Happy Friday!


Happy Birthday to my sweet momma!

My fave picture of my mom and me:)
Andrea sent me the cutest necklace ever for finishing my 1/2 marathon!  I couldn't wait to wear it.  Good friends make my heart smile:)  Thank you friend!  She has a giveaway today too--go sign up, it's for a gorgeous statement necklace!

Have a good weekend y'all!!

Life lately


With my mom in town last weekend Mr. C and I got to try out Fish & Co., a restaurant that has been on our list.  It did not disappoint!  I loved it.  

I had seared scallops with herb tomato confit, chargrilled okra (divine), and herb cacciatore reduction.  Fancy description!  Bottom line, it was delicious.  I heart Fish & Co.  They also had a nice selection of oysters I wanted to try but Mr. C does not like them raw.  I do.  We did indulge in an amazing peach crisp and some Irish coffee--it was gone before I could think about a picture.

We also tried Savarino's Cucina for lunch (no website?!).  We saw it on Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives with Guy Fieri.  My sandwich was really good.  The bread was homemade and the ingredients were fresh...roasted pepper, fresh mozzarella, prosciutto, grilled chicken, and marinara.  Yum!
 Wore my polka dot ON sweater and loved it, wish I'd gotten more colors.

Made this pizza last night and it was delicious!  I used a Trader Joe's pizza crust for the first time and was impressed.  It got nice and crispy even with heavy toppings.  I topped it with mozzarella and baby bellas, then once it was out of the oven I added arugula tossed in vinaigrette.  So good, and easy!  

How cute is my mom?  Never lets a day pass by without wearing leopard.  I love her.  Her birthday is tomorrow!

That is all, happy Thursday!

I did it! Nashville Women's Half Marathon Recap


Well, I finished, and I was pretty excited as you can see!!

Race day was amazing!  My mom and dad arrived Thursday night to be here for me and to help out with the boys.  Friday night I had some serious nerves going on.  I slept well though and the 4:30 a.m. wake up call didn't even hurt.  I was ready to go!

On my way to my corral and telling Mr. C to chill with the camera!
Mr. C took me downtown and stayed with me until the start of the race.  He's so supportive and I love him for it.  Since I didn't have any friends in this race (Andrea, you're going to do this with me next year right?:) he had offered to sign up and run with me.  Bless his heart, he's a good sport.  But I couldn't ask him to do that, I needed to be a big girl.  We did see a few men running, one of which was wearing a hot pink shirt that said "I love my wife"-- ha!  Yay for awesome husbands.

I started the race feeling strong but tried to take my friend Ashlyn's advice to go slow early on.  I knew the course was full of hills and I was hoping to have something left at the end.  By mile 10 my knee was throbbing and I started taking 15 second walk breaks (grrr, so mad at myself for that!).   I picked it back up though and ran to the finish.  My time was 2:13:50--my goal was 2 hours and I wasn't far off but I could kick myself for those breaks!!!! In truth, they didn't hurt that much less and I wish I had pushed harder.

At the finish line and pretty tired!
My mom, my boys, my good friend Ashlyn, and Christian were yelling for me at the finish line.  It was so awesome I almost started crying.  Our names were printed on our bibs and even strangers were yelling my name-- let me tell you, I loved it and it made a difference!  So did all the encouragement you guys left here in your comments and emails, they were on my mind when the going got hard and I can't thank you enough!! I'm here to tell you, EVERY comment and piece of encouragement mattered to me!

Music city bling!
This half marathon started out being something I wanted to cross off of my bucket list but it turned into so much more.  Three and half months ago, I couldn't run to the end of my street.  Four days ago, 13.1.  I'll never forget it.  I found something I love doing, something I love being a part of, and it's so rewarding.  I can't wait to do another one and reach my goal time!  I'm a runner!!!!

I'm ready!


It's time to run!  My half marathon is tomorrow!

Wearing this (fave Nike tank, Lulu shorts)..

listening to this...

The Fighter (feat. Ryan Tedder);   Gym Class Heroes
Raise Your Glass;   P!nk
If;    Janet Jackson
Brokenhearted;   Karmin
California Gurls (feat. Snoop Dogg);   Katy Perry
I Gotta Feeling;   The Black Eyed Peas
Starships;    Nicki Minaj
Wild Ones (feat. Sia);  Flo Rida
Price Tag (feat. B.o.B);    Jessie J
What Makes You Beautiful;   One Direction
Livin' on a Prayer;   Bon Jovi
If Ever I Could Love;   Keith Urban
Sweet Thing;   Keith Urban
Call Me Maybe;   Carly Rae Jepsen
Drive By;  Train
Sparks Fly;  Taylor Swift
Payphone (feat. Wiz Khalifa);   Maroon 5
Stupid Girls;   P!nk
Teenage Dream;    Katy Perry
Boyfriend;   Justin Bieber
Standing Right In Front of You; Keith Urban
Part of Me;  Katy Perry
She's Not Just A Pretty Face;   Shania Twain
Blown Away;   Carrie Underwood
Titanium (feat. Sia);   David Guetta & Sia
Put You In a Song;   Keith Urban
As Long As You Love Me (feat. Big Sean);   Justin Bieber

thinking this.....

and looking for this...

I'm pumped! I SO appreciate your comments and encouragement!  This has been a crazy week and I missed keeping up with you guys, hopefully I'll be back to normal next week!

Y'all have a fabulous weekend!!

Book reviews and a recipe


I've finished a couple of books lately that I wanted to mention while they are fresh in my mind.  First, The Lost Hours by Karen White.

I loved this book.  It touches on a number of poignant themes: lifelong friendships, first love, loss, grief, forgiveness, regret, and family secrets to name a few.  I really enjoyed reading this and would definitely recommend it.

From the publisher (because I am the worst paraphraser ever):

When Piper Mills was twelve, she helped her grandfather bury a box that belonged to her grandmother in the backyard. For twelve years, it remained untouched.

Now a near fatal riding accident has shattered Piper’s dreams of Olympic glory. After her grandfather’s death, she inherits the house and all its secrets, including a key to a room that doesn’t exist—or does it? And after her grandmother is sent away to a nursing home, she remembers the box buried in the backyard. In it are torn pages from a scrapbook, a charm necklace—and a newspaper article from 1939 about the body of an infant found floating in the Savannah River. The necklace’s charms tell the story of three friends during the 1930s— each charm added during the three months each friend had the necklace and recorded her life in the scrapbook. Piper always dismissed her grandmother as not having had a story to tell. And now, too late, Piper finds she might have been wrong.

This was a wonderful book as well: The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf.

The subject matter for this one was difficult for me.  It's about 2 little girls who go missing (clearly a mother's worst nightmare), the search for them, and what is revealed along the way about their family members and daily lives.  It's not all pretty and it won't leave you feeling warm and fuzzy.  But, it is an intriguing story that I had to finish.  Also, the story is told from 6 different points of view, making it an interesting read.

It really is a great book, don't let me scare you away! I would still recommend reading it if you're done with silly romantic happy stuff.:)


I made chicken corn chowder for dinner last night and it was so easy and tasty.

Also, my bff Jules just gave me the link to PUNCHFORK and it's a fun website for recipes.  Happy Tuesday!

The Weekend Update


Hey friends! Hope it was a good weekend.  Here's a look at ours!

*My little guy swiped my glasses and gave them a try.  And see the bunny back there on the counter? He was injured and that caused many tears to fall.  I finished his reconstructive surgery this weekend.

*Rice krispie treats, yum! We make ours with coconut oil and flax seeds and pretend they're healthy.  I was thinking of throwing some nuts and raisins in there too.

*A much needed trip to the salon:)

*The boys are obsessed with throwing water balloons lately.  It's so fun!

*Saturday night we had friends over for the Florida v Tennessee game and we made bacon wrapped potato bites with spicy sour cream (swiped the recipe from Jill).  They.were.delicious!  My friends called them deconstructed loaded baked potato bites.  Make them! Yummy.

*Saturday we drove my half marathon course through Nashville so I could get a little familiar (it's THIS SATURDAY!!!).  Um, why is my very first big race entirely uphill?  The hubs (I believe) is afraid this race might be the death of me.  He looked very worried.  And that made me worried.  But I'm pushing the nerves away and I'm just going to do the best I can.  That's all I can do!

As always, sharing with friends; Leeann (Join the Gossip), five30three, and sami's shenanigans

Fashion Friday


Better late than never right! At least it's still Friday... My boys have been waking up before the roosters and I haven't had my usual blog time.  Enough talk, here are some pretty clothes!

On my fall lust list:  My boys are quite rowdy so my clothes have to be comfy and functional as well as cute.  I love these pieces for fall:  Forgive me, you've seen a lot of this before!

Chambray shirt (Banana Republic)--I love mine and will probably live in it.

Fun cotton sweaters:  The heart sweater is a must, puts me in a better mood automatically.  How can you not smile when there's a giant heart on your shirt? Mine is from Old Navy but this one is JCrew Factory.  Love lightweight cotton sweaters.

Loose blouses:  This navy one is ShopSosie.  I love these for impromptu date nights with tight jeans and heels (or boots), I feel instantly chic.

Scarves:  Loft has some adorable ones but the truth is I buy most of mine at TJ Maxx! Cheap and cute--I have a ton and keep adding them on, easy way to spice up Mom clothes.

Cute jackets:  The hot pink corduroy one is from Gap.  I love it!  I'd get rid of that plaid shirt and throw on a white tee and some dark skinny jeans.

Riding boots:  I think we bloggers talk about these daily.  I live in boots in the fall and would love for these to magically appear in my closet.

Friends, go have a fun weekend!  Shop, play, eat, drink, hang with your family and friends and be merry!

Cute outfit


A friend of mine had this outfit on the other day at pre-school pick up and it looked adorable.  She had on TB flats but I'm thinking TB riding boots would be super cute when the weather is a little cooler.  I would have passed over this dress looking at it online (looks too long to me?) but in person, SO cute.  I really would love to have it but I'm on lockdown this month.  Too bad because the dress is only $59.50:)

A recipe [finally!]


I'm following my sweet friend Andrea's lead and doing a Tasty Tuesday post! Thanks to Pinterest I ran across this little gem of a recipe...hot and cheesy carmelized corn dip.  It was yummy!

I think I originally pinned it from Lauren [I'm so paranoid about not giving credit:].  We served it with corn chips of course and it was {as I mentioned} delicious.  We had a lot left over so the following night I mixed it with black beans and made quesadillas.  They were yummy too:)


Hot + Cheesy Corn Dip [sightly adapted from Emeril]
serves 6-8

4 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped
1 teaspoon olive oil
3 1/2 cups sweet corn
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
4 green onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 (17 ounce) container of 2% Greek yogurt
5 ounces cheddar cheese, freshly grated
5 ounces monterey jack cheese, freshly grated

{In the words of 'How Sweet It Is'....} Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add bacon.  Fry until crispy and all fat is rendered, then remove bacon and let drain on a paper towel. {**See my note below} Add corn to the skillet, cooking and stirring until golden and a bit caramely – about 6-8 minutes. Remove corn and add it to a large bowl. Add olive oil to the skillet, then add onions and red peppers with salt and pepper. Cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in jalapeno, green onions and garlic, cooking for just 2-3 minutes. Transfer mixture to the bowl, adding in the yogurt, paprika, bacon and 4 ounces of each cheese. Stir until combined, then top with remaining cheese. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese is golden on top. Serve immediately with tortilla chips or crackers.

**Note: I followed the recipe with the exception that I cook my bacon differently.  I baked it in the oven at 350 until crispy, on a wire rack that I place on top of a cookie sheet. I saw Ina Garten do it once--all the fat drips down below and it makes WAY less mess than pan frying.

Enjoy, it's so good!  Linking up for Tasty Tuesday:)

{POTW} Picture of the week


I love any picture where I can capture these guys in brotherly action:) Makes me smile. Boo boos on the knees, big belly laughs, alligators on the shirts, nothing could be better.

Some {belated} back to school pics...I was very impressed with what my precious angels told me they wanted to be when they grow up.

Happy JaxNi Hao Yall

Summer Fun

Y'all tired of this photo yet?  I couldn't resist giving it a go when I saw that the I Heart Faces theme was "Summer Fun". Never hurts to try;)

Photo Challenge Submission

Just some thoughts


I've got running on the brain today.  Two weeks from tomorrow is my half marathon. I sort of have butterflies already!  I want to say "I'm a completer, not a competer," but when I get out there I want a good time and I want to do well.  Where is this competitive me coming from?  I like it:)

And isn't that a great metaphor for running?  Makes me want to run even more.  I miss Oprah.

Some {very} random links I enjoyed this week:

6 super foods to boost endurance

Shelf life advice: interesting website my pal Julia sent me about food shelf life and how to store things

From A Beautiful Mess: how to make product collages for your blog in Elements.  I don't use Elements that often but this was kind of fun.  Beware; very time consuming:)


Recent finds and a great big thank you


First, I have to thank you guys big time!  You really came through for me.  I won that photo contest at Ni Hao Y'all and I am so excited!  Thank you for voting!  I'm inspired to get busy with my camera again, it's been collecting dust. Thank you thank you!

My blog swag...

Ni Hao Yall

Now for some finds..

I got a chambray shirt, yay:) Too bad I didn't keep the 10 I owned in 1992.  This one is Banana Republic {and I got 30% off and used eBates for the first time!}  The reviews said it's really soft, which is what I wanted.  I love the Madewell one too but for some reason the darker one spoke to me.

Old Navy black and white polka dot sweater...I want to put this with boyfriend jeans or mint skinnies..

Loft red skinnies..  I love this look and while I do believe in investing in good denim, I don't want to spend $200 on red jeans.  Loft's are a great fit {good pocket placement} and they have some cute colors right now. Inspiration..

Mac Lipglass...I asked Miss MAC {aren't those MAC girls the bomb?} for a nude gloss that had a hint of color and she said, "You'll love 'Imperial Light' Cremesheen."  She was right, it's wonderful.
I hope the hubs isn't reading today, that spending freeze didn't work out so well;)

Labor Day 5K and a celebrity sighting


Hope you had a great Labor Day! Ours was so fun.  I've been training for the past few months for my first half marathon and decided it would be great practice to run a 5K to learn the "race day" routine.  So on Labor Day I ran my first one ever, the Franklin Classic.  My goal was to run it in under 30 minutes and I did it!  29:44 was my time, I barely slid by but I'm so happy with that.  For a girl who grew up never liking to run and be sweaty, I've come full circle.  It has become a passion--I'm addicted!  I love the crowds, the energy, and everyone cheering.  Such an awesome feeling. Mr. C ran too and pushed the boys in a jog stroller.  He's a trooper!

The boys also ran a 1K.  My oldest wasn't crazy about it and decided a piggy back ride was much more appealing.  My youngest loved it.  Here we are hoofing it across the 1K finish line!

In other exciting news, we've started shopping at Whole Foods as part of our healthy living initiative.  And guess who was there shopping with us Sunday...

Y'all know I love me a celebrity sighting and Mr. C and I were super excited to see Carrie Underwood in person.  And doing her own grocery shopping no less!! So impressed.  If I had a gajillion dollars I would send my trusty assistant.  And in case you're curious, she looked fabulous and was so darn pretty in person.  We may have waited in the parking lot in our truck and watched for her to exit the building.  Mr. C was seriously as giddy as I've ever seen him.  She was that fabulous.  The deets:  she was wearing a long tan print maxi dress, nude heels, and had her hair in a loose low bun.  (I will of course try to copy the bun, super cute on a humid day.)

Let me tell ya, it was a memorable weekend!