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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

4 weeks fit challenge {my results!}

Here we are, finally! Linking up with Erin and Kristin today! 4 weeks after some of us set some goals -- its a time that's either really crummy to look back on because we didn't keep up with our goals, or really exciting cause we rocked the house on ALL of them! I'm here to tell you I'm a little bit in between, and you know what? I'm good with that.

I began the month insanely motivated, then a few things happened that slowed me down, but as of March 22nd, I've really kicked it into over drive. Something just "clicked" in me and I've worked really, really hard! I've run every day since, and for the most part, have eaten really clean! It feels amazing. So, lets go over my goals one by one.

Run 16 times
TOTAL WIN! I ran 16 times exactly. Some of those were as little as 2 miles, some were up to 7 miles... but I freaking did EVERY ONE OF THEM and it feels so good. You guys, I even woke up before work 4 days in the last week. Who am I turning into!? I'm pretty proud of myself. Sure, there were days I wanted to give up...but I pushed on. I finally started seeing some results this week, and that has me even MORE motivated than ever.

Lift weights
FAIL. Ha - yeah. We won't go into that one. I used to do this a lot but this month Caleb and I focused on running outside a lot with the new weather and it was awesome. So I'll be sure to focus more on that in April. I really want to be toned, and I truly think lifting helps my endurance during my long lets hope in April I can make a dent in this!

Run 3 miles in 30 minutes
HALF WIN! I ALMOST did this, by about a minute. So, I'm kinda giving it to myself - also because I ran 2 miles in 20 minutes a few times!

Stretch more
WIN! Woohoo! This was huge for me. I took a while after (and sometimes even before) each run to stretch my legs and calves, especially. My worst spots are always my shins, and the QL area above my rump... ha! Hey, we're being honest here. But this stretching has helped so much, I haven't had any pain. I'm praying for an injury free journey to my next half!

Some other exciting moments....
-Finding my nice Adidas dri-fit hoodie before an outdoor run
-Accomplishing the 7 miles straight was definitely my biggest milestone.
-Getting some adorable running pants for my half. I think that's going to be my thing - buying myself a crazy pair of running pants for every half or big race I run! It's true - you burn more calories in cute gear ;) sneak peek up above.
-Finally believing in myself. Knowing that I CAN do difficult things. My head gives up before my legs, so I've learned to push through.
-Finally learning how to properly use my watch and actually use it! Pumps me up!
-Finding more good music for my playlist.

I'm really not sure if I'm meant for distance running, I really would like to work on getting faster in shorter distances, but we'll see how I feel after this next half!  Sure, there were days I felt like doing NOTHING...and some days, I did just that. But the feeling I have after accomplishing a hard run, or even an easy one, just can't be beat. I finally feel like I've "found my groove" and hope that this link up has encouraged you guys like its encouraged me!!


Love, Fun & football

How was your month??

Monday, March 30, 2015

Our jam packed weekend!

I just wish week DAYS would go just as fast as the weekENDS seem to! We had so much fun planned and couldn't wait to get started. Friday night I came home and got in a quick run...which was perfect because that night was also declared "cheat night" (I think I'm seeing a pattern here), so we got Chinese! My brother stayed the night with us so while the boys played video games, I caught up on some reading.

Saturday morning we had a huge run in front of us. It was going to be the longest run yet in my training plan, and Caleb promised to run it with me. We got started, and something just came over us...we felt GREAT! He told me to follow him and we finally ventured outside of our little apartment complex. We ran on a real road, you guys!! It made me feel kinda legit (not going to lie). He's so good at keeping a great pace...and if I can do this again on race day, I'll be more than satisfied!

I cleaned up and made french toast for all of us....

...then spent a while reading...

...before heading to Erin and Jared's for a much overdue game night! We missed our best friends!

We also made a quick trip to CVS for some snacks and I found this lil guy!

Sunday was busy, but awesome. We went to church, got Caleb's haircut, I had a photo shoot, then went on a quick 2 mile run. Then we had youth group where we shot some basketball for a while, such a blast! THEN! The Walking Dead finale. OMG! Any fans?!! I'm dying. I can't even wait to see what's next!!!!

Happy Monday, friends!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Making time for me

I love my husband dearly...I really do...but there are times when I just need to get away and do my own thing for about 30 minutes or so. I've always been that way. I LOVE community, I love my friends and family, I love being surrounded by awesome people....but sometimes I just want to spend time with myself. I think its good for the soul. Maybe you're like me, or maybe you think I'm crazy. But here are just a few things I do to get my 'me time' in...

Sure, its work...but exercise is seriously therapeutic for me. It's just me, my playlist, and my thoughts. I've sorted through lots of ideas/priorities in my head on my long runs lately and have LOVED how refreshed I feel once its over. I don't always love the actual exercise, but I never regret it once its over.

Getting my hair done.
I know this requires an appointment most of the time, but there's nothing like spending an hour or two girl talking with your stylist and getting your hair played with. Bonus points when you leave feeling like a million bucks!!

A bubble bath.
I LOVE taking a 20 minute bubble bath. There is something SO relaxing about it. I put on some Hillsong Live and throw some lavender bath salts up in there, and I'm good.

Popping in a classic feel-good, funny movie.
Hello Pitch Perfect. Nice to see you for the 17th time this year... :)

Being in the kitchen.
I think its so refreshing to pick a new recipe, follow it verbatim, and create something delicious for people you love (or even just for yourself!). My kitchen is definitely one of my happy places...if only it was bigger!

I'm excited that Caleb and I are making a priority to read 30 minutes a night a few times a week to dive into the plot of our choice. Being able to curl up under a comfy blanket and do just that? Makes me one happy girl.

Not even on my blog (though I do love doing that), I'm talking in a real journal. Pen to paper. Sometimes I just start writing down one thought, one memory, and next thing I know an hour has passed. It's so important to me to document my day to day thoughts. A lot of time, I look back just a few weeks and see how I've grown/learned from something. It's amazing.

Being a typical 20 something and browsing Pinterest/stalking Instagram
...because duh, I'm bored sometimes...and you all live beautiful lives.

I wish I could say "getting a massage", but that's never in my life happened. I hardly ever want to PAY for a mani/pedi, although I complain almost 24/7 about my ugly maybe I should finally treat myself soon. I should've also included "shopping" in the list, but Caleb and I hardly ever go out to actually purchase stuff and its more like "browsing", but sometimes, thats just as fun! What do you do to get in your me-time?!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Pushing yo'self.

Last night, Caleb and I ran a few miles in the cold wind, and rain. Yes, RAIN. I looked at him during the run at one point like "we're not turning around yet?!" He said "that's what jackets are for!" and we pushed on. Once we were done, I realized it was a pretty quick couple miles and I was very excited. It made me realize I'm easily running over 2 miles with no problem. Even with the hills in our subdivision... I don't have to stop anymore!

I'm in week 8 of my half training and its gone pretty well. Although I missed my long run last Sunday, I'm doing quite well. This morning I even woke up before work to get my 4.5 miles in. Who am I turning into?! With every step I take, burning legs and all, I literally have to tell myself "Kayla, this is making you STRONGER...don't you dare give up"...and I've somehow been finding a way to go that extra 100 yards, that extra mile... and its making all the difference. I saw a neat quote on Pinterest and loved it; "Your legs are not giving out, your head is giving up. Now keep going!".

I've also been stalking stores for a cute running tank, I think its a known fact that you run harder in cute I should probably just go ahead and buy this, yeah?

My run last night also made me think about my list of fitness goals for this month, and while I won't meet all of them (sadly), I've made a LOT of progress, and I think that's something to be proud of. I don't always love running, but I sure do love the feeling of accomplishment it gives me. I'm finally understanding that there is no such thing as a 'bad run'. There's running, and then there's sitting on the couch...and I'm choosing to be active! It's not always easy, heck, most days I'd prefer to sit on the couch (with ice cream in hand) , but once that workout is done? I never ever regret it.

Next time I try and come up with an excuse not to workout -- I need to remind myself that its always worth it! I WILL crush this half marathon!!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Cheat nights rock.

I came home after work and it was obvious that Friday was going to be our 'cheat meal' night. Caleb was anxiously waiting for me to pick out which pizza I wanted...and I was way too excited about it. Of course I picked the one with the salted pretzel crust... it was amazing.

He also surprised me with a $4 sweater he found at the mall and it made me laugh because it was technically the first day of Spring and the sweater was all about Snow and Frozen, of all things. But it first perfect and is SO soft so I pretty much haven't taken it off :) we spent the evening at home playing silly video games and just relaxing. We truly needed a night off.

Early Saturday morning we hit up the library for the best dang used book sale you ever did see. We got to fill the largest bag for $5 (but we gave more since it was such a steal), and got nearly 40 books (they aren't all pictured). Maybe I'm an old soul but there is just something SO amazing about having a book in your hand...and actual book! I've made a lot of time for reading this weekend and I can't wait to keep it up.

 We made some yummy breakfast sandwiches and shortly after I headed out for a baby shower for Lyndsie's aunt. I'm really close with her family so it was great seeing all the ladies again, it had been a while. Lyndsie's mom is so creative and ordered the CUTEST cookies I've ever seen. Plus I got to squeeze my bestie!!

Sunday we had church, a maternity shoot, and an amazing run. I LOVE Sundays!!

We're absolutely soaking up the amazing weather + all this free time. I can't get enough. Also can't contain my excitement that Spring is finally here!!!
Did you do anything fun this weekend?

Friday, March 20, 2015

Friday Favorites! {yay its SPRING!}

Can we all just take a moment to celebrate the fact that Winter is officially over and SPRING IS UPON US?!!? I, for one, couldn't be happier about this. Lets just hope the colors come back soon, I'm sick of grey skies!

As far as exercise?  This definitely wasn't my week. BUT, lots of other amazing things happened, and I can smile about that. In other news, I'm finally joining in on Amanda's awesome Friday Favorites link up-- but I'm just throwing out a BUNCH of random favorites. Is there ever a real prompt for these kind of link ups? Nah. That's what makes them so fun. Here goes nothin!

1 // I won a giveaway this week and got the CUTEST shirt to rep my city!
2 // Volunteering is already rewarding, but church decided to give us a fun little thank you last week!
3 // We had a baby shower for one of my favorite co workers yesterday!
4 // I finally got some decent make up brushes with my play money!!! Love that its already budgeted for so I don't even feel guilty!

5 // My friend Becca had contractions this week and we thought she was going into labor. Come ON baby Norah! We're ready for you.
6 // Making THIS again was amazing. Find it here!
7 // I know I said it already, but this sunset from our back patio? Unreal.
8 // This shot from our last wedding. Just gearing up for wedding season to begin!

Now for my favorite Pinterest finds of the week:

Favorite song of the week: (lets be honest... all month) Four, Five Seconds!

Favorite quote:
A few other randoms from my week:
I  finally moved into my new cube at work...
I'm officially cavity free...
The gal who did my fillings is looking for a photographer #haayy...
Almost all the laundry in our home is done...
& my husband rocks.... :)

Have a happy weekend!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Make room for adventure.

As much as Caleb and I love to stay in and watch TV, I think its so good for our souls to get out and be more adventurous. I'm not talking about pulling an all nighter acting like little kids (although, we would love that)...I just mean something as simple as getting outside more. Taking a long walk, hitting the road for a spontaneous dinner date, etc.

It's so easy to leave my camera at not want to carry it around, and just use my iPhone. I feel like I document SO many moments for everyone else (brides/grooms/families/etc), and don't really spend the time to take nice photos of OUR stuff, OUR day to day lives.

I want to capture the small stuff. Like when I come home from a long day and he's got dinner already cooking...or when we're walking outside and he wraps his arms around me for no reason. Obviously, some moments I want to leave undocumented (as in, no photos)...I like some things to stay between just us. But a lot of the time? I like to document the sweet little things he does for me, so that I can remember them.

I'll be the first to admit that Caleb and I haven't exactly "dated" each other lately, unless you consider time at the gym together, dates ;) we've had a LOT going on with family, and busy weekends. So you could say I was pretty excited when I got this text yesterday from my man...
Sure, life isn't crazy exciting every single day, but I want to remember to always find joy in the small parts of our marriage. I think sometimes, its so easy to get comfortable and forget to pursue one another...but I never want to forget. Caleb is always so great to me, and I want to be sure he knows how awesome he is.

This is where creativity comes in. I truly don't believe you have to spend a ton of money on your spouse/significant other to make them feel special. Some of my most favorite dates with Caleb were the ones that didn't cost a dime. Impromptu dinner out w/ a gift card, netflix + ice cream at home, Saturdays spent at the library, etc. My creative juices are flowing and I'm excited about some future dates I've got in the works for us! So Caleb, if you're reading this...get ready!

What's your favorite date night been?

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

A change in perspective.

Sunday I was supposed to run my longest run yet of the training plan - 6 whole miles. I had just run 4 a few days prior so I honestly wasn't too nervous. Well, things came up and the 6 miles didn't happen, so my plan was so lace up immediately after work yesterday so I could enjoy the nearly 70 degree weather (hallelujah!). I got home from work, and did just that. Shorts and a tee, it was glorious! I get about 2 miles into my run and I was already insanely exhausted, what in the world was happening?! Then all of a sudden I had a severe sharp pain coming from the inside of my right shin, I had to stop. I was almost in tears...1) due to the actual pain I was feeling, and 2) I was so disappointed in myself.

I get home, Caleb begins to encourage me..."we're gonna KILL this half marathon, don't you worry", etc, etc, etc...he's a gem, seriously. I keep moping around, drowning in my own self pity...and won't shut up about these unfinished 4 miles. I decided some me-time, and a bath full of Epsom salt would do the trick...and boy, did it! I was able to walk around an hour later no problem... but even though I felt better, I was still really annoyed with myself.

{back story} Lately, Caleb and I have been opening the windows when we're home from work because the weather has been so fantastic, and the sun stays out much later than usual. For whatever reason, I got up from the couch, and  happened to witness one of the most beautiful sunsets I'd ever seen from our back porch. We live in a complex that has a gorgeous lake, and I never take advantage of it.

It was in that moment that I is about so much more than a silly run. I have no right to be THIS upset over an unfinished workout. I tried my hardest, and that's all I could do. My leg pain is so insignificant compared to other things in life, and I need to remember that more often. I'm thankful for what I DO have. Sure, its okay to be sad about my run, but not for too long.

I've got a husband who cheers me on, even when I fail...
I've got two jobs that I rock at...
I've got friends all over the world who would do anything for me...
I can make a mean grilled cheese...
but most importantly? I'm a good person, and that should be enough.

Time to tackle those unfinished 4 miles tonight. I CAN do this!

Monday, March 16, 2015

1 down, 29 to go!

Here we are...another Monday. I never understand why I ALWAYS feel tired on a Monday? No matter how much sleep I get!? Maybe I need to learn to like black coffee... (gross).

Rewind to the beginning of the weekend. I couldn't believe how nervous I was Friday evening. Just THINKING about shooting the wedding the next day was making my stomach hurt. It had been about 4 FULL months since we'd shot an actual wedding and I was beginning to think I'd forgotten everything. Little did I know, picking my camera back up to start this 2015 wedding season would be so rewarding.

Caleb and I had the whole morning to do whatever we wanted, and didn't have to be Downtown until 1:30! It truly couldn't have been a better day. I hadn't seen the bride and groom since their consultation over a YEAR ago, so I was excited to squeeze the bride and get some fun pictures by the river. Little did we know the river would be FLOODING! They almost called an evacuation of a nearby city due to the insanely high waters. There's a walkway we planned to take pictures on prior to the ceremony, which was right by the river...yeah, no walk way to be seen. Totally covered in water!! It was crazy. BUT, we made it work and got some amazing pictures... and had fun doing it!

Sometimes I get overwhelmed thinking about how crazy our lives are about to get when weddings really pick up. How in the world are we going to manage 30 weddings, two full time jobs, church volunteering, and a marriage? Oh and you know, maintaining friendships...etc?!?! Then Caleb sweetly reminds me that we are going to take it one day at a time, get the HECK out of debt this year, and enjoy each wedding as they come. He also considers them like "date nights", and he's totally right. Free dinner, free favors, and unlimited dancing on the dance floor.

I am so blessed. I just have to remember that!
Congrats to the newlyweds!

I hope you had a fun weekend, too! 

Friday, March 13, 2015

Friday {and what I loved this week}

Happy Friday, friends! I hope you've all had a great week. We're shooting our first wedding of the year tomorrow and couldn't be more excited about it. I've had some serious "cabin fever" during this off-season. While Caleb and I have DEFINITELY enjoyed the free time on the weekends, we've been itching to create beautiful I'm pretty excited for tomorrow! The forecast is calling for some rain, so we're keeping our fingers crossed that it'll hold off for a while! Ohio had some seriously beautiful weather (for the most part) this week...and I definitely took advantage.

-I had the most amazing lunch in my car while the rain drops fell one afternoon. So, so healthy and refreshing.

-I was able to get my first outside run of the year done last night. 4 miles in the bag!! I slept like a rock last night, thanks to this!

-We got new cubicles at work! The promotion I got months ago (along with quite a few other co workers) is finally coming together, and they've redone a whole section of the building to fit our new needs. I'm so excited!!

-Spending 3 hours in a grocery store because we felt like looking at everything...even if we had no intentions of buying it. Plus, its Jungle Jim's. You HAVE to look at everything!

-First time I rolled the windows down while driving this week!! Heeeyyy 60 degree weather!

-If this isn't the cutest thing you've ever seen then I don't know what is??! Nora and her baby sister, Charlotte! As my mom said "holy pink hats Batman! They are beautiful!!" :)

- I had a very successful consult this week with an amazing I came home with a Starbucks treat...because we had a gift card and because we can... :)

-Today is one of my favorite people's birthdays! My girl, Angie!! I don't know what I'd do without her and her goofiness in my life. She and I were freshman roommates back in college and I wouldn't have had it any other way. She made my time at college one I'll never forget. Ang, I hope today is as amazing as you are!! LOVE YOU! (yes, that's us in 2009-2010...babies!)

I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend ahead of them! I'm very much looking forward to a relaxing Sunday, after our busy-filled day Saturday! Also, looking forward to some new recipes I've got in the works {also thanks to my momma for helping}. Enjoy, friends!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Balyage, baby! & other weekend plans!

So many great things happened this weekend, that only a collage was appropriate.

Friday, my mom and I had a ladies night. Dinner at O'Charley's, journal purchasing at TJ Maxx, and movie watching at my place. Saturday, I was super excited to get to sleep in...but once I remembered I was getting my hair done that afternoon, I couldn't get ready fast enough. Caleb wanted it more blonde again, yet I didn't want to keep up with roots every 8 my stylists compromise? Balyage...apparently that's the appropriate term for subtle highlights painted on from the bottom up? Regardless, she did an awesome job and I'm pumped about it!

Once I got home, Caleb and I got busy cleaning our place...because we were having bunch of friends over to hang! I finally had an excuse to use my Ohio cutting board (but yes, I used it as a serving plate).

Sunday we were bad people and forgot to set alarms, so we missed church...that whole "losing an hour of sleep" thing really caught up with us. That afternoon we laced up because we knew we both had a hard workout in front of us. As I said yesterday, I had to run 5 miles...while Caleb did 7 miles on the elliptical! We were pretty proud of ourselves! So we rewarded ourselves with Marco's Pizza...I know, I know...but free coupons make it way more enticing. That bottom right photo is me just beaming with pride over my husband. He planned a whole lesson to teach to the youth group and straight rocked it. He's awesome.

I hope you guys had a great weekend, too!!

Monday, March 9, 2015


This weekend was full of so many amazing things, but one thing stood out to me the most. Yesterday, my training plan told me I had to run 5 miles. If i'm being honest, that was about the LAST thing I wanted to do, but Caleb pretty much made me get up and go to the gym with him.

I'm SO glad I did because I freaking RAN those 5 miles, like nobody's business. Sure, it was tough...but I was in my own world with my new running playlist and I kept telling myself there is NO reason I couldn't run one more mile. I got a good laugh thinking of a pin I saw a few days prior...

My goal is usually to run 10 minute miles, and while I know its not the fastest ever, its also not the slowest. I constantly have to remind myself that its not a competition with anyone. There is no sense in getting caught up in that silly she can run faster AND farther than me mentality. Cause you know what? I finished, & that is what matters.

I now have 8 full weeks until my half, and while I'm still pretty nervous...I'm crazy excited. If I could push myself to run 5 miles (which, before yesterday, I hadn't done since last May), I know I can hit more milestones as these weeks pass by. Kinda figured one week in would be a good chance to take a look at how I'm doing on my goals;

Run 16 times -- so far, I've run 4 times since the 1st of March, so I'd say I'm on track!
Run 3 miles in 30 minutes -- Not yet, but getting CLOSE!
Lift more weights -- haven't touched them this week. Good reminder to get back on it.
Stretch a lot -- I've spent at least 15 minutes after each run, and its helping a TON!

In addition to those goals, I've made sure to drink a TON of water each day. I've found that I drink a lot more when I have a straw. How is everyone else doing on their March goals (fitness or non-fitness related)??!

Friday, March 6, 2015


Sweet Friday. I've been waiting for you!

Lately I've been taking a lot of pictures on my phone in "square" mode. 1) So they are insta-ready, but 2) so they fit nice and perfect on the blog. I figured a Friday full of squares was a perfect way to look back at my week! We got a crap ton of snow this week (some nearby cities got up to a foot!), but other than that mess, the week went by really quickly! Which I love.

When your headband is this cute, you can run 3 miles like nobody's business! Hiiiii baby cameras.

The three of us (meaning me, my mom + Caleb) went working out together this week a few times and it was AWESOME! I'm allowed to pat myself on the back when I'm part of a sweet challenge with a bunch of other awesome ladies, right? I know we're only a few days in but its already been so fun to read your accomplishments and your progress!

 I babysat one of the cutest children in all the world. Since I won't take cash from my friends, I let them pay me in wonderful, home cooked meals! Besides, Nora is the best company.

Last night I made this after our workout and it rocked my world all over again (this was before I stirred that deliciousness in)

Hiiiiiiii snow storm. You're beautiful, but I'm ready for Spring!

Thanks to Kristin, I have my first oil kit. I can't remember the last night I got a good nights sleep, so last night I put some of the lavender on the bottoms of my feet. Oh my word, I think I only woke up once all night, and that's because Caleb got out of bed! Love them!!

I know this is blurry -- but I think it'll forever be a favorite of mine. 3 generations of laughter ;) love my momma and Nanny. Wouldn't know what to do without these two!!

I'm getting my hair done tomorrow and I'm really excited! I don't know what in the world I'm going to do with it, but I know my girl Becca will make it look awesome! Hope you guys have some fun plans for the weekend!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

We packed in some FUN this weekend!

My family came over Friday night and our family friend {who catered our wedding} had given my Grandma all the ingredients to replicate one of our wedding meals! It's a creamy chicken poppyseed bake poured over a bed of rice, and let me tell you...its as amazing as it sounds. So the family came over for a few hours to hang out, and we had ourselves a ball. My mom and I curled our hair, fell in love with a youtube star, and acted like children for most of the night.

Saturday was Becca's baby shower, so I ventured up to Dayton a bit early to get some quality girl time in. {Backstory} A few years ago when the four of us got together, we made a "jar of memories". We all jotted down a ton of our favorite stupid/hilarious/embarrassing memories and bottled them up...and we haven't looked at them ONCE since. I'm pretty sure we all forgot about the jar until one of the girls commented on a picture of it that was on Facebook from years ago saying "BRING THIS!". Somehow, I knew exactly where it was. Let me just tell you. It was HILARIOUS to open. I can't even explain it. It brought back so many old memories we had all forgotten about.

It's such a good idea and now I want Caleb and I to write down every one of our inside jokes ever, so when we're 87 years old, we can look back and confirm just how silly we were :)

The shower was awesome. Becca and Breck are expecting their first little girl next month, named Norah. It was so awesome to spend time with them, and a few of my other friends. As we all get older, get married, and move to different states, it becomes more difficult to make time for things like this...but I'm so happy we still do. I couldn't live without these gals! Her family friend who threw the shower has incredible taste...and even let me take home a bouquet of flowers for helping!

After that, a few of us ladies went to dinner, then I came home before a little snow storm hit. I had a weird migraine coming on so I went to bed pretty early while Caleb played some video games. Sunday I hit the gym and knocked out nearly 3 miles. I finally ran a mile in 9:36 and didn't die! The rest of the day was lazy and we loved it. Hope you enjoyed your weekend, friends!