If you're happy and you know it...

Despite the fact that winter seems to be extra treacherous this year as well as taking forever to be done with I've found myself really upbeat and generally in a good mood. I've been focusing on the positive and surrounding myself with like minded people, it's a wonder what that does for your sanity. 

I'm at the point in my life where I just have no need for people who have nothing better to do than complain or judge others. 

So here are some pictures of things that are making me happy lately.

Dry erase chatter with my husband. 

Picking a date and deciding to change my life for the better. 

New gigantic glasses.

Being silly with The Beef at a diner. 

Hoodie Footie pajamas. Especially awesome since our heat was on the fritz for a while.

Babies playing guitar.



Your body hears everything that your mind says.

Last year I got really into pushing myself physically and found out what completely amazing things my body could do with a little time and conditioning. I was captivated, I was addicted, I was happier and more confident than I had ever been because I was finally doing something for myself that I was really proud of.

Then I stopped.

I got stressed and seemed to never have any time right before the wedding and after I just needed to rest, everyone told me I was burnt out and even though I didn't feel like it I believed them, so I rested. Then we went on our honeymoon and upon returning home I just didn't feel like it anymore.

I started to get cranky and feel sad.

Things at work weren't going so well and added to my general sour mood and sadness.

Suddenly I was escaping the world through books, hours and hours spent holding still while off in some fantasy land.

I kept telling myself I would be active again but all I did was procrastinate, there's always some kind of valid sounding excuse to start tomorrow or next week.

Suddenly your body can't do the things it used to. It no longer looks the way it used to and this makes you even sadder. Moping certainly doesn't help the situation but it's all you want to do.

Then I caught a lucky break, someone who had left my current place of employment for greener pastures let me know about an opening to which I applied and was offered.

Now that I wouldn't be stressed and sad about work all the time I'm sure I could get my groove back.

But of course I'll need to settle into the routine first, acclimate to my new position.

And the next thing you know, weeks have passed and you still haven't done anything. At least the last job you had was a very physical position even though it makes you sad, this new one involves a lot of sitting. So now you're sitting all day and sitting all night, a complete decrease in activity.

You have two choices, make changes or wallow in it.

I chose the latter for a while until I stumbled across things I'd written and pictures I had posted last year. Look how happy I was, look how healthy my words were.

Instead of letting the enormity of my fall crush me I picked myself up and got started back on the road to finding my healthy self again.

The journey was hard at first, things that used to come so easy to me now seemed insurmountable. I became the master at self pep talks. Something changed in my brain and I finally took a more positive tone with myself.

I can't speak for everyone but I know in my case that my biggest hurdle is my mind. If I'm mid workout and suddenly my thoughts turn negative I am instantly out of energy. Staying body positive has been the biggest asset to my road back to finding my healthier self and I'd recommend giving it a try to anyone who is struggling on their journey.


It's hammock time!

This Christmas I was an awesome wife and bought The Beef a Hennessy Hammock to use on the overnight hiking adventures we are planning for this year. The company has no idea I'm writing about this, I just thought it was so neat that I had to share. As someone who regularly "luxury car camps" (public campgrounds, air mattress, etc) hammock camping is completely out of my comfort zone and I am absolutely pumped to give it a whirl. 

This is how the product is described on the company website, "At last, you will never need to find a level campsite. No more roots, rocks or puddles coming through the floor of your tent. No more aching muscles and stiff joints from sleeping on the hard ground. And no more carrying a heavy tent.  Finally, a shelter that takes the pain out of the outdoors and is good for the environment."

Sounds pretty good to me!

Despite all the snow we got 2 days ago the temperature rocked up to 40 degrees and everything melted so we decided to venture out into the mud to woods behind the house to set the hammock up and see how it went. To be honest it was much easier to do than I expected and the only need for two people came because we were reading the instructions for the first time. Setting up again should be a breeze for for someone by themselves with a little practice. 

The hammock all set up .

Now with the rain fly.

The Beef lounging inside. You get in through a velcro opening in the bottom that snaps closed once you lay down. 

Lounging away. He said it was really comfortable. 

View from the inside, I also found it to be comfortable. 

It also doubles as a chair or a lounger.

And with the snake skin sleeves (sold separately) it packs up nice and tiny.

And just shove it into your little back and on into your backpack!
It only weighs 3lbs 2oz! 

Now that I know that I like it and wouldn't be claustrophobic or feel like I was sleeping in a coffin I just need to get one for myself!


Wedding Recap Part 4

Most of the following was written a day or two after the wedding as I recaped the big event for some friends who couldn't get there and were dying for details. I am so glad that I did this right away because I really did forget almost everything that happened. When my photographer sent me the pictures I said a lot of "oh yeah, I forgot about that". It's amazing that the old cliche of it all being a blur is 100% true, and here I was thinking that I had been stopping to savor moments. Below you will find part 3 you can start with part 1 here, part 2 here and part 3 here.

The Beef has been having shirts with BT Customs printed on them for a while and we thought it only appropriate to incorporate that into the wedding. The shirts only come in a boxy man style so I altered mine to be a bit more fun. I cut open the top and laced it back together with black cord through the grommets I punched in. I based it off of this pin I found.

We had set up a photobooth in the garage that turned out to be a really big hit. It was somewhat more family friendly (aside from The Beefs step father who found the coconut bra) at the beginning of the shindig and slowly slid into madness as the night went out. End up with every single person left at the party cramming themselves into the frame.

And then The Beefs motorcycle made an appearance.

The Beef and I also rarely miss an opportunity for a good couples selfie and our wedding day was certainly no exception.

From there we had great fun making a fire, doing our own versions of horrible karaoke at the microphone, late night grilling, skipping around, singing, dancing and head banging.

The night ended with about 8 of us left in the back yard, my father in law included, just hanging out and laughing, it was all pretty perfect and I'm so glad it turned out just how we expected.

The End!

It was the best day of my life so far and I was really happy to find out in the following weeks how many people truly had an amazing time. We even heard a few "best wedding ever" because of the casual no pressure atmosphere that we created. 


Wedding Recap Part 3

Most of the following was written a day or two after the wedding as I recaped the big event for some friends who couldn't get there and were dying for details. I am so glad that I did this right away because I really did forget almost everything that happened. When my photographer sent me the pictures I said a lot of "oh yeah, I forgot about that". It's amazing that the old cliche of it all being a blur is 100% true, and here I was thinking that I had been stopping to savor moments. Below you will find part 3 you can start with part 1 here and part 2 here

At some point Katie decided to document the decorations that I created during the 3 month planning process. Starting with the centerpieces for the tables and the flags hanging across the yard.

The picnic basket for gifts and cards, the suitcase for the madlibs our guests filled out and the fingerprint guest book.

Eventually it was decided that it was time for cake, we thought we had everything set up and were ready to go until I looked around and realized I was sans groom. I felt like I might die a little as the crowd started to gather and I stood there alone very much the center of attention. To break my own awful tension I asked for volunteers for substitute grooms for the cake cutting but the Beef magically appeared before anyone stepped forward.

We'd had the "should I smash the cake" discussion before hand and we both said no thank you to getting cake smashed in our face. But I could see the beef wanted to smash cake in my face so I said please no and he asked me if I really wanted to smash cake in his face and I smiled, to which he replied, do what you want, you know they're expecting a show.

So we cut the cake and he picked up a slice and I could see him debating, trying to gage my reaction, before he could make a decision I leaned forward and bit the cake out of his hand because I'm a crafty ninja like that and of course I smashed some cake up in his face because I'm a brat. I did help him clean it off though.

Then it was time for dancing, we got our first dance in (Then by Brad Paisley) which was funny because we had to keep switching the directions we were spinning in as much alcohol had been consumed and someone was getting dizzy. I kept zoning in and out of being painfully aware of the crowd and focused on his face.

Then I danced with my father (I loved her first by Heartland) which turned me into a sobbing, white knuckled mess for a minute until we started chatting away about the world series of beer pong. 

The beef got a dance with his mother and heaven help us, by the next day we had forgotten which song. At this point the Revs  FIL, Greg, decided this was his chance to dance with me which took me by surprise and then he promptly passed me off for a dance with my new FIL.

 And then suddenly the music changed and The Beef and Greg were cutting a rug. They win for best dance moves.

Katie took a few moments to take advantage of our slightly intoxicated calmed nerves and threw us in the woods for a few more couple portraits.

And then came the moment I think my dad had secretly been waiting all day for. The giving of the speeches. I know he'd been working on his for a long time. I requested that there was a microphone present just for this occasion because I suspected he would bring his own if we didn't provide one. The speech he gave was so heartfelt that I was of coursed reduced to tears again and then laugher because he is ever the showman. 

 Up next was my father in law, who might be the coolest person on the face of the planet. He speech was off the cuff but no less special. At one point he had us close our eyes and listen to the crowd roar, it was a really cool moment. 

 And then we were handed the microphone and I tried my best to stay as far away from it as possible because public speaking is my nightmare.  The Beef was nearly as flustered and did his best to say thank you to everyone. I did the only thing I found appropriate at the moment. 

As it does the microphone ended up back in my fathers hands where he was interrupted by The Beef step-father. There is no need to mention what was said because a picture speaks 1000 words.

After that some of the crowd started to clear out and the party got a bit more rowdy. I went inside and changed into my after hours outfit.

To Be Continued...