminate our body and spirit. I think that applies to music as well. God doesn't want us to pour anything into our minds and lives that don't bring us closer to Him. I hate to say it, but there are not many secular songs that wouldn't be considered contamination to us.

5) It sets us a part from the rest of the world.

"Do not conform any longer to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind." - Romans 12:2
I was thinking about this topic today. In a random conversation, I was saying how typically Mormons' are known as being good people who are trustworthy, kind, and full of love. I think it is their religion that plays such a huge role. However, I don't think that most Christians have this reputation, which breaks my heart.

God calls us to be a light in this world, and in order to do so, we have to stand out from the crowd. I am starting to see my role in the world as someone who's every move points back to Jesus and His truth. In doing so, I am living out my life for His will rather than my own.

That being said, I think I have to listen to Christian music as a sort of testimony of my faith.

Tell me below…

Do you listen to Christian music?

What are some of your favorite songs?

Linking up with Amanda

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Oh How Pin-teresting!

I am a lover of Pinterest! I have been using the website for a year or so now, and I love being able to find recipes, ideas, and inspiration so quickly. I have found myself utilizing it more and more over the last few months…possibly because of the move!

I thought I would share with you a few of my pins from the last week or so. You will notice a trend. I pin a lot of food and a lot of decorating items.

Are you like me and pin a million things but then never actually utilize them?!?! I have made it a goal to make at least one recipe a month from Pinterest. Might as well get some use out of the website considering how many hours I waste looking through it each night!!

So here are a few of my favorite pins!

Don't these green beans look to die for? I think that green beans might be my favorite veggie of all time and when you add in garlic and bread crumbs, it is a 10 in my book

Yum! I can't wait to try this one. I think it sounds so refreshing and good for you!

I have been looking for some snacks that are healthy and tasty to take to work. I find that at about 10am and 3pm I start to get a little sluggish. I need a little pick-me-up, and I think these energy bites will do the trick.

I love crockpot meals. Throw all the ingredients in and by the time you get off work you have a meal!

I have taken a break from teacher mode the last year as I have worked up at the district admin office. I am planning on applying for teaching jobs for the 2016-17 school year, and this scavenger hunt looks just like something I would use in my classroom!

I mentioned yesterday that I would like to start bullet journalling. I think it is a great way to stay organized and keep everything in one place. I love that pinterest helps me find websites and blogs to try out new things!

Tell me below…
What are some of your favorite types of pins?
Do you have any pins that have turned out to be huge successes?

Linking up with Jessie.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Tuesday Talks #2

- - I was so excited for Grease Live on Fox the other night! I missed it Sunday because of a church commitment, but I was able to watch it Monday after work. I absolutely loved Vanessa Hudgens as Rizzo, and I think Julianne Hough did an amazing job as well. My only critique was them adding the new song that Frenchy sang. I just didn't think it worked.

Vanessa Hudgens absolutely killed it in this song. You have to watch it!!

- - I can't wait to head to the Caribbean in less than a week. We are going on a cruise with my some of my family, including my 89 and 86 year old grandpa and grandma!! My grandpa told me he wants to go zip-lining! How great is that? I hope I have that much energy and spunk when I am his age.

- - The best part about blogging is getting to read and meet new people. I have found some fun new blogs that I now read on a daily basis like Glisten Fit, East Coast Chic, and Small Things Blog.

- - Have you ever heard of Bullet Journaling? My cousin introduced me to it, and I think I might give it a shot. I love how it allows you to have one journal where you keep everything.

- - I need a new daily devotional to get me back on track. I just finished reading Crazy Love by Francis Chan. I highly recommend anything he has written. Anyone have any suggestions for a new one?

- - Since moving into my new house, I have just been using Apple TV rather than getting cable. I was kind of worried that I wouldn't like it as much because as much as I hate to admit it, I love watching tv. However, there are so many apps and so many shows I can watch with my Apple TV that I don't think I will ever get bored.

- - My sister is having her baby shower in a few weeks. She has the cutest light pink, grey, and white theme for the baby's room. She has added a few elephant accents, and it came together amazingly! I just can't decide what to get her for her shower. My sisters and I were thinking of going in together to get her a newborn baby photo shoot.

- - I keep reading about all the snow days that people had last week after the huge storm on the East Coast. I am so jealous! I was thinking back to all my years in school, and we never once had a snow day in Montana. Sometimes recess had to be held indoors if it was below 0 (which happens a few days every winter).

Ok this post has turned into a bunch of ramblings, but hey that is what Tuesday Talks is all about, right?!?

Monday, February 1, 2016

Weekend Shenanigans

I hate to say it, but I don't typically do exciting enough things over the weekend to report back to you all on Mondays. However, this weekend was a little bit out of the ordinary and full of excitement!

Friday Night…

I started out by participating in our local Big Brothers Big Sisters "Bowl for Kids' Sake" bowling night! If you haven't heard of Big Brothers Big Sisters, this is a non-profit program that pairs community members with children who could use a positive mentor. They then meet with their "little" once or twice during the week to do fun activities. It is an amazing program that gives students in need a positive role model.

So a team of friends and I put on our bowling shoes to play a few games! The fundraiser use to be set up where people would pledge to pay X amount of money per pin knocked over. Over time, this way of fundraising kind of went out the window, and now people just ask for donations. I always said that people would love to sponsor me the old way because they would only end up donating a few dollars!!

I am proud to admit that I bowled one game over 100…it was 114 to be exact! Regardless of our scores, it was a lot of fun with some great friends. I loved being able to support such a worthy cause.


I spent Saturday dinking around the house. I really made some headway on getting boxes unpacked. I think I only have three left! I also spent some time with my sister and her roommate who were in town for the weekend. We shopped a little bit, ate way to much, and just enjoyed our time together. 

One of the stops we made was to Hobby Lobby which just opened in my town about six months ago! It is my new favorite store, and I can't wait to head back there to get a few more things for my house. I will have to do a haul of everything I get there when I'm done.

Saturday Night…

My aunt was in town from Seattle so we decided to head over to the local Bingo parlor for a real night out on the town! :) We have gone to the Bingo parlor a few times, and it is always a blast. You end up playing about ten different games throughout the night. My younger sisters and I just crack up every time we are there….I could tell you a few funny stories about the events that take place there!

There are about ten ladies who are regular customers. I wish I would have had the guts to take a picture of their tables because they are quite hilarious. The ladies bring all sorts of good luck charms including trolls, pictures of their grandkids, and a plethora of dobbers!! 

When we decided we were going to go play, my mom thought it would be funny to find a few trolls to put out on our table as a joke. She went to a few thrift stores in town, but she wasn't able to find them. After a few games and no one at our table winning, she decided to get out her own good luck charms. 

She proceeded to pull out about ten lipsticks from her purse and line them up. We were laughing pretty hard at how many she had in there!

My grandma decided she could one up my mom. Look at what she pulled out of her purse!!

Needless to say, we were laughing pretty hard at that one. In fact, I was laughing so hard at my grandma that I played the whole next game with only one card when I had two! I didn't even realize I was missing a card!

Sunday Night…

I spend every Sunday night with some amazing young girls at our church's Awana program. I love working with the 3rd - 6th grade girls! We always seem to have a fun time.

This week we had the girls review some of the verses they had learned over the course of the year. I really want to encourage the girls to learn these verses for life not just for the week. So for every review verse they could say to their leader, they were able to put their name in a bucket for a chance to play "Pie in the Face"!

The girls were so excited, and a few of them were able to say nine or ten verses! Four lucky girls got the chance to play Pie in the Face. I wish I would have been able to get more pictures, but we were having to much fun!

I think this is a game we will have to bring out again soon!

Have a great Monday!

Linking up with Biana, Erin, and Katie.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Friday Favorites #4

Happy Friday everyone!! 

If you are anything like me, you are sooo ready for this weekend! Has this week been as crazy for everyone else as it has been for me?!?

For my Friday favorites, I decided to do my favorite makeup items! I absolutely love make-up, and Ulta is my favorite place to shop. I thought I would share a few of my favorite items that I use daily plus a few of my favorite you tubers!

I am a pretty simple make-up girl. I love watching all of the youtube videos about smokey eyes and bright lips, but I tend to be pretty simply when it comes to my own makeup. I also like to try and find drugstore alternatives whenever I can…rather than the expensive brands! However, there are a few items that are worth the splurge.

When I first heard people spending $20 for a sponge, I thought it was crazy. However, I had a coupon for Sephora so I decided to take the plunge. I am so beyond happy I did! The Beauty Blender makes my makeup go on so smooth and evenly. I have very dry skin, and I really think that the Beauty Blender helps my makeup go on more dewy and less cake.

As for brushes, I think some of the best brands are the Sonia Kashuk available at Target as well as the Real Technique brands. If I had an endless amount of money, I would buy every It Cosmetics brush, but that just isn't possible!

Now onto a few of my favorite you tubers. I can spend hours watching makeup tutorials on youtube. Some of my favorite types of videos include the monthly favorites, the tutorials, and the routine videos.

Tati or Glam Life Guru is probably in my top 3 favorite you tubers. She has a great personality, and she always has super informative videos. If I am questioning whether or not to buy an item, I always check to see if she has done a review on it!

Emily or Beauty Broadcast is the most relatable of all you tubers. She has tons of drugstore videos, and you can tell she spends a lot of time on her content. I love that she isn't someone who constantly does sponsored videos.

Casey Holmes is my absolute favorite. I think I have watched every single one of her videos. She is hilarious, and she has amazing style. Her makeup is always spot on, and she can do no wrong in my eyes :) However, her makeup is a bit more than I would wear on a normal basis.

Last, but not least, I love watching Shelbey or love, Shelbey. She has dry skin just like me, and she always has the best recommendations for products. She has a great series on how to use Bare Minerals which I found super easy to follow!

So those are my make-up favorites. Tell me below…

What are your make up favorites?
Do you watch youtube makeup videos?
What is one item you think is worth the splurge?

Linking up with Erika.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

One of those weeks

I have had one of those weeks. You know the ones that seem to drag on, and everything seems to go wrong. I have been sicker than a dog with the stomach flu. I missed three days of work which is absolutely unheard of for me! I finally am on the mend, and I will never take my health for granted again. Seriously!

Work has been crazy busy. We are in the middle of testing students and pulling and analyzing data on top of all the other things that need to be done on a daily basis!

Needless to say, I am ready for the weekend. Although my weekend will probably be spent finishing unpacking boxes, setting up my house, and hopefully get a little cleaning done. Oh well…I'm just happy to own my very own house :)

So I have decided to do a "Currently" list. I was inspired by Bri over at School in Our Slippers to do a currently list. So here it is.

Currently, I am….

listening… to K-Love radio. I don't know if you have access to this radio station, but you need to find it. I believe you can listen to it online, but I absolutely love it! The songs are full of encouragement, truth, and life! I find myself singing little parts of songs throughout the day, and I often have to pause to jot down phrases that I hear in the songs. My current favorite song is Just Be Held by Casting Crowns.

watching… I am still watching Gossip Girl on Netflix. I have seen the entire series before, but I love rewatching it. So many details I have forgotten. I am also excited that Jane the Virgin is back on the CW.

reading… Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs. This is the last book in the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children trio. I absolutely love this series! It is so unique and creative. I would love to see it turned into a movie. The basis of the book is that the author found a stack of old photos, and he uses these photos to guide the novel. He includes them in the book, but they help tell the story. Trust me, I can't do the book justice in my description. Check it out for yourself!

wishing… it was the weekend! I missed the last three days of work, but I still want it to be the weekend. I need a few days to catch up on everything, sterilize clean my house, and get ready for the upcoming week!

making… a huge to-do list in my planner. I have a million little things to write down including all the new payments that come with a new house, all the things I need to plan for my upcoming cruise, and all the little things in between.

planning… what clothes I am taking on my cruise! We leave on February 8th, and won't be back until the 16th! I am so excited and ready for this fun week with my family in the sun.

feeling… refreshed and invigorated. I finally feel like a human after a few days of being sick. I am ready to take on the next few days!

loving… the time I got to spend with my puppies. I know that moving houses was an adjustment on them, but I am so proud of them. They have done so well, and they are adjusting to their new house just nicely!

Have a great Thursday!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Friday Favorites #3

For today's Friday Favorites, I am going to share with you a few of my favorite pins from this week. I have been looking up a ton of ideas for my new house. I am trying to pinpoint the specific colors I would like for each room.

/ / Bedroom Inspiration/ /
{I am leaning towards a coral, grey, and navy blue theme in this room. I am struggling to find a comforter I like, but I love the pops of color in this room while still be neutral}

/ / Guest Room/Office Inspiration/ /
{I feel like  a little girl with this room, but I absolutely love the gold and pink look! My second bedroom has a guest bed as well as my desk so I would love to have it all work together to create one cohesive room}

/ / Living Room Inspiration/ /
{I have a creme colored couch with navy blue accent pillows. I have a few pieces of wood furniture with dark cherry finishes. I would love to add some more cream and navy into the room}

I am hoping to do a little bit of online shopping over the weekend to find a new comforter and possibly some decor for my guest room. I am thinking of doing gold and mint green in the guest room rather than pink, but after looking at these pins again, I am so in love with the pink and gold look :)

If you would like to follow me on pinterest, I would love to have you as a friend!

Linking up with Erika, Heather  Amanda for Friday Favorites

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Thinking Out Loud #2

Whew!! This week has been a whirlwind. I finally moved into my new house on Saturday! For those of you know don't know, I have been building a house since August. I am so excited to finally be settled into the house {and by settled I mean boxes and boxes sitting on the floor}. I am slowly but surely getting things put away, and it feels more like a home. To be honest, for the first day or two I felt like I was just playing house with someone else's things.

The only pictures I have so far is of my dogs watching tv :)

Am I the only person who loves tax season? Probably because I have always gotten a tax refund, and I feel like I am getting free money. I understand that it is my money to begin with, but it still feels like a bonus :)

Since moving into my new house, I only have Apple TV; no cable. I am getting use to that, but I have found a ton of new shows to add to my list. I am one of those types of people who likes to watch tv series over again. I tend to watch an entire series over a couple of months, and then a few years later I like to watch it again. I am currently watching Gossip Girl again, but once in awhile I add in episodes from My Name is Earl. This is a silly 30 minute sitcom about a redneck guy who wins the lottery. After watching an episode of Carson Daily, he learns about the concept of karma. He decides to write a list of all the things he has done wrong in his life, and slowly one by one he rights those wrongs. It is beyond cheesy, but I love it for a quick, funny fix.

Does anyone else write thank you notes or other cards and then stash them in their purse for a week or so because you forget to buy stamps? No? It's just me who does that…dang it!

Speaking of cards, you have to check out the dollar section at Target! They have the cutest supplies out right now. I like to send cards to the girls in my Awana church program every once in awhile, and I love that I can buy a cute pack of 8 cards for $1!! So while I was searching for a picture of some of the cards, I came across this awesome website! They have tons of information about Target including the Dollar Spot!!

You are probably thinking that this post is going to go on and on, and it kind of has :) So tell me below:

What are some good shows on Netflix to add to my list?
What is your best suggestion for someone setting up their first house?

Linking up with Amanda, Annie & Natalie

Monday, January 18, 2016

On the Radio

I was driving to work last week when I tuned into a song on the radio. It was a beautiful song, but I didn't think anything of it. I continued on my day, and I got back into my car just a few hours later to run an errand. Again, the same song was on the radio. I chuckled a little to myself thinking about how the radio stations in my town seem to play the same song over and over again until you are completely sick of it! I went back to my day..busy testing kids, pulling data, and gathering curriculum materials. I jumped into my car at the end of the day, a bit exhausted and ready to crash on the couch when I got home. I turned on the car, and it hit me. The exact same song I had listened to twice already that day.
I sat in the parking lot and pulled up the song on my phone so I could read the lyrics. I figured if I would have to listen to the song three times in one day, I might as well learn it so I can jam out to it {don't judge…you know you rock out in your car too}. 
As I read the words, I got goose-bumps on my arms. Now, I am a pretty emotional person. I cry during previews of movies, so it wasn't a big surprise that I got goose-bumps. But I continued to read the song, and I began to realize there was a reason I heard it each time I got into my car.
God was talking to me. I laugh a little at this because I often think it would be so much easier if we could just pick up the phone and call God to ask His advice. Wouldn't it be great to text Him? {I'm pretty sure God is the type to use emojis!} But I think when we open ourselves up, we realize He does talk to us throughout the day. He just uses His resources wisely.
So I thought I would share this song with you today. Listen to the chorus. Let it sink in that our God is so powerful that He can rise the dead from their graves. He can move mountains just by speaking. He can calm the sea. And yet, we have the audacity to worry. All I can say is don't worry. God's got this.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Hearing God's Voice

I wrote this post about a year ago. At the time, I had wanted to start a blog as an outlet for a lot of anxiety and stress I was going through. I wrote a lot of posts, but I never actually published anything. I was reading through some of the old ones, and this post really hit me hard. I look back at the last year, and I realize that even when I didn't know it, God was working in my life. He put me where I needed to be, and he placed people into my life that I needed. Like I said, I wrote it a year ago, but I will explain the significance below!
I have had a year of growing pains. A year filled with tears, anger,  disappointments while at the same time filled with laughter, mercy, and joy. I feel like I am in that awkward stage of my life where I am struggling to find my place. To find my way. To figure out where I want to go and who I want to be.

Just last week, I got the awful call from a superintendent telling me they had given my dream job to someone else. I was filled immediately overcome with disappointment. I mean I had nailed that interview, and I deserved this job. I have put in my dues as a substitute teacher. I have spent countless hours making contacts, building my resume, and having people write me letters of recommendations.

My disappointment was soon transferred into anger. Anger at my college for not preparing me enough to get a job. Anger at myself for not getting an elementary degree. Anger at God for not answering my earnest prayers to provide me with a job.

It was in that moment when I was steaming over with anger, embarrassment, and disappointment that God’s unwavering voice could be heard. I remember laying in my bed that night lashing out at God for His unwillingness to answer my prayer, but His response was showered with love and grace. It was almost as if I could hear Him saying to me, “My child, this door was closed in order to open the right one for you.”

You see, God doesn’t close doors simply because he has the power to do so. Instead, He opens and closes doors to produce growth in our lives. Like I said earlier, I have had a year of growing pains. I look back, and I realize that I never want to live many of those moments again, but then again, I look back and realize that through those moments God was molding me into his image.  Through the ups and downs, I have come to rely on God as my rock. I have learned to fight my battles on my knees in prayers. I have come to truly appreciate my daily Bible reading and devotions.

People always say we never learn to appreciate the sun until we experience the rain. I agree. We can’t appreciate the beauty of life until we overcome the moments of darkness that God uses to sharpen, mold, and grow us into the people he intends us to be. 

Shortly after I wrote this post, I received a job offer from an unlikely source. I had subbed at a school a few days in a row. I then received a call from the principal who asked me to fill in as their school secretary for a few weeks. I gladly accepted the position, and I am now a year later still working for the same principal. She has become one of my closest friends and confidantes. I am so blessed that God placed her in my life. We both had some huge family changes happen this summer, and I look back and realize God knew exactly what He was doing when He closed the door to that first job. Sure, He opened the door up to a new job, but more importantly, He opened up my life to some amazing people.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Friday Favorites #2

I am back for another Friday Favorites! I love the chance to look back on the week and remember all the little things that made it great. I am linking up with Erika from A Little Bit of Everything.

Favorite Post
I have been following The Daily Tay for awhile now. She is hilarious, and I absolutely loved this post she did on Thursday! She loves her dog, Harlow, just as much as I love my two dogs, Bella & Cori, so I totally find this post relatable! Go check her out….and just for fun, here is a pic of my two dogs :)

Favorite Blog
I just found Caitlin's blog, Cait's Cozy Corner, the other day, but I already love it! She is starting up a book club next month, and I can't wait to join. Make sure to show her some love and tell her I sent you!

Favorite Quote
My younger sister, Ashton, is full of hilarious quotes. I try and document them as much as possible because she really comes up with some bizarre things. We were looking back at my Facebook posts the other day, and I realized most of them are just quoting here. I thought I would share some of the funny ones below!

Favorite Activity
Packing!! I know that sounds strange, but I am so beyond excited to move into my 1st home this weekend! I have been slowly packing things over the last few months, but I have had to really kick it into gear in order to get everything ready to go. I have already taken a few trips to Goodwill {I am amazed at how much junk I have accumulated over the last few years!} 

Favorite New Puppy
My mom got a German Shepard puppy the day before Christmas! Winston Charles is going to be a great companion for her when I move out. He is quite possibly the fluffiest and cutest puppy I have met.

Favorite Workout
I was doing the 21 Day Fix Piyo workout the other day, and I turned around to this view. Cori, the black lab, is attempting her own version of Child's Pose while my two sisters are laying around in the background. At one point Jackson was participating, but when we looked back at him he was sitting against the wall on his phone. Guess they don't find find Piyo as exciting as me :)

Well those are my favorites for this Friday. Tell me below, what are your favorites from the week?