Monday, June 25, 2012

Random health stuff

Well, finally got to go grocery shopping last night!! It's amazing how rare Drew and I go grocery shopping just because it's not something that's at the forefront of my mind and we rarely have time to actually take a full on trip to the grocery store!
I finally got something else figured out for my attempt at eating healthier all the time. For the most part I have a hard time with eating meals because I'm usually so on the go that I don't have the time to make anything, so I have come up with a couple things that are great for on the go! These are things that most people already know and all that good stuff, but that I'm trying for the first time.

I was really wanting to find a good recipe for a homemade granola bar type of thing that wasn't overly packed with sugar and/or sodium or anything. It seems like almost no matter what all types of granola bars are either over packed with those, or don't taste good to me. (I really don't like any sort of almonds or peanuts or anything and most of the "healthy" ones usually have something like that in them) I never really found a good recipe, so I decided to make my own chex mix instead.  I did 4 basic ingredients: corn chex mix (the cheap version), cheerioes (again, the cheap version), fat free pretzel sticks and raisins.
I have a hard time when chex mix gets over salty or something because the saltiness of peanuts or something gets all over the rest of the ingredients and it just tastes gross to me. With the things I picked they all tend to not get all jumbled together and works better for me. I know that's being extremely picky, but hey, I'm the one that has to eat it.

The other thing I figured out (which shouldn't have been so hard to think of) is pre-making salads. I don't mean the whole thing, but I like to use lettuce and spinach when I make a salad but hate the process of tearing up the lettuce (since I buy a head of lettuce, not a bag) and such, so I started putting them in ziploc bags together so I can just grab one of the bags when I want to make a salad. (Yes, I am that lazy and sometimes just that on the go that I don't have time to do this at the moment) Since I just started doing that I'm not really sure how long a bag will last before getting gross, but I'm guessing at least 5 days. Hopefully!

I also picked up a bunch of more fruits and veggies and got them all washed and prepared and put into separate containers and ziploc bags to make them more grab-able for me. Hopefully that helps keep me on track!!

It also sucks lately that I haven't had time to do my work outs I was doing. Since I get off work at 5 and usually have rehearsal right now at 6 until around 8:30-9 it doesn't leave much time to do a workout. Busy busy busy busy busy!!!!

The photography thing has been going well though!! So far I have two weddings photographed and have my 3rd one this weekend! Then some other stuff coming up later in the summer. Now all I have to do is sit my butt down at get some editing done! Learning photoshop is no easy task!!!

Hoping everyone is doing well!
Much love,

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hello Sailor!

So...I've been re-doing my bathroom decor...I have been overly obsessed with this whole nautical theme lately!! I just can't seem to get enough and I'm not quite sure why!! So after seeing this shower curtain on eBay:
 I knew I just had to do this!! I started searching for photos of nautical pin-up girls and one of them I found was this one:
Which is where I got the inspiration for the sign. This sign was the first thing (besides the shower curtain) I decided on and made for the decor change. 
I'm still shocked at how well this turned out for me since I made it. Usually the ideas I have for projects are amazing in my head and then just flop while I'm doing it or just don't look right at all, but I LOVE this one!!! I'll be posting a tutorial of it soon!
(For pricing guide, the letters were $0.99 a piece but were on sale when I bought them so I get them all for $6.53, the paint was $0.99 a piece and the twine was $1.47 but I got it on sale for $0.73 and the mounting squares I used to attach it to the wall were $1.00 for the pack from the dollar store)

I tried as hard as possible to spend as little as possible with this re-do. Especially since I have been trying to decorate my house and the one room that was completely done is the one room I made a specific theme for and re-did....yup.....of course that would happen...
But all in all (as of right now and I'm pretty much done unless I find something else I "have" to have) I spent $130....a bit steeper than I wanted to spend, but....oh well....a couple of the things I already had (just a couple) so I didn't spend the money for them at this time....

Starting from where you first walk in:
I bought this captain's wheel at Hobby Lobby. I wanted to do quite a few DIY projects to try to keep the cost down, but this was one I just bought. It was originally $19.99 but it was half off. 

This is the corner of the counter by the door. The thing everything is sitting on is one of those wicker place mats that's blue. I found it at a thrift store quite a while back for $0.25. The blue vase I found at another thrift store for $2. The two clear vases I already had from my previous decor in the bathroom but were only $1.00 each at Wal-Mart. In them I took some twine ($.073 at Hobby Lobby and the same stuff I used on the Hello Sailor sign) and dropped it into the vases. I just fed it in and let it all coil up as it went into the vase. Then I took another piece of the twine and tied a small charm around each, a sparrow on the shorter one and a skeleton key on the taller one. The white balls are actually cat toys I found at Pet Smart for $0.99 a piece. They have a little bell in it but thank goodness they don't make noise while sitting there! The other two tan balls I found at the thrift store for $0.25 a piece. Here's a closer look at the two clear vases.

For the soap dispenser I found this blue one at the dollar store and just used some of the twine to attach the anchor charm to it.

These two little nautical boxes I just found at the thrift store for $1.00 each. They sit on the other side of the counter.

This is the shelf that hangs above the toilet. It's actually a small cabinet that my dad made and was in the bathroom of the house I grew up in. My parents built their own house and didn't need this so they put it in my bathroom for me. The book on the left I found at the thrift store for $1.00, the glass in the middle I made using items from the dollar store: glass stones, sand, glass jar and string. The small red anchor box I found at Target in the $1.00 section before I even decided to re-do my bathroom in a nautical theme!

Here's a closer look at the glass.
The little hole to the right of the glass my dad had put in the shelf for my mom to store her hair dryer in. Pretty genius huh? ;) Yes, I'm biased and think my dad is the most amazing father of all times.  The only reason I don't use it and covered it up with the anchor box is because I don't get ready in this bathroom, I get ready downstairs.

These little boxes I bought at Hobby Lobby for $1.49 a piece. They were blue and red already but not the shades I wanted, so I used the paint I had used for the letters on the Hello Sailor sign to paint them to match. I'm not sure if I want to just leave them here or do something else with them, I just thought they were cute and added to the nautical theme a bit. 

When we re-did the bathroom with the shower and flooring and such, we had to build out a little bit to allow for the wider bathtub, so I ended up with this little shelf. (The two clear vases before used to sit here) I made this "Message in a Bottle" for it. I had the wine bottle already. I just rolled up a wrinkled piece of packing paper and put it in the bottle, then tied some twine around it and attached a little compass charm to jazz it up a bit.

Here's that corner of the room with the shower curtain! (The shower curtain I found on eBay for $25) I know the shower curtain is maybe a little risque....but I love it!!!! I have always loved pin-ups and it was the perfect thing for my new bathroom decor. You can also see the entire cabinet in this picture.

This white shelf I already had (purchased it from Wal-Mart for around $12). From top to bottom, the blue mirror I already had (found at The Arc thrift store for $0.50). The small red knick knack by the mirror I found at Community Blessings thrift store for $0.25. The red and white rope was actually a dog toy I found at the dollar store. The two red baskets I found on clearance at Hobby Lobby, $4.08 for the smaller one and $4.76 for the larger one. The basket in the middle was $2.00 at Community Blessings thrift store. If I remember correctly there was a third red basket in a small size, but I like the difference in the baskets. The top red basket has some rolled washcloths in it. I bought two red washcloths, two blue washcloths and a hand towel in each color from Kmart for $12.58 all together. The middle basket holds extra shower products for guests if they ever need anything, and the bottom one holds toilet paper.

The Wal-Mart bag has the rest of the things I need to hang up yet. I have a small cast iron anchor (about 6" high and 4" wide) that I got at Hobby Lobby (was $3.99 but was half off when I bought it) that I need to hang above the door, and then I made some pin-up girl prints that I need to hang yet as well, just haven't had the means or the time yet. They will hang under the Hello Sailor sign. 
I also bought some netting from a gal on Bisman Online for $5 that she had used for a beach wedding and I'm going to try to hang it from the ceiling in some fashion to give it a nice look. 
The last thing I want to do is make a sign for the door. I was looking around on eBay to see if there was any other fun nautical stuff I could find and I ran across one of those gold brass signs that look like it goes on a ship of some sort. It said toilet and I thought that would be cute to put on the door. But then, I ran across one that said...poop deck!!! I busted out laughing to myself! I know that the bathroom in nautical terms is not the poop deck...but it makes me giggle so much!!! I was going to buy it, but it was only about 6" long and I wanted something a bit bigger to hang on the door so I'm going to make my own sign, just not 100% sure how yet haha!

Almost the only thing I didn't buy for this re-do was new towels (body towels) and new rugs. I would much rather get new ones, but I've already spent too much as it is and the grey ones work just fine! I'll post more pictures when the rest of the pin-up girl photos are up and such!!

Hope everyone's week is going well!!!

Much love,

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Wedding Season

We are in the midst of that time of year again! Wedding season!!! I have only begun doing photos on my own this year, but before that I worked with another photography company for three years helping with wedding photos. This is a list of things I have learned through that process about your wedding day. I have never attempted to plan a wedding and no, I don't know everything about weddings, but these are some of the tips I have learned from just doing photos for 3 1/2 years that brides (and grooms and bridal parties) should keep in mind.

1. Be prepared. Even if you are planning a wedding in a couple months instead of a year in advance, make sure you have everything prepared. The last thing you want to be doing is finishing bouquets or favors on the morning of your wedding day.

2. Delegate. If there are tasks that cannot be done until your wedding day (i.e. decorating the church/reception, picking up the flowers and/or cake, picking someone up from the airport) make sure you delegate these tasks to someone that day so you or your bridal party or parents do not have to worry about these things. You will want your parents and bridal party with you almost the entire day for photos. Try to give these tasks out to a person or persons who will not have anything else going on before the ceremony.

3. Have a wedding survival kit. A tote bag or clutch that will have anything you may need for last minute emergencies. Some recommendations to put in the survival bag:
Safety pins, a tide stick, oil blotting sheets, lip gloss and any other makeup you may need for touch-ups, bobby pins, a comb, perfume and deodorant, powder, needle and thread, breath mints, band-aids, aspirin/ibuprofen, lint roller
These are of course just suggestions, but better to be well prepared then not at all.

4. Make sure you eat!! Even if you aren't feeling hungry, make sure you eat. And drink lots of water! Keep yourself hydrated! No one wants anyone to pass out at a wedding!

5. Make a timeline. If you print out a timeline for when everyone needs to be at the ceremony for pictures beforehand, you won't have to worry about people calling you and trying to figure out when they need to be where. It may seem silly, but it will make the day run that much smoother.

6. Don't drink before the ceremony. It's fine to do just one drink before as a toast with your bridesmaids or groomsmen or something of the like, but make sure you limit yourself to that and only that. You will have a very long night ahead of you filled probably with everyone and their mom wanting to buy you a drink. Pace yourself. Yes, your wedding is a celebration and a party, but you want to remember it.

7. Lay everything out the night before. Every thing you will need that day have lain out and set aside so you don't forget anything. If everything is already out and ready to go, you won't have to think so much about making sure you have everything the next day.

8. Talk with the people involved in your wedding before the big day. EVERYONE!!! Make sure the bridal party knows what the day will all entail. Make sure your parents and family members know their roles and what time to be there. Talk with your photographer about what kind of photos you want, where and what time you need to start photos to be finished by the time the ceremony starts with some time in between to relax before the ceremony begins. The more you talk to people and make sure they all know what is going on and when, the less stress you will have on your wedding day.

9. Have a meeting with your photographer before the wedding day. Photos are usually something very important in a wedding and usually take up a good chunk of time of your day. Make sure you get a photographer that is willing to listen to you and work with you. As much as a photographer needs to be bossy and get everyone to pay attention and in a position to make your photos look good, they should still be able to work with you and make it a fun experience. Talk to them about your locations. If it isn't a location they are familiar with, try your best to tell them about it, or possibly take them to the location so they are prepared for the backgrounds and such they will have to work with. Make sure they know of any specific shots you want and talk to them about the feel of the wedding you want. Some people like really posed, traditional pictures, some don't. Make sure you get a photographer that is willing to do the types of photos you are looking for. Listen to your photographers suggestions as well. Don't let them run your wedding, but remember that they have usually done quite a few weddings and know what they are talking about.

10. If you and your fiance would rather not see each other before the ceremony, schedule your wedding accordingly. The photos of you and your fiance, the full bridal party, and the full family photos will not be able to be done until after the ceremony so have your ceremony earlier and make sure your guests are entertained or have a good cocktail hour at your reception area to accommodate the time it will take for you to get the rest of the photos you will need after the ceremony.

11. Remember that your guests are going to be waiting on you between the ceremony and reception. You don't want to make them wait too long. Yes, it's your day so you want to have it exactly your way, which is not a bad thing, just make sure you remember that your guests will be waiting on you for dinner. Try to only have an hour to an hour and a half in between when guests arrive at the reception to when dinner actually starts.

12. Delegate how you spend your money. Know your budget before you even start planning. Make a list of the things you want incorporated in your wedding, listing them from most important, to least important, and spend your money accordingly. This will help to insure you get the things at your wedding you really want while sticking to your budget. If photos are most important to you, do your research and spend the extra money on a good photographer. If you want the dance to be the focus, make sure you have a good band or dj. You get the point...

13. Make compromises. If you and your fiance can't compromise on things with the wedding, how are you going to compromise on things in life? If your fiance wants to wear camouflage tuxes, compromise and let him have camouflage vests or ties instead of tuxes. Just as an example. It's his wedding too.

14. Do a trial on your makeup and hair. And do not try any new products on the day of your wedding. Allergic reactions are not something you want to deal with on your wedding day! And make sure you know exactly how your hair is going to look for your wedding day, including any hair pieces you want and if you're going to have a veil.

15. Make it personal. Your wedding day is supposed to be about you and your fiance joining your lives and celebrating your love for one another. Have your wedding represent the two of you. Whether that be by location, food choices, your home-made wine, a slide show, a destination wedding, whatever it is, make sure the entire day is in celebration of the two of you and that it reflects that.

16. Have fun!!! You put in all the time and money to get your wedding just how you want it, now enjoy it!!! When the big day comes, don't let the little things bother you, it's not worth stressing over. If some big emergency comes up, make sure you have someone there to fix it. There shouldn't be anything you really need to worry about on your wedding day.

I hope these bits and pieces are able to help anyone heading out to plan their wedding this year or next or in the years to come!!! If anyone wants help with anything feel free to ask me! I kind of love weddings. :)

Hoping everyone's summer is starting off well and congratulations to all the newly married or about to be newly married couples!!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Life is crazy!!!

Life is so crazy busy for me right now I'm not even sure where to start with a new blog post!! Anyone that follows this blog probably follows my Facebook too so the life stuff is already out there, haha!

I am SOOOOO excited about my photography stuff taking off! Maybe not really fast, but it's taking off for sure!!! After doing my first two weddings I can officially say I think this is something I could make a career out of! If not a career than an amazing side job!!! It's something I definitely don't want to quit doing and want to do more and more! So now to get the word out there!! If anyone knows of anyone needing senior pictures, engagements, baby/pregnancy pictures, family photos or wedding pictures send them my way!!! My prices are reasonable and you still get some great photos!!! (At least I think so :P )

The diet and'm still being really cautious about what I eat and such (and still eating and drinking "bad" stuff here and there like I knew I would) but the exercise has (as I imagined) proved problematic. I just have trouble fitting it in sometimes! Yeah, I can do quick 15 minute things here and there, but that just never feels like enough and I never really remember to do them. And of course there's no way I can drag myself out of bed any early than need be...and when I do get in a work out, I feel the need to shower immediately after because I sweat so much with the workouts I do. I know you don't have to sweat to get a work out, but it just makes me feel like I get a better work out haha! Also, my knees have been giving me more problems lately and acting up and hurting and such so doing some of the workouts on the Jillian Michaels DVDs is really painful :(
Some things that have been working for dieting. The detox tea I bought was not good as hot tea, so I started taking 4 tea bags and putting them in a 1 quart pitcher of water and setting them out to make "sun tea". Then I would put it in the fridge to make a cold tea and to drink it I would fill a glass with 3/4 tea and 1/4 lemonade for "sweetener". It has a taste and is still the detoxifying tea but also isn't overly high with calories since the tea really doesn't have any calories and the little bit of lemonade doesn't add much for calories either.
I have been doing lunch at home a lot more and if I do eat fast food I do my best to eat at Subway (which can of course be just as bad for you as McDonald's or something of the like) but I have been doing my best to make a healthy supper and have leftovers or make sandwiches and such at home. Also, since it's summer fresh fruits and veggies are so much better right now!!! The fruit/veggie market that's not far from my house is now open and I've already made one trip there and plan on another one very soon!

Also, I have been getting more and more focused on getting my house actually decorated and organized to be a functioning, clean, appealing place to live. Drew and I just spent about $1300 on a new bed, box spring, frame, sheets, pillows and comforter. Worth it? YES! Oh my gosh! The sheets we got are made from bamboo and are the absolute most comfortable sheets I've ever slept in! Expensive, yes. Worth it, yes!

I have also set up a cleaning schedule for myself. I will do an entire post on that later though after having been on it for a bit to see how it actually works for me. The other thing I have been trying to focus on with the organizing portion is my business and craft room. I just can't seem to keep that dang room organized!! So I have been on the hunt for book cases and storage bins to try to help me out! If I find something that works there will be a blog on that as well.

Last but not least for right now is the decorating. I have been trying for a long time to figure out a good decor theme for my place and have narrowed it down to picking color schemes for each room and going from there. The kitchen (as of right now) is going to be pink and green, the bedroom black and teal, and the living room is to be determined. The upstairs bathroom is already teal and grey....I think I would probably do my entire house in teal but then everything would end up looking the same I think and I would probably not enjoy it much. The bedroom may go to champagne and black just because I think that would be a nice neutral scheme since the sheets we got are a dark purple and the comforter is a light teal. But they look good together so I'll either stick with that or go with other neutrals in the bedroom. Hopefully.....I always get so many thoughts going on in my head on what I would like to do and then they either never get done or never turn out how I thought they would.

Well now that this blog has become a jumble of nonsense and things that probably don't really matter...