Monday, July 28, 2014

an essential oils giveaway

I'm hosting my first giveaway-- a sample pack of 5 essential oils! You can read some of my other posts about essential oils here and here. I have experienced their benefits and I love to share them with others! Some say essential oils are just a fad, but when you are utilizing the healing properties of plants which have been around since creation, I have to disagree such a statement. I'm glad to see that more people are investing in their health in natural ways. I am a Young Living essential oils member. I value their focus on quality from seed to seal. If you're interested in learning more about the oils and trying a few for free be sure to enter the giveaway!

Sample Pack of Young Living Essential Oils: 

add to water for a refreshing drink
diffuse for a bright, fresh aroma
use to make homemade cleaning products

apply to the bottoms of feet for restful sleep
diffuse for a calming environment
apply to blemishes, cuts, and scrapes as an antiseptic 

apply to neck/temples to alleviate a headache
diffuse with lemon + lavender to alleviate allergies
add to warm water for a stimulating tea

Peace & Calming:
diffuse for a relaxing environment
apply to the bottoms of feet for restful sleep

diffuse to reduce airborne bacteria
apply to the bottoms of feet for an immune booster
use to make homemade cleaning products

To enter: Comment below or on any social media post linking to this blog post with the oil you are most excited to try! I will select one winner on Thursday, July 31st to receive the 5 samples. Each sample packet is 0.25ml and contains 6-8 drops of oil. Most applications only need 1-2 drops so you can get up to 3-4 uses out of each packet.

If you're interested in ordering any oils, I would love to offer you my wholesale prices. If you have questions, please feel free to ask in the comments or email me for more information.

Good luck! 

Monday, July 21, 2014

mustard glazed salmon

Today I am guest posting over at my friend Jenni's blog. I'm sharing a delicious, simple recipe for Mustard Glazed Salmon. I love simple suppers during the week so I can spend time after work with my husband and our puppies! Click here for the full recipe on Frankly My Dear blog. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

recipes found in the attic

I've expressed my love for Instagram before. I just love the combination of a pretty photo and a catchy caption. I love following my family and friends, as well as "meeting" new people.

I stumbled across Rachel Reeves of Attic 17, a lover of all things vintage. She created a fun project where she would send (via snail mail, which makes it even better) old, classic recipe cards to those who signed up to participate. The challenge is to re-create the vintage recipe with the liberty to put a modern twist on it. Everyone shares their creations on Cooking Day. You can find all three editions and the participants by searching for the hashtag Rachel coined "#recipesfoundintheattic" on IG.

I had the pleasure of participating in Rachel's third, and the first savory, edition of #recipesfoundintheattic this last week. It was so much fun receiving my recipe card in the mail and gathering the ingredients to prepare Dorothy's Zucchini Casserole. I was especially excited to use zucchini from our garden and to wear my apron that just happened to perfectly match Dorothy's recipe card!

On "Cooking Day" last week I made her recipe my own. She used the microwave for all of the cooking, but I prefer to use the stovetop and oven. She used bread crumbs with her bacon, I just used bacon. I also added some garlic and onion powder for extra flavor. I enjoyed the fact that there was not a can of "cream of something" soup in the ingredients list! Here is my adapted recipe for Dorothy's Zucchini Casserole.

4 cups sliced zucchini
1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese
1 egg
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
salt & pepper
4 slices cooked and crumbled bacon

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a pan over medium-high heat, sauté the sliced zucchini until soft or about 15 minutes. While the zucchini is cooking, mix the egg, sour cream, flour, seasonings, and cheese to form the sauce. Once zucchini is tender, combine with the cheese mixture and pour into a greased 8x8 casserole dish. Top with crumbled bacon and extra shredded cheese. Bake for 30-45 minutes until golden and bubbly. 

I loved this dish and will be making it again for sure! What's not to love about zucchini, cheese, and bacon!? You could definitely use whatever cheese you prefer and I just know yellow squash would also be tasty. 

Definitely check out Rachel's Instagram for the next installment of #recipesfoundintheattic. I loved participating and look forward to future rounds! Thank you Rachel! It was so neat to slow down and think about a woman years ago making the same (for the most part) recipe for her loved ones. To sort of time-travel back to when life was a bit more simple but just as meaningful. As Laura Ingalls Wilder once said, 

"It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all."

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

sunshine award.

Julie over at Homegrown State of Mind nominated me for the Sunshine Award a few weeks ago. Because things have been pretty eventful in our household, I am just now getting around to posting. We found out recently that Dustin was approved for a transfer within his company which will allow us to move back to Kentucky near our family and friends! We are so excited for this opportunity but will so miss the friends we have made here in Illinois. Since finding out we have been working on getting our home ready to sell, looking at houses for sell back home, packing a little, and watching tons of HGTV. But back to the Sunshine Award... I really enjoy learning random facts about people so I think these awards are so fun! Thank you Julie for nominating me!

Rules of the Sunshine Award:
- Post 11 random facts about yourself.
- Answer 11 questions from the blogger that nominated you. 
- Nominate 11 bloggers to receive the award.
- Write 11 questions for those bloggers to answer.
- Notify the 11 bloggers that they have been nominated.

11 random facts about me
{1} I have every episode of HGTV's Fixer Upper on our DVR. I absolutely love the show. 
{2} I have a soft spot for farm animals. Primarily pigs, but I would also love to have a cow, goat, and chickens.
{3} Anytime I can use an alliteration, I'm thrilled. 
{4} I am a Young Living Essential Oils member. I'd love to help you get started with them!
{5} While I totally appreciate and enjoy crafting, I am really not that good at it.
{6} Fresh flowers are my favorite. So happy to see my zinnias growing!
{7} I love making lists.
{8} There are very few foods that I don't like, celery being the least enjoyed.
{9} Old books make me happy.
{10} I will be 25 this month! Weird.
{11} I enjoy learning new words. 

Julie's questions for me:
What's your favorite childhood memory?
I'd have to say anytime I was in the kitchen with my Meme. She is the one who introduced me to cooking and encouraged my love of food. She was never put off by me making a mess, slowing her down, or eating our culinary creations before they were finished. 

What's you favorite band?
Currently, NEEDTOBREATHE and Hillsong United are my favorite Pandora stations. 

What's your favorite dish to cook?
I can't choose just one!? Probably roasted vegetables. Of any kind. They are just delicious. And so simple. And so good for you.

Mac or PC?
I had only used a PC until I met Dustin. Now I use his Mac all the time. So Mac. 

What's your favorite nail polish color?
OPI Bubble Bath

Do you workout/run/exercise? If so, what do you do regularly?
Honestly, no. Insert embarrassed emoji. I know how important it is to be physically active, I just don't make it a priority as I should. My favorite is a good spin class-- although I'm not sure it can be as fun without my BFF, Gracey. We developed a love for cycling our senior year of college. Two years later, we still text each other good "spin songs." 

Do you have fur-babies (pets)?
YES! Love love love our  sweet puppy sisters, Callie and Chloe.

Have you ever been fishing? Did you enjoy it?
I grew up fishing at my grandparent's pond. My first fishing pole was a blue Snoopy pole. I loved fishing then, and love it now. 

What motivates you to blog consistently?
Such a great question. While at times I wish I blogged more often, I enjoy posting randomly. I guess I could say I am consistent in my 7 on the 7th posts! I do want my readers to enjoy my blog and get to know me better, but I also don't want to put pressure on myself to post a certain number of times in a week/month/etc. 

What's your favorite guilty pleasure? Shopping? Chocolate?
Manicures. No matter how much I take my time, I can never do them as well myself. 

What's your favorite social media platform? Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, other?
Instagram, hands down. I so love a pretty picture and catchy caption (and alliterations, remember!?).

My Sunshine Award Nominees:
McKinzey @ Whisk & Thread
Michelle @ Becoming Michelle

My questions:
{1}  Which meal of the day is your favorite?
{2} What's your favorite social media platform? FB, IG, Twitter, other?
{3} What's your favorite season?
{4} What's your favorite part about blogging?
{5} What verse or quote are you clinging to right now?
{6} What's the most recent book you've read?
{7} Do you have a favorite TV show? If so, what is it?
{8} Do you DIY or buy?
{9} What song do you currently have on repeat?
{10} Where has been your favorite trip/vacation so far?
{11} What is your favorite family tradition? 

Thanks again for nominating me, Julie! I had so much fun!
To my Sunshine Award Nominees, I can't wait to hear your responses!

Monday, July 07, 2014

7 on the 7th: two year anniversary edition

Two years ago today, I said "I do" to the one my soul loves.

For this very special edition of 7 on the 7th, I am sharing 7 of my favorite images from our wedding.  I love looking back through our photos and remembering our day. I love that like almost every event and moment in our life, it was very much a group effort. Family and friends worked together to create the wedding of our dreams. Our photographer, Tonda Thomas, captured SO many special moments. Friends and family also took some great shots. Selecting only seven favorites is nearly impossible because I love them all!

This photo made me feel like a princess. 
Doesn't every bride want to feel that way on their wedding day?

The "Somethings" Old, New, Borrowed, Blue
Such special pieces from even more special people. 

Our First Look
I'll never forget that giddy, excited feeling I had when I saw him. 
I'm thankful to say it still happens everyday. 

The Ceremony
I love that this photo captures our bridal party, our families, 
and the beautiful church decorated by my sister in-love. 

Father-Daughter Dance
My sister in-love captured this photo and I just love it.

AOII Friendship Song
Some of the most special women in my life surrounding us in a sweet tradition.

A sweet moment.
Here's to a lifetime of countless more.

Dustin, thank you for two years of wedded bliss. 
Your love, grace, humor, and joy are some of my greatest blessings. 
I'm so thankful God gave me you. 
I love you!