10.24.2014

Get Fit Friday: Guest Post

Today, I am so excited to have Amy Meyer share with us for Get Fit Friday! Her story is so encouraging and the recipe she is sharing looks absolutely delectable! Take it away, Amy!
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I was so excited when Amanda asked if I’d like to contribute to Get Fit Fridays! I am so happy to be here! I have a story I’d like to share with you, a super simple lip smackin’ recipe & a few thoughts to refresh your soul.

Before I jump in, let me tell you a little about me and how this whole fitness & nutrition passion of mine came to be. I have always been a fairly active person. As in, I played sports in high school, I haven’t ever been able to sit still, and I have a 3 year old and an 18 month old. < Enough said, right? ;-) Well, within that less than two year time frame where I had my baby girls, I weighed more than I had ever weighed in my life, still fitting in maternity pants seven months post-partum, my hormones were out.of.whack; I am pretty sure I had postpartum depression but I was too stubborn to see a doctor (ask my husband, not really sure how the man stood by me, bless him) and at that seven months postpartum (with my youngest) I decided I had had enough. I felt absolutely terrible. I wasn’t  exercising at all,eating habits consisted of spaghetti bake, mac & cheese, Arby’s, Sonic, Bojangles, and McDonald’s. NO wonder I felt bad, right? One day I saw a friend’s Instagram post about Beachbody’s Focus T25 and Shakeology. I contacted her and 2 days later made my purchase. I decided I didn’t care how much it cost, or what it took, I had 25 minutes a day to dedicate to working out and I HAD to do something to feel better and treat others around me better. I knew my diet and lack of exercise were the root of the problem. So, fast forward one year. I am now a health & fitness {Team Beachbody} coach, a momtrepreneur, and a much, much happier person. Here’s the thing, if mama ain’thappy, ain’t nobody happy. Can I get an AMEN? Absolutely, right? So this mama made a change. And I haven’t looked back. Exactly one year later, I’ve lost 30 pounds and 30 inches and truly feel better than I ever have in my life. 




I have absolutely found my purpose in helping others get started or continue their fitness and nutrition journey. I don’t believe our health journeys are all about the physical. Yes, it is true if we don’t feel like we “look” good, we don’t feel good, but truth be told, it ALL starts from within. The decision to make a change, the decision to make healthy choices in place of the not-so-healthy ones, the decision to work on ourselves spiritually, mentally and emotionally so that we can get our minds in the right place to work on the physical. Then we can work on the physical and help along the fitness side of things. I am learning that life is all about balance. With our minds, jobs, spouse, children, families, friends, workouts, nutrition. It all has a place, it’s just finding that balance that is sometimes difficult. Let me tell you though, once you start working on YOU, from the inside and out, things just fall into place. You’ll find that balance. I love this quote, so much truth in it: “It all begins with you. If you do not care for yourself, you will not be strong enough to take care of anything in your life.” -Leon Brown



I have a few thoughts to leave you with.

Take Time For You.
Accept Yourself.
Love Yourself.
Invest in Yourself.
Be Grateful.
Smile.
Never Give Up.

Speaking of taking care of yourself, I have a monthly 10-day long “focus+refresh” {free} private support group on Facebook where we commit to focusing on ourselves for 10 minutes a day, connect with other women in the group, have a daily “soul challenge” and a daily photo challenge…..we share stories, successes, motivational stories, and even fears, struggles and dark times we have been through. It is a place to connect with other women and to take a few minutes out of each day to focus on ourselves and check out of the group feeling refreshed. Please feel free to reach out to me if you’d like to join an upcoming group.

Guilt-Free Almond Bliss Bites
12 Whole Pitted Dates (I use the Publix  brand)
1 tsp. extra virgin coconut oil (I love Nutiva!) or 1 tsp. coconut butter
1 tsp. almond butter
1 tsp. pure maple syrup (organic if possible)
2 tsp. shredded unsweetened coconut (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
12 whole almonds

Melt coconut oil (or coconut butter and almond butter. Slice dates in half. Combine coconut oil (or coconut butter), maple syrup, almond butter, 1 tsp. of shredded unsweetened coconut and mix well. Spoon small amounts into the hollow pits of the dates. Place one almond on top of each date. Sprinkle remaining shredded coconut on top. Store in airtight container in the refrigerator. (Note: next time I make them, I want to try dipping them in dark chocolate after they cool for a bit. YUM!)

ENJOY! :-)

Thanks so much, Amanda, for having me today! :-)

Let’s Connect! Let me know you found me by leaving a comment with the hashtag #cultivatecreate and #getfitfriday

IG: @getfitwithamymeyer




About Amy:
Work at home mom of two entertaining & energetic little girls, wife to a hard-working man, fitness+health+life coach, former marketing & public relations career woman & professional photographer. Living & working to find the balance within while inspiring others along the way.
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Amy, thank you so much for sharing with us today! I am so encouraged and inspired by your story!  

10.23.2014

Molly Wins

At the beginning of the fall season, I had grand ideas about how my fall display would look. It involved hay bales and corn stalks. Pumpkins and mums would be placed ever so strategically among the straw, drawing us in, making us want to sigh and declare, "I love fall!" 

Little did I know the struggle I would have regarding my beautiful outdoor display. Shortly after setting up the display at our side entry, our dog Molly began using the hay bales as her bed. Then she decided that the pumpkins were her new favorite play things. (In case you missed it, you can see the original fall display and more about Molly's bad straw bale destroying, pumpkin picking habits HERE.)


Earlier this week, we decided to concede defeat and get rid of the hay bales.  I regretfully put them away and rearranged, the best way I could, all of the pumpkins and mums that I had on hand. The cornstalks, what was left after Molly decided that she enjoyed chewing on them, were placed on either side of the front door. 


We added a couple of Jack-o-lanterns, but other than that, I just used things I had on hand. 



If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen me documenting Molly's bad habits there. But now, I have video proof.  (And don't mind the cackling in the background. My hubby and daughters were watching AFV and apparently it was pretty hilarious.)

Click HERE to view video!





Obviously, we love our puppy. She gets lots of belly rubs----her favorite. As I type this, there are small pumpkins littering my front walkway since Molly got a whim to play with them early this morning.  But, I have learned my lesson this year and won't attempt to decorate with hay bales again. And will have to be more careful where I put our pumpkins. Man, I hate losing to a dog. 

10.22.2014

What You Wish Wednesday #23


What You Wish Wednesday (#WYWW) is here!  I love, love, love seeing all of the amazing posts linked up each week. There is such a wide variety of topics! Here are a couple of my faves from last week!

//Via Christianity Cove//
How cute is this yarn turkey?  That would be an easy project for my kiddos, and I think they would really enjoy it. 

//Via Little Brags//
I really wish I could go shopping with Christine of Little Brags. She lives in the Northwest, so it may be a little hard for me to get there from the Southeast. But, I can dream can't I? Look at all of those goodies she brought home from a recent shopping trip. Go see how she used them in her home. 

Really quick, I wanted to remind you all to enter the Jamberry Nails Fall Prize Pack Giveaway. You can enter here

Okay, let's get this party started!

WYWW DETAILS:

  • SHARE A RECENT POST FROM YOUR BLOG. 
  • INCLUDE THE WYWW BUTTON (CODE BELOW) AND/OR A VISIBLE LINK-BACK TO THIS POST.  
  • CHECK OUT A FEW OF THE SHARED LINKS.
  • BY SUBMITTING A LINK, YOU ARE GIVING ME AUTHORIZATION TO FEATURE YOUR POST.  IF YOUR POST IS FEATURED, I WILL INCLUDE A PICTURE AND A LINK TO YOUR SITE TO SHARE THE LOVE!
  • FOLLOW ALONG: 


10.21.2014

Fall Jamberry Nails Giveaway

Have you tried Jamberry Nails? I love, love, love the colorful nail wraps. I had my first experience with them a few months ago and have been hooked since. (You can read my post about my first experience in Jamberry nail wraps here.)

Aren't these wraps just adorable? I love all the different ways you can accent an outfit with them.....







Headed to a college game or a tailgate party?  You can show your spirit with the collegiate line of Jamberry nail wraps. So adorable. 

My friend, Rachel, (you met her yesterday in my Shopping in Alabama post) is a Jamberry Independent Consultant. I did my first and only online party with her and it was so fun! Book a party with her now and receive a free gift. Also, if you want to order, you can buy three sheets and get one free. Great deal! It's a great time to shop for all of those holiday gatherings and parties. 


Now for the fun part! I am happy to offer a special Jamberry Nails giveaway----a $35 value. Enter below.  Also, go to my Facebook page to find out how to get an extra entry.


(I have not been compensated for this post....all opinions are my own.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

10.20.2014

Shopping in Alabama: Troy



Last Friday, I had such a wonderful time shopping in Troy, Alabama. It is only about forty-five minutes from my home, but I rarely go there.  Troy (State as it was then) University was where I went to college and I got to meet up with one of my college buddies, Rachel, who now lives there.  We. Had. So. Much. Fun!

Other than corresponding on Facebook, Rachel and I had not been in contact in years. I don't remember the exact day or time that we met, but it was our Freshman year and probably at the BCM.  And let me just tell you how refreshing it is to have a friendship that stands the test of time.  It honestly felt like no time had passed at all. There was an ease and familiarity even though years had passed.  I think those types of friendships----the ones where you just "click" and "get" each other-----are few and far between, and I am thankful to have rekindled this friendship that embodies those things.  We laughed all day!  Rachel even joked we might need Depends next time we get together! (Haha---Mom humor.)

But back to our shopping experience.  I will say Troy has really grown since I was in college there. Those years ago (I won't say exactly how many, because a lady never reveals her age, right?) we didn't have all the cute little shops that now adorn the square in downtown Troy. I parked my car in the center of the square and walked to all the shops.....and there were enough places to look to keep us busy for a few hours. 


I started off at Perfectly Imperfect. I was familiar with the blog, but had never been to the store until this trip. I loved it. It was curated really well, the displays were inviting, and the items were not your run-of-the-mill home decor. It had me imagining and dreaming up what I could do in my own home. They do sell the full line of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint. I have used the chalk paint, but never the milk paint, so I bought some in Trophy, which is a light grey. There are quite a few pieces of furniture sitting in my garage----and have been there for months----that really need some TLC. I can't wait to get started and give the milk paint a try. 

//Via Candace Nelson Photography//
Next, was E+Me. I had been following this shop on Instagram and was so excited to finally see the items in person. It is a high-end children's boutique. Everything in there had me ooohing and aaahing.  Right now they are having a Persnickety trunk show through November first. I may not shop here all the time, given that the items are on the higher end of the price point, but I would definitely shop here for holiday or special occasion items. 




After dragging myself longingly from E+Me, we made our way to The Confetti Crate. I loved this store. Here again, I had been following them on Instagram and couldn't wait to see it in person. This store had a little of everything....from jewelry and clothes to home and holiday items. I found the "deal of the day" here. I purchased the large seeded glass vase for only $10! It had been marked down from $39. Steal! If you can't tell, I was very excited!

Here is how I have displayed it in my home for fall: 










Here we are with our items from Hazel's. I got a cute pair of houndstooth earrings to wear to an Alabama game and Rachel got the cutest monogrammed bracelet! This store had beautiful jewelry and accessories at great prices! I got lots of Christmas gift ideas there. 

I spotted this antique glove mold at Troy Antiques. I thought it would be cute to display jewelry, but I couldn't convince Rachel. If it had been a little more inexpensive, I probably would've bought it. This store had a lot of curiosities. I enjoyed browsing in there. 




These pink pumpkins, painted for Breast Cancer Awareness month, welcomed us in to Glow. I really enjoyed looking in here, too. It is a beauty boutique, selling makeup and bath and body products, but they also have lots of clothing, jewelry, and accessories. We had a blast in here, as well. 

Fat Girl Soap???

This gorgeous arrangement adorned the back of the store. It was absolutely beautiful!


Cake pops while we shop? Don't mind if we do!


Cheers!




 We had so much fun!  We had lunch at Mama Goldberg's, which is right next door to Glow. It was delicious. It was really nice to be able to park my car and just walk to all of these stores. I highly recommend shopping in Troy and checking out all of these stores.  You won't be disappointed. I will definitely be going back soon!

For more information on these stores, visit their Facebook pages:
Perfectly Imperfect
E+Me
The Confetti Crate
Hazel's
Troy Antiques
Glow

10.16.2014

We Are Not Competing

I guess I shouldn't be surprised by the way women treat each other sometimes. I have always been one to believe the best about someone, to optimistically hope for the good in every situation. I think sometimes I forget we are imperfect people living in a fallen world. So, when I do witness less than becoming behavior from grown women, it does kind of take me by surprise. I know it shouldn't. Maybe I'm a bit naive. 

But, can I just talk to you for a minute? Woman to woman? 

Why do we feel the need to tear each other down, especially when a peer starts to excel or succeed at something? Why, when we see someone who is reaching for her dreams, do we want to nitpick and talk about her behind her back? 

It's almost as if women will cheer each other on......at first. Then, when we see that someone is going a little further than we do, or lose a little more weight, or get that promotion we wanted, or, or, or.....we bristle, get jealous, and resent them for their accomplishments and successes. We do the opposite of encourage and exhort.....we want to sabotage and tear down. 

That is prideful and selfish. That is not wanting the spotlight on anyone but ourselves.  And that is not how we are called to act. 

//Via//
In a perfect world, our sisters in Christ would rejoice with each other as we succeed. We would cheer each other on. We would rally behind and support, helping each other reach our goals. We would esteem others, selflessly putting them ahead of ourselves.  We wouldn't secretly gloat when we see them stumble. We would be the first to help them back up.
//Via//

Ladies, we are not competing with each other. There is no need for pettiness and bitterness. I am not claiming to be perfect. We all struggle sometimes. When we do get that twinge of jealously, let's quickly put it away. When we are tempted to say a not-so-kind word about someone, let's check our tongues and our hearts.  Let's love one another. How can we expect others to receive the love of Christ if we are backbiting gossips who compete with one another for every little thing? That is not love, that is hatefulness. 


//Via//
I really have no interest whatsoever with competing with any other woman. Why can't we all succeed? Why can't we all "make it?" Why can't we be glad for others? God has gifted us all in different ways, and we won't succeed in the same ways. If we are secure in our position in Christ, there is no place for petty jealousy and needless competition. There is only room for love.

Linking up to: What You Wish Wednesday

10.15.2014

What You Wish Wednesday #22


Last week was our biggest link up yet. We had so many great posts shared! Here are my top three from last week!


//Via Three Kids and a Fish//
These little buckeye bats are so adorable.....great for that Halloween party!


// Via A Hot Southern Mess//
My family loves camping and I loved this fall camping survival guide from A Hot Southern Mess. (Fall is, after all, the best time to go camping.)


//Via No Bohns About It//
I could so relate to this post.  What mom hasn't forgotten to clean out a school folder or forgotten other such pertinent details. I know I have. I love that she decided to turn her focus positive and end with 1o Ways I'm Winning. 



If you were featured, grab a button!

 photo featured_zpsa75aa649.png


                                                                                               

Okay, let's get this party started!

WYWW DETAILS:

  • SHARE A RECENT POST FROM YOUR BLOG. 
  • INCLUDE THE WYWW BUTTON (CODE BELOW) AND/OR A VISIBLE LINK-BACK TO THIS POST.  
  • CHECK OUT A FEW OF THE SHARED LINKS.
  • BY SUBMITTING A LINK, YOU ARE GIVING ME AUTHORIZATION TO FEATURE YOUR POST.  IF YOUR POST IS FEATURED, I WILL INCLUDE A PICTURE AND A LINK TO YOUR SITE TO SHARE THE LOVE!
  • FOLLOW ALONG: 

 photo WYWW1_zps9fe7dbe8.png


                                                                                                     

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