Thursday, December 31, 2015

Goodbye 2015!

So I took an unintended blogging break and it was actually sort of nice! I have still stayed caught up with all my favorites but writing hasn't been at the top of my list.

Here is what has been happening in our neck of the woods this last week of 2015!

*We spent an amazing Christmas in Florida with my family. Seeing the kids so excited on Christmas morning was the best. We ate lots of good food, played games, and just enjoyed time together.

*We were supposed to fly to Vegas the day after Christmas but it unfortunately did not happen. Due to horrible weather in Texas our flights were canceled and it we would have not gotten flights out until days later. We decided to stay in Florida for a few more days before heading home. It was a bummer that we didn't get to see our Vegas family for the holidays.

*One perk that came out of the that trip not happening was getting an earlier doctors appointment! We found out that I am actually 6 weeks along not 8 like they had estimated but we saw the most amazing heartbeat just beating away at 110bpm! It was incredible. I go back in 2 weeks for another ultrasound. :)

*Pregnancy sickness has hit me in full force, I have periods through the day where I feel okay but mostly I'm laying on the couch cradling a bag of pretzels but I am totally okay with that! Kyle has been so helpful and it's a huge blessing.

We have no plans tonight for NYE and I'm just fine with that, but whatever you all have planned I hope it's wonderful and I hope you are all safe!

See ya later 2015!

Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A New Favorite Photo

We received our professional photo from ball and I couldn't be more happy with how it turned out. We have been to 8 and this is by far the best one we have ever had done:

I will definitely be framing it!

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Friday Favorites!

It's that time again! Time to see what my current favorite things are!

My new Garmin Forerunner 220, I purchased this before I knew baby smith was on the way but despite that fact I'm still using it. I plan on keeping running part of my regimen and so far it's been awesome. It's easy to use and I love it.

My super cute gingerbread leggings. I got these gems at Walmart and they are super comfortable!

American Horror Story: Hotel. My sister has been telling me to watch it and I finally gave in and I love it! I will be sad when the season ends in January.

This photo of Fishy haha! This was his reaction when he told him he was getting a human sibling. 

This view. I will never get sick of the green and beautiful skies.

We are off to Florida tomorrow morning to start Christmas leave! We are so excited to spend time with family. I'll do my best to check in every now and then. :)

Wishing you all an awesome weekend!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

The Perfect Gift

Kyle and I got the biggest and most amazing surprise on Monday morning! What a wonderful Christmas season this is turning out to be.

*Oh and it's not twins haha.

Happy Wednesday, Everyone!

Monday, December 14, 2015

A Little Dancing and A Lot Of Running

This past weekend was a lot of fun! On Friday night we headed off to Alexandria (about 45 minutes from home) for the OPS Group Ball. It was held at one of the facilities that they use for rotations and it was very nice. We had our photos taken and mingled with friends and co-workers of Kyles. He works with great people so that it a huge plus.

 We sat through the formal portion which I always love, I know some people find it boring. I love the tradition of it all. After then it was time for dinner which was spectacular! The COG (commander of group) which is a friend of ours had it catered buffet style because you never get big portions when it's a sit down dinner haha. He is right.

Once the speeches and dinner were done it was time for dancing and more mingling (plus time to take a few photos). We took some pictures and headed back to our hotel at around 10:15.

Most of you know that I rented my dress from Rent The Runway. I had the best experience, I got 2 sizes and the one I chose fit perfectly! The dress had gorgeous pleating in the back, a very subtle slit in the front, and pockets. I received a ton of compliments and I felt like a princess. I highly recommend using them.

Once we got back to our room we tried desperately to fall asleep haha it didn't work and we ended up only getting 3 1/2 hours of sleep.

We got up and headed to Lafayette (about 95 miles away) for the Cajun Country Half Marathon. I ran this race last year but Kyle did not. I loved it even more this year, the course is beautiful and everyone is so nice.

I felt great the whole race and crossed the finish line and realized that I beat my previous PR by 12 minutes. It looks like this marathon training is paying off.

I love a medal that doubles as a bottle opener haha. We grabbed Starbucks and headed home. We ended the night with dinner at a steakhouse and lots of laying around haha. Sunday was spent catching up on school work and watching football. Not a bad weekend if you ask me.

I hope you all had a great weekend!

Friday, December 11, 2015

14 Days

I can't believe we are only 14 days away from Christmas, to be honest for me I usually get pretty bad anxiety around this time of year but I have to say for the first time I am feeling really calm. 

I am very much looking forward to Christmas this year. The first week (to include Christmas Day) will be spent with my family in Florida. One of the best parts of that is my Dad will be flying in from Idaho (he is building his bosses house up there) to spend the holidays with us! He has not seen my sister, the kids, or Kyle since January. I saw him in March when I went for a visit but this is the longest we have all gone without seeing him and we can't wait! It's going to be a week full of laughter, love, and a whole lot of fun. 

The day after Christmas we are leaving Emma with my sister (so thankful for that), and hopping a flight to Vegas to see Kyle's family. It will include a day trip to Arizona to see his brother and is family, which includes our nieces, one of whom was born a month ago. We haven't seen them in quite a while so it will be great to catch up and see everyone. Kyle hasn't been back to Vegas since Christmas 2013, which seems like such a long time to me. It will be great to ring in the New Year with his family and take in the lights of Vegas. :) 

I am grateful that we will get the chance to celebrate with both of our families, it means a lot to us because we don't get to do that very often. 

Buddy the Elf has the right idea. :)

What are your plans for the holidays?!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

A Little Christmas Cheer

It may be a little early but Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

I hope you all have an amazing Wednesday!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Another Weekend Gone

Another weekend has come and gone and we are getting that much closer to Christmas! :)

On Friday we headed out to the Fort Polk Tree Lighting, we met up with a few people that Kyle works with and had a great time. Afterwards we went out to dinner to our favorite Japanese Hibachi restaurant. It was so good and we left full and happy.

Saturday morning we got up bright and early to head off to Alexandria for the Ugly Christmas Sweater 5k. It was a new event and we had the best time! The course was a giant square which was so nice because I loathe out and back courses. I was stoked when I crossed the finish line at 27:41, a PR by 2 minutes! It was an awesome race!

We stuck around for the awards and Ugly Sweater contest. Kyle placed 3rd in his age group and was in the top 3 for the Ugly Sweater contest haha. One of the ladies working the race said Kyle looked like Cousin Eddie from Christmas Vacation, it was hysterical and he made the most of it. We had a blast dressing up. We grabbed our free bloody mary's and stopped for donuts on the way home.

We ended the night with grilling and lounging around.

Yesterday was spent baking and I mean A LOT of baking. We are giving away trays to some friends but the majority will go to Kyle's work. :)

I hope you all had a great weekend!

Friday, December 4, 2015

What's Going On!?

Well, it's finally Friday, it has felt like Monday to me everyday haha. True Groundhog Day, not cool at all. 

I haven't done a proper update lately, so here is what is going on in our neck of the woods. 

*I finished my first grad school class this past Sunday and I will begin a new one on Monday. Would anyone like to take this Statistics class for me?! Pretty please?! ;) There is a promise of baked goods, lol.

*Our ball is next Friday and my dress should be here Tuesday, eeek! We realized after we got the date for the ball that it's the night before a half marathon we are doing. It should make for an interesting few days.

*We are loving Kyle's work schedule right now. He is home by noon most days because there is no rotation happening (they start back up after the new year). I am starting a honey-do list to keep him occupied though. ;)

*Marathon training is going awesome, I run a few days a week with my neighbor and she has been such a huge motivator for me. It's nice to have someone to talk to when you really just want to go home and lay on the couch. 

*I didn't do much cyber Monday shopping but I did snag this gem from Target. After I ordered it there was a waiting list online to even put it on your cart. That is crazy to me.

I know the next few weeks are going to be busy leading up to Christmas leave, we are kicking off our holiday festivities with the Tree Lighting on post tonight. It should be fun!

I hope you all have a great weekend.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

It's Already December!?

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! On Monday we finally brought out the Christmas tree and got to decorating. There is nothing quite like seeing the glow of Christmas lights especially when it's rainy and cold out. I am loving it! I am not quite in the Christmas spirit yet but I'm sure as we do more festive activities I will feel it. I do however, have my Christmas cards done and ready to be put in the mail, that always makes me feel like I'm on top of things. lol.

This weekend we are running an Ugly Sweater 5k and I could not pass up these sweaters for me and Kyle haha.

For my Sloth loving husband, this sweater is pure perfection haha.

I am sure these sweaters will end up in a Christmas photo with my family, they are too good to not wear again.

I hope you all have a great Wednesday!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Post Holiday Catch Up

You know what the sign of a good weekend is!? When you have very few pictures because you were too busy enjoying time together.

We spent Thanksgiving with my sister and the kiddos in Florida and we had the best time! Here is a quick run down of our time:

*Cooked all day Thursday and enjoyed an awesome meal, followed by yahtzee, football, relaxing, and my sister and I venturing to Target to check out the chaos haha.

*Friday we are pizza, watched football, took Christmas pictures,  Kyle put up my sisters Christmas lights, the girls went to the movies (to see Mockingjay Part 2 so good!) , and Kyle and Grayson surprised my sister with a birthday cake after we got home from the movies.

*Saturday we all took Kylie and 3 of her friends to Panama City Beach for lunch at Red Robin and then to have some fun at the Ripley's Believe it or Not Odditorium for her birthday.

It was a great weekend spent with family and now it's back to normal, well at least for 3 weeks until we head back down to Florida for Christmas! 

In the next few weeks we have 2 races, a military ball, dentists appointments, and other things that scream being an adult haha. 

I hope you all had an amazing holiday weekend!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

It's Turkey Time!

As you are reading this, we are on the road to Florida for the holiday weekend. We are very much looking forward to spending Thanksgiving with my sister and the kids. We will also be celebrating 2 birthdays, our niece and my sister. It's going to be a great time!

One of the things I am most looking forward to is having our Christmas photo taken. My sister's backyard is the perfect backdrop, she is going to decorate her little garden house with lights and all things that scream Christmas. I normally don't plan outfit since it's usually spur of the moment but this is what I plan on wearing:

I can't wait to see how they turn out. 

Overall, I am just looking forward to time with family and it's even better that Kyle gets to come. He doesn't get much time off so it's important to make the most of the time together. 

I hope you all have an amazing Thanksgiving, eat lots of food! ;)

Monday, November 23, 2015

Who Doesn't Love A Turkey Trot?!

Bright and early Saturday morning we headed off to Lake Charles for the Rotary Club Turkey Trot 5k. We ran this race last year and enjoyed it, the course is more like a trail type run which is something we don't do much of. It was a great time despite the fact that it down poured when we got there and continued to rain through the race. I joked with Kyle that we got more muddy in this race than we have in most of the mud runs we have done haha.

We usually stick around for the awards ceremony but this time we were anxious to get home because of the weather. As we were walking away we heard Kyle's name called for 3rd in his age group! He was definitely pleased and then they called my name for 1st in my age group. I was honestly shocked.

This is one of the coolest medals we have received to date, the turkey makes me laugh.

I probably shouldn't have been running (I was diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection on Tuesday, oops lol) but I felt great that morning and felt even better afterwards.

One thing I have been putting off for months is finally happening. I have a ridiculous amount of race shirts that are collecting dust in a plastic bin. I contacted a good friend of mine on Saturday and she is going to turn them into a t-shirt quilt! I have an American flag quilt she made me years ago and it's my favorite. I'm excited that the shirts will get seen on a regular basis. 

I would say that we had a pretty successful weekend. We even got school work done and some trips to the gym happened.

I hope you all had a great weekend.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday, everyone!! This week went by really fast and we are officially less than a week away from Thanksgiving. Let that sink in for a minute, time is flying!

Since it's Friday, it's only fitting that I share some of my favorite things as of late.
The Fort Polk wild horses, they normally stay in the training areas but lately they have been venturing out onto main post. While they can be stubborn and in the way it was neat to see them in person.

My training shirt for the Pixie Dust Challenge! I got it on Wednesday and I can't wait to start wearing it. Isn't it cute?!

This cardigan from Target. It is so comfortable and if I could wear it everyday I would.

Mini funfetti cheesecakes! I normally don't like cheesecake (it's a consistency thing) but these morsels are delicious.

Teapigs everyday brew tea, I received this in the swap I did and I'm addicted. I enjoy a cup every night and I plan on buying more before it runs out. If you haven't tried it, you must.

Kyle and Emma! Haha this picture cracks me up, she always gets after dinner pets from Kyle. They are the cutest.

What are some of your favorite things lately?!

Hope you all have a great weekend, we are running a Turkey Trot 5k tomorrow so it should be a lot of fun.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What Does Our Future Hold?

A few weeks ago Kyle and I were talking about what our future looks like in terms of the Army. He was asked by a coworker if he had plans to stay in and his response was exactly what it always is, "As long as Jen and I are having fun I will stay in." It really is funny to see the looks on peoples faces when he says that. Some wouldn't necessarily associate the Army with fun, but that's how we see it, of course there are some not so fun things but overall we have a good time.

We have been pretty lucky in terms of assignments so far, Kyle has been given jobs that have checked off the necessary blocks for his career progression and believe me we are both thankful for that. Of course when it comes to the Army nothing is ever certain nor set in stone, that is why we both are also putting a lot of focus on our education. Kyle is almost finished with his Master's program, and I will be done with mine hopefully by 2017. 

We are hopeful however that Kyle will stay in until he is able to retire at 20 years (or longer than that if he chooses). We will find out on Thursday if Kyle made the MAJ promotion list, this is his BZ (below zone) look and not likely he will get picked up (he feels that way, I think he has a good chance of getting promoted now) but it should happen for sure next year which would likely mean a move to Kansas in Summer 2017. After that we are hoping for Germany or Italy, it would certainly be amazing.

There has never been a time in his career where he has questioned his decision to stay in, with the current state of the world, he is even more determined to stay in and serve. 

We have been extremely lucky and we will continue to ride this wave until someone says otherwise. I am excited to see what the future holds for us but in the mean time we will enjoy the present.

Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Weekend Wrap-Up

Saturday, I ran my 12th race of the year! It was the Cowboy Gallop 10k in Lake Charles. This was the first race we ran in Louisiana last year and we loved it. However this year I had to run it solo because Kyle was at work.

I knew the minute the gun went off that I wanted to push it as much as I could. I am not a naturally fast runner, it takes me a while to gain momentum and I never really push myself to go faster. This time it felt different and when I crossed the finish line I was shocked to see that I shattered my previous 10k time by 10 minutes. It felt amazing! I am noticing a huge difference in my running since I started marathon training, I am more focused and just feeling strong.

The rest of the day was spent relaxing and spending time with Kyle, I did a little shopping and found these amazing booties for 50% off and I had to have them haha.

Sunday we met up with a good friend of ours that Kyle worked with at Bliss (as well as Bragg years ago). He is here as an augmentee helping with the rotation so we picked him up for dinner and then watched football back at the house. It was nice to reminisce and catch up.

Kyle is off today but I am pretty sure both of us will be spending the day writing papers that are due at the end of the week. :)

I hope you all had a great weekend!

Friday, November 13, 2015

A Few Things

It's Friday already!? I feel like this week just started, the days are flying by a lot faster the closer it gets to the holidays. 

Here are a few things happening in my world

*Emma's appt went really well, she has inflammation in her bladder and had we not taken her in it could have turned into a really bad infection. She is on a few different medications so hopefully it clears everything up. :) She goes back on the 24th for a followup.

*I am finishing up week 3 of marathon training and it's going really well. I am feeling strong and that is always my favorite part. 

*I'll be running a 10k tomorrow and I'm really looking forward to it. This is the first race we ran in Louisiana last year and it was a lot of fun. 

*Kyle's last rotation of the year ends in a few days and I am so excited. It will be nice to finally have some quality time together especially during the holidays. He has been working so hard and definitely deserves a break.

* We will be at my sisters for Thanksgiving and I'm in charge of desserts (shocker I know), and I have apple pie cupcakes and pumpkin pie cupcakes on my menu, I can't wait to share the recipes.

*Oh and probably the biggest piece of news, looks like I will be getting braces after the 1st of the year. I have always been unhappy with my smile, particularly my two front teeth that turn in. I am excited and nervous all at the same time. However, I never thought I would be 30 years old and getting braces haha. 

This gave me a good chuckle.

I hope you all have a good weekend!!! :)

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Veterans Day 2015

I am blessed to have 2 amazing Veterans in my life, my Dad and my husband. 

My Dad served in the Air Force in the 70's as a jet engine mechanic, he was inspired by his Dad who served in the Army and 3 of his brothers who served in the Army, Air Force, and Marine Corp, respectively. He was so proud to serve and he understands the sacrifice that so many make. He is an awesome person and a great veteran.

Kyle has served in the Army for the last 8 1/2 years and I couldn't be more proud of him. He never envisioned that this is the direction his life would take but he loves what he does and would not change it for anything. He does not serve for recognition but because he wants to lead soldiers and make a difference. I am proud to walk along side him on this journey.

To these two awesome guys on this day, thank you for your service and sacrifice! It does not go unnoticed.

Happy Veterans Day to all those amazing men and women who serve and have served, it is appreciated everyday.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Great Pumpkin Swap (better late than never haha)

This post is a few days late but now that I home I can sit down and write it. Every year I look forward to participating in The Great Pumpkin Swap hosted by Kristin and Becky!

This year I was paired with the awesome Rachel from a nesting nomad. She lives in the UK and that has always been a place that I have wanted to visit. As she said in her post we are clearly opposites but that is what makes this fun but we do share a love of sweets (I don't indulge much but I love 'em!). Please go check our her blog, she is a sweetheart and pretty awesome.

I was so excited when the package showed up and quickly realized that she and I sent each other very similar items.

She graciously spoiled me with all these yummy treats, how can you go wrong with anything from Cadbury!? I may or may not be eating one right now. ;)

Next is this tea, I typically have a cup of tea daily and this was such an exciting thing to find in the box!

She and I both sent each other a location keychain and nail polish, great minds think a like I guess. I sent her a Louisiana keychain and she sent me this Paris one (she was there for work). I am loving this nail color and can't wait to use it.

Next are 2 things I have never heard of before but so excited to try! Marmite, which is used like a jelly and this Angel Delight chocolate mix, it sets up like a mousse and I'm so excited to try it. :)

Last was this calendar, I needed a 2016 one for my office and this is perfect!

I am so happy that I was paired with Rachel, it's always fun to meet new people and get new things that you would never think of trying. 

Thanks Kristin and Becky for hosting!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Send Good Thoughts

If you could send good thoughts and vibes for our sweet Emma that would be wonderful. We have noticed lately that she has been really lethargic and not herself. She has also developed some bladder issues that have me concerned, she is getting older (she is 11) so it could be attributed with her age but I would rather be safe than sorry.

We are driving home from Florida today and I was able to get her into the vet first thing tomorrow morning.

We are just hoping that our precious baby girl is okay!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Date Ideas

I had a few people ask me if I was going to share some of the date ideas that I put inside our jar. To be honest I hadn't really thought about it but now I figured why not. 

There are 5 different categories and I have ideas that fall under each of them:

1. Home: These dates are just that, ones that can happen at home. Anything from a candlelit dinner to playing video games together. 

2. Restaurants: Of course another one that is self explanatory. Our area and the surrounding areas have really good local restaurants. I wanted to include some that we have not tried before to push us outside of our comfort zone. There is nothing more to me than trying new things with your significant other.

3. Out and About: These dates include everything from hiking to a picnic at a park. I even included things like shopping at the mall or Target. Things that would get us out of the house but didn't necessarily have to spent money one.

4. Under $40: This is one category that has me really excited. I included things like seeing a new movie, miniature golfing, go-karting, visiting a museum, and attending a painting class. There is a Fishy Hatchery in Natchitoches that we have been wanting to go so I put that on there.

5. Over $40: Of course this category was a little easier because most things cost over $40. I included things such as horseback riding, couples massage, sporting event, and 18 holes of golf/driving range.

The ideas don't have to be extravagant and I made sure that I included things that we both like to do. Too often dates can be completely one sided and I don't want to do that to Kyle. If he is going to compromise by going to a painting class with me I want to do the same and go golfing with him. 

I hope this helps you come up with some great date ideas! 

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

What's Happening!?

I am halfway through my trip to Florida and I'm having a great time. However, life is still happening and here is what is going on in our neck of the woods:

~We celebrated 1 year at Fort Polk last week! I can't believe it has already been that long. Kyle has already completed 10 training rotations, which has kept him pretty busy. Despite the crazy schedule we are still loving it here.

 ~I have been dealing with a little bit of dizziness lately, but it's only when I lay down. I think I have a mild case of vertigo. My MIL has it and she said it sounds exactly like what happens to her. I am going to get checked out when I get home.

~Marathon training is going well so far! In the midst of this training I am also getting ready for the Pensacola half marathon this weekend. I have been enjoying the back country roads of my sisters neighborhood. However, the hills aren't my favorite. lol.

~ We are patiently waiting for Kyle to be able to make his 3 month follow up appointment. He will go in January to see if this surgery is showing signs of improvement. I am so anxious to see what it shows and to start making plans to move forward with our journey to have a family.

~I am almost finished with our Date Night Jar, I got all the ideas written on the popsicle sticks. Now I just need to make a cute label (please ignore the ugly painters tape for right now). Kyle is just as excited about this as I am. It will be fun to have things already planned out.

~ I registered for my next 4 classes for school and it has me a little overwhelmed but also excited. I am really hoping to have this degree done by early 2017. Fingers crossed that I can make that happen.

Hope all is well in your neck of the woods!