Archive | May, 2012

A Job Worth Doing

30 May

It’s come to my realization that many of you out there hate your job, so much so that you dread waking up in the morning knowing that you have to go do it.

 

NEWS FLASH!

You don’t have to hate your job. In fact, you don’t have to do that job at all!

Now before you go rolling your eyes at me, let’s think this one through. The reason most people work is to consume enough money to live our lives in which we think are appealing or at the very least going to bring dinner on the table. I had that job. I hated that job. I spent countless hours complaining about it, making my husband miserable about, and ruining the life I always wanted because I was so upset with the job. 

My husband and I sat down and took a look at our finances and compared how much I made to how much I spent at that job. 

  • I was making X a month.
  • Spending A on gas to get there and back each month.
  • Spending B on food for lunch each month.
  • Spending C on easier meals to cook at home (premade things) because I was too lazy to do them when I got home each month.
  • This does not include D on bills that were created from me having to work (ex. daycare, fixing the car, doctors appointments for stress & anxiety)

X-A-B-C equaled a whopping 100 bucks a month. I was in complete shock. I was spending almost my entire monthly paycheck just for work and I hated my job!! I looked at my life and how I was living it. My job was not worth working $100 a month – I can’t even picture what job would be worth that little. 

Then I sat down and thought about all the things I love to do.

  • I love spending time with my daughter.
  • I love taking care of children. (Possible Income)
  • I love organizing things. (Possible Income)
  • I love to write and take pictures. (Possible Income)
  • I love finding great deals on things. (Helps budget money for other things)
  • I’m not the best at cooking, but I like trying. (Not an income but also can be a money saver instead of going out to eat)
  • I like being crafty and making things. (Possible Income)
My husband and I talked about which of the items above that posed as a possible income would be something that our family could handle. I chose taking care of children because out of all those things the start up cost was almost nothing and it was my favorite one. I work PART TIME Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8-5 and I’m making exactly what I made at my previous job. Out of all that income I don’t spend any money on gas, lunches out, easier meals at home, daycare, extra car expensive, doctors appointments, fancy clothes for work, heck – I hardly buy make up anymore!!
Because I made the decision to stop doing what I hated, and find a way to do what I love – I now make three times as much as I did at my other job. I also have time to spend with my daughter, organize, write, take pictures, find great deals, attempt at cooking, and make crafty things. I even get to sell the crafty things I make to have EVEN more income! 

 
I will say that this wasn’t easy. We had a month where we had to make ends meet and live with the little income we did have. It taught us how to better manage our money, what we really needed as opposed to what we wanted, and made us more thankful when we did have more money. It may seem impossible but it’s not – you can do what you love and still live the life you always wanted.

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

J

 

*Thank you google images for the pictures

New Colors to Share!

27 May

Hey everyone! I finally added the new colors to my shop and had to share them 😀

 

Click on the pictures to go to the listing for more information and details about each bracelet:

 

 

 

 

 

Click on this last picture if you just want to see my shop in general and all the other items I sell 🙂

 

I’m so happy with the way these have turned out and am excited to say I got my first bracelet sold yesterday! ❤

 

I’m thinking about doing a multiple “pick you own color” set. How many do you think I should sell as a set?

Two

Three

Four

Five

Let me know what you think in the comments section below!

 

Thanks for stopping by!

 

Love Always,

They are FINALLY here!

24 May

My new listings for my bracelets are finally here! I still have about six colors to take pictures of and post but those will have to come later – I’m hungry and tired 😀

Click on the pictures to see the listing for more details, the prices, and anything else you might want to know:

Click on the last two pictures if you just want to see my entire shop!

Colors that will be listed soon are: Purple, Orange, Light Purple, Brown, Light Pink, and Leaf Green.

Tell me what you think about them! I’d love to hear comments and opinions 🙂

Also use  the Coupon Code: UNDERESTIMATED to get 10% off if you decide to purchase when you check out!

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

J

Hump Day

23 May

Hey everyone!

I’m having one of those days where it doesn’t matter what you try to do –  you fail miserably. After a while I gave up and decided not to try anything but it still led to me sitting there miserably..

Maybe it’s just me but I’m one of those people who can’t just have a bad day. I attempt as many ways as possible to turn it around and make it get better and thank goodness for my persistence because here I am feeling like I’m back on my feet and ready to keep going!

I have to admit it was NOT an easy process and for a while there I didn’t really have an option to make anything better. Once I was done work for the day and Brian got home I turned off the computer, put my phone down, and took a shower. Part of me being miserable was literally feeling disgusting from all the humidity and chasing after little girls today. After scrubbing down I felt fresh and clean, ate some food, and pulled out the sweet tea 🙂 Nothing makes a terrible day better than some awesome sweet tea!

Another thing that always seems to get my mind off whatever is bugging me is some good music. I turned Pandora on my Taylor Swift station and got to organizing my desk so I have a place to get things done and feel accomplished again.

It doesn’t take much for me to feel bogged down with a bunch of little miscellaneous things to do and putting them off is just plain torture because they keep adding up! I cleared off my desk, made a pile, and knocked one thing out at a time. I still have a little pile next to me but the important things are done and I’m already feeling like there’s a weight lifted off my shoulders.

Things are starting to look up and I still have three hours left in the day to enjoy!

Here’s to hoping your bad days turn around fast!

Thanks for stopping by,

Love Always,

J

55 down 200 more to go!

23 May

I’ve been crocheting my little fingers like crazy! Only four more colors to go 🙂 Who’s ready to see these babies listed on Etsy?

 

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

J

Wasted.

21 May

from google images

Some of you may have noticed that it’s been a little over a week since I last posted. Some of you had no clue 😉 That’s totally okay! After a weekend trip to see some of my favorite people I took a little break from blogging. Instead I spent a majority of my time on Etsy working on my shop, working out, trying to cook better meals, and spending some quality time with my family.

What you’ve missed while I’ve been gone:

A girls weekend road trip! Emma and I headed to Richmond to see my two favorite girls: Stephanie and Tiffany.

While we were there we checked out the playgrounds in Richmond – we like them better than ours because they have sand boxes!!

I played around with some yarn thinking I’d make a cool necklace since scarves are out of season.

Then I decided to make a fancy one!

Which then led to fancy bracelets and anklets!

Ahhh then a day trip to the beach with my hubby!! This was exactly the kind of getaway I needed from the computer 😉

And since Brian was so sweet to take me to the beach – I took him to the Nationals vs Orioles game!

Needless to say it was a much needed vacation! So I hope you are happy to have me back but since I’ll be limiting my time on the computer to avoid wasting away and actually enjoy this summer: posts will be short, sweet, and to the point!!

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

Work Out Challenge: Weekly Fitness Routine

12 May

Hello There!

 

Hey everyone! So this is the second post to my work out plan – here I am going to explain my weekly routine, fitness goals, and a few recipes from Lauren’s site that I am going to be trying next week.

So let’s start with my weekly routine:

Monday – Wii Fit

Tuesday – Gym (Cardio & Weight Lifting)

Wednesday – Dance Central (X-box Connect)

Thursday – Gym (Yoga)

Friday – Zumba (X-Box)

Saturday – Gym (Cardio & Weight Lifting)

Sunday – Rest

My favorite thing about my schedule is that it’s so flexible. I work from home Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays so those days I will be working out from home but any of those days can be interchangeable for what I do!

Knowing ahead of time that I travel often on weekends, my Saturdays and Sunday’s need to be flexible as well so if I don’t make it to the gym on Saturday I can just move it to Sunday and if I can’t get there in time on Sunday I can do one of the workouts from home and make up for it the next week!

Being flexible is a huge thing in my life. My work schedule isn’t always the same, some days I work extra, some days I work less, some days get switched out completely! This routine is easy to work around as long as I am doing something each day and I have one day of rest it works!

On top of that weekly schedule I am doing a few things in the morning and at night that I can do from home. I’m starting out small and switching up what I do each morning and night and hoping to be able to do more as I go. Here’s a list of easy things to do right by your bed when you wake or when you are getting ready to go to sleep:

Crunches, push ups, lunges, jumping jacks, planking, leg lifts, and squats.

So far I’ve been trying to do 15 of three different things each time.

If you are interested in following a plan like mine but don’t have video game consoles or games please don’t worry! You can run to your closest Best Buy and grab some DVDs. There are thousands of fitness, dancing, and work out DVDs that you can use on your days at home!

Tomorrow I will be posting two recipes I’ll be attempting to have for this coming weeks meal plan as well as a list of other foods and snacks I’ll have around the house to keep me energized and healthy.

Do you have a weekly fitness routine?

What is the one thing that gets in the way of keeping up with a routine for you?

I’d love to hear what you have to say in the comments section below!!

Thanks for stopping by,

Love Always,

J

 

Work-Out Challenge!

11 May

Hello There!

I am excited to say I am attempting a work out challenge with an amazing friend of mine! We are posting on her website in the comments section what we are doing each day to keep each other motivated and excited. We are also sharing healthy recipe’s that we are eating in place of my (our – she is way healthier when it comes to eating already than I am) usual meals.

For those of you that know me I am NOT dieting. I am too skinny as it is so losing weight is not my goal. When I got my membership and successfully made the gym a part of my routine during the week – I did it to tone up my body. For all of you mom’s out there you know that your body goes completely crazy during pregnancy, birth, and after pregnancy it’s hard/impossible to get back to the same body as before.

My goal was to tone up my thighs and stomach. I also wanted my leg and arm strength that I had when I was in high school and the beginning of college. I miss my athletic muscles and being able to carry a good amount of weight. These days I feel like just carrying Emma around for a half hour is exhausting and my arms feel like they are going to fall off! It’s also annoying having to ask my husband to carry the heavy things for me all the time.

So here I go – I am starting my work out challenge to get healthy, toned, and get my muscles back! The gym has been a big step for me and since I’ve kept a routine and made progress I was really excited when I saw Lauren Conrad’s – Bikini Boot Camp Plan

This is from Lauren’s site the link is attached to so you can see her boot camp rules!

Eating healthier has been something that’s almost impossible to do in this house. Growing up the only diets I ever had to do was EAT MORE food. I naturally have a high metabolism and growing up I also had a lot of energy so that resulted in me being super skinny without any effort (which is not all fun and games as it sounds).

My husband doesn’t help with the food process in this house. He is a picky picky eater! I could go through the list of things he won’t eat but it’s just easier to say he pretty much eats meats, potatoes, pastas, rice, and bread. Occasionally he’ll eat some fruit.

Going on a healthy food diet is going to be a huge challenge for me in this household so I’ve found a few meals that I can make one day during the week and either freeze or refrigerate so they are easy for me to quickly heat up and Brian can still eat his favorites 🙂

Basically why I’m explaining all this is because I won’t exactly be following Lauren Conrad’s meal plan. Going cold turkey sometimes is not so easy for me and then I quit so I decided to make her plan fit my lifestyle better. So I’ll be working out and eating healthier in a way that fits me. For those who are like me and keeping up with lifestyle changes are hard for you, I really suggest starting slow and making it work for you!

So to start out I’m going show you a progress of how the workouts and healthy food is affecting me physically and mentally!

This is a picture of how I look now, what I want to work on, and such:

Ignore my messy hair and lack of make-up! So what I want to work on is getting my muscles back in my thighs, tone up a little bit everywhere but definitely in my stomach too, get my arms in shape and get those muscles back as well, and of course I could use a little tan!!

Check back tomorrow to see my work out plan and some awesome recipes I’ll be attempting!

Do you have problems keeping up with lifestyle changes like dieting, working out, eating healthier?

Is there something specific you’d like me to explain about the work out challenge I am doing?

Do you have tips and tricks you’d like to share about keeping up with challenges you face yourself?

I’d love to hear what you have to say in the comments section!

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

J

Trim up those Crazy Bangs!

9 May

Hello There!

Today I attempted to trim my crazy bangs. This isn’t the first time that I’ve tried to do it on my own but this was the most successful so I wanted to share a few tips that helped me out as well as a few of my errors that I will never do again!

I’ve been messing around with bangs for the past couple of months. I go from pushing them off to the side like this:

to straight let them hang down in my face!

It got to the point where they were poking me in the eyes and I just couldn’t take it anymore!! For those of you who have awesome hair salons like I do – trimming bangs is usually free as long as the person you go to has a few minutes to fit you in between their schedule. If you don’t have one of those salons and you live in Northern Virginia – you better email me now so I can give you my guy’s (Tim) number 😉

Unfortunately I live about an hour and a half away from my salon so driving there for a quick bang trim costs more in gas than it’s worth. Thankfully the last time I was there he gave me a few tips and I finally got enough guts to try again with his wonderful advice!

Now, before I start – you really need a great pair of scissors. My Mother-In-Law bought me shears like these:

  • You don’t need to spend a fortune on them as long as they are meant to cut hair. Just promise me you won’t cut anything else with them because that will ruin your shears and you can forget about trimming your bangs properly!
  • Make sure you have a well lit area and a good clean mirror to position yourself in front of.
  • Pull back the rest of your hair so it’s out of your way. Sometimes in between cuts I’ll let it down to see how it looks with my hair style but try not to cut with it down – it’s distracting and you don’t want to make a mistake!
  • Tim told me to cut with my scissors angled upward instead of trying to cut them straight across for a more natural look. It sounds weird and I even looked at him like he was a little crazy but boy is he right! You can totally tell the difference!
  • Cut little tiny bits at a time. Even if it takes a few different times to cut it. Smaller cuts lead to better results!
  • When you think your done, put the scissors down and play with it. Maybe restyle your hair, brush your teeth, enjoy the look for a little bit to make sure you like it and chances are you find a few pieces you missed that you’ll want to come back and fix!

When it’s all said and done the chances of you having a million little hairs all over your face are pretty high. Wiping them off is not as easy as it seems. I tried blow drying most of mine off and that didn’t work out so well either. My favorite thing to use are these suckers:

I already use these to wipe off my make up but the little hairs just stick right to it and magically don’t fall off! It’s also smooth and cleansing for you skin. I’m in love with these and their price!

When I first attempted to cut my hair I did it right after I got out of the shower while it was wet. I held my hair in between my fingers like they do at the salon and when hacking away eyeballing to see if they lined up. I ended up cutting my bangs way too short. Epic fail.

This time I went ahead and dried my hair right after I showered. Instead of using my fingers to hold my hair I just brushed out my bangs and held the scissors up to my bangs at a slight angle. I snipped the bottom edge of my hair in little clumps one at a time. I took my time to make sure that they lined up evenly and in some cuts I barely cut anything off because I was trying to be careful that I didn’t cut too much. I ended up cutting my bangs three times in order to get them to the height that I love the most.

 

They are still long but that’s the way I like them and since the bang trimming salon is in my house I can do it whenever it gets just a little too long instead of going somewhere where they cut it a little shorter than you’d like since they know you aren’t going to come back for another three months 😛

Now my bangs will stay a the same length and I’ll never have to worry about them being too short or too long. Thank goodness for figuring out how to trim my own bangs and thank goodness for my awesome salon guy for dishing me some good tips!

Let me know if you have any other good tips you use in the comments section!

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

J

Music isn’t my only Therapy <3

8 May

Hello There!

What a crazy week it has been over here and it’s only Tuesday night! I spent most of Monday playing with three gorgeous girls. Child care is like a constant eye opener for me. I love watching Emma play on her own but watching her play with other kids is a whole different ball game! It’s amazing how smart, friendly, and funny little ones are. Each day I get to watch them grow up is just another reminder to me that life goes by so fast and to enjoy every little second that I can.

Emma has been especially amazing these past few days and it’s hard to resist the urge to spoil her rotten! Sure she likes to pick on me and get my nerves but so does everyone else 😉 haha. It’s like she’s finally understanding me and how I function now. We are finally getting into a comfortable routine for both of us and enjoying the transitions that the days bring.

Today my Mother-In-Law took Emma to visit family and she couldn’t have been any more excited! Car trips have become more of an adventure that’s fun and exciting rather than boring and painful 😛 She loves visiting people too and sharing all her wonderful news of all her new things and what she has figured out the past few days.

We got her all dressed up in her new dress which she called her princess dress. She told me that I was beautiful (partially because I had just told her she was) and said Thank You Very Much Mommy – You Are Da Best once I got her all packed up and ready.

It’s funny because as a busy parent working from home on two different jobs, blogging, and trying to find a balance between it all – I always say if only I had more time. Today I had the entire day to get things done and I did, but the thing I did the most was miss my little girl. I wondered how she was and what she was doing. If she remembered to say please and thank you. If she ate her lunch well and picked up her toys.

Before I had this little princess in my life – I used to use music to calm me down and make me realize what was important in life. Sometimes it was the beat of the music, sometimes the lyrics fit my mood perfectly, but most of the time it was that reminder that everyone else was going through the same things I was so there wasn’t any point in worrying so much.

These days it’s my little girl reminding me that worrying gets you no where. That the little things in life are the best. That all it takes to fix a little boo boo is a hug and kisses, then it’s time to get up and keep playing because no matter what happens – life’s too short to worry about things that bring us down.

I love my little therapist.

Thanks for stopping by!

Love Always,

J

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