Christmas in Indiana Part 2

Good morning!!  I hope your Wednesday is off to a good start!  I just got back from an early class at the gym so I am feeling great!  Exercising will always be my favorite way to start the day.  It just sets me up to make healthier choices throughout the day and puts my mind in a good place.  

So back to where I left off yesterday with my recap of our trip to Indiana.   Sunday morning we opened presents!! My mother-in-law is the best gift giver ever.  

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And then we ate some breakfast!

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A little later, I had an assortment of goodies for lunch!

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And we played a bit of ping pong…my husband has to go easy on me.. he is a lot better than me. 😉

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A few hours later, we gathered in the dining room for Christmas dinner. 

We had a huge delicious meal of steak, swordfish, mashed potatoes, rice stuffing, green bean casserole, cornbread, and a pear and walnut salad.  So delicious!

Christmas cookies!

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My brother-in-law got me the game Taboo for Christmas so we decided to play that night.  We were laughing hysterically and someone, who I won’t name, may or may not have peed his/her pants. 😉 

My mother-in-law’s mom was a huge Cubs fan so my mother-in-law got us all shirts for a picture for her holiday card this year.  I know, dad, I told her it was against all my morals to wear a Cubs shirt.  🙂

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That wraps up our trip to Indiana for Christmas!  We had such a fun and relaxing time with my in-laws over the weekend.   I am sad the holidays are coming to an end, but it is always nice to come home and get back into a routine.  I am soaking up our time at our house now because it won’t be long until we are officially in Nashville!  

Questions:

  1. What is something you cook ever year on Christmas?
  2. Do you open presents or eat first on Christmas morning?
  3. Favorite type of Christmas cookie?

Christmas in Indiana!

Hi friends!! We are back from a wonderful Christmas in Indiana with my in-laws.  My husband is back to work this week and I am spending the week doing errands and getting ready for our move.  

Let’s back up to last Thursday when we headed to Indianapolis for a long Christmas weekend.  We arrived early afternoon and just hung out until we headed downtown for the Pacers game. 

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A 6 person family selfie. 🙂

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Friday we just hung around the house until early afternoon.  This little one was so happy to be in Indy.  He loves to run and run and run some more in my in-laws yard.  

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Late Friday afternoon we headed to the Murat theater to see Straight No Chaser.  They are an acapella group from Indiana and they are absolutely amazing.  

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They sang a bunch of current songs, fun songs, and Christmas songs.  

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Me, my husband and brother-in-law. 

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Love this guy!

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Afterwards we went to Mimi Blue Meatballs for dinner.  They have the best beans and fried brussel sprouts! so yummy!

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My husband and mother-in-law split this delicious maple pecan cookie. 🙂

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Riley and I on a run.  This little guy was full of energy!

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He got a new toy from my in-laws for Christmas and he wanted to play nonstop. 

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On Christmas Eve we spent the day watching movies and doing a puzzle.  Later we went to dinner at Sangiovese.  

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The food was absolutely amazing!!!  

After dinner we headed to church for the candlelight service.  

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The family on Christmas Eve!!  Love these people! 

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I will finish up my recap of our trip to Indiana tomorrow!! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!!! 

Questions:

  1. Did you travel for the holidays?
  2. Are you back to work this week or still enjoying vacation?
  3. Favorite meal you ate over the holidays?

Cancun Mexico Part 2 … Vacation Versus Adventure

Hi guys!  Well it is already Wednesday and by the time you are reading this (I am writing this Tuesday) I will be on my way to Nashville for the rest of the week.  I have a couple things to do in Nashville to get ready for our move so off I go! 

My husband and I often talk about the difference of a vacation and an adventure.  An adventure to us is exploring a new place while immersing ourselves into the culture and seeing all the popular attractions and local favorites.  A vacation to us is about relaxing and reading a good book, but not worrying about “seeing” or “doing” too much.  While our big London/Amsterdam trip was definitely an adventure, our Cancun trip was most certainly a true vacation.  Before we even got to Mexico, we planned to “not plan” anything.  During previous trips to Mexico, I have swam with the dolphins, deep sea fished, snorkeled, and explored the town, but this time we didn’t even want to leave the resort.  So we didn’t.  And it was exactly what we needed.  It was truly so relaxing and nice to not have an agenda.  

This is where I spent all day on Sunday.  It was lovely.  

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Heaven. 

The water is so clear and beautiful. 

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We have decided we are going to make this a yearly tradition.  It was the perfect time to get away.  Although we both love the holidays, they can be a pretty stressful time especially with our families in different places.  This was a special time for us to just reflect on how blessed we are and really enjoying the holidays.  Can you see the rainbow in the picture below?

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Lucky girl. 🙂

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The resort had a cute little espresso bar too so every day after the pool we would grab an espresso or two.  Espresso and champagne are my favorites.  Not together, of course. 😉 

Saturday night we got ready early and headed to the theater for a drink before dinner and ended up playing a round of scrabble.  Did I tell you guys that I love games? 

 

The huge Christmas tree in the lobby. 🙂

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Saturday night we went to the Steakhouse restaurant for dinner. 

So yummy!

When we ordered a drink after dinner while waiting for the show, the bartender gave me two glasses of champagne.  For the record, I did not drink that big one! LOL!

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Sunday morning we went to the gym bright and early before catching an hour or two by the pool before getting ready to head home.  We had one last amazing lunch… I had a salad the size of my head and it was delicious! 

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We had such a great time on our vacation and I can’t recommend this all-inclusive resort enough!  The food and drinks were soo good and the staff was truly amazing!  We will definitely be back!  I hope to check in with you all tomorrow or Friday!  Have a great rest of the week! 

Questions:

  1. Favorite cocktail?
  2. Pool or beach?
  3. Appetizer or dessert? Or both?

 

Cancun Mexico Trip With Jonny

Hi friends!!  I hope you Tuesday is off to a good start.  My started on a rather….icky note due to a furry little guy thinking it was okay to potty inside last night… My dogs are very well behaved and potty trained, but every once in a while.. I won’t name any names (eh hem… Riley…) one of the pups decides he isn’t going to wait until he gets to go outside.  Fortunately the accident was not on carpet… unfortunately I walked right into it my gym shoes this morning in the dark while getting ready to run on my treadmill.  So yeah.. it has been one of THOSE days already and its not even 9am.  

But let’s focus on the positive, shall we?  My husband and I just got back from the most amazing vacation ever in Cancun, Mexico!!  After a hectic morning last Wednesday (my husband forgot his backpack at home when we were on the way to the airport) and a flight connection from hell (for some reason my name was under our reservation twice and my boarding pass wouldn’t let me board our connecting flight to Mexico… they worked to fix it for 20 minutes… meanwhile my husband is on the plane freaking out that I am not going to get on and I’m freaking out thinking he is going to Mexico without me… they finally got it fixed with about 1 minute to spare..).  Needless to say, we were more than ready to get to Mexico and our resort when we finally arrived late Wednesday afternoon.  

We took a short shuttle ride to our hotel, Riu Palace Las Americas.  This was the first time my husband had stayed at an all-inclusive resort so he was pretty skeptical.  I had been to Cancun and all inclusive resorts quite a few times over the years and think it is the way to go for a relaxing, stress-free vacation in the sun.  This resort is absolutely stunning and did not disappoint!  

 

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I have stayed at Riu resorts before and while they are all pretty nice, this one was exceptionally nice.  It is also an adults-only resort so I think they definitely helped with the peaceful atmosphere and everything is geared towards adults so that is nice.  

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There are 5 or 6 restaurants in the resort and none of them require reservations, which is always nice.  There is one buffet and the rest are sit-down dining.  

The food was amazing.  So fresh and tasty.  My husband was so skeptical that the food wouldn’t be good at an all-inclusive, but even he raved about it.  On our last day he said, “well I didn’t have one bad meal.” so I think that explains how good it was!

The resort was beautifully decorated with lots of lights for the holidays.  We went to the nightly show (different every night) most nights, but our favorite was the star impersonations show.  They did Brittney Spears, Elvis, Beyonce and more.  It was amazing!

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I am proud to say that all 4 mornings we were there we made it to the gym!  We also played lots of games/sports during the day.  My husband loved the ping pong tournament… until a guy almost 3 times his age beat him. 🙂 🙂 🙂 

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I did more lounging… and swimming up to the bar. 

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I mean.. a cold pina colada on a hot day… doesn’t get much better than that.  

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Speaking of the weather.. it was amazing!  In the 70s and 80s every day except for a little scattered rain on Sunday.  We weren’t too upset though… we just sat under covering and read our books! 

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The pool is more our kind of place, but we did take a couple walks on the beach. 

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I loved having lunch at the resort and piling my plate high with a big ole salad!  yum! 

Oh and mimosas and beer with lunch :).

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My husband entered the football throwing contest… he did not win. 😉

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The entertainers asked us if we walked to play water volleyball… we said sure why not.  They later told us it was tequila volleyball.  Every time you missed the ball, they poured tequila in your mouth… Tequila is not my thing so I tried my hardest. 🙂

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Thursday night we went the theater before dinner for a little Black Jack.  Thankfully it was fake money. Gambling stresses me out. 😉

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I’m better at drinking pina coladas. 😉 

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Thursday and Friday nights we went to the Japanese restaurant because we loved it so much! 

We may have had that sushi platter times 3! 🙂 So yummy!

Love this guy!!  So grateful for time away from work and our crazy schedule to spend quality time together.  It is so important to us.  

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I will finished recapping our wonderful trip to Mexico tomorrow!! I hope you all had an amazing weekend! 

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Questions:

  1. What was the highlight of your weekend?
  2. How is your morning going?  Better than mine I hope. 😉 
  3. What re you eating for lunch today? 

 

Thanksgiving Week Recap Part 2

Good morning!!  I hope you all are getting back into the swing of things after the Thanksgiving holiday.  I am definitely feeling the earlier wake up calls and really need to work on getting to bed earlier.  Always a struggle for me.  

Back to the second half of my Thanksgiving week recap!  After the race Thursday morning, we went straight home and got cooking.  We had friends coming over around 2pm and planned to eat around 4pm.  

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My sweet Callie girl needed lots of loving in this new-to-her place.  She is quite the homebody and takes a while to warm up to new places and new people.  

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One of the two buffet tables!

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I made the chocolate peanut butter pie on the left and our friends made the strawberry trifle! 

After dinner we sang happy birthday to my daddy using the pumpkin pie! 🙂

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Then we did the dishes and these two knew just where to stand. 😉

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The boys and Otis.  

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Love my little family.  

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The kids! 

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Friday morning we met my mom and stepdad for breakfast and then went with my mom to the food closet.  My mom runs the food closet at her church and the day after Thanksgiving is a big day of organizing because church attendees bring non-perishable food items to the alter to donate on Thanksgiving.  With all 6 of us it only took a little over an hour and we all enjoyed being able to give back!

Friday night we went to another Predators game with my dad.  They won again!

Saturday was a lazy day full of movies and naps.  That night we had a family dinner with my mom and stepdad at Jimmy Kellys.  We got some appetizers to split and all really enjoyed our meals. 

Family.

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Sunday morning I dropped of my husband, sister, and her boyfriend at the airport to head back to Dallas.  I spent a good portion of Sunday making and decorating Christmas cookies with my momma.  She makes a bunch of different kinds every year to give to her friends and neighbors.  I forgot to snap a picture, but let’s just say that a 5 year old could have decorated them better than I did. 😉

And before I knew it, my alarm was ringing at 3:30am on Monday morning for me (and the dogs) to get up and hit the road for Dallas.  These two were not amused.  

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That wraps up my holiday travels to Nashville for Thanksgiving.  It was such a nice week filled with lots of fun activities and rest, which in my opinion, is the best kind of vacation.  I am getting pretty excited to live near my parents and little brother and to be able to see them more often! 

I hope you all have a great Wednesday!!  Stay warm! 

Questions:

  1. Did you travel for Thanksgiving?
  2. Did you shop on Black Friday or Cyber Monday?
  3. If you did shop, what was the best deal you got?

Exciting News and A Thanksgiving Week Recap Part 1!

Hi guys!  I hope you all had an amazing Thanksgiving and had some time to relax and eat yummy food with loved ones.  We sure did.  I actually just got back to Dallas yesterday afternoon so I am slowly getting back into the swing of things.  I made the 10 hour car ride with the 3 pups and boy was it a long one!  

Before I start recapping last week in Nashville with my family, I have some very exciting news to share!  If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, you may have seen my announcement this afternoon.  We are officially moving to Nashville, TN in early 2017!  We are so excited!!!  As I have mentioned before, our long term plan was to hopefully end up in Nashville one day, but this day came a lot sooner than we expected.  We had been anticipating a move early next year (for my husband’s career), but we were fully expecting to end up in a different state.  In mid October, my husband was presented with an opportunity to move to Nashville and we were both in shock!  We started getting excited, but realistically we didn’t think it would really end up happening.  Fast forward a couple weeks… and it is official!  We are not expecting this move to be permanent, but we are happy to take what time we can get to live near friends and family in Nashville. The one downside is leaving my sister, her boyfriend, and their pup in Dallas.  I get teared up just thinking about it.  It has been so so so nice getting to spend so much time with them these last two years.  

So I hope that helps explain my sporadic blogging these last few weeks… life has been a little hectic. 😉  This also explains my mom deep cleaning our house and my mother-in-law visiting (she helped us paint a lot of our house).  Thank the lord for our mommas!  We don’t have an exact moving date yet as we will wait for our house to sell in Dallas (in 2017) and then start really looking in Nashville.  I will be sure to update you guys along the way!!

Let’s rewind back to a week ago at 4am.  This was my view as we began our 10 hour car ride from Dallas to Nashville.  The pups were very curious why we woke them up so early.

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We arrived early afternoon and my dad and I took the pups to the park for a long walk.  We all needed to move after that car ride!  At least Riley was looking at the camera… 

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After our walk we headed to a new-to-me restaurant called Wild Iris.  We ran into my dad’s friends and grabbed a drink at the bar with them before sitting down for dinner.

I got the salmon and I can’t even explain how good it was.  It came with this kale pesto and a bunch of roasted veggies.  Mmmm mmm mmm!

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Tuesday morning I headed to the grocery store bright and early to shop for Thanksgiving dinner and avoid the crowds before picking up my husband at the airport.  He had to work that day, but later on we headed to the park for another walk with the doggies.  

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Then we met up with my favorite french fry loving little brother and dad for a quick dinner.  

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The dogs made themselves right at home.  🙂

Wednesday was spent baking and lounging around before heading to dinner and the Predators (hockey) game!!

How hilarious is my brother’s face in this picture?  The guy next to us told him, “Someday soon you will like that!” 😉  We love this boy so much!! 

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My husband went to grab a drink and came back and said to my brother, “The cameraman wants you to dance for him!!”  (Side note: my little brother LOVES to get on the Jumbo-tron at the games so he was SO excited!)  They ran up the stairs and waited for the whistle to blow. 

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The cutest!!!

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Thursday morning, Jacob and I woke up super early to get ready for the annual Boulevard Bolt (Thanksgiving Day 5 mile race).  We sported our Santa hats for the race too. 🙂

My husband and best friend, Lissa, made signs and cheered us on throughout the race!  So fun to see them!

We had a blast, but we were happy when we finally saw the finish line!!! So proud of this boy!

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If you made it this far, thank you for reading. 🙂 I will finished up my Thanksgiving week recap tomorrow!!!  Have a great night!

Questions:

  1. How was your Thanksgiving?
  2. Did you run a race on Thanksgiving?
  3. What is your favorite Thanksgiving side dish?

 

Nashville Trip… Food, Family & Fun

Hi ya’ll!  Long time no talk!  On Tuesday, my husband and I headed to Nashville for a couple days.  He had some work to do there so I decided to tag along so I could spend some time with my family and friends.  

Shortly after we arrived we headed to California Pizza Kitchen for a late lunch.  I had the best salad! Yum!

Tuesday evening my dad and I surprised my little brother at his hockey practice.  He was so happy to see us.  He is such a good skater; I am so jealous of his skills. 🙂 

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After practice, my dad and I grabbed takeout to eat at home during the Indians/Cubs game.  I can’t believe the Indians lost. 😦

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Riley was very invested in the game too. 😉

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Wednesday morning my dad, Riley, Jon and I headed to the park for a nice long hike. 

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We saw an owl!

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And a turtle!  Riley wasn’t sure what to think of it.

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Such a beautiful day to be in nature.  

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I can’t believe we are still wearing shorts in November!

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Wednesday afternoon my dad and I grabbed some lunch at McAlisters before some shopping at home goods. The squash soup was to die for!

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Then it was more playtime for Riley.  He thought all my brother’s toys were his new toys.  🙂

Wednesday night my dad and I met my bestie, Rachael, at Mere Bulles for an early dinner before game 7 of the World Series.  

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I got the ahi tuna, which was absolutely incredible!!!

After dinner, we headed home to root for the Indians…. 

And Rach got some cuddling in with her nephew. 🙂

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Shortly after, he was wiped!! That hike did him in. 😉

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Thursday morning I met my mom at Target for a little shopping.  We grabbed a coffee and did a little more shopping before lunch at Avo.  Avo is a vegan restaurant I have been wanting to try for a while now! 

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I got the Nashville salad, which was full of fresh, local ingredients and my mom got the avocado toast that came with a salad too.  We both loved our meals!! So fresh and healthy!

Yesterday afternoon we caught a flight back to Dallas and now it’s back to the grind!  Looking forward to a fun dinner tonight with Jon, my sister, and her boyfriend to celebrate my birthday that was on Tuesday.  It’s official ya’ll, I am in my late 20s now… ahh!!! 🙂

Enjoy your weekend!!!

Questions:

  1. What are your plans for the weekend?
  2. Do you like avocado toast?
  3. Did you watch the World Series?