I made it to Dallas safe and sound. Thank you all for the wonderful comments this week, they helped brighten my day everytime I read them!
I will detail our trip later (when we have internet set up). I have dozens of boxes that I should probably unpack in the near future. Plus, I’m just not a cell phone blogger. I read all my comments on the WordPress app, but when it comes to writing posts there’s just no way I can do it on a small screen.
In the mean time I have something amazing to tie you over….
I’m joining a few amazing bloggers for an awesome group giveaway hosted by Lisa over at The Skinny on Health!
[The first time I made it to the top of Camelback Mountain, nearly 3 years ago!]
This is the day I’ve been dreading for the past 3 months….my last day in Arizona.
I couldn’t bring myself to include any other pictures than a few of my favorite Arizona landscapes that I’ve taken over the past few years. Most of these are old (which is obvious from the awful reddish/brownish hair color in the second picture). Although they are outdated, these pictures perfectly depict the beautiful desert wildlife and what I will envision after I leave Arizona.
Nobody likes saying ‘goodbye’. Nobody enjoys leaving their comfort zone and their life behind. These things go without saying.
What I’m most surprised about is how much I’ve grown to love it here. We moved here over three years ago and didn’t know a single person in Arizona. Although this was initially intimidating (and exhausting) to move across country and not know a single soul, it was probably one of the best things that ever happened to me.
Moving from Cincinnati (a much smaller city), was eye-opening for me. I lived there for 6 years and mostly hung out with the same friends since college, so I never had to “put myself out there” and make friends. Some of my best friends still live there, but moving away gave me a chance to meet a variety of different people (that I otherwise wouldn’t have).
Moving is still a foreign concept to me–although it might not seem that way considering Dallas will be the 4th city I’ve lived in the past decade. I lived in the same house in Cleveland from age 4 until I went away to college and will always consider it my home. But going away to college and then moving across the country really helped me grow and mature tremendously.
I know we will be back here someday to visit friends (or vacation), but I’m unsure when that will be. This is one of the many factors that are making it hard for me to leave here. This week has been tough for me, and I haven’t slept well because of it. Many tears have been shed, and there are probably more to come.
The good news is when we arrive in Dallas this weekend I’ll be so busy I won’t have much time to dwell on everything.
Cheers to a new chapter in life! xo
P.S. Follow my travel adventures across the southwest this weekend on twitter and instagram!
[gallery wall in the living room that I started...but never finished]
A while back I made a point to snap a few pictures of our current apartment. I knew that soon enough the you-know-what would hit the fan and it would be a mess in here. I love this apartment and I want to remember it in a good (clean) way.
I’m sad to leave the place we called home for over 3 years. This was the only apartment we lived at in Arizona, and I will always envision it when I think about our time here. It was also Dexter’s first home with us, which gave us an excuse to get out more often and meet the neighbors!
I’m thrilled I took these pictures before the packing process began, everything is such a mess now! We got rid of the end tables in the bedroom and we’re currently using stacked moving boxes as nightstands. So chic, right?
I’m moving in less than a week, can you believe it?
The only way I’ve managed to stay somewhat sane is to have a to-do list for everything. The only problem is that I seem to be adding more to the list faster than I can check things off!
You know the saying “when it rains, it pours“? I’ve found myself saying that more than anticipated lately. When this happens I immediately take a deep breath and say “this too shall pass” and remind myself that it could be worse.
I got pounded with paperwork and other things to do yesterday afternoon, most of which had to be done rather quickly. I was trying to get through as much as I could while chatting with Bluehost support to figure out why on Earth the server for my blog has been going down so much lately.
I was stressed, but in a different way than I’m used to. When I was in school, I always felt like everything was in my control (to a certain extent). If I wanted really good grades, I had to earn them and put in the effort. I was given a syllabus at the beginning of the semester, and for the most part I always knew what was coming up next.
But we all know there is no syllabus for your path in life! When life throws you lemons (and you have those days that you feel completely out of control), it can really throw you off path.
I’m not a fan of clutter and disorganization, which are two necessary evils during the moving process (no matter how hard you try to stop them). To prevent a meltdown, I always write down what I have to do. I make lists on my phone for the grocery store or target because I know I will have it when I’m out and about. When it comes to things I need to do around the house or errands to run, I have to physically write it down on paper and cross it off. If you’ve ever moved you know how the little things can add up very quickly.
Normally I do this on the first post-it note I see, but lately my “to-do” lists are far too long to fit on those. I saw some of these cute notepads on Etsy and I could really use one right about now!
My resident physical therapist (aka- Greg), has been on my case for a while now to get new workout shoes. I’m normally really good at knowing when to replace my current pair, but life got in the way a bit this year. Yes, it’s been over a year since I got new kicks! (embarrassing).
I suppose I justified waiting this long since my cardio has been lacking lately and I bought custom inserts with my last pair of Asics. I’ve had terrible shin splints lately so I knew it was time. To motivate myself in the future (and appease my physical therapist), I caved and picked up a new pair last week.
I was always a lifelong fan of Nike until a few years ago when I converted to Asics and haven’t looked back. I still wear my Nikes for running errands or leisurely activities since I love the look of them. When it comes to shoes for cardio, I’m devoted to my Asics. Plus, Greg will probably never allow me to buy Nike shoes ever again (not enough support). It’s common knowledge in the physical therapy world that Nike shoes are horrible for you because of the low support in most of their shoes.
After much debate, I decided to go with this pairof Asics, which are quite different than what I would normally buy. I’m quite happy with my decision after I took them for a spin earlier in the week. Close runner-ups were this purple pairandthis blue pair, but I’m very happy with the choice I made. The Asics GT-2000s didn’t have enough padding/support around the ankles for me, which is one of the reasons why I liked the Gel-Kayanos better. In the past I’ve had the Gel-Nimbuswhich I like a lot, but wanted to try something different.
What is your favorite brand of running shoes?
P.S. The blog name change is official on my Facebook page now!
I’m at the tail end of my advanced macronutrients class and this past week has been eye-opening. The research that was presented goes against pretty much everything that I’ve learned when it comes to health.
Throw everything you’ve ever learned about weight and metabolism out the door. Prepare to change the way you think about calories, weight, and health from here on out. READ MORE
I don’t think I’ve expressed my love for Etsy enough on here. I’ve always had a soft spot for homemade/unique/crafty decor and jewelry that no one else has. Naturally, I loved everything about this site from the start. What is better than getting a unique, homemade item while supporting a small business at the same time? Noth-ing!
I’m on the hunt for some unique and fun artwork to create a gallery wall for our new apartment in Texas.
I’d like to mix-and-match a variety of motivational quotes with graphic prints. I like the gold foil prints, but I need to limit it to one (possibly two). Otherwise, too much gold may be a bit overboard. The simplicity in this printis exactly what I’m looking for. Not too boring, but not too overdone at the same time. There are so many incredible options, how am I ever going to choose?
The nutrition nerd in me loves this fresh herbs watercolor painting, maybe for the kitchen in our apartment? As much as I like it, the stubborn artist in me knows that I could easily paint something similar myself. I would probably spend just as much money on supplies at the art store, so I may just save myself the time and effort and order a print.
Many of these Etsy shops have really affordable prints that you can order. The beauty of ordering just a print is you have the freedom to chose your own mat and frame (or use one you already have at home). Etsy even has an extensive supply of what I like to call- “manly” artwork. Last week I ordered Greg this pastel printof Michael Jordan for his future man cave (he’s a huge Chicago Bulls fan).
Today marks the beginning of my last week of school. It hasn’t hit me yet considering I still have 3 classes to attend, a paper to write, and a final exam to take, etc. But for the most part, it’s over and will be downhill from here on out. It will probably hit me next weekend when I can actually go to sleep at a normal time!
In precisely two weeks I will be done with school and moving into my apartment in Dallas. To say that “time flies” is a severe understatement. To be honest, I’m having mixed emotions about the move. READ MORE
Many of you are probably off work today and will be heading to a BBQ (or two), so I wanted to take the time to wish you a very happy holiday weekend beforehand! Surprisingly, things will be quiet around my neck of the woods this weekend. I opted to lay low and work instead–need money for furniture in the new apartment! Maybe I will brave the deadly heat and hit up the pool this weekend (with my SPF 50 of course).
In case you are in the same boat as me, here’s a a little something to brighten your day– READ MORE
If you haven’t noticed, Arizona is sunny. But I’m not talking sunny “most of the time”….
I mean I haven’t watched the weather in over 3 years. I remember when I lived in the midwest I would check the weather religiously if I had an outdoor event planned/wanted to do anything outdoors. It was always such a relief to have nice weather, but it made planning anything too far in advance nearly impossible.
Well, things are different in Arizona…
Checking the weather is rather pointless here. It’s sunny…and hot…everyday. After all, Phoenix isn’t nicknamed “Valley of the Sun” (and the NBA team isn’t named the Suns) for nothing!
I’m frequently asked, “You live in Arizona, why aren’t you tan?”, in which I’m tempted to respond, “Who has time to lay out for 3-4 hours a day on a regular basis?” I can’t just lay around knowing I have a huge list of things I need to do. One of these days I won’t feel guilty about it when things die down (maybe next year).
Another contributing factor is my newly developed paranoia about excessive sun exposure. I was the kid with the bad sun burns every summer (the ones that peeled for weeks). My horrific lobster skin would usually turn to tan after a few days, but the problem was that I would almost alway burn first.
Living here has really made me conscious about wearing sunscreen and limiting my pool time. I had no idea how intensely strong the sun was until I moved here. Walking outside in the summer to run errands makes my skin feel like it’s burning.
I wear sunscreen on a daily basis these days (and I don’t mean the wimpy SPF 8). On my face, I always wear SPF 50 in the form of Dermalogica Solar Defense Booster. It’s become part of my daily beauty regimen. Even simple tasks like going to the grocery store or walking the dog makes me feel like I’m getting a sunburn. Plus, I really don’t want wrinkles or skin cancer. I have the “at-risk” pale/freckly skin and it’s just not worth it to me. I’ll opt for a spray tan instead.
My family history of macular degeneration combined with my intensely light-sensitive eyes means I’m always wearing my sunglasses too. If I leave the house without sunglasses or chapstick, it throws me off the rest of the day. I use to have a bit of an obsession for sunglasses, but for some reason my love affair has died down in the past few years (a bit).
I have such a small face that I’m extremely indecisive when it comes to sunglasses (can’t be too big or too small–just like goldilocks). The classic Ray-bans are my fav, but occasionally I like to branch out.
These three sunscreens are a part of my daily routine. I love the high SPF 50 in this lightweight face moisturizer, I wish I had discovered it sooner and saved my face from more sunspots.Initially, I was hesitant to buy it because of the price.
I will say that a little bit goes a long way and the bottle lasted almost a year. I bought it on vacation in California last August after breaking out excessively from other brands and have used it about 2-3 times/day since and I just ran out last week. I guess in the long run it’s worth it!
For the rest of my skin, I lovebody lotion with SPF15because it doesn’t smell like sunscreen. As a base coat for my makeup, I put on this oil-free tinted moisturizer. Not only does it have SPF 20 in it, but it’s so lightweight. I’m seriously in love with it and will never buy any other kind!
Don’t forget your SPF at your 4th of July party this weekend!
P.S. I’m having lunch with my blogger friend Erica @ Luv in the Bubble at one of my favorite Arizona spots for healthy eats and green juice- ChopShop! I sure am going to miss all the healthy eateries on every corner when I move. I’m trading healthy vegetarian restaurants galore in Arizona for Tex-Mex and BBQ. I guess this means I will be cooking a lot more at home this year!