Friday, April 27, 2012

Crazy Week!

Happy Friday ladies! 

This week has been absolutely crazy, but in the best way possible. Between the hubby and I, we had a lot of work but Wednesday was my birthday and that meant a day trip to NYC...yay! B had a conference to attend for most of the day but I was able to sneak in a little shopping, a yummy lunch, and a matinee show of "Once". After I met back up with the hubby, we had a fun dinner at Serendipity's and caught a play, "The Best Man". It was an awesome, awesome day and B made it so special :)

I was totally exhausted yesterday... we didn't get back home until after 1:00 am. I felt so bad that B had such an early morning at work. Me on the other day had a super stressful day full of a mani and blonde appointment... haha, clearly I'm kidding as this was quite a treat and a little birthday gift to myself ;) BTW, my new nail color is OPI "Suzy and the Lifeguard". Love it!

And before I head back to having a productive day, here are some of my fun finds from Pinterest:

I hope y'all had a fantastic week and have an even better weekend! 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Being A Biblical Wife in a Modern World

The Importance of Praise and Encouragement 

"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds."
~Hebrews 10:24~

Being a part of a marriage means dealing with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. There are good days and not so good days in any and every relatioship. It's just part of the territory. Within all of these moments is when wives have the joyful opportunity of being their hubby's encourager and main source of praise. I describe this role as being joyful because that is exactly how we should approach this part of our marriage. Being a wife is about helping your man when he needs it most. Through the easy days and the hard days. 

I am a firm believer that love is not only an emotion and feeling but an action. We should be showing our husbands that we love them each and every day. In some form or fashion our love needs to be evident to our man. To love someone is not just to say "I love you". It's a simple gesture to let your man know that you are behind him 100%. Remember the saying, "Actions speak louder than words"? This is the ideal situation to put that quote into effect. Does your hubby have a favorite meal? Surprise him and fix it one night for dinner. Does he have a favorite author or musician? Next time you're out grab a book or CD to give to him. When he walks through that door after a long day, a hug and kiss is always perfect. There are many ways to show our hubby's how much we love, care, and appreciate them but it is up to us, the wives, to take action.

Everyday should be a day to show your husband that you support him. Our husband's need to know that they are the most important earthly thing in our lives. When it comes to making difficult decisions in our life, our support is imperative. Supporting our husband's thoughts and ideas are important. Allowing him to share his prayers, his questions, his fears, his dreams... these are ways to show that you care and that you support how he feels and you support what he does everyday for your family.

There is always something to be thankful for. In each day, no matter the situation, there is always something wonderful hidden. Find ways to show your hubby that you recognize his hard work and his efforts. Does he work long hours and provide for your family? Is he a strong spiritual leader in the home? Does he always find time for the kids? Did he finally complete that household chore? Our husbands do countless things in and around our home and for our families. It is easy to take these things for granted on a daily basis but find a way to recognize his dedication and achievements, no matter how big or small. Maybe hide a sweet card in his work bag that simply says, "Thanks for all you do." Stay encouraging at home if work is rough. Praise takes on many shapes and forms. The other day, after an afternoon of helping my hubby fill out a gazillion pages of paperwork for his new job, I high-fived him after we dropped the bulging envelope in the mail. This small gesture did not go unnoticed. 

Communication is so, so, so important in a successful marriage and part of making this work is the art of listening. Our hubby's are going to have days where they just simply need a shoulder to cry on, a pillar to lean upon, an open ear. Communication is all about give and take and finding that perfect balance of talking and listening. 

And of course the most encouraging thing we can do for our husband's is to pray for them each day. What better way to praise our significant others than by lifting them up to the Lord and share with Him our prayers for our hubby's. It is such an awesome feeling to know that we can count on someone to go to God and advocate for us day by day. 

The past couple years I have learned to recognize and push my selfish feelings and emotions aside. Right now my life is really all about my husband and I've learned what an encouraging part I can play in his life. By loving, supporting, praising, listening, and praying, my husband and I have grown more together than ever before. We make important and difficult decisions about our future together. So for now, my hubby's career is our priority and I'm completely okay with this because I know my job is to motivate and help my man in any way I can. There are always things that we want to do but what does God want us to do? What do our husbands need from us? There are still days when I can be self-centered but this time encouraging my husband is a stepping stone in our marriage to help prepare us for the future.

Other Key Verses

"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing."
~1 Thessalonians 5:11~

"Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; someone else, and not your own lips."
~Proverbs 27:2~

Wife Challenge

Find a way to encourage and praise your hubby each day this week.

"A wife's esteem and admiration for her husband should always be on display, on parade, so that no one can miss it." Elizabeth George

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Summer Shape Up: This Past Week's Workouts

This past week was full of some awesome workouts and lots of long walks!

30 minute elliptical
3 sets of 12 tricep extensions
2 sets of 10 bicep curls with plie
50 crunches on stability ball
50 sitting twists on stability ball
2 sets of 15 standing leg lifts (Right and Left)

4 mile walk

Tuesday: Card Workout! (To read about my card workout go here)
15 minute cardio warmup on elliptical
7 planks with arm twists
4 bicycles (abs)
7 lunges (Right and Left)
10 minute cardio on elliptical
7 push ups
8 tricep dips
7 minute cardio on treadmill (walk)
5 russian twists
10 jumping jacks
3 minute run
9 booty blast squats
13 jumping jacks
9 crunches on stability ball
9 sitting twists on stability ball
4 bicep curls
10 second wall sit
6 tricep extensions
9 reps pec-fly
1 minute plank
15 pec-fly
5 calf raises
8 squats
3 tricep dips
2 minute run
10 side bends with weight (Right and Left)
14 standing side leg lifts (Right and Left)

6 mile walk

15 minutes on elliptical
2 sets of 20 side bends with weight
3 sets of 12 tricep extensions
25 standing twists with medicine ball
3 sets of 10 standing leg lifts (Right and Left)
3 sets of 10 bicep curls with plie
10 lunges with weight (Right and Left)
50 crunches on stability ball
50 sitting twists on stability ball
3 sets of 12 pec-fly
3 sets of 12 lat pulldowns
15 mountain climbers
10 booty blast squats

5 mile walk

All in all, I think I had a pretty successful week!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend ladies, xoxo

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Happy Wednesday pretties! Here's what I'm loving today:

I'm loving that this past weekend the hubs and I got to celebrate his birthday. He was on call the entire weekend but there was still time for gifts, cake, and balloons!

I am loving this gorgeous weather that we have been having the past few days. The sun has been out and temps have reached 80 degrees! It's been so nice to take some long walks, trips to the dog park, and grab a good book and head outside to soak up some rays.

{My favorite house to pass while walking}

{B and I took our sweet, big pup on a trip to the park}

{Catching some rays and enjoying this sunshine}

I'm loving these new arrivals from Anthropologie...

I'm loving my fun finds over at Pinterest...

You can follow my boards here!

And, as always, I'm loving my sweet, sweet hubby. He has been working so hard at his current job while filling pages upon pages of paperwork for his new job beginning this summer. Most would find this stressful but I love that B stays excited and motivated during this busy time. Very encouraging for sure!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Feelin' Like A Natural Woman

There is something about Spring and Summer that just screams natural. Maybe it's all the trees and flowers coming back to life or maybe it's the fact that I don't have to lather on tanning lotion, get a spray a tan, or pile on layers of makeup to cover up all that is pasty and white. You feelin' me?

When it comes to hair and makeup, I love taking it easy during these hot months. Who wants to have their face start melting as soon as they walk out the door? Ummm... not this gal! My makeup routine is a lot less stressful during these months and it makes getting ready for the day or a night out much quicker! It's downright simple: Concealer where needed, light powder, dusting of blush, neude/natural eyeshadow, mascara, and lip gloss. Other than wearing nothing (which would probably frighten people!) I don't think it gets any easier.

I love these fresh, natural, summer looks that I found via Pinterest.

I'd love to know what your Spring/Summer beauty tricks are!

Have a great day and enjoy the sunshine

Monday, April 16, 2012

Being A Biblical Wife in a Modern World

Is It Okay to Be Proud?

"The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished."
~Proverbs 16:5~

"When pride comes then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom."
~Proverbs 11:2~

"Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall."
~Proverbs 16:18~

"But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: 'God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble' "
~James 4:6~

"People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy,"
~2 Timothy 3:2~

The subject of pride or being proud is brought up several times throughout the Bible. It is a feeling that is important that we women of the Word take seriously so that this sin does not slowly creep into our lives. I've read and re-read numerous Bible verses that speak of being proud, including those listed above, but I was also curious how the dictionary defined pride. Here is what I read:

noun- a feeling or deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one's own achievements

After reading this definition, I went to the thesaurus to find out what other words were similar to pride:

honor, self-respect, self-worth, fulfillment, arrogance, vanity, self-love, haughtiness, glory

No wonder pride is considered a sin! As a dance instructor and coach I have said, " I'm so proud of you!" countless times but as I dug deeper and learned more about the harmful effects of pride and being proud of our own accomplishments, I have decided to make the commitment to not use the word proud or pride in my vocabulary. Seriously!

I never ever want to come across as a woman or wife who is boastful, arrogant, or finds her fulfillment in mine or my husband's accomplishments. Our accomplishments are God's accomplishments. When I wake up in the morning that is God's accomplishment. I never want to take satisfaction in my own accomplishments. Anything that I accomplish in life, whether it be an award, completing an awesome workout, making it through a long work day, or creating a new recipe, comes from God. It is because He gave me the motivation, encouragement, and guidance to such things. All the glory belongs to Him and I never want to be mistaken for someone who tried to take credit for something I honestly did not do.

Pride is sin. Pride is self-worship. Pride is something that I never really understood until recently and it is something that I hope to carve out of my life. When my hubby was offered his new job I so badly wanted to run and jump and tell him how proud I was of him. It was difficult to not use the word but I found other ways to congratulate this wonderful happening in our lives:

"I am overwhelmed by your hard work and dedication. Thank you for all that you do!"
"Thank you Jesus for leading us to this new job and location."
"God is so good."

You may think that I have lost my marbles and that saying that you're proud of someone isn't a big deal but as I read these verses and continued deeper into what His Word says about being prideful, I just can't have anything to do with it. I want to be humble and I want to be a woman and wife who is quick to give credit to her Provider. I never want anyone to think that I am arrogant and that I believe my accomplishments were all because of me. I am a daughter of Christ and because of Him I am confident and because of Him I am encouraged to make goals and motivated to accomplish them.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Book Review!

By: J. Courtney Sullivan

Background of the story: Three generations of women and their secrets, fears, lies, and betrayal all revolve around a summer house in Maine. Juicy and delicious... after some time.

I literally started this book a month ago and just finished it yesterday. That is soooo unlike me. I usually tear through a book within just a few days but for some reason I just could not get into this story. I read about 100 pages or so and set the book down for a couple weeks. There are a lot of characters and a large family tree to learn and each chapter changes the point of view that the story is told from so maybe it was the constant changing that I just couldn't get used to. I really don't know why I had such a hard time diving right in because when I picked up the book again yesterday, I finished it and I really enjoyed it.

I did not find this book really juicy until yesterday when secrets started to unravel and the characters were mingling with one another a little more. Sullivan does a great job describing each woman and I especially fell in love with the character Maggie and the journey she was on. I think there is a woman for each of us in this book. A character we can somehow relate to on some level and I believe that makes this story captivating for women of various ages.

The ending left a little to be desired. I felt like all the characters had closure except one and I wished we weren't dangling at the very end but in a way, it allows the reader to create their own ending based upon their opinion of that particular character.

I wouldn't say that this was an "easy" read as I clearly had to take a break from it early on but when I cracked it open yesterday, I couldn't put it down. If anyone has read this or plans to read this, I would love to hear your thoughts as well!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Summer Shape Up + Meals

We've had some awesome weather this week so I have definitely taken advantage of being outside and taking some long walks. Here are my workouts from this past week:

10 minutes elliptical
2 sets of 25 side bends with 15 lb weight, right and left
4 sets of 25 crunches on stability ball
4 sets of 25 side twists on stability ball
2 sets of 25 standing twists with 15 lb weight
2 minute walk/run intervals on treadmill for 10 minutes
3 sets of 15 tricep extensions with 10 lb weight
3 sets of 15 bicep curls with plie
3 sets of 12 booty blast squats

25 minute elliptical

4 mile walk (may have been more!)

Killer Card Workout

3.5 mile walk

All in all, a pretty successful week when it comes to working out! I also made a few yummy meals. Beginning with Easter:

Baked ham with a Brown Sugar and Spice glaze
Roasted Parmesan Green Beans
Homemade Mac n' Cheese

Roasted Chicken
Leftover Mac n' Cheese

Caesar Salad
Spicy Angel Hair Pasta
(made with EVOO, garlic, red pepper flakes, basil, parsley, parmesan cheese)

I love fixing some yummy homemade meals for me and my hubby and I have learned that a ramekin is a great tool to help with portion control. I was totally wanting some creamy mac n' cheese but I didn't want the guilt. With some tweaks in the recipe which swapped out heavy cream for skim milk and only having a small portion, my craving was satisfied and I didn't consume a ton of calories.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend ladies!