Thursday, July 31, 2014

Because I Don't Quit...

Tomorrow is a new day... a day to take the plunge and just do it!

I know this might sound silly to some, but it spikes my nerves to think about what I'm going to attempt. It will be my first time ever going to Crossfit. It's a free class so I'm going to give it a whirl. I'm hoping that I love it as much as I loved working out with my personal trainer. Crossfit is way less expensive though. That is the only reason why I'm leaving my personal trainer. Since March, she has trained me twice a week. She has taught me well and instilled a drive in me to keep kicking butt. And my heart is filled with gratitude towards her. Maybe this is being dramatic, but I feel like she got my life on course in terms of health... once I started working out hard, everything else followed suit. I have a whole new perspective on healthy living and lifestyle all because of her. She rocks.

Needless to say that I'm super nervous for tomorrow, but I'm going to do it. Even if my knees are shaking and my palms are sweating and my heart is beating through my chest, I am going to do it. I will do it. And that's that.

Sometimes you just need to get a bee in your bonnet and let it sting you 5 times on the ear to keep you running in the right direction. And the direction of health is the way I want to run.

I keep telling myself: "I got this" {but I have yet to believe it...}

I love challenging myself... pushing myself out of my comfort zone... feeling strong. This is one of those sink or swim moments for me. My sessions with my trainer ended. I can sign up again {but it's super expensive} I can stop working out altogether {but that's not happening}, or... I can join Crossfit...  I mean, I know those aren't my only options, but they kinda are the only options in my head.

I hope it's fun. I hope it's hard. I hope it's challenging. I hope I meet great people. I hope it keeps me feeling fit and strong. I hope, I hope, I hope... fingers crossed.

I'm adopting this as my new mantra...


pic via: pinterest

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Island Honey...

Hello to you!
We just returned home from the most restful, peaceful, glorious vacation I’ve had in a loooong time. It was just as I imagined it would be. The house we stayed in was nicknamed “The Little Gem” by the owners. It’s the perfect name for it, except it wasn't all that little… but gem, yes, definitely a gem! We rented two houses that were within walking distance from each other since there were 11 of us in total. The view from our house was stunning; overlooking the ocean. The house itself was a weathered, shingled, typical Martha’s Vineyard style home, with lots of screen doors, an outdoor shower, plenty of bedrooms and even more bathrooms. It also had beautiful stone walls, and blue, pink, and vanilla colored hydrangeas bursting out of every garden. There was lots of soft grass to walk around barefoot on, to play on {major wiffle ball games were played,} and lots of privacy {good thing, with that outdoor shower and all...} Not another house visually in sight.

Here’s the skinny on the houses so we were told: They were built in 1938 by Mr. and Mrs. Stanley and handed down through the generations. Mr. and Mrs. Stanley bought 400 acres of land {yes, you read that correctly, but back then, they got it for a steal.} So they gave away a lot of their land to their family and friends to build houses on as well. So the entire road was a private road that went deep into the woods, and along that road today stands all the homes of Mr. and Mrs. Stanley’s family and friends. Pretty cool, huh. I mean, how were they to know back then that Martha’s Vineyard would become such a treasure? Here’s the even cooler part… You know how I said it was owned by Mr. and Mrs. Stanley? We’re talking about “the Stanley’s” as in Stanley Tools. Now that is pretty darn cool!
I wish I could give you every detail because I tried to soak it all in and embed it in my memory for future use {aka times of stress, hair pulling, and general meltdowns.}

Let’s start with the ferry ride over. I literally was inhaling the salty sea air so deeply to fill my lungs with the freshness of it all. I gulped it in like I was taking my very last breath. And perhaps some part of me was taking my last breath. I feel like I’ve come home from this vacation renewed in many ways. But let’s save that for later. I’ll just share some highlights from certain aspects of the trip.

My favorite breakfast was at the Black Dog bakery. So delicious!

My favorite lunch was a fig, brie and arugula sandwich. Yum!
My favorite dinner was oysters, clams, lobster {dipped in scrumptious butter!} and corn. Of course there was some white wine to go along with dinner. And dessert was a tie between homemade s’mores and blueberry pie.  We ate a lot of really great food on this trip. I tried to be good, but our motto was "it doesn't count if you're on vacation!"

I read constantly on this vacation. I finished a really good book called The Orphan Train that I would recommend. Not a light read, but definitely a good read. Now I’m half way through my second book, The Book Thief, which took me a bit to get into, but now I can’t put it down. I think they are making {or already made?} it into a movie.

We went to the beach almost every day. My skin got a little sun kissed and my hair got a little lighter {some pretty blonde streaks from the salt water and sun. Who needs to pay $150.00 for highlights?! No thanks.} The water was pretty frigid, but the waves were humongous so we couldn’t resist jumping in them for a few minutes of play each day. Relaxing on that beach was just what the doctor ordered! And I got to wear my huge Anthro sun hat too, which just made me extra happy!

We went shopping a lot too into the little towns. My favorite was Edgartown, with all its cute little shops and boutiques. It had that sweet small town feel. And lots of great farmer's markets!
The highlight of my trip was going for an hour long trail ride on a horse named Liam. We went through windy paths in the woods, over big logs, under hanging branches, uphill, downhill, and through a huge open field. Here’s another cool bit of info. The owner of the farm {a 37 acre farm!} lives on the island year round and is married to Captain Bob, who happens to be the owner of all the Black Dogs. Who knew?!

We heard Katie Couric was on the island, but we didn’t see her. We did see some glorious sunsets though. And we did see a lot of each other. We spent so much time together as a family, talking, laughing, bonding, walking through the towns, going to the beach and having dinner together every single night. Here's how it basically worked: Someone would toss out an idea of where they wanted to go. If you wanted to go, you would pile in the car and go. If not, you were free to do your own thing. We had 4 cars there so there was a car for each couple. No one was stuck doing anything they didn’t want to do. Love vacations like that, right?! Just fun family time and relaxation.

One other highlight was when my husband and I were sitting on the couch in front of the living room window, taking a lunch break, when suddenly a bright green humming bird flew right up to us, staring at us for about 10 seconds. It was a hold your breath for 10 seconds kind of moment. But off he flew, just as quickly as he came.
I tried really hard to soak all those little moments in and make them big moments. Make memories out of them to thread together in my mind for months to come. Like taking a needle and thread and taking those snapshots in my mind and making a memory garland… Weaving those memories within my soul to last me for a long, long time... To help restore my bones back to that place of pure relaxation when the real world comes knocking again, bashing me on the head, and stress takes over with all the things that life can throw your way. I will close my eyes and remember.

That is why I feel like I’m coming home a little different. I'm a little bit changed {hopefully for the better!} I am much more in tune with myself. I didn’t worry once about anything while I was there. I stayed so present and in the moment that I practically forgot all about my life back home. That just doesn’t happen... at least not for me. I tend to worry about all the little things I’ll have to do when I get home. This time I didn’t. I just didn’t. I breathed in the sunshine and salt air and sea water and I tried to just be. And I did an amazingly good job at just being.

This whole vacation was like island honey, sweet and delicious. But all good things must come to an end. And that is why I need to savor what I just had because it was so special and does not come along often. I am happy to be home, back to my routine, but rest assured, my dreams tonight will be of a magical little island paradise so peaceful and perfect and beautiful that we are already starting to make plans for our trip back next summer!

And here is a picture that I took of the front door of The Little Gem. It would bang shut every time you came or went. Perfect, huh. We slept with all the doors and windows open every night. You could hear the waves crashing from afar. Heaven on earth.

To The Little Gem and all the memories she provided, Cheers!


Saturday, July 19, 2014

Is That An Eclipse?

Hi there my little chinchillas.

It seems like everyone I know is on Block Island right now. Seriously. Every person from facebook is posting pictures and they all seem to be bumping into each other. Funny!!

I've never ever been to Block Island before. Weird, huh. Although I've never been to Nantucket before either. I've heard Nantucket is more of a snob-fest, which I'm not down with. Block seems much more fun and laid back.

Which brings me to my upcoming trip to Martha's Vineyard. It's the perfect spot. Laid back, no rambunctious party kids {am I turning into my mom by saying that?} no snobs, good food, nice beaches, etc, etc, etc.

So I'm uber excited to hit the Island for my summer getaway. Here is the thing... I said I was going to buy a few new things for my trip. Well, I bought much more than a few... So when I get back home, I'm totally and completely purging my closet. Out with the old {consignment, give to friends, donate, trash} and in with the new. If I don't purge, I'll have way too much stuff and there is nothing I hate more than having way too much stuff. Makes me feel like a pack-rat or hoarder, which I am not! {My mom... possibly. My brother... definitely. Me... no way!}

One of my best snags was a new sun hat from Anthropologie. It is the most fabulous, extravagant sun hat I've ever laid eyes upon. The brim is humongous. If I stand straight like a pencil, my whole body will be under approximately 3 feet of shade. It will be like an eclipse hit the beach when I block out everyone's sun who's sitting within a mile radius of me. Ha! I love this hat. Yes, it's that spectacular! I can't wait to see the look on my hubby's face when I roll onto the beach wearing it. He'll probably be like: um, the flying nuns are sitting over there!

But I had my eye on this beauty for quite a while now. And when she went on sale... I salivated like a Pavlovian dog... drool, drool, done deal! She was all mine. I'm a savvy budget kind of girl like that...

I won't bore you with the other things I got, but just know that my goal is to still live simply and on less. So truly, when I get home, I will be digging to the dark depths of my closet {hoping not a skeleton to be found!} and ridding all the things I no longer wear, like, have use for, or have just been hanging onto, just because.

Plus, I have to make room for my new gigantic flying nun sun hat.


Pic via: pinterest

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Watch Me...

Hi y'all.

So I've been getting a little kickback from my lack of blogging...

I have been super motivated on my journey to wellness. That's what I'm calling it now. Not just physically well, but entire wellness. Some things are taking a back seat while others are front and center. And that's okay by me. That is called balance. We all need balance. If everything was front and center, we would not have balance.

I made a little list last night of things that I'm doing and that I want to keep doing on a daily/weekly basis. Obviously this list is not for everyone... It's my list that is helpful to me. I figured for the kickbackers, this would be good to look at {you know who you are... lol.}

1. Drink one Isagenix shake per day.
2. Fuel my body with healthy organic foods. Eat raw and unprocessed as much as possible. No meat.
3. Keep hydrated by drinking tons of water each day. Keep water bottle with me at all times. {I love my Green Feet water bottle.}
4. Use juicer or drink fruit smoothie every day.
5. Take vitamins daily.
6. Do not take any medication unless it's absolutely necessary {no aspirin, allergy meds, etc. unless I HAVE to.}
7. Workout Monday, Wednesday, Friday.
8. Horseback riding Thursday {and Saturday when possible.}
9. Yoga every Sunday.
10. Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night.
11. Meditate for 10 minutes every night.
12. Tuesday is my day of rest.
13. Think positive thoughts.
14. Try acupuncture.

Sounds easy enough, right? Yeah, sure. But I'm doing most of them. This is why I'm calling it a journey, because it's always in progress.

Hoping you are motivated to get on your own path to wellness, whatever that looks like for you.


Pic via: change your thoughts today.

Friday, July 11, 2014

A Friday Ride...

Hi strangers!

I saw my best girl today and took a few pictures of her. She was just relaxing and eating grass when I went in to get her. Her look says it all though... Like: "This has to be a joke, right? You're making me leave the sunshine and grass?"

We had a great ride today. It's the best way to start out the weekend. A little time with Isabel is time well spent. I love, love, love her!


Friday, July 4, 2014


Rainy day for the 4th today. But people celebrated anyway. Lots of fireworks shooting off all around my neighborhood. I loved it... my dogs, not so much.

Tomorrow we have a wedding to go to on the shoreline. It's supposed to be beautiful weather at a lovely inn on the beach. I have the perfect dress to wear too. What more can you ask for, right?

Sunday... I'm thinking of going to the Elephant's Trunk. Maybe buy a few vintage beauties to refinish. Summer is half way over already and I really haven't done a single piece to sell.

My favorite thing used to be to duck out into my workshop and blast my country music while painting a great vintage piece. Getting paint on my hands and clothes... Getting creative... Having fun.

I need that back. Where oh where did it go? I honestly don't know. All that I do know is that I've been incredibly busy at work and don't have much free time at all lately. Which is a great thing... I love when business is booming. But it doesn't leave me with much spare time for me... Or to paint and refinish pieces. When I get home I'm tired. I've been crawling into bed every night exhausted.

I'm hoping that my vacation really recharges me and brings back my spark. And this weekend will hopefully give me a little kick start if I hit up the Elephant's Trunk. It's really hard when you lose your focus to get it back. Once the rhythm breaks, it's hard to get that mojo back. But if it's something you truly love to do, it will come back... I know it will come back. Hopefully when work slows down and I get back from vacay, my feet will hit the ground running... and my hands will start painting!

Happy 4th... Thank you to all our military.


pic via pinterest

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Just Do It...

Hi. I haven't been feeling well lately. Just really exhausted.

As I sit here typing tonight, I'm swigging straight from the bottle my Organic Acai Juice in an effort to get a little all natural pick me up. It's loaded with all kinds of goodness and antioxidants.

Sometimes I have a hard time practicing what I preach: Self Care!

Sometimes I get drained by being everyone else's cheerleader. Don't get me wrong, I love helping, inspiring and encouraging others. But I have to remember to put myself on that list too.

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy...

I need more sleep and play.

Here are my short term goals:

Once my training sessions end in July, I am off for a well needed and well deserved vacation for one glorious week in Martha's Vineyard to do nothing but rest and relax. When I get back, my feet will hit the ground running.

I am going to join Crossfit. Gulp. I can't even believe I'm saying that! Have you ever heard of it? Seems intense and really hard, but I want to do it. Try it at least. 3 times a week.

Then for more play, I want to horseback ride twice a week. No more of this once a week stuff. I need to see my favorite mare twice a week.

Then yoga class once a week on Sunday.

Sounds like a lot...

But I want to do it. Everything sounds fun except... Crossfit. I'm a little nervous, but all the more reason to push myself to do it. If I don't die from it, I'll keep you posted.

Sorry... it's getting late and my typing is getting a little wonky... as are my thoughts.

So goodnight.

Tomorrow is a new day.

Or at least be there for herself and do some serious self care.


Pic via pinterest