Picture-bration {A Weekend Recap}

Our big weekend of celebrations has come and gone! Between a graduation, birthdays, Mother's Day, and lots of family time we had an absolute blast! And of course, in typical me fashion I snapped a ton of pictures between my phone and camera, and I'm deeming them as our "picture-bration." Enjoy! :)

We started early Friday morning, which also happened to be my birthday, with a trip to Knoxville for my husband's cousin's graduation from our alma mater, the fabulous University of Tennessee. I've been avoiding Starbucks due to my diet, but made an exception for a birthday treat. :)


Too cool to have to sit through all those names... :)

Hulk joined us at graduation. :)

Love that Rima and her friend, Lucia, showed up in the same dress to their graduation! Totally a coincidence!

The family in front of the Torchbearer.

Proud of my Zeta sister!!

Moving on...

So, wondering if I stuck to my diet through all of this fun? Kinda! I had these delicious shrimp fajitas for lunch, but only had one tortilla. Not too shabby!

That girl... She clued the servers in that it was my birthday and they decided to cream me... I got a free little dessert out of it so I'm not complaining. :)

And I also had a free slice of my absolute favorite cookie cake from Great American Cookie Co. because they do cool stuff like that for you on your birthday. It was huge, and due to my lack of sugar eating lately I totally had a sugar crash afterwards, but it was delicious!

We did a little shopping and then met up with my sweet friend, Melinda, and her baby girl who is about to turn the big O-N-E!!

And then we had some Chick-fil-a where I had my first experience with grilled nuggets and Chick-fil-a sauce... Both delicious! {Especially the nuggets!!}

For dinner we met up with this guy! He just happens to be my very cool grandfather. We like to call him Pops. :)

After dinner we ran over to meet with some other people we love, Ms. Joy and her sweet family. Her son was playing in a baseball tournament where we watched his team come back from an 8-1 score to win the game 9-8. It was pretty great! The boys love Ms. Joy's son, who we call Buddy!

And they also love that Ms. Joy spoils them with fun things like Fun Dip! :)

We took Saturday pretty easy after such an eventful Friday!

We went out for some dinner where I was promised thrilling times ahead. ;)

Then we went home to some family time and birthday cake from our favorite hometown bakery!

Jackson's Birthday and Mother's Day!

We took a trip to Olive Garden after church to celebrate. {Yes! More celebrating!} I was going to stick to my diet... And then I saw my favorite OG dish, Shrimp and Crab Tortelli Romana. So I had it and it was awesome with a glass of Raspberry sweet tea with lime, a breadstick, and some salad. Yum!!


Our precious birthday boy, now a big three years old!!

Me with my boys on Mother's Day. I kinda love them... :)

My sweet sister!

Despite my diet cheating at lunch she was still trying to tempt me to cheat even more with some chocolate icing. Evil I tell ya!! ;)

Jackson talking to his friend Elly on the phone as she wished him a happy birthday. Too precious!!

We also had a chance to stop at my dad's and deliver gifts and hang out for a bit which was short, but great, nonetheless! Today is the last official day of celebrations ending with my hubby and my dad's birthdays, so a big happy birthday to them!! We'll finish off the week with Jackson's party, which I can't wait to share with everyone! I'm having lots of fun prepping for it!

Hope you all have a great week!

Stop and Smell the Roses: A Weekend to Celebrate!

Hi friends!

I am feeling oh-so-behind today as it has continued to be busy, busy, busy around here lately! We're in the middle of getting ready for Jackson's birthday bash, some travels, and other fun festivities! I haven't even watched the vlogs from last week, so if you get comments in the next few days on your week old Stop and Smell the Roses vlogs don't judge, mmmkay?! :)

I'm linking this little ol' vlog up with Mandy from House of Rose again for Stop and Smell the Roses - a time where we stop and vlog about something we're thankful for or loving. Check it out and join us!

Hope you're all having a great week!

17 Day Diet Check-In {End of Cycle 1}

I've officially finished my first 17 day cycle of the 17 Day Diet, or as I lovingly called it, my own personal version of the Hunger Games! ;)

{Woo Hoo!!!!!}

It feels good to know I stuck to it pretty closely, kept up my exercising, and saw some weight loss. Now I'm ready to move on to cycle 2, which comes with alternating days of different foods that weren't allowed in cycle 1, like limited servings of natural starches (brown rice, oatmeal, potatoes, etc.), shell fish, and red meat.

Last time I checked in I was one week into the diet and had lost 4.5 pounds. Curious to see how I did at the end of the 17 day cycle? Let's check out the results...

After 17 days of eating lean chicken and turkey, fruits, veggies, drinking lots of water and green tea, {and throwing in a Skinny Cow chocolate bar here and there} plus training for a 5k I lost 6.4 pounds!

So, I'm going to be honest... I'm a little disappointed in that number. Considering a lot of people lose 2-3 pounds a week by eating better and exercising {Which is basically what I've been doing, but to the extreme} it doesn't seem that thrilling. Knowing that when I did this same thing a year ago I lost about 10 pounds in 17 days makes me feel like this was a bit of a letdown.

The good news is I can feel a little difference in my clothes and a big difference in how I've felt. I've even contemplated kicking my morning coffee to the curb, because I just haven't felt like I've been as dependent on it lately. I've looked forward to my runs and eating healthy meals and snacks, and when I have cheated I haven't wanted to go to the extreme - a few bites of chocolate and I'm good to go.

Now for the ridiculously embarrassing fun part... The comparison pictures!

I can definitely see a difference in the way that shirt is fitting in the "after" pic... A lot looser in the belly!

In this picture I feel like the belly looks a little less "poochy" and I feel like I can even see a difference in my face, but that may just be lighting. 

The results aren't drastic, so I'm not going to be upset if you guys can't see them, but I'm glad we're on the right track!

Here's to the next 17 days!! :)

**If you're interested in checking out The 17 Day Diet you can see the official page here or other posts I've written about it here.

Stop and Smell the Roses: Marathon Survival and Skinny Eats

People, it's been Crazy Town, USA around here for the last few days, but I did not want to pass up a chance to share what I'm thankful for this week with all of you!

We traveled last weekend, which always throws me out of whack for a couple of days, plus I'm in the midst of major spring cleaning/yard sale prep and trying to plan a birthday party for my almost 3-year-old... How I'm going to get it all done I have no idea, but somehow this kind of stuff just usually works out, so I'm banking on that!

I talked about my husband's marathon he ran on Saturday in the vlog. If you would like to read more about that or see some pics you can check out my post from Monday.

The blog I talked about in the vlog is Skinny Taste, or Gina's Skinny Recipes... I'm not really sure what the right title is, but it doesn't matter because she could call it anything she wants and it would still be awesome. :)

Come join the rest of the Stop and Smell the Roses vlogging crew at House of Rose... That's where I'll be linking up and catching up on some of this week's gratefulness!

Peace out, peeps!!


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