Friday, February 28, 2014

things sports fan say

Can I begin this post by saying that every single fan base has its pocket of horrible fans. You can roll up to Bryant–Denny, Carter-Finely, Dowdy-Ficklen, Kenan or Neyland stadiums and you're going to find all kinds of different people. There will be those passionate fans who know way too many stats and historical figures, you'll find the ones just there for the pre-game party, the fans who are just d-bags in general about everything, and all kinds of people. In the words of my girl Miranda Lambert, "it takes all kinds of kinds". 

While I am in the zone of explaining some fan issues, here's another one... I see all the time when people post about "I wear this college t-shirt because I went there, you wear it because you went to Wal-mart". People, seriously? First of all, a fan is a fan is a fan, I don't care if you attended the university, grew up screaming with your parents at the TV during a game or if you just decided, "hey, I like that mascot". Cheer on whoever you want (but I'd rather it be the Pirates of course).

With all that being said, here are some things you're likely to hear walking through our tailgate lot, being around a sports fan or sitting in a bar on game day...

"A 12pm game!?! But that gives us no time to tailgate!"

"I met insert player name here once in class and he is seriously the best guy ever." 

"Don't let me go to the student store again, I just spent $170 in there last week."

"I think we need to slow down, kick off is in 3 hours and we've already played 18 rounds of flip-cup."

"A NIGHT GAME!?!?!?! Thank you Jesus!!!"

"Is this purple shirt really purple or is too blue?"

"Let's take a picture!"

"Is this gold dress really gold or is too yellow?"

"Man, I wish I was still a student!"

"Where's my cup!?! I wrote my name on it!"

"Woah, did you see that girl's dress? How is she tailgating in that, isn't she worried about stuff falling out?!"


"Who's been drinking out of my cooler?!"

"Put that picture on insta and tag me so I have it too!"

"Is there any room in your section? Nobody will stand up in ours?!"
(sent in a text, because the stadium is WAY too loud for phone calls)

Then there's the go-to "slam" that people use against other teams. Or the go-to crutches people lean on if they lose...

"I wonder how much they paid those refs?!"

Regarding rivalries, If they lose:
"Who cares it's not like that team is our rival."

Regarding rivalries, If they win:

My favorite things people say about ECU:

"Ha, I'm surprised their players even made it here, they're probably still drunk from last night."

"Can they even find the stadium? You know the average IQ of a Pirate is less than 4".

"ECU, more like EZU". 

"They're not even in the ACC".

"I've heard that having an STD is like a requirement to be a girl on campus. Sluts."

Despite crazy fans, mean stereotypes and losses, college football is one of my favorite things of all time. I have said it over and over again (here), but I am so proud to be part of such an amazing family of fans and to call myself a Pirate. 

What do you hear around football season?!

Only 6 months until kick-off!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

new favorite recipe

I've been trying to do better about eating lunch in my office versus getting out in Greenville traffic at lunch time and spending money. In order to this, I have to cook things I actually want to eat at lunch. I've toyed with some salads (like actual lettuce & topping salads - see those recipes here) and just bringing leftovers from dinner, but two weeks ago I found a recipe for an Avocado Chicken Salad at Kayln's Kitchen and I am hooked.

It is so exceptionally easy. I make a batch on Sunday night and then eat it for lunch until Wednesday/Thursday!

2 cups cooked chicken, shredded into large pieces
2 medium avocados, diced (I use 3)
1 T lime juice
salt, to taste
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 T mayo or light mayo (I just used 1 T since I added more avocado)


  1. Shred the chicken apart until you have 2 cups of chicken shredded into fairly large chunks.   
  2. Dice the avocados into medium-sized pieces, mix with 1 T of the lime juice, and season avocado with salt to taste.  
  3. Thinly slice the green onion and finely chop the cilantro.  
  4. Mix mayo and 1 T lime juice to make the dressing.
  5. Put the chicken into a bowl large enough to hold all the salad ingredients. and add the sliced green onions and dressing and toss until all the chicken is coated with dressing.  
  6. Add the avocado and any lime juice in the bottom of the bowl and gently combine with the chicken. Then add the chopped cilantro and gently mix into the salad, just until it is barely combined.
  7. Enjoy

I enjoy mine with wheat thins, or just straight out of the bowl with a spoon!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Weekend in Wilmo

This weekend, I got to spend time in my old stomping grounds (if you can even call them that since I only survived in Wilmington for one year - I get way too distracted by good shopping & great beaches) visiting my sister at UNC-Wilmington.

We got in late Friday night so we just ate at the Ale House before my parents dropped me off at Deanna's on-campus apartment and they went to their hotel. Her little tiny room with the lofted single bed gave me just enough space to put a single blow-up mattress down.

Saturday we went to the Baptist Campus Ministry's pancake breakfast that Dee was helping with and then spent the rest of the day shopping Mayfaire. I somehow managed to withstand the Lilly sale at Palm Garden but couldn't resist a new dress & necklace from Fedora boutique.

After shopping my lovely knee was screaming at me pretty loudly so we went back to Deanna's and I acted like a college student and took a mid-day nap that lasted 2 hours.

After our glorious nap, we ventured to Sweet n Savory Cafe, an absolutely delicious restaurant and bakery near Wrightsville Beach. 

I had their clam chowder and then a grilled chicken salad with apples, dried cranberries, bacon and brie-filled croutons with a honey-balsamic dressing. It was heaven, and so was the amazing Mondavi Moscato d’Oro wine we had with it. They also had great live music, if you've yet to hear a folk/indie version of Johnny & June Cash's "Jackson" I highly recommend it. 

Also, my dad is a great photographer... until you hand him a smart phone. Note the finger in the corner and the blurriness here. 

Deanna and I caught the late showing of "Frozen" Saturday night and were blown away. I had been dying to see it after hearing such great reviews and I am glad I did. However, I have now been singing "Let it Go" and "Do You Want to Build a Snowman" continuously since then. I am obsessed with the amount of sass the princesses had and Olaf totally made the movie. 

Sunday morning we all went to Deanna's church, Wrightsville Beach Baptist and it was truly amazing. We attended the celebration-style service which is more contemporary and the music was amazing as was the participation by the congregation. I am so glad Deanna has somewhere she can feel at home when she worships. 

Luckily we had time to grab lunch at one of my favorite places, The Oceanic. They have a she-crab soup that I could forever and they are right on the beach. 

And it gave me a chance to at least put my feet in the sand, knee brace and all. 

How was your weekend?

Thursday, February 20, 2014

what blogging has taught me

I have been blogging for a little over five years, but really only consistently for about three. In that short amount of time I've learned a lot of things.

1. My skin isn't as tough as I thought it was
I have always prided myself on not caring what people thought of me.... until an anonymous person behind a keyboard made a not even that mean comment that rubbed me the wrong way.
It made me so mad that I even dedicated an entire post to a response to it (here).

2. Hobby Lobby is a magical place where dreams come true
Forget Disney World, helllooo Hobby Lobby. I had never even heard of the place until I started reading other blogs and then, just in time we got one only 20 minutes from my house. And it is glorious.

3. I can make ANYTHING
Granted, Pinterest also brought about this revelation, but reading other DIY blogs and seeing the success stories of other projects from bloggers made me realize, "hey, I can make that myself." Check out my DIY tag on the side bar to see all the crap I've made!

Purple Polka Dotted Lamp - Tissue Paper Garland - Ruffle Trees
Glitter Dipped Jars & Candles - Diaper Wreath
Wreath with Moss Initial - Silhouette Art - Monogramed Pocket Tee

4. I am not alone.
My favorite part of blogging is that I realized other people are going through some of the same struggles that I go through. I love seeing comments of people relating to an issue or reading posts with solutions that I have never thought of.

5. That you can have great friends that you've never "met" IRL
My soul sister, Brit at First Comes Love is a prime example of this. I love our emails and even though I've never even been within a 500 mile radius of her, I know we'd be besties IRL if I ever moved to MA or she came on down to NC. Then I was lucky enough to actually meet Marianna at Delightfully Dunn and proved this theory correct, blog friends can be real life friends.

check out these hotties

What have you learned from blogging?

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

the big 2-1

My little sister is 21 today. Twenty-freaking-one

I cannot wrap my head around it. Just last month I was still getting over her being 20.

You won't find my sister face-down on a bar tonight, or dancing on a table (she left that up to me), you'll find her in the library because she has an exam on Friday - I'm not even kidding, this is literally what she said she'd be doing when I asked her what her plans were for her birthday.

Not only will you not find her in those situations because she doesn't drink, but also because she is so extraordinarily dedicated to her schoolwork and to getting into med school. I joke all the time about how I am the black sheep of the family because Big Mark's a physician assistant, The Wendy is a pharmacist and Dee is pre-med... while I am in public relations/marketing - but I am honestly so proud of my sister and her ambition.

I posted last year on her birthday (here) that I look up to my little sister and it is so true. I am in awe of her drive and strong will, and I admire her devout faith and her ability to stand gracefully in the face of adversity.

I was going to dedicate this post to giving her advice about her 21st year of life and the road ahead, but I honestly have nothing for her. She's already got an amazing guy that is already part of our family, her Christian walk is more faithful than mine, and she has a dream she is chasing with all her might.

If there's anything I could tell her about this year is for her to live a little. To not get so bogged down with studying and all her extra-curricular activities. Take at least one day to not do anything and just enjoy the fact that she lives at the beach and has an amazing GPA (unlike her sister who left UNC-Wilmington with a 1.56 GPA).

I am heading to Wilmington this weekend along with my parents to spend the weekend with her in celebration of her birthday and I can hardly wait to give her a big birthday hug and try to make her drink at least a glass of wine.

Also, can you tell we're related? Folks at home mistake us for each other all the time despite the 5.5-year age difference and the fact that I have auburn hair and she's a blonde.

Me at 20 and Dee at 20

Happy Birthday Dee!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

stupid knee

I am angry.

Angry at my stupid knee.

I have somehow managed to screw it up again (read about the original screw up and surgery here) and it is messing up my life.

I want to play on the floor with Sawyer and chase after him in the yard.

I want to do squats and lunges and burpees and such (okay, more like I want to have the results from those things, and therefore need to do them).

I want to wear heels again.

I would like to snuggle (and such) with my husband without pain.

But, I am instead rocking what I like to call the "robocop" leg brace. Icing my knee every night after super until bed and wearing stupid flats and outfits that allow for the stupid brace.

look at all that nasty fluid

I have a MRI tomorrow, so we'll see what is in store for my dumb knee.

And yes, this is a whiny post that has no purpose but to let me vent. I also realize I am a spoiled child and that there are people in the world who don't get to do any of these things ever because they have real leg problems.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Why We Work

Josh and I have been "together" since 2005 and married since 2009 and we still work hard every day to make our relationship work and to be the best husband and wife we can be. But there are a few key things that really make us work.

2005 to 2013

We work because we don't keep score. 

We don't say things like "but I let you go out with your friends last night while I watched the baby, so now it's my turn!". I don't keep a tally of how often he vacuums nor does he keep track of how overloaded the laundry basket gets (or how often he has to search through the dryer for clean underwear I haven't folded yet).

We work because we admit when we were wrong.

We bicker and fight, because we are both strong-willed, opinionated people. But, we also admit when one of us was in the wrong. We apologize if we said something hurtful when we were mad or if we were way too adamant about being right. I am a know-it-all and I know it, so it is often me that has to give the "you were right, I was wrong" speech.

We work because we work at it

Marriage can be work. Fun work, but sometimes hard work. We tell each other when something is going well or if there is something that needs to change. For example, Josh learned that I need a minute when I walk in the door and not to say, "what's for supper?" before I even put my pocketbook down.

We work because we balance our duties

Being a mom, wife, sister, director of marketing, relay for life co-chair and friend is a heavy load, but Josh has an even heavier load with his multiple committees he sits on for work and being the head of a department. So, we try our hardest to make sure we don't bring too much work home with us and on the weeks when we have multiple meetings, we find time to be together, even if it means staying up later than usual and eating dinner at 9pm on TV tables so we can catch up on our DVR, eat and talk at the same time.

What makes you and your significant other work?

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

for the love of Lilly

It's no secret that I have an unhealthy obsession with Lilly Pulitzer. I know the brand has its share of haters (I once overheard someone say my Lilly maxi dress looked like a 70s tablecloth once at a wedding) but the prints, design and stories behind the brand are glorious (in my opinion). I just wish the prices were as fantastic.

Apparently, my strange brain agrees because I have been legit dreaming about the Lilly Pulitzer Ashlynn dress the past couple of nights. In the dream I am either wearing the dress and it keeps disappearing off of me or I am standing in a dressing room trying on the dress over and over. Yes, I am aware of how strange that is, but how could you not dream about a dress this perfect?

I actually tweeted/instagrammed about the dress/dreams yesterday and Lilly Pulitzer replied and liked my picture (insert fan-girl moment here)!

I am so in love with their entire Spring 2014 (and others) line and wish I had all the money in the world to buy everything (well every top and every dress that is A-Lined, because Lilly shifts + my hips = bad).

Briella Fit & Flare Dress
Leona Zip Up
Delray Tunic
Riley infinity scarf

Do you have a favorite Lilly item that you're lusting over?

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

a Paw Patrol "paw-ty"

Sawyer decided he wanted a Paw Patrol birthday party this year. In case you are lucky enough that your life doesn't revolve around Nick Jr., Paw Patrol is a brand new tv show featuring a set of dogs and their owner who go on missions and stuff. With it being so new, there are NO existing party supplies for Paw Patrol. 

So, I had to wing it.

Note: I've received a lot of emails asking where these invitations can be purchased or found online. I made these myself using graphics from the Nick Jr. site. 

Thankfully, Nick Jr. has a great printables section on their website that I used a lot for decorations.

Banner from Nick Jr. (via)
Treat Bag toppers from Nick Jr. (via)
Popcorn Containers from Nick Jr. (via)
For table decoration, I just printed out the badges from Nick Jr. (via) and then taped them to their corresponding "hat" (I found the yellow hat at the Dollar Tree and the blue & red at Michael's). Then I cut out a picture of each dog that went with the badge and staged them with their corresponding vehicle (which Sawyer already had).

We decided to just serve hotdogs & chips and then enjoyed some cake. I waited a little late to get a cake, so I just printed out a picture of Paw Patrol characters and had Wal-Mart do the "picture to cake" print. It turned out horrible. I added M&M's all around the picture to take up the empty white space and try to distract from the terrible quality of the edible picture.

Sawyer didn't seem to mind though...

My awesome friend Caroline owns a monogram & gift ship and does screen printing, so she made Sawyer's shirt for me!
showing off his tshirt
I used Nick Jr.'s "Pin the Badge on Marshall" game, which Sawyer totally cheated at.

We had a ton of toddlers (and infants) at our house, but everyone had a great time!

Sawyer's babysitter "BeeBee" (also our friend Chris' mom), came and brought some kiddos with her 
our friend Dana's son, Colton (see her baby shower here)

Our cousin Michelle's son, Wallace (see that baby shower here)
Sawyer's friend Brileigh

Our friend Hope's baby, Ella (see her baby shower here)

our friend Chris is a straight-up baby whisperer, kids adore him. (p.s. he's single ladiessss)
Also, Sawyer and his "girlfriend" Rorie (Chris' niece) kept going missing and we'd find them back in his bed... watch out world, Sawyer doesn't waste any time. 

I think the two pictures below sum up the success of the party:

Our play room at the end of the party:

My husband at the end of the party:
reward for best hotdog cook = a beer in hand