stop negating, start accepting

back on january 1, i quit with the “i’m going to give up diet coke” or “i’m not going to eat a single bite of ice cream”  new years resolutions and decided i wanted to choose something more meaningful.

i, like many other women, am terrible at receiving compliments.  before you can finish giving the compliment, i’ve already started negating it in some way or the other.  just the other day at work, a co-worker complimented me on my weight-loss and i, quickly, told her “well it’s not cause i’ve lost any weight in the last couple days, it’s probably just this shirt i’m wearing”.  why?  why did i feel the need to say that?  she was being genuine (she’s one to call me out on the good and bad, which i like about her) and i was too uncomfortable with myself to simply say “thank you”.

then, yesterday, i read heather’s blog post about the same. exact. thing. and while reading, i realized that others had written about this very same topic, as well.  it’s everywhere.  so why do we feel like we can’t just receive a compliment in today’s society?  i posted a comment on how i’m horrible at accepting compliments and woke up to this reply:


i couldn’t help but smile, and even after a night of tossing, turning, and awful nightmares/hallucinations, my day had already started out awesome.  so thanks, heather!  i owe my good mood to you, today!



here’s the thing about me, if i think i’m having a good make-up or hair day, i’m quick to throw up a selfie on instagram. it’s a good feeling to receive a compliment on them  (you can call me vein if you want) but i don’t put the pictures out there because i’m fishing for compliments. i know, however, that in THAT moment, i felt really good about myself and i owned it.

some days, i do truly believe i’m a beautiful person, hell, i’ve even recently entered into a contest to be considered as a plus size model.  but some days, i hate every single thing about myself and pick myself apart, and as soon as someone else says something nice, all i want to do is bash myself.

i can honestly say that i love my smile (that never received braces).  i love my eyebrows (that took a few years of tweezing to finally master). i love my eyes (that can change colors from green to hazel to brown, depending on the day).  i love my hair (that is thick and wavy and takes entirely too much time to style, on certain days). I LOVE MYSELF. 



over the years,  i learned to stop focusing on what others think and truly focus on what i think.  i’ve weeded out quite a few friends because i felt like all they did was bring me down and make me feel bad about myself.  i even had to stop visiting my parents as much because all the negativity was too much for me to handle.

so, obviously, i broke my new year’s resolution, although every time i break it, i’m at least conscious of what i’m doing.  hopefully, by next year, i’ll be able to simply say “thank you”.  i’m at a better place today than i was a year ago, and hopefully in the next year, i’ll be in an even better place.  i want to be able to look in the mirror and ALWAYS be happy with what i see.  i want to receive a compliment from someone and ALWAYS mean the thank you that follows.  i want to ALWAYS love ME.  and i’m slowly making the changes in my life that will make all those reality.

thanks for listening. 🙂


Q: how are you at receiving a compliment?  if you’re good at it, have you always been like that?



festival of the grape

hey guys!  how was your weekend?  mine was jam packed with fun, food, and friends!

friday night was spent with family at my niece’s pre-school’s fall festival.  they had crafts and games and ended with a parade.  it was cute. but there were waaaayy too many people cramped in small areas and i had some serious anxiety going on.  (i guess i need to get used to it, because babies will be coming before i know it and i’ll be taking my own kids to their fall festival!) after that, we went to outback for dinner.  i had the cobb salad and was pretty disappointed, but i wasn’t expecting much to begin with.

saturday, i woke-up bright and early to straighten up the house then get ready for Powhatan County’s annual wine festival!  its the go-to wine festival in this area, but this was actually my first time going, or even really trying wines for that matter!  i’m more likely to try a new beer versus trying a new wine, but i’d like to branch out some and see if i like it.

the festival is only three miles from my house, so Barbara, her mom, a friend, and i headed out our door around 10:55 a.m.  there were already A LOT of people there by the time we got there!  we parked and headed to the front gate where you show your tickets and grab you tasting glass.


after we picked up our glasses and got our wristbands, it was time to try some wine!  i am a complete newby at all of this and my memory is horrible, so i wont be able to tell you all the details, please forgive me.  there were tons of vendors set up, from artwork to wine-glass-holder-necklaces, along with the obvious wine vendors.


the wine vendors had samplings of anywhere from three to eight wines.  most had red, whites, sweets, and sangrias.  its mostly Virginia wineries which is nice to know its all made local.  some of my favorites included Cooper Vineyards, James River Cellars, and Byrd Cellars.


as you can see, the weather was not in our favor that day.  all week the forecast said 70* and sunny, then, friday rolled around and the forecast changed to 65* and rainy.  it was never a heavy rain, just enough to piss you off.  it surely didn’t stop people from coming out and trying some wine, though!


each winey had a list of the wines you were tasting, so i made note of which wines i liked and which ones i didn’t.  i noticed that the majority of the ones i really liked were a blend of vidal blanc, chardonel, and something else.  they usually had other fruity notes, like peaches and pineapple, and were sweet white wines, but not too sweet. just kind of refreshing. i also enjoyed most of the sangrias.

byrd cellars had sweet apple wine that was amazing.  i plan on visiting them for a tasting sometime in the near future because i only got to try a few of their wines.  from their website:

Sweet Apple – Made from Virginia cider house apples. Light, fruity, and slightly sweet.  The apple juice comes from a cider house in Amhurst county.  We purchase the juice as the apples are being pressed at harvest time, begin the fermentation process at the cider house and transport it back to our winery to finish the process.  The apples are a wonderful blend of such great apples as pipin, fugi, yellow delicious and more.”

i really wanted a chance to try all the wines, and i’m glad i did, because i really got to see which ones i liked and which ones i didn’t care for.  one winery, peaks of otter, had a light chili pepper wine, which was served with a squeeze of cheese.  spicy wine, i did NOT care for.  it almost reminded me of the master cleanse – lemonade drink i tried for about 3 days.


i ended up purchasing wine from cooper vineyards called rhapsody.  from the website:

Sweet:  Rhapsody – Our refreshing blend of Vidal Blanc, Chardonel, and Viognier. At 3% residual sugar, with notes of peach and honeysuckle, Rhapsody pairs well with Thai food and sunny afternoons.”

its a sweet wine, but i found it more refreshing than overly sweet.  i guess i’ll be able to give a better description once i drink more than a sample, but i’m excited to break open my bottle.


we stayed from 11-3 p.m. and then headed to a local restaurant for dinner.  i had a blackened and bleu burger, but it was so salty, i could barely eat it.  we got home and hung out a little longer with the fire going, since it was so cold and drizzly out.

scout was happy to see the fireplace back up and running.  the kid loves a fire.  i catch him some nights with his foot actually propped in the fireplace.


sunday, i stayed in bed until 12 p.m. sorryimnotsorry.  it felt soooo good to sleep in.  theres only been a few weekends, over the past few months, where i’ve been able to sleep in, so when i get the chance, i take it.  it was a nice relaxing sunday which included noodles & company for lunch, the movies to see carrie (don’t waste your money), and chicken noodle soup (GO MAKE THIS SOUP) + more movies (hunger games & act of valor) later that night.

all-in-all it was a really great weekend!! did you do anything fun this weekend? 

five things friday

hey y’all!  how are ya?  happy it’s friday?  i know i am.  i had monday off work for the holiday, but this 4 day work week has been dragggggging.  i thought i’d do a light post with four lists of five for you.

five most recent pins:


  1. this hair!  i’m actually dying my hair a deep purplish hue (kinda like this) nov 2 and adding bangs!  i always want to do something different, but never get the guts to do it once i’m in the seat.  i cant wait to see how i look with both of these changes!
  2. this. pizza w. fig preserves, caramelized onions and chicken sausages by Bev Cooks.
  3. pitbull dalmation mix.  is there anything cuter than this?!
  4. these highlights.  very subtle!  i want to be more adventurous with my hair. i’m tired of it being cookie cutter all the time!
  5. this tribal/aztec cardigan.  i’m currently obsessed with all things aztec and tribal themed.  along with ikat and chevron.  and polka dots. i cant get enough of it!

five most recent purchases:


  1. this cardigan.  like i said, i’m obsessed with tribal patterns.  i saw this sweater at wet seal and scooped it up, quick!  when does shopping at wet seal become age inappropriate?  hopefully not until i’m 26 (in a month).
  2. a fireplace gas key.  nothing fun here, the pervious owner didn’t leave one with the house, so instead of struggling with tools i had on hand, i got one for about $20. the joys of adulthood.
  3. dinner from McAlister’s Deli.  they seriously have the. best. salads.  it’s a chain restaurant, but doesn’t feel like one, which is something i really like.
  4. air filters and some random items from Lowe’s.  again, nothing fun here.  just maintaining the house!  we’re actually re-doing the laundry room (we’ve already installed tile), so i’ll have to show you a before and after once it gets done.  which should be sometime soon!
  5. this chicago bears shirt.  i don’t normally buy stuff like this often, but its barbara’s fav team and i thought it looked kinda cute.  i am by no means a football fan, but i will root for the redskins when they’re on because my uncle, who lived with us growing up, was a die-hard skins fan.

five dogs on my wish list (note:  i plan on adopting from here on out, so i don’t know how likely any of these will ever be, but these are my current favorite ‘future’ dogs).


  1. corgis.  i have become OBSESSED.  i used to think they were funny looking, but then i realized it was the exact same dog as scout, except shorter ears (and no tail).  the more i see them, the more i love them.
  2. french bulldogs.  these stocky little guys have won over my heart.  i need one before i die.
  3. newfoundland. i volunteered at an animal hospital growing up and one of the dogs i helped out with was a newfoundland puppy.  they grow up HUGE, but i love big dogs.  i also love short dogs.  i don’t discriminate.
  4. bloodhound.  one of my friend’s has one named jeb and he is the sweetest thing i’ve ever met.  hes full of energy and reminds me a lot of a taller scout.  i think i’m partial to hound dogs.
  5. great dane.  i’ve always been in awe at the size of these dogs.  they’re adorable too.


five meals i want to make:

  1. grilled hawaiian pizza burritos.  pineapple makes everything better.  i’m semi-obsessed.
  2. quick & clean chicken noodle soup.  clean. simple. tasty. how much better could it get?!
  3. white chicken quinoa chili.  its chili season.. do i need another reason?
  4. cheddar chive pancakes.  these neeeeed to happen, stat!
  5. mini cheddar sweet potato and chorizo shepherds pie.  long title but they look amazing!  comfort food for the win.


now your turn!  list off 5 things from your own list.. or choose from one of mine!


DIY halloween wreath

hey there!  i didn’t forget about this little blog of mine, life has continued to be crazy, so i promise, i’m dropping in as much as i can. hopefully, everything will start to slow down and i’ll get to post regularly, like before.

i dropped in to show you the halloween wreath i made last night with the help of some inspiration via pinterest.  here is my ‘wreathspiration’:


and here is my version, with step-by-step directions:


first, you’ll need to gather your supplies (shown below).  i picked up the skull, originally brown, awhile back when halloween stuff had just started to show up at Jo-Ann’s.   to make it silver, i simply sprayed it with some metallic spray paint from Lowe’s that i had laying around the house.

last week i picked up the rest of my supplies, which included: foam wreath (i wanted one with rounded edges, but after searching two stores, i settled for this one).  i also picked up two spools of ribbon, one white and one black, to wrap around the wreath.  the inspiration looks like it may have been felt (maybe?), but i like the way mine turned out just as well, so whatever you can find will work.

that other spool of ribbon down there is glitter ribbon to make the bow. (note: Barbara is an expert bow maker, so she actually made the bow on the finished product.  i have no clue how she does it, but i saw plenty of pre-made bows at Jo-Ann’s for a decent price, which i would have had to snag up if it weren’t for her.)

the only tools i used for this project were scissors and a glue gun.


next, i glued the two ribbons together, overlapping some, so that they would be easier to start wrapping.


then, glue the ribbon onto the wreath and get to wrapping!  i would periodically glue the ribbon to the wreath so it wasn’t just ‘sitting’ on top of the foam.


soon, it will start to come together and look like this:


here is what my wreath looked like after the whole thing was wrapped.  i ran out of black ribbon on the last wrap, so that’s why there’s more white at the bottom center.  i knew i would be covered by the bow and skull, so i wasn’t that worried.


barbara worked her bow-making-magic, or if it were just me, this is where i would tell you i hot glued my store made bow onto the wreath.


finally, i hot glued the skull onto the wreath, making sure that i didn’t set it too far back, so that it would sit flush on the front door.  i let it sit to dry overnight and will be hanging it on the door tonight when i get home!


this whole project took about 15 minutes and cost around $20 with some coupons i had.  i know all the wreaths i look at cost a lot more, so i would definitely say this is worth the time and effort!  it’s not exactly the same as my ‘wreathspiration’  but i love it.  feel free to use any colors you want here, purple and orange, orange and black, black and red.. the possibilities are endless!

wreath8 happy halloween!

Q:  have you made any crafts for halloween?  did you have inspiration or did you just wing it?

iphone, lately.

hey guys! i didn’t fall off the face of the earth, promise!  it’s been CRAZY busy in my world with traveling to the baby shower, work conference, catching up on work i missed, and then enjoying life this weekend, but i’m still doing great!  here are some snapshots of the last couple of days since we last talked (i apologize if you follow me on instagram and have already seen these!).

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(bacon filled pancakes)

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(glow in the dark sparkles!)

that’s all i have for you, today!  i promise i’ll be back sometime this week with an update on how everything is going!