A lunch break blogger, just writing to hear herself talk.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Friday 5

1. My new form of cardio that I don't hate at all:

I just set the incline to as high as the treadmill will go (this one went to 15) and then I just climb. I feel like the thing is vertical but when I get off, I realize it's not that impressive of an incline. My heart rate gets up there but I can easily go 20 minutes, huffing and puffing, without hating my life or swearing off working out forever (typical reactions I have when I get on the treadmill). Also, it works the booty and legs more than just regular running, so hey!

2. New hardware for the kitchen, baby! These gold balls have been the bane of my existence in the kitchen (along with our other banes of existence: wallpaper, orange-y toned cabinets, the faucet that sprays like a fire house, ect, ect). When we first bought the house, Peyton immediately walked up to one on a lower cabinet and bit it. These are not something easy to overlook. I sat cross-legged in the aisle at Lowe's surveying all the options and landed on these for the knobs. I got cup pulls for the drawers but we have to drill new holes for those so they haven't gotten installed yet. Maybe tonight.

In this picture the balls don't look so horrific... but trust us, this makes a huge difference.
Also, it really tones done the orange in the kitchen when ALL the gold is gone. #winning

3. Next set of highlights, please. My appointment is tomorrow and I'm taking in basically my entire hair and makeup board but here are my top inspiration pics.

So this is where I want to get by late spring... a full out bronde. But my hairdresser kindly told me if I went from my natural dark brown to this, I'd fry my hair and it'd fall out of my head. 

So.... I'm settling for incremental highlights. My first set are very natural looking but I'm hoping this set will take me to about half way to "bronde". I'm thinking something around this tone:

I have no doubt every brunette has this picture pinned as a highlight option on their board!
It's an oldie but a goodie!

4. Did you know that dark roast coffee actually has LESS caffeine per bean? Some of the caffeine is lost during the roasting process (like, just a tiny bit). I was curious so I googled it the other day. I started typing "Does dark roast coffee have more caffeine" and when I got to "Does da" Google autofilled "Does Daryl die?" and I thought WHAT?!?! Spelled correctly and everything. So I clicked on it, obviously, and it turns out that's a character on The Walking Dead. Phew.

5. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek the Oscars are this Sunday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm so excited! I plan to make paleo cookie dough, crack open a bottle of Pinot Grigio and hold my breath to see what Lupita Nyong’o wears! Also, Ellen is hosting and I have an undying love for that woman. I failed miserably at seeing all the Best Picture nominees this year, so I just hope they spread the love. Oh, and Pharrell is performing! Love me some Pharrell. He's releasing his new album RIGHT after his performance. Yay Yay Yay OSCARS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Side note: last year, Kanye was a puppy and he, apparently, was seeing a ghost in our home and BARKED through like half the Oscar's. I could not calm him down. I finally put him in the backyard, closed the doggie door and yelled "THE OSCARS ARE ONE NIGHT A YEAR, KANYE!" Not my proudest doggie mom moment. Luckily, D was in the backyard assembling a BBQ grill, so he wasn't alone out there.
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Thursday, February 27, 2014


Watching - Game of Thrones

Reading - Game of Thrones. It's a full out addiction.

Planning - 8 months worth of construction? If you thought I was going to say 'my wedding', you couldn't be more wrong. I've been knees deep in construction prep for 2014 at work and as far as I've gotten with wedding planning is colors. Hint: I'm going to have to be careful it doesn't read 80's. No scrunchees will be involved.

Making me Mad - Seriously. I got the dadgum fruit to the bottom... but I fail because I didn't get enough points! MALARKY!

Making me Happy - Our new sofa! D and I decided, with as much time as we spend planted on our sofa, we could really use... a sofa. Not the loveseat I got in college. So we created our own out of pieces typically assembled in to a sectional at Sofa Mart and now we have a giant reclining bed sofa that is so comfortable, we have to not sit on it until dinner is made and chores are done... or else the couch wraps its warm, comfy arms around us and we can't get back up.

My favorite part is that the pups LOVE the recliners. They like to sleep between our legs and so they're pretty fond of the new sofa, too. Plenty of room for all!

Craving - These chocolate and salt covered almonds. Ohhhhhhhhhh my gosh so good. I just killed this bag today but I took this picture to send to D as proof that I do have self control. Sometimes, I eat like half the bag in one sitting at home and I make myself sick. But when I take them to work, I actually just grab a handful every now and then and they last a couple weeks. Proof.

Avoiding - Hanging art. I'm normally decisive person to a fault but for some reason, choosing and hanging art has been a real struggle for me! So I thought I'd try to sketch out some options... maybe my living room will look like this one day.

Creating - Progress? Is that a thing? Okay, so Sunday I had a meltdown. I had told myself, after quite a lot of traveling and excitement lately, on Sunday D and I were going to veg. And I was going to catch up on sleep. But by 7am, I was looking around the house at everything I had been neglecting for weeks and realized I really needed to do... EVERYTHING. And I just got really overwhelmed by life and melted down a little. So D got the brilliant idea to make a giant list (literally) of everything that I felt like needed done. And I mean EVERYTHING. And he would help. But since he had no idea the fact that the coffee table needed stained to match the other wood tones in the living room was stressing me out to the point of tears, he was helpless. So I just started rattling off everything I wanted to get done and he proclaimed that he is now the project manager of the house. And every night we will get something done that needs done before we sit on our really comfortable couch. So far, so good! He's strict but fair :)

Celebrating - Still celebrating our engagement! It's like every single day D says or does something that stops me in my tracks and has me thanking God that I get to spend the rest of my life with him.

I was so sad when I realized I was going to have to tear this sheet off my desk calendar! So I snapped a picture of the square to keep forever! :)

Like this: D sent me a picture of a partly eaten Minion birthday cake someone brought in for work. This conversation followed. I mean, c'mon! How lucky am I? He's so clever!

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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Cheers to Forever

Boy howdy am I glad I wrote that heartfelt post on Friday. It would have been pretty embarrassing if I had blown off Valentine's Day. Why?

Because BOOM!

Yeaaaaaa buddy. Daryl proposed Friday night! I'm over the moon excited and say out loud, "oh my God, we're getting married" like once an hour.

It hasn't 100% sunk in, I don't think. Mostly because we decided to just be really excited for a couple weeks, enjoy, spread the good news and celebrate until March 1st. I'm still in the 'stare at my ring all day and all night' phase. The wedding planning phase comes after, I hear. We do not have any concept of what we want for a wedding so more details will come after we start doing some planning.

By popular demand: The story of the engagement

Well, throughout Valentine's Day, I sent D, like, a million Valentine's texts. My favorite was this one:

Hahahahahaha so cute right? 

I also liked this one a lot - D's FAVORITE karaoke song so it was too perfect.

Also this one!!! Hahahaha

And this one was a little creepy... but in a funny and romantic way, right? Riiight? hahahaha

So yea, we were texting all day. At THIS point in our texting conversation...

...Daryl walked in to my office in Seminole carrying a huge bouquet of flowers. HE WASN'T AT SUBWAY!!! At which point my heart completely stopped and I thought to myself, 'Really? Really, my office in Seminole? THIS is where he's going to propose?' but nay, my friends. He just wanted to hand deliver my flowers for Valentine's Day because "Delivery guys get all the glory".

So after work, I came home to him laying on the couch watching the Olympics. I had my guard up all afternoon after the romantic, surprise 1pm flower deliver so when I saw he was just chilling, I relaxed, kicked my shoes off and curled up next to him for a few minutes. Then I asked if we could exchange presents now! I was excited to give him my gift!

I also got him a tactical bag to carry to the range when he goes! I mean, when you compare it to him proposing, it's ultra lame... but I was really excited to give it to him. I knew he'd be excited.

After he unwrapped his gift, He handed me mine. I thought maybe it would be Season 3 of Game of Thrones on DVD? Like that was the size of the box. Inside, however, were boarding passes for a weekend getaway to Dallas! I had a 3 day weekend (President's Day) and I thought we had zero plans. We would be flying out the following morning and he had everything handled. Rental car, hotel, dog-sitter... he even casually did the laundry throughout the week so my clothes would be clean! (Who am I kidding, he always does the laundry, I wasn't suspicious at all).

And, honestly, as I was reading the boarding pass, I thought to myself "This is it. He's totally proposing on this trip!" and as I looked up, he was getting down on one knee, right in front of me. I hadn't seen it coming at all and I'm sure my jaw just hit the ground. And he choked up, welled up with tears and kind of coughed "Arica, will you marry me?" to which I said.... nothing!

Haha it's true! I forgot to say yes! I fell down on my knees and hugged him and I think I was saying "ohmyGodohmyGodohmyGod" until I remembered to say "OH YES!"

After we both regained our composure, he gave me the ring. He then gave me the whole speech he had prepared that he was too nervous to say while he was down on one knee. Afterward, I hugged him and said the dorkiest thing possible. I said "We're a real wolf pack now!" WHAT?! That's a goofy thing D and I say when we talk about our family with the pups. We call ourselves The Wolf Pack. As soon as I said it, I said "oh my God, that was so dorky!" I was a mess! But I wasn't crying! I was just shaking and saying embarrassing things. I couldn't shut up.

It wasn't until 10 minutes later when he said something about me being his fiance and then he stopped and looked at me and smiled and said "oh wow, you aren't my girlfriend anymore!" that it REALLY hit me. And I just broke down and sobbed. HAPPY SOBBING! He was like, "Oh no no no! You'll always be my girlfriend!" but it was just in that moment that I realized things had changed 10 minutes ago. And we were going to get MARRIED. Mascara. Everywhere.

I pulled myself together and had to get ready because we had tickets to a play that night. I went to get dressed and he called his mom. After we were all ready, we went by my parent's house to show them (they already knew. He took my dad to lunch last week and then had to tell my mom when he asked her to watch the dogs). After which we swung by Starbucks to get a coffee cake (we weren't going to have time for dinner before the show now) and then off to see Mary Poppins! Casey and Ashley were at the show so I got to squeal and be excited with Ashley before the show and the four of us toasted and went and watched some Mary Poppins!

The next morning we packed up and headed to Dallas! We ate, ate, ate some more, did some shopping and then went to dinner with a bunch of friends in Dallas to share the good news and... eat. I wish I had some pictures of this weekend but you'll just have to experience the trip through the pictures I do have of this weekend:

Laying in bed before heading to the airport

Flying to Dallas

Oooo it makes sparkles

In the rental car waiting for D.

Oooo look, we ate Indian food!

Back to my ring (watching TV after eating too much Indian food)

Taking pictures of my ring in the hotel room after a morning of shopping while D relaxed before dinner.

On a tray I found in the hotel room (getting artsy... it wasn't great)

On the plane ride home on Monday!

At work on Tuesday

So yea! That's pretty much what our weekend looked like from my eyes! I couldn't take my eyes off the ring!

We haven't made a Facebook announcement because I really wanted the chance to tell as many people in person (or on the phone or via text) as possible. It's been a lot of fun! I agonized a little over not posting it... it's hard not to post it... but I didn't want Facebook to be a part of my engagement memories. I've told my coworkers now, and quite a few friends, and MY BLOGGIES. My mom and D's mom have spread the news to a good share of our families. So Facebook will happen eventually, but that's the reason why you didn't see it there first.

So there you have it! I'm engaged. I couldn't be happier he proposed in our home and I couldn't be happier he knew me well enough to know that's what I'd want. I'm really, really glad we had the whole weekend, too. The moment of him proposing was a total blur and so fast. I couldn't be happier that we drug it out for 3 days. We got a chance to talk about our future, talk about our past. All weekend I kept gasping and saying things like "Oh my gosh, I can be on your insurance!" or "Oh my gosh, I need to practice signing 'Gonzales' now!" (yea, right, like I haven't been doing that since the day we started dating).

Forever? We're ready for ya! Let's do this!
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Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day 2014

I've written my fair share of mushy posts about my moon and stars, Daryl (Game of Thrones reference, anyone?) But it's Valentine's Day so here comes another!

Last Valentine's Day I wrote a super mushy post about what a rockstar he is. And not a darn thing has changed in the last year in that department: He's hot, smart, fun, kind, funny, encouraging, ambitious, a great partner and a phenomenal kisser! I love that post. Go read it! It reminds me every time how completely obsessed with him I am.

But while he remains exactly the boy I met 5 years ago, he's just... more. A lot about our lives changed since last year's V day post. We bought a house and are turning it in to a home. We are taking our jobs and turning them in to careers. We went from a couple of love birds to a wolf pack.

I'm sharing responsibilities with him and him with me. And for the first time, we're taking on new responsibilities together. We make each other's lives easier. We lean on each other more these days than ever before.

I refuse to call him my best friend because I think that's a totally dorky thing to say, and also a slight on my actual best friends who are vital to my life. I mean, he's been my favorite person for a really long time, but in the last year, he's become the most important person in my life.

It's not mushy or sexy or fantastic. It's really, really real. And I think that's the most romantic thing of all.

I can say I love him to the moon and back. Or I love him more every day. Or I love him with all my heart. They'd all be accurate. But that's been the case for a long time now. When I look back on my Valentine's Day 2014 post, I want to remember that this is the year we rooted ourselves in each other.

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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Old vs new

Old friends are better than new friends. And I have the primo example of why this is true for you today.

I was just sittin' at my desk the other day, minding my business when the new engineer comes in and asks, "Hey! Do you like running?" to which, without hesitation, I responded "No, not at all, why?" She laughed, maybe thinking I was joking and said "Well, would you want to run in a 5k with me in March?" I responded with "uhhhhhhh...." to which she responded "It's just a 5k. You could probably run 3 miles right now if you really wanted to!"

Any "old friends" out there I played soccer with? Vouch for me here. I could not run 3 miles when I was in my peak physical condition, 17 years old and had almost a six pack. 3 miles was exactly how much the coaches asked us to run during conditioning days and they had to drive down the street with me yelling out their window to run like some inspirational sports movie. And I would roll my eyes and do that obnoxious girl jog foot shuffle that's slower than a walk? Yup. That was me.

But do you know what my stupid mouth said without consulting my legs, lungs, mind or lazy butt? I said, "Alright! It'll give me something to train for, right?" and off she skipped to her office while I wrote an email to my sister to complain about training for the 5k I had only committed to 30 seconds earlier. Ugggggh making new friends is so haaaaaaard.

This is the 5k we're running. Don't you dare say it looks like fun. When she sent me the link I maniacally laughed out loud and thought "I'd rather dye."

Fast forward 2 weeks. My little Lori texts and, I kid you not, asks me if I want to do a 5k with her. My response was immediately Hell No. No explanation. Honestly, she should really have known better. And that is why old friends are better than new friends.

Well, yesterday I found out new girl is no friend at all. I think she's evil, maybe. Do you know what this monster did?! She brought kolaches and donuts for the team for breakfast. For no good reason at all! JUST BECAUSE! Heather. I am training for a 5k, gawwwwd!

So I went to the gym at lunch yesterday to work off 1/10 of the single donut I indulged in and then went and got Subway after. And their cookies looked especially undercooked and gooey and I was helpless. 

Wednesday was a failure. I did drink just a crap ton of water, though. As if maybe that would dilute the bleached refined flour and sugars and regret out of my system.

Any ideas on how I can weasel out of running this 5k? And please don't send training tips or success stories or links to the Couch to 5k Website. I really just want advice on how to feign the flu or something. HELP!

**Heather, if you're reading this, it was meant 100% in jest. I'd run a million miles to be your friend! Okay, now that sounds stalkerish. Why is making adult friends so awkward?!
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Tuesday, February 11, 2014


I put myself on a Pinterest hiatus a while back. I just kept accruing more and more projects and not executing any of them. I thought I'd be more productive if I quit pinning but instead I just started Craigslisting like a nut. I logged in this morning, though, and realized... I don't need anything else! I got some kitchen chairs a couple nights ago off CL (I'll post about them later, gators), and really, I think I'm furnished!

Which brought me back to... I guess now I need to actually nest my home. The day before I quit Pinterest, I made a list of all the projects I really wanted to get done and swore I wouldn't get back on the Pin until I completed them (or most of them... or got shot down by D on most of them... which ever came first). I've been slowly working through the list but have a ton more to go!

But I thought it would be fun to share my list and then hopefully share the outcomes of the projects as I complete them! 

Now. A few years ago when I got started on this website, I would get so worked up when I saw someone else post on Facebook that they had completed one of the projects I loved before I got a chance to! I was so excited when 'Secret Boards' were released and I hoarded all my favorite ideas (and I still have a couple little darlings tucked away). So, sharing this list of my favorite DIY ideas makes me feel vulnerable. I'm trying to prepare myself because they're all really fabulous and other people may like them, too. I want to scream "DIBS!" but I realize that's the opposite of a blog, right? So here goes:

Make a wreath for the laundry room out of cloths pins (this is so dorky, I'm not even worried someone else will do it! I'd decorate the wreath a little differently but I think the idea is so sweet! )

Make a Texas glitter art (mine will probably have to have a few more hearts)

Make a blanket ladder Have D make me a blanket ladder

Make a clip board wall

Install wine shelves above the fridge (I'm actually half way there on this one!)

Restain the coffee table

Print/Frame travel photos

Make a bucket list destination art

Make a sheet music print (This one would be really hard but such a statement piece!)

Sew a table runner for the table behind the couch (I'm crazy about this tartan plaid)

Make booze-y shadow boxes (one for bottle caps, one for wine corks!)

Thumbprint art

And then I have some that don't really have a specific Pinterest image... just like a million Pinterest images that I'll reference:

Organize my pantries
Spray paint the fire place cover
Make a mantle box
Style the urns on the porch
Organize the Keurig area

Yay! I'm excited all over again to get rolling on these projects! Hopefully I can turn my walls from bland to homey and personalized! And this doesn't even include the project pieces of furniture I have sitting around the house (new tea cart, side table that needs stained, table behind the couch needs repainted... a ton of projects!) I'd say that each of these is a blog post prompt but that'd be a lie. I'll try to take some pictures of the process on the more intricate ones but "clip board wall" and "Texas glitter art" aren't exactly brain surgery.

Wish me luck and if anyone feels like getting crafty one weekend, hit me up! We'll DIY together!
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Monday, February 10, 2014

Weekend Update

Happy Monday errrrbody! I couldn't be happier to be back at work today! Oh yes, you read that correctly. I believe I'm going to start working 7 days a week. Why, you ask? Because I cannot be trusted in my home.

D went to Lubbock Saturday to visit his mom and take her out for her birthday. I stayed in Midland and my mom and I went antique shopping and then out for a light lunch. Adorable, right? 

I bought this tea cart. It needs some love and paint but I see potential for a cool bar cart!

Well, at approximately 3pm, I was starving again. And since I had no one there to judge me, other than the dogs, I proceeded to spend the rest of the day eating jalapeno cheddar popcorn and milk chocolate. Not even DARK chocolate. I had some soup for dinner... and then more popcorn. Yikes. So I'm so happy to be locked in my office with only what I have stowed in my cabinet:

Cinnamon anyone? Apple cider vinegar?

I did, however, have a fairly productive weekend! After I watched the KUWTK where Kris decides she wants to be in the Broadway production of Chicago, I put on my DVD of Chicago and went to work! All That Jazz gets me movin'!

D told me he abhors the border in our bedroom the other day. I was under the impression his decor style was "Army Barracks Chic", so when he made a comment about the decor of our bedroom, I took it seriously. I spent over an hour using every method I could think of to get the border down and this is how far I got.

 I think maybe they stuck it on there while the paint was still wet? Or just used superglue. I'm not sure but it's not budging. :( So much for my cool girlfriend surprise. Any recommendations?!

After that failed attempt, I decided to stick with what brung me and get my hands dirty in the kitchen. I was not excited about it at all; I'm so over working on the kitchen. But once I actually started painting the trim, I freaked out. LIGHT! I see it! At the end of the tunnel! On Sunday, D was helping me after he got home and every time I started painting a new section of the orange-y 90s wood trim, I would sigh with relief! He was making fun of me for sounding sexy when I did it but it just was such a relief to be on our way to pretty, clean, white trim!

Sorry about the terrible lighting; those windows make it tough. This was what the kitchen looked like Saturday afternoon...

And this was Sunday night. WHAT A TRANSFORMATION! Just kidding. But it does look better!

I'm such a dumb dumb. I sanded the chair rails and was so excited to get painting, I painted all the chair rails before I looked up at the crown molding and was like, "Oh." I had forgotten to sand those. So after I went to town on the chair railing, door frames and window sill, I had to call it a night. I'll do crown molding tonight when the rest of the paint is nice and dry. Oh, and we're having to get new baseboards. The old ones started disintegrating  when I sanded them. I'm such a cheap-o that I was like, Nooooo I can save them!!! But, alas, they're in the dumpster.

I apologize for the most drawn out before and after of a project ever. I think real bloggers wait until a project is done for a big reveal... but if I don't show you these pictures, the only pictures of my weekend I have look like this: 

She likes to sleep on my shoulder like a parrot. 

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