Friday, August 29, 2014

Friday Five & September Pin-spired!

It is Friday and it is a holiday weekend!
Bring on the three days off work!
I have some super fun plans like clean the house, catch up on laundry, go grocery shopping, etc. ;)
I also plan to spend lots of time with Mic and X :)


FYI: Today is going to go a bit long.
Not only do I have my normal Friday Five & Favorites link ups, but I also have the wonderful monthly Pin-spired link up!

Let's get to it shall we!

Just throwing out all the link ups right here, right now.

Amy/Karli


Momfessionals
Erika/Narci/Andrea

Shay/Sheaffer/Mel




eXecution Factory (Mic & my fantasy football team) is in place and ready to battle!
We went to our annual draft party this past Sunday and I think we were able to get some really good players.
I am hoping for big numbers from Andrew Luck and all of our wide receivers.



Project: Move X to a big boy room is in full swing!
Furniture has been moved, a theme is set, and colors have been chosen!
I have big plans this weekend to patch, sand, and possibly get a coat of paint on the walls in X's big boy room!
Pics and recap to come in the future :)



Another great week of Booty Barre class and eating healthy has paid off!
I am only 3lbs. shy of my next goal :)
So the following link up comes at the perfect time!

Not Entirely Perfect

I will be participating in Choose Your Own Adventure link up each month with Stephanie & friends :)
September's theme is Fitness.
To find out more about the link up and to join the fun check out Not Entirely Perfect today!


In case you didn't see my pic from the other day, here it is again...
I enjoyed my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season on Tuesday morning :) It definitely made the day just a little bit better!
Since I am not a hit up Starbucks every day kind of girl (my wallet can't handle that), I have used my delicious Pumpkin Spice creamer the rest of the week.
I will be picking up the Starbucks version again this weekend when I do my grocery shopping though :)



Knocking on wood as I type this....X has been a dream this week!
He is so sweet and polite saying Thank you and such.
Giving extra snuggles, saying "I love you mommy", etc.
He loves to dance around with me, watch and play football ~ proud mommy moment, and enjoys taking his vitamins.
The biggest thing this past week is the amount he is talking!
I honestly can't understand half of it, but he is so passionate about the story he is telling.
He moves his arms all around, head back and forth, and even gets louder the more into it he is.
It.Is.Adorable!
There are days that are trying and the temper tantrums feel like they will never end.
But I need to try to forget about those bad times and focus on times where we are just laughing to laugh :)





I really wanted to recreate so many outfits this month, but the weather just wasn't working with me.
I think my Fall Style board on Pinterest is dying to show itself off, but unfortunately the Ohio weather is acting as though we are in the middle of summer!
Daily temps in the mid to upper 80's and humidity that is just unreal!
So Fall board you will have to wait until next month :(
Here are a couple of outfits I did manage to squeeze in this month.


Inspiration photo

I love how effortless this look is!
Totally work appropriate and 100% me!
I unfortunately don't have the exact items, so I put my spin on it with what I did have in my closet.

My recreation

Swapped the top and bottom colors and added a red belt and shoes instead of the neutrals.
All items are super old, but here are a few similar ones...
Red belt and shoes

My next look I wore for a girl's night out/birthday celebration.
I saw this pic and I knew I had almost the exact same pieces to recreate the look!

Inspiration photo

My recreation
That evening was especially hot, so I swapped out the pants for shorts, but I think the outfit still turned out good.
Gold necklace - similar
Oatmeal blazer - similar
Black tank and shorts
Black sandals - similar

I was so comfortable in the outfit!
It was easy to dance in and I wasn't freezing as the night cooled off.
It was the perfect Vanessa outfit :)

Click here to see my previous Pin-spired posts.

Were you pin-spired in August?
Maybe you found a new recipe or a fun DIY project.
I would love to hear about it in the comments below :)

Happy Friday!
Hope you all have a wonderful Labor Day weekend!



Thursday, August 28, 2014

#xvsdailylife2014 Week 33

 Day 232 ~ Not gonna lie, it was an amazing mail day!
#ilovemagazines #nowineedtofindtimetoreadthem
#mommyproblems


 Day 233 ~ Lunch all by myself...I never do this!
#cantstandtositalone


Day 234 ~ Indoor s'mores for dessert on this rainy Friday night.


 Day 235 ~ Rockin' our matching Joe Haden jerseys while we cheer on the Cleveland Browns!
#diehardbrownsfans


 Day 236 ~ The calm before the storm...It is Fantasy Draft Day!!!
#eXecutionFactory

Day 237 ~ This kid can't get enough of himself! He loves to see himself in photos and video!
#entertainerX #toddlertalk

Day 238 ~ My day is complete! First #psl of the season from Starbucks!



Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Recipe Club ~ Easy Ravioli Lasagna Bake


Mic and I love when we receive a new Kraft Food & Family magazine in the mail.
And I am always jealous if he got his hands on it first. lol!
All the recipes sounds delicious and are pretty darn easy to make.
I don't know about you, but I don't have much time after work to make dinner before it is bath & bed time for X.
I need quick, simple, good meals to make.
This magazine has come through for me time and again.
And the subscription price of $13.98 for a year (or $18.98 for 2 years) is well worth it!

When I received the above copy I knew it wouldn't be long before I was making the cover dish.
Anything pasta goes over pretty well in our house and this dish did not disappoint!

#badblogger ~ I forgot to take any photos when I made this dish last week :( 
So you get the stock photo from the website...sorry!

You will need the following ingredients:
1 lb. extra lean ground beef
1 onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 jar (24oz.) of spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup of water
2 lbs. frozen cheese ravioli (about 24), uncooked
1 tub (8oz.) of Philadelphia Cream Cheese
1/2 cup of milk
1 1/2 cups Kraft Shredded Mozzarella Cheese with a touch of Philadelphia
2 tbsp Kraft Grated Parmesan Cheese

Directions:
Heat oven to 350*

Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and brown the meat, onion, carrot, and garlic over Medium-High heat.
Stir in the spaghetti sauce and water and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Spray a 13x9 pan with cooking spray.
Spread 1/2 the meat sauce on the bottom of the pan and cover with half of the ravioli.
Whisk cream cheese & milk together until blended (this took forever!) and spread over the ravioli.
Top with layers of 3/4 cup shredded cheese and remaining ravioli.
Cover with the rest of the meat sauce and cheeses.
Cover and cook for 50 minutes or until heated through, uncovering the last 10 minutes (I put mine under the broiler on low for the last 10 minutes).
Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting to serve.

Each serving (about 12) is only 330 calories!
Add a salad and your meal is complete :)

Do you receive the Kraft Food & Family magazine?
What recipes have you tried?

Linking up today with Andrea @ Momfessionals for


I was not compensated, nor was I contacted to write this post about Kraft Food & Family magazine.
I just like the magazine and wanted to share with all of you :)


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Favorite Things - Fall

I know most of my posts have been centered around Fall lately, but I just can't help it!
It truly is my favorite season of the year!
Have you been to Ohio in the Fall?
Absolutely gorgeous!!!
From the perfect temps to the changing leaves...it really is the best!

So with that lovely intro I am linking up today with Erika & Andrea for

I have professed my love for the Pumpkin Spice Latte on here more than a few times, and I am going to do it again today!
I honestly would probably pay over $10 for this cup of liquid heaven, but thankfully I don't have to :)
For under $5 you can get yourself a venti (that is a large in English) cup of pumpkin goodness!

If a daily or weekly trip to Starbucks isn't in the cards or your wallet, you could always pick up some Pumpkin Spice coffee creamer to make your own cup of deliciousness at home!
I picked up this Friendly Farms creamer from Aldi this past weekend and it is the closest thing I have found to the real thing (Starbucks version)! And even better....it is only $1.49 for a 16oz. bottle!!!

And what goes better with coffee than donuts?
I swung through our local apple orchard this weekend and picked up a dozen fresh made apple glazed donuts for only $7.25!
Oh my goodness these things are delicious!
Listen...I am not a fan of donuts and really dislike glaze, but these are the exception!
Looking into the bag of yumminess!


Have you ever visited Ohio in the Fall?
Are you a pumpkin spice lover?
If not, what is your favorite Fall drink?
What is your favorite kind of donut?

I would love to hear what your favorite thing under $10 is!
Share it in the comments below :)



Monday, August 25, 2014

Hooray for Monday!

From Friday evening through late Sunday night it was just a rough weekend!
Nothing horrible happened, but nothing seemed to go my way :(
Since Mic still wasn't feeling the greatest on Friday, we just had some leftovers for dinner and indoor s'mores since the it was rainy & wet outside.
X skipped the s'more part as usual and just downed numerous marshmallows!
Making silly faces while becoming a sticky mess :)

Super blurry, but he just couldn't stop laughing!

I decided to run my errands and do grocery shopping on Saturday morning since we were heading up north for the rest of the weekend.
I made my usual Target run and found some super cute things on clearance for X :)
Rockin' his new TMNT hat (not available online - similar)

I have heard of a lot of people doing their grocery shopping at Aldi recently and how cheap everything is so I decided to give it a try.
I didn't need a whole lot so I figured this was the perfect time to do it.
I did get some good deals, but what I mainly needed was produce and the selection was not terribly impressive :( 
I think for now I will stick with Kroger, unless anyone local has any suggestions for me...I am all ears :)


When I arrived home I needed to switch loads of laundry around. I had washed a blanket and some sheets together that were dark colors...nothing abnormal.
Unfortunately, I opened up the washer to red fuzz and such all over the rest of the load and all throughout the washer! UGH!
I thought the worst was behind me and put everything into the dryer in hopes things would dry and the fuzz would be caught in the lint trap.
When I opened the dryer it was worse than the washer!!!
Oh my goodness...I think there was more red fuzz in the dryer and lint trap than there was left on the blanket!
After bleaching the washer a couple of times and using the vacuum to get all the crap out of the dryer..things are now back to normal!
Needless to say, I did not get any other laundry done this weekend :(

After that debacle, we headed north to visit with my cousin who recently turned 16.
It was nice to see a few members of my extended family, and of course my mom and little brother :)
And as a bonus we were all able to go out to eat together after the party at Olive Garden :)
It was the most relaxing and enjoyable part of my day!
Mic and X and my cousin's house :)
 Thank god for technology! He was perfect at dinner while he ate and watched his movie :)
Of course followed by being goofy right before we left ;)

We ended the evening watching the Browns preseason game.
Nothing too exciting there :(
 He looks way too big laying on that couch by himself :(

Sunday was Fantasy Draft Day!
We have 12 teams in our league and just about everyone was there for the draft.
It is always a good time :)
Our finished draft board.
Go eXecution Factory!!!

The draft went super fast, which meant my dad and I were able to take a quick ride on his motorcycle :)
The weather was perfect for it too!

Afterwards, we had some pizza and then headed back home.

There were definitely more good things than bad over the weekend, but those bad things just seem to always stick with you.
Oh well...at least it is a new day, new week, etc.

How was your weekend?
Are you participating in a Fantasy Football league or draft this year?


Linking up today with Lisa & Bella
Weekend Recap


PS. I stopped by my Starbucks today for my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season...I was told they wouldn't have them until tomorrow :(
Not going to let it ruin my day, but boy was I bummed!
Did anyone else manage to snag their first cup?



Friday, August 22, 2014

Friday Five Football Edition

Today I am not only linking up with my Friday regulars (Karli/Amy, Andrea/Narci/Erika), but also with one of my favorite Ohio gals - Erin!


Football Friday


Momfessionals



If you are new around these parts let me catch you up real quick.
I was born and raised a Cleveland Browns fan. There is no other team for me. Seriously. I will always cheer for and bleed orange and brown. And now, so will X.

I started going to games with my dad when I was about 6 or 7 years old and we have made the father/daughter game an annual thing for (usually around my birthday in December) for the last 29-30 years!!!
A couple of years ago we got to go down on the field together during the team line ups and national anthem. That game actually fell on my birthday. Best present by far was high fiving Joe Haden as he ran out of the tunnel.

I love my team through the ups and mostly downs.
I stick by my team when they make terrible play calls, throw an interception, get burned by a wide receiver, and pick their (what seems like) one millionth starting QB.

No matter what, this is my team!


There are so many kinds of drinks you can consume on game day!
Pop, water, beer, mixed drinks.
My favorite drink during cold weather games is hot chocolate!
It keeps me warm, and I have one more thing that is part of my team colors :)

When tailgating before the game it is customary to do a shot before heading into the stadium. (It is, don't test me.)
We have done many different kinds of shots over the years --- flavored pucker, Blackberry Schnapps (yuck!), & many more.
My favorite pregame shot is American Honey Bourbon Whiskey with Rum Chata. DELICIOUS!!! 
Super simple too!

1 part American Honey
1 part Rum Chata

Shake together and pour into a shot glass. Enjoy!




The easy options are of course hot dogs, burgers, chips and salsa, etc.
Even chili is a pretty easy option during the cold weather games (my favorite games to go to). We usually make it the Cincinnati way, because that is best. Don't try to tell me otherwise :)
My favorite food on game days at home is wings!
Whether you order them or make them yourself they are THE perfect football food!

Desserts play a big role in game day eats for our group.
Here are a few of the ones I am planning on trying out this season.




Apparently I like peanut butter and chocolate together :)




Whether you are tossing the football around, playing corn hole (our favorite tailgating game), or managing your Fantasy Football team...there is so much fun to be had before, during, and after the game.
I have a set similar to the ones above that my dad had made for Mic and I as an engagement gift. We don't use them enough at home, but they sure are fun during game days!

Managing a fantasy football team can be stressful, but super fun at the same time. You find yourself watching every game you can to see how your guys are doing. And sometimes :( you find yourself cheering on the enemy for a few extra fantasy points.
Do you know how hard it was to have Big Ben as our fantasy QB (for too many years!) when the sight of black and gold and most things Steelers makes me sick to my stomach? 
UGH!
Sorry Cari & Gwen! We can still be blog friends...just not on September 7th or October 12th :)

The most important and the most fun part about a game day is cheering on your team!
I love cheering on the whole team, but I have always had those favorite players that make the game just that much better to watch :)
From back in the day with Webster Slaughter & Bernie Kosar,
Kosar

to more recent years with Josh Cribbs & Phil Dawson, 


to now with Joe Haden and Josh Gordon (clean up your act kid!)!



Jersey, jacket, hat, scarf...you name it, you need it!
And sorry ladies, but a real fan does not wear pink!
You have a tee, sweatshirt, jacket, whatever it is in YOUR team colors!
If you do choose to wear pink, please don't do it around me.
#sorrynotsorry
Maybe it is the cheerleader in me or maybe it is just the fact that I must match...but I have to wear my team colors on game day!
Heck, even when watching the Superbowl I wear the colors of the team I am cheering for (unfortunately it is not brown and orange).
I don't even care if you wear a plain white tee...it is one of the team colors for almost every team in the league!

Now that we got that out of the way, let's talk about some of the new gear I usually wear and what I am hoping to pick up this year :)
My dad gave me this bad boy for Christmas last year and I have been dying to wear it! 
 Or my personalized jersey always works well too!
Especially since Brian Hoyer (recently named starting QB) is #6 :)

But I wouldn't mind picking up this super cute thermal to wear on colder days or even under my jersey. It is crucial to dress in layers on game days at the stadium!
Thermal shirt

And I could always use a new hat or two or three :)



And just for fun these tees would be great to add to my collection.

Etsy shop - unknown

I honestly have been alive and a fan for all of these things :(


Whew! I am tired after writing that post!
So tell me...
Who is your favorite football team?
Do bleed your team colors?
What are your go-to eats and drinks on game day?
Are you a corn hole fan too or is there a new tailgating activity I should try?
What do you rock on game day? A jersey? Team tee or sweatshirt?

Share your favorites in the comments below and don't forget to link up your Hey Friday, Favorites, and Football posts with the hosts listed at the top!

Happy Friday & GO BROWNS!!!!
Just found this amazing print on Etsy!
You better believe I am picking this up for myself X! ;)

Have a great weekend!



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