Five on Friday {June 27}

Hey y'all,

It's FRIDAY! I am officially on vacation once it hits 5 pm today. I'm excited for a busy weekend filled with fun and lots of time relaxing over the next few days. As usual, on Fridays, I share five things I have been loving this week:

one. Sleep.

A lot of June has been filled with subpar sleeping and lots of caffine consumed. This past week though, I have been in bed and asleep before 11pm and getting in 8 or so hours of sleep. Blissful! Let's hope this continues in July.

two. Dining Chairs.

I finally settled on a dining chair and ordered the Ingolf chair from IKEA for my dining room. The backstory is that my dining table was actually my grandparent's table and my dad sanded and refinished it a few years ago. Dining chairs can be so expensive and finding a chair that is a similar color as my table has been impossible. The shipping from IKEA online was only $10 for the chairs and while they are darker than my table, I still love them.

three. DebtKickin Mom.

I discovered DebtKickin Mom this week thanks to the Rachel Cruze show. She is a mom of four who shares about her debt free journey and zero waste meal planning. I have watched a lot of her Youtube videos this week and I am going to try her meal planning method in July.

four. Scrubee.

While my Big, Shannon, was in town a few weeks ago we stopped into Lush. She wanted to look at their shampoo and conditioner options and I was out of bath bombs. However, we both picked up the Scrubee. This is a body butter bar that you use after you cleanse your body that has exfoliating almond and coconut shell with cocoa & Shea butters to hydrate.
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five.September.

Flights are booked and both my baby sister, Kate, and my best friend, Air, are coming to visit in September! It is going to be a busy month but I'm excited to see them both since I have not seen them since October last year. Kate lives in West Texas and Air is in her residency in California.


Other fun.
If you want to understand how I think, listen to the EnneaSummer Sixes episode from Annie F. Downs that came out on last Monday.
On Saturday I purchased my first kimono from LOFT and work it to work on Monday. I now have my eye on this one to add to my summer wardrobe.
If you are like me and need to stay away from dairy (silly lactose intolerance), check out this post of ratings of different dairy-free ice creams.
I discovered Tig Notaro's new series, Under A Rock, this week. Tig is a comedian that doesn't pay much attention to popular culture so she interviews individuals and tries to figure out who they are during the conversation. They are funny under 10 min videos here.

Also, congratulations to Danielle who won my giveaway from June 14th's Five on Friday post! I can't wait for you to receive your O-venture key ring.

Link up with Erika, Narci, and Andrea

Also linking up with Tif, Becky, and Katie.
What does your weekend look like?

Work Wear Thursday {June 27}

Hey y'all,

I'm bringing you my work wear post a day late this week due to VBS and the What's Up Wednesday link-up yesterday. I have really been enjoying sharing my casual work wear and I hope this inspires your closet. It has helped me be more creative with my current wardrobe and highlighted that I wear the same necklace almost daily so I should mix it up with some of my other pieces. This post does include a few more casual looks as Monday-Wednesday of this week I have been driving straight from work to church for VBS. Since my office is so casual, I have just been wearing my church shirts and jeans to work rather than changing when I arrive at VBS.

top: LOFT (sold out, similar)/ jeans: Old Navy (on sale for $25)/ necklace: LOFT outlet (old)/ earrings: pearls/ shoes: Target (this year's version)
Of course I wore Lilly for National Wear Lilly Day/The first day of summer
top: Lilly Pulitzer (different patterns)/ jeans: LOFT/ Necklace: Kendra Scott/ earrings: pearl-gift
top: kid's ministry/ cardigan: Nordstrom (old, similar)/ jeans: Old Navy/ shoes: gift as a bridesmaid (similar)/ earrings: Kendra Scott/ bangle: Mantra Band
top: kid's ministry (our theme is summer of wonder) /jeans: Old Navy/ shoes: Sam Edelman/ earrings: N&S
top: Summit women's conference 2017 t-shirt/ jeans: Paige/ sandals: Target (this year's version)/ earrings: J.Crew (old, similarsimilar)



What's Up Wednesday {June}

Hey y'all,

It has been a hectic week and I had hoped to post more but I am serving at Vacation Bible School (VBS) each night after work so I am getting home at 9pm and in bed by 10pm exhausted. Tonight is the last night as tomorrow is a Family Worship Night so I am excited to get back to my routine, finish putting away my laundry (whoops) and get ready for my staycation next week. Today, I am linking up with Sheaffer and Shay for What's Up Wednesday!
Sheaffer Told Me To What's Up Wednesday | Crazy Comfy Clothes

What I'm Eating:

This week, church is feeding me each night I serve. Monday night was pizza (I ended up taking home some of the leftovers for lunch yesterday). Last night was mini sandwiches from Jason's Deli.

I think I am going to try DebtKickinMom's Zero Food Waste Meal Plan method next week though so get ready for a post on that attempt.

What I'm Reminiscing About:

Image may contain: Jessica Driscoll and Laura Caroline Spell Rick, people smiling, tree, wedding, flower, plant, outdoor and nature
I can't believe it has been three years since this sweet friend's wedding!

What I'm Loving:

Dining chairs. I finally bit the bullet and ordered dining chairs. My table was my grandparent's table that my dad sanded and refinished for me. Finding chairs has been impossible but I finally ordered these from IKEA and while they don't exactly match the table I love them and the price was right.

What I've Been Up To:

VBS! The theme is Summer of Wonder. The team did an amazing job decorating. On Sunday I helped a bit with decor in the main space but the kid's area includes a sun on the wall, jungle in the hall way, and lots of fun coral, animals, and reminders of the one who created the whole world.
The rest of this month has just been filled with my usual activities.

What I'm Doing This Weekend:

This weekend is filled with celebrating a sweet little guy's 1st birthday at a cookout, book club, Barre3 class, church, and the grocery store.

What I'm Excited About:

Next week I am off work but plan to stay in the Triangle. I planned lunch dates with friends, barre3 class each day, and hope to get in lots of pool time and reading.

What I'm Watching:

I'm not watching much since all of my shows are off for the summer. I did record the new Hills reboot but have yet to watch it and I started Schitt's Creek this weekend. It took a while to get into but it is an easy show.
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What I'm Listening To:

Annie F. Down's EnneaSummer series. Tomorrow is the 9's episode so we are almost done with the series. I am also listening to Watching You by Lisa Jewell on audible.
Image result for watching you lisa jewell

What I'm Working On:

Next week while I am off, I hope to deep clean and organize some spaces like my desk where paperwork goes to be piled and not filed away.

What I'm Wearing:

For the last two weeks I have posted my daily work wear here and here. Tomorrow I will post this week's version but it is a lot of jeans and a t-shirt since I have headed straight from work to church.

Thyme for Thursday {Ice Cream Lasagna}

Hey y'all,

I thought I would share one of the simplest desserts that is always a big hit, especially in the summer. On Sunday, I went to my monthly supper club and since it was a DIY Pizza party theme, I decided to bring ice cream lasagna for dessert. I know that sounds like it could be an intimidating dessert as lasagna can be a time-consuming dish, however, this dessert is five ingredients (four if you skip the nuts) and takes less than 20 minutes to prepare.

Ingredients:

-ice cream sandwiches. You can use any flavor, I went with the classic vanilla. I grabbed two boxes of 12 sandwiches for my lasagna and ended up with about 5 sandwiches left over. The amount will vary depending on the size of your pan (mine is a bit smaller than a 9x13"). 
-cool whip. I used almost two full containers for my lasagna.
-chocolate sauce
-caramel sauce
-chopped nuts (optional, we typically use walnuts)

To prepare:

  1. Drizzle chocolate sauce and caramel sauce on the bottom of your pan/serving piece.
  2. Place a layer of ice cream sandwiches on the bottom of your pan. You may need to trim them to size to fit. Keep all the sandwiches in one uniform direction.
  3. Add a layer of cool whip.
  4. Drizzle chocolate sauce and caramel sauce on the cool whip layer.
  5. Add chopped nuts if you desire.
  6. Repeat the layers - ice cream sandwiches (try to keep them in the same uniform direction), cool whip, chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, and nuts. You will have a total of two layers.
  7. Cover and freeze for at least two hours.
  8. Slice and enjoy.

I hope you enjoy this sweet treat at your next gathering!

Work Wear Wednesday {June 19}

Hey y'all,

I loved writing last week's post on my work wear and thought to continue this series. I loved when bloggers used to show their outfits of the week so here is my take on my work wear. As discussed last week, I work in a very casual office but I did have to escort candidates for interviews over the last few days of work so I tend to dress up a bit more on those days. Here we go:

top: LOFT (old) / cami: LOFT/ jeans: Old Navy/ necklace: John Wind/ earrings: pearls/ swapped my slippers for Jack Rogers sandals
top: LOFT (old, similar)/ Lilly Pulitzer (oldsimilarsimilar)/earrings: J.Crew/ necklace: Kendra Scott/ bangles: Kate Spade/ shoes: Jack Rogers
This was actually Saturday out shopping with my sorority Big sis, but I wanted to share since I love this tank and it will be making an appearance at the office soon.
top: LOFT (on sale for 50% off)/ jeans: Old Navy/ earrings: N&S/ necklace: Kendra Scott
dress: LOFT/necklace: Kendra Scott/ earrings Anthropologie (old, similarsimilar)/ shoes: Sam Edelman
top: BP (old, similar)/ kimono: LOFT/ jeans: Old Navy/ sandals: Sam Edelman/ Earrings: N&S

These posts are helping me shop my closet and realize I wear my Kendra Scott necklaces almost daily and should try to switch it up next week.

What is one of your go-to workwear pieces?

Don't forget, today is the last day to enter my summer giveaway here.

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Five on Friday {June 14}

Hey y'all,

It has been one crazy week and I am looking forward to a few days away from my work email after putting out some fires this week. Here are five things I am loving this week:

one. Saturday.

Tomorrow, my sorority big sister, Shannon and I are going to visit Chapel Hill and enjoy time together. While we both live in NC we only see each other about once a year. I'm excited to catch up and to see how much Franklin street has changed since we left 7+ years ago.
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We also have not taken a photo in the last eight years, whoops, so here is us back at a Mother/Daughter brunch in 2009. Babies.

two. Vineyard Vines for Target swimwear.

Yesterday I popped into Target for salad dressing and some ear drops. I, however, wandered over to the Women's clothing section and the VV for Target display was hiding by the clearance. I scooped up this swimwear set and love it! Thanks for someone returning it! It does look like the top is still available to ship and you could always find plain navy bottoms to coordinate.

three. Project Runway.

Last night was the Project Runway finale was last night and I loved watching the designers' collections. It was a very impressive show and I won't share any spoilers but I am so excited for the winning designer and I know the other two will go on to do very big things! This also ends almost all of my tv shows for the summer. The Bold Type also ended this week so I only have Younger and Southern Charm on my DVR.

four. Small Group send off.

This week was my friends last week in our small group before she moves around the world. It was a nice night of discussion, prayer, and pizza hut breadsticks to send her off. Of course I cried during the prayer but I am so excited for what the Lord has planned for her in this new country, job, and community.

five. Giveaway. 

I had plans to post my giveaway yesterday but this week got away from me. In honor of 300 posts and getting back in the blogging groove, I am giving away a $25 Barnes and Noble gift card for all of your summer reading and a silicone O-venture o-ring perfect to toss in your pool or beach bag so you don't lose your keys. I have had the pink silicone key ring since March and love it! To enter, just write a comment below about your favorite summer vacation spot or summer read on your to-read list. The giveaway ends Wednesday, June 19th at 12pm EST.
Also, this giveaway is not sponsored. I am purchasing the items directly. 

Link up with Erika, Narci, and Andrea

Also linking up with Tif, Becky, and Katie.
What does your weekend look like?
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Work Wear Wednesday {June 12}

Hey y'all,

I cannot believe it has been a year since I transitioned from a business casual office to a very casual office. I even have my annual review today so fingers crossed that everything goes smoothly. It has been a change in my wardrobe as well so I thought I would share some of my recent work outfits.
Cardigan: Target (old, similar)/Top: Old Navy (old, similar)/ Pants: Lilly Pulitzer (old, similar, similar)/ Necklace: J.Crew (exact, similar)/Shoes: Jack Rogers
Top: Bobeau/Pants: Old Navy/ Earrings: N&S/ Shoes: Sam Edelman
Dress: LOFT (sold out, similar)/Earrings: J.Crew (old, similar)/ Shoes: Jack Rogers
 Dress: LOFT/ Jacket: Old Navy (old, similar)/Necklace: Kendra Scott (silver Rayne with pearl)/ Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: LOFT (old, similar)/ Cardigan: LOFT/ Jeans: Paige/ Earrings: Laura Cox Collection/ Shoes: Jack Rogers/ Necklace: Kendra Scott

Top: Target (old, similar)/ Scarf: Lilly Pulitzer (different pattern)/Jeans: Paige/ Shoes: Target/ Necklace: Kendra Scott
Top: LOFT (old, similar)/Pants: Old Navy/ Necklace: BP
Top: BP (old, similar) / Jacket: Old Navy/ Jeans: Paige/ Sandals: Sam Edelman/ Earrings: N&S

What kind of environment do you work in?
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10 on Tuesday {Book Club Reads}

Hey y'all,

This year marks six years of my book club! It is crazy to think we have been meeting monthly for so long. When we started none of the members were married and now we have five married friends, one engaged, and three book club babies with one on the way!

Today I thought I would share ten of my favorites from the past 5.5 years. How our book club runs is each member selects a book and hosts one month of the year. We go based on birthdays and for those months like January where we have two members birthdays, one moves to another month of the year where we don't have a birthday, October. I have held the January spot for a few years but last year swapped with Christie for the October slot. So if you have any ideas for my October pick add them to the comments.

We have a Facebook group for everyone to share the title of the book and the doodle poll to select the day book club will fall that month. We tend to not select the new, shiny books as we are all big library fans but it has happened some months where we all were too far on the holds list. Books tend to be around the 300 pg mark and can be any genre. Sometimes the host has previously read the book while other times it is a surprise to all of us. We also keep a file in our Facebook group of all the books we have read in the past which is a lot of fun.

Here are eleven of my favorite book club reads that other members picked from the last six and a half years since I couldn't pick just 10. I also decided to write when we read each novel.

Set on the coast of Australia, Tom Sherbourne takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock. This isolated island only receives supplies once a season and Tom brings his young wife Isabel to the island. After years of struggling with infertility, Isabel hears a baby's cry on the wind. A boat has washed up with a dead man and a living baby. Tom wants to report the child immediately, however, Isabel views the baby as a gift from God. After raising the child as their own, they arrive back on the mainland years later and deal with the choice that their adoption brings to others.

The Kite Runner - February 2015
In Afghanistan, the Kite Runner, is a story of friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father's servant. The story deals with the ethnic, religious, and political tensions of the Afghan monarchy and caste system.

What Alice Forgot - March 2015
My first Liane Moriarty novel, I have since read Big Little Lies, and a few others. This novel begins with Alice falling off her bike in a spin class and losing her memory from the last ten years. She's getting divorced, has three kids, her sister won't talk to her, and does not remember any of this. Alice struggles with wanting to remember or viewing forgetting as a way to start over.

The Martian - September 2015
One of our only science fiction reads, the Martian follows astronaut Mark Watney after a dust storm nearly kills him following his walk on Mars. His crew evacuates the planet thinking him dead. Mark details his attempts to survive on Mars while waiting to see if he can communicate back to Earth for a rescue to occur. Get excited to root for potatoes to grow in this novel.

Unbroken - July 2016
This is a WWII biography on the life of Louis Zamperini. Zamperini as a boy was a running star and even made it to the Olympics but when the war breaks out, he becomes an airman and during his service, his plane crashes and he is stuck on a raft. It's heartbreaking, joyful, and filled with hope. I still have not watched the film but have heard great things!

Defending Jacob - April 2017
This novel of family drama involves an assistant district attorney whose 14-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student. It was an interesting mystery/thriller with a lot of courtroom drama mixed in with the family drama. If you enjoy a good Law and Order episode I would recommend grabbing this book at the library next.

Wonder - July 2017
We have read a couple YA books but Wonder is one of our only elementary books. It's the story of August "Auggie" who was born with severe facial differences that even after surgeries have isolated him, until now. Auggie is starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep and wants to be treated as an ordinary kid. The book is told through multiple perspectives including Auggie's sister, his classmates, and a few others. It was a great book, but warning, if you choose the audio, the voice can be a bit distracting. Also, I cried through the movie on a plane.

Small Great Things - August 2017
Ruth is a labor and delivery nurse but during a routine checkup on a newborn, she is told that she has been reassigned to other patients. The parents of the newborn are white supremacists and don't want Ruth, an African American, to touch their child. However, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery, does she obey the hospital orders or does she intervene? The rest of the novel involves the trial as Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and is charged with a crime. The novel is filled with empathy, discussions on race, privilege, and prejudice. Get ready for a lot of discussion in your group if you pick this as your next read.

In a Dark, Dark Wood - October 2017
I love a good thriller and Christie picked this one around Halloween and it was a perfect choice. The story begins when Leonora is invited on a hen weekend (bachelorette) for a childhood friend but the weekend does not go as planned.

Born a Crime - March 2018
This is Trevor Noah's memoir and I loved it as an audiobook since it is read by Trevor Noah. Trevor's birth is considered a crime in South Africa as his father is a white Swiss man from and his mother is a black Xhosa woman and is punishable by five years in prison. This details his childhood in South Africa and the struggles of living under the government and being hidden from many by the fear of being stolen away. It details Trevor's struggles, family relationships, and dealing with a damaged world.

The Sound of Gravel - September 2018
A memoir about a woman reflecting on her childhood in a fundamentalist Morman compound in Mexico. Ruth details the violence, familial loyalty, and her hope for a better life. This one was hard and sparked a lot of conversation and sympathy for Ruth. Her cousin actually has also penned a memoir called The Polygamist's Daughter.

Also, my favorite book that I picked for book club has been Madame Tussaud.
Madame Tussaud is a historical fiction novel based on the life of the woman who would become known around the world for wax sculpting. The book spans from the beginning of the French revolution through the Reign of Terror all while wandering the line between the rich and the poor as she is introduced into the life of court after her museum of figures gains notoriety.

Are you in a book club? Favorite recent read?

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