Sunday, August 7, 2011

Time to organize some chaos....or, moving.

Good morning sunshines!

I hope everyone has had a great weekend :) Mine was pretty much perfect, filled with lots of relaxing, hanging with my loverface, watching movies, and getting to see my daddy. Nothing too exciting but after two months of go-go-go, a low-key weekend was just what the doctor ordered.

Some exciting news: we're moving next weekend!! Not to another town, but to another house. If you've read my rants for a while now, you know the drama we've been dealing with in our current living situation. If you haven't, here's a basic summary:

Moved in in March of this year (with a year long lease), was assured the house would not be sold despite rumors of houses being bought up in the area to build a parking lot, house was sold in May, land lady did not even tell us, heard it through someone else, people who bought our house said they'd honor our lease, then in July they tell us they would like us out before school starts (August 22nd), they begin tearing down houses on both sides of us, become more insistant that we move soon, have a very hard time finding another rental that doesn't cost an arm and a leg because the housing market here is ridiculous because of the oil boom, every house we find gets leased before we can even look at them. Ughhhh....

But yesterday we finally got lucky. We were shown a house that wasn't on the market yet and said yes to it. I am so relieved. We can finally get out of these parking lot peoples way and just live...without the noise, without the calls, and without all the boxes piled up around the house. YAY :)

The next few weekends will be a little cray-cray for me...

Next weekend: move

After that: Fifi's bachelor party in New Orleans, which gives me a solitary weekend to prepare for school which will start Monday

After that: Do any and all last minute wedding things

After that: Get hitched!

So basically a lot of preparation...whatevs, bring it on life!

This week is also the last week of my summer. Bummer... And I have to spend two days of it in training and one day at teacher convocation. But honestly...I'm kinda ready for the summer to be over. For one, it is too dang HOT! But I'm ready to move on, start a new school year, get married (27 days!), and simply live. This week will be bittersweet, and I'm ready.

Now, to run and get ready for church! I be needin' to do some praisin' for mah blessin's! And I'm a hungry hungry hippo and want me some banana pancakes :)

Hope y'all have a lovely Sunday!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

the simple things...

Hey Y'all! Hope everyone is staying cool in this crazy heat, I'm trying to and most of the time it involves me and my pupperdogs locking ourselves up in the coolest room in the house...which happens to be mah bedroom, and so we usually sleep these hot afternoons away... hehe. Hey it's the simple things right? School inservice (which = work for moi) starts next Friday so I'm gonna soak up these afternoon naps while I can :)

So with the simple things in mind, it's time to join the wonderful Jesslyn Amber for her link-up to appreciate such things...

...afternoon naps...
...getting my first sewing machine (now I just need to learn to use it)...
...dr. pepper floats...
...deep, wonderful, heartfelt talks with my love...
...going to see "my girls" play in a scrimmage (my 8th graders are high schoolers now!)... running socks and shoes...
...preparing for a new (school) year...
...Rock the Desert this weekend...
...this post by a childhood friend of mine, it deeply inspred me and I hope it does for you, too...

The Simple Things

That's all I've got for today, now it's time to run, literally!

Happy Thursday loves!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What I'm Lovinteresting...?

It's Wednesday and we all know that means it's time to link-up with that sweet girl Jamie for WILW! Here's what I'm loving...

I'm loving... that I finally joined Pinterest. Why did it take me so long?? This place is basically

I'm loving... that the fifi (fifi = fiance, yes I like goofy names, whatevs) and I came up with a new Sunday plan that really streamlines the rest of the week and makes it less stressful

I'm loving... that after almost a two month gym hiatus that I've been going strong for two weeks and feel amazing! We have a 5k coming up next weekend and I'm ready to kick it's booty!

I'm loving... how organized and accomplished I feel. I made my list, check it twice, and get work done! Why haven't I done this sooner, too? Oy...

I'm loving... that tomorrow I get to craft with my super sweet friend Brandi. We have some fun crafts to do and I am going to attempt to make this super adorbs dress for footyfootyfootball season (tis around the corner!). Thank you Stephanie!

I'm loving... that fall is right around the corner and I simply can.NOT.wait! We are in desperate need of cooler weather and rain and I pray every night that fall will bring both of these. Then there's also football season, fall clothes, autumn decorations, the holidays.... bliss... :)

I'm loving... that in exactly ONE month I will be wearing a white dress, walking down the aisle, and beginning my happily ever after with this handsome man. Whom I am loving today, and every day, too :)


And I finally made it onto to Pinterest - man have I been missing out!! - so naturally it is only right that I link-up with the lovely Michelle for Oh, How Pinteresting!


Favorite Places & Spaces

I love neutrals with a pop (of my fave) color

My Style

For work...

and play :)

For the Home

"book" shelves! LOVE!

Quotes I Love

Baby Cuteness

Yay, I feel like my life is now complete :) What are YOU loving today? (in life and on pinterest, hehe) Happy Hump Day Y'all!!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Ok....well kind of....

I don't know if any of you other teachers out there are like me, but I see August as the beginning of a "new year". So with that mind-set, I decided to be ahead of the game this year and really be on top of things. Last year (my first year) was pretty rough, I was lucky to be treading water and keep my head above water. No lie. I knew I couldn't go through another year like that so I am determined to have it all together. Not just in the classroom, but everywhere in my life. Things have been super cray cray in this little world of mine and I'm ready for some order.

I started by putting together a list of monthly goals and then broke them down into attainable weekly and daily to-do's. I also created a monthly budget to keep on track financially, my weakest area fo realz, I am a compulsive shopper, it's terrible. And lastly, I redid my 101 in 1001 so I have some long-term goals, too. (Sorry if I'm boring anyone out there but I felt like I need to put this somewhere where I will feel accountable about it).

So without further ado, Nicole's August Goals:

* have quiet time & pray every day
* get 7-8 hours of sleep every night
* workout at least 3 times a week
* be moved, unpacked, and organized (more on this later)
* stick to budget
* have wedding details 100% complete (only 33 days to go!!)
* finish season 3 of Sons of Anarchy (season 4 premeires sept. 6th, i am obsessed!!)
* invest in fall wardrobe staples (like a fitted navy blazer...and yes, i did include clothes in my budget ;) )
* for my classroom: clean out room, start over, be organized; have first 2-3 weeks planned and room decorated
* have volleyball practice routine/schedule nailed down

Not too lofty, right? Wish me luck!

And sorry for being MIA again for the past two weeks. I was out of town and busy the entire time! I had my bridal shower (which was completely amazing!!) and then I went to Washington, D.C. for a Bill of Rights workshop and then I was back in Houston hanging with my parents for a bit. Hopefully later this week I can do a shower and D.C. trip recap for y'all.

And as far as being "moved, unpacked, and organized" appears we will most likely be moved in the next week or two. We currently rent and our house was sold so it can be torn down and turned into a parking lot. The school that bought the house is working with us to find another rental house and they think they've found one. Now we just have to check it out, give it a thumbs up, and they'll move all our stuff for us. We moved into our current house in April and I never fully unpacked, too busy with school and going a million miles an hour this summer (and maybe it was a blessing in disguise since we have to move so soon). But at our next place I would love to not have a bunch of boxes hiding in closets and corners, hehe :)

Well that's all I've got for today, hope I didn't bore ya to death! Hope y'all have a wonderful week and Happy August!! :)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

the simple things

It's Thursday and I'm linking up with sweet JesslynAmber to appreciate the simple things

The Simple Things

...a good workout...
...a giant glass of ice, cold water...
...checking things off my "to-do" list... happy my fur-babies are to see me when I've been gone...
...babies and pregnant friends...
...counting down the days until our wedding...
...goodnight kisses...
...anticipation of a party that's just for you :) ...
...pedicure on my toes, toes...
...pickle flavored sunflower seeds...
...browsing bookstores...
...knowing Jesus loves me and you and everyone and died so that we can live :) ...

What simple things are making your day?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Happy Wednesday Y'all!! One of my favorite days of the week because I just *love* playing along with sweet Jamie and her WILW!

What am I loving on this sweltering day....?

**********Blogger isn't letting me upload any pics right now, boo!! So this will be a pictureless WILW :( Sad face *********

I'm loving... that I leave tomorrow for my bridal shower!!!! Only 52 more days until I'm a Mrs.! I can't wait to hang out with my bridesmaids and see my family.

I'm loving... my trip next week to Washington D.C. I've never been and am super excited to go learn a lot of history :)

I'm loving... Princess Kate. Seriously. She is just so dang beautiful, graceful and elegant. Her fashion choices are always spot on and I pretty much lurve them all.

I'm loving... cooking shows. Ok just two. Giada at Home and Paula's Best Dishes. I heart Giada and Paula Deen. They make me and my tummy happy :) but not so much my figure.... hehe.

I'm loving... that we've decided to go completely organic. It's been weighing on my mind a lot lately and after watching Food, Inc. it was decided. What happens in mass feed lots, slaughterhouses, and poultry "growers" made me both physically ill and depressed. It broke my heart to see what really happens and how industries like that are supported. Not only in the meat industry but also what farmers have to go through when facing big corporations.

I'm loving... ice cream!! So delicious and nice and hot and just what the doctor orders on these hot days :) If you have a Baskin Robbins in your area, Tuesday night is $1.50 scoop night - so go forth and be satisfied my friends!

I'm loving... my wonderful fiance. The love of my life :)

Happy Wednesday Y'all!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Thankfulness and a Vacay Recap

Two amazing things happened today my friends:

1. The AC was finally fixed!
2. We actually got some rain today!!

To me, both things are equally monumental events (in my eyes) and I am ever so grateful for them both :) God is so good. He answers prayers for both the small things (like getting a busted AC fixed ASAP) and the big things (like sending rain to a place that hasn't seen any since last September - 10 months!). Yaaaaay God!

Now onto a little recent vacay reminiscing....

Our vacation last week was pretty much the most amazing trip ev-aaaaaah. If you have not been to Jackson Hole, Wyoming/Grand Teton National Park/Yellowstone National Park then you should most definitely put it on your "to-do" "must-do" list.

Jackson is one of the neatest small-big towns I've been to. Sure there are all the little touristy shops but they also have super adorbs boutiques and restaraunts that serve amazing food. And if you wanna get outta town one day, there are plenty of options:

Go horseback riding
Whitewater raft
Fly fishing
Make a short (30 min) drive to Grand Teton National Park
or make the longer drive to Yellowstone

Both parks abound with several things to do. In my opinion, Grand Teton is a park better suited for people who like to be out hiking or mountain climbing and enjoying nature versus Yellowstone that, while it has many natural wonders (think geysers, hot springs, a "grand canyon"), it is much, much more crowded and if you only have a day or two, you spend most of it in the car getting from one side of the park to the other trying to get in all the sights.

Old Faithful

We enjoyed Grand Tetons more because it was less crowded and we enjoy mountain hiking and did about 10 miles into the canyons. It was absolutely wonderful. We also got to see some wildlife, like marmots, chipmunks, moose, bears, elk, and buffalo which was super rad.

Grand Teton National Park

When we weren't at one of the parks we spent the day strolling the town square, horseback riding and whitewater rafting. If you haven't done the last two, they are "must-do"'s as well! Whitewater rafting is so thrilling and I love the adrenaline rush and riding horses is just the opposite, it fills me with clamness, serenity, and peace, haha.

(we had to wear wetsuits for rafting and I thought it'd be cool to strike a pose....why that one will forever remain a mystery...)

On our way to and from Wyoming we stopped in Denver, Colorado to break up the drive into more managable pieces. From where we are in Texas it takes 10 hours to get to Denver, and then from Denver to Jackson it is 8 hours. That's a LOT of driving! I got my car serviced the day before we left and I already have to take it back to be serviced again (you know, the whole oil change after every 3,000 miles). If you ever go to Denver during baseball season, go see the Rockies. Their stadium is amazing and the weather is perfect - the perfect ball game place.

Well that about sums it up! :) It was a badly needed escape. It really gave us the chance to unwind, relax and just get to enjoy eachothers company away from all the hubbub of everyday life. Any questions, comments, etc. just shoot me a message and I will gladly elaborate or answer anything I can. I didn't want to write a too-detailed post because I can be a little very OCD about details and this post could have turned into a novel, haha.

Welp, it's getting late 'round here, almost 10 o'clock! I know, I'm such an old person already.... Hope everyone is having a wonderful week so far!! :)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Not a happy camper...

First off, please excuse me from my week long absence, I was on the bestest vacay with my wonderful fiance. But more on that later, right now I have a more pressing issue.... Story:

We were away on our little one week excursion when I receive a text from my wonderful and sweet puppy-sitter that our AC has gone out.

We thought maybe it was a glitch or something that could be easily fixed - NBD - so we told her not to worry about it and we would take care of it when we returned on Sunday...

We walk through the door at 7:30pm last night and are met with a wall of thick and hot air straight from the depths of Hades. I kid you not. It's been 100+ here just about every day and with 3 days (going on 4 today...) of no AC, it gets pretty smoldering.

My handsome handy-man/fiance attempts to fix said problem. All attempts fail. So we call our "landlord" - I use that term loosely because a month ago our real landlord sold the house we are renting out from under us and now our house is property of a private school. Why? Because said school has bought not only our house, but both houses on either side of us and have already pretty much torn the other two down to create a parking space. Not a parking space for the school...a parking place for the construction workers who will be building a real parking lot for the school on the other side of the school. Needless to say that has been another headache in itself. I digress...

So we call "landlord" who says he has left messages at all after hours AC repair places and now we have to wait for a call. Seriously?!? Do you know how hot it is in this house?? Do you know what I'm like when I get too hot??

Anyway, it is now 3pm and temps have reached their peak for the day (a cool 99 degrees I might add) and I still have no AC. I did, however, just receive a call from the people who are supposed to be coming to repair the AC. Wanna know what he told me...?

That I'm on the "priority list" (and have been for some time now) and they should get to me soon. I asked for a time frame...couldn't get one...hopefully today. Please, Lord?

Shoot me now.

Stay cool my friends, and be thankful for AC! It's heck without it!

How did pioneers live like this??

Thursday, June 30, 2011

the simple things...

Hey y'all! Happy Thursday!

I have a pretty busy day of running around trying to take care of things before we head out Saturday for our vacay. You know, fun things like: getting the car serviced and detailed, running by the pharmacy, doing laundry and dishes....

and I received our wedding invitations in the mail yesterday!! YAAAAY! So I also need to print little info cards for directions to the location and hotel info, stuff envelopes, stamp them and get them sent off by tomorrow. So busy, busy (and very happy) bee today. I recently stumbled across a new blog that I just adore by sweet Jesslyn Amber who has a link up on Thursdays called "The Simple Things" and I am excited to jump in and play along. It's important to remember and be thankful for the little things, for that's what life is made up of :)

Play along and enjoy :)

The Simple Things cream on hot days.... visits....
....movies with sweet friends....
....getting organized....
....sweet puppy love and puppy kisses from my babies....
....sons of anarchy on netflix....
....brownies, yum!....
....being inspired....
....sweet tea....
....a new razor....
....feathers in mah hairrrr....
....summer projects....
....a great book....
....holding hands with my sweet loverface....
....afternoon naps.... excitement....
....God's unending love and grace....

what simple things are making you smile today?

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Hello There...and WILW

Where has the time gone...?!

It has been ages since I've blogged, minus that one or two rand-o post. My blogging sabatical has not stopped me from reading all your lovely blogs! So much going on in the blog-o-sphere - weddings, babies, moves, oh my!

So what happened to lil' ol' me, you ask? Well kids, I got sucked in to the deep, dark world of what is known as "The First Year". What is this strange phenomenon? It is more commonly referred to as "teaching". Yes ladies (and gentlemen?), I am officially done with my first year of teaching 8th grade social studies and coaching volleyball and track. It was a whirlwind of cramming as much information into my head (and the students) as possible, learning the ropes of a new profession, and trying to balance my professional career with my personal life. No easy least not for me. But more on that later this week...

Other than teaching, which basically consumed my life, I managed to get some wedding planning done - which is only 66 days away - EEEEK!! - and move from an apartment to a house. I am loving the house, mostly because our puppies now have a giant backyard to run amuck in, but the extra space inside is also great.

Now that school is over and I have finished my summer training, my "true" summer can begin! YAY! So what better way to celebrate than with sweet Jamie and WILW :)

I'm loving....that I am officially on my summer vacay! I love getting to watch Good Morning America and Today in the mornings (makes me feel accomplished, like I'm actually keeping up with current events, haha), then doing my workout and having the rest of the day to tackle projects and wedding items.

I'm loving....the "Insanity" workout. Yes, the name says it all. Ok, ok, so it may be a love/hate kinda thing, but in the end the good outweighs the bad. It is truly insane but it hurts sooo good! Haha, gotta get myself in tip-top shape before the big day!

I'm loving....that I am getting to spend time with some of my lovely friends today! Lunch with one of my bridesmaids and then off to see Bad Teacher with two of my sweet pals. I feel like I haven't seen any of my friends in forever because of work and then training right after, so this will be a very welcome escape :)

I'm loving....that my sunburn is just about gone and has turned into a nice little tan :) I remembered the sunscreen...but forgot to reapply after three hours. Not good when you're floating a river for six and a half hours in 102 degree heat. Which brings me to...

I'm loving....White vinegar, aloe vera gel, and deep moisture lotion. The trifecta of skin saving solutions has tamed the burn and prevented me from peeling, yay!

I'm loving....the Ke$ha pandora station I created. It gets me moving and grooving, so whether I need to wash a few dishes, sweat it out in a workout, or just need a pick-me-up it has become my go to station.

I'm loving....the books I've (finally) been able to start reading. They're helping set goals, learn how to get from point A to point B, and just feel more organized and focused in my life...and boy do I need it!

I'm loving....the vacation we are taking starting Saturday! Spence was able to get the week off and so we are taking a legit vacation. Not to see our parents or bringing people along, just him and me and the wideopen road and spaces of Colorado and then up to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. I'm so excited to spend some time in the great outdoors (and in some cooler weather!) with the love of my life, just the two of us and some time to get some serious R&R.

I'm loving....all of your sweet and fun blogs. It makes my day to read them :)

I'm sweet fiance, as always!

What are you loving today? :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Friday Favorites

Hey y'all!!

I know I've been MIA for a the last 7 months... yeah...sorry about that :( Work really started kickin' my booty and I needed a break. So for now I'll be taking baby steps back into blogging and what better way to start than with a few of my favorite things? I will try to post some updates soon and should be able to since my Spring Break started today - YAY! :)

I'll be heading to home to see my family on Sunday and I just cannot wait! I haven't seen them since Christmas and me and S are beyond ready to head home for some rest and relaxation! Not to mention some pampering ;) I also hope to be getting a lot of wedding things accomplished while there. Anywho....on to some Friday Fun! :)

Favorite time of day: When I get home from work on a Friday :)

Favorite season: Oh gosh...I love them all for different reasons! Spring for the all the flowers blooming, summer for the beach and getting a tan, fall for the crisp, cool weather, and winter for the holiday season!

Favorite month: December for my birthday and Christmas

Favorite holiday: Christmas :)

Favorite subject in school: In high school it was English, in college it was International Issues...and now I am a history teacher, haha :)

Favorite channel: FX for Glee and Archer, ABC for Grey's Anatomy

Favorite color: Purple

Favorite song: I actually don't have one

Favorite movie: The Little Mermaid! :)

Favorite celebrity: I do love Zooey Deschanel

Favorite kind of music: Texas Country, but I listen to a little bit of everything

Favorite TV show: Glee, Archer, Grey's Anatomy, and NCIS

Favorite thing to do: Spend time with S and the pups, read, and craft :)

Favorite place in the world: Anywhere with my love :)

Favorite hobby: Reading and crafting

Favorite kind of animal: Horse (and my two pups of course!)

Favorite place to live: Somewhere close to family, I do love the Texas Hill Country

Favorite place to vacation: So far, Belize has been the best but anywhere with a beach and some sun will make this girl happy :)

Favorite restaurant: I love food way too much to just pick one place! Hmm...if I had to...Cheddar's.

Favorite food: Again....way too much of a foodie to just have one fave, I love anything homemade :)

Favorite thing to cook: Honey-Mustard Salmon, Artichoke Chicken, anything that turns out delicious!

Favorite drink: Sweet tea

Favorite chore: Vacuuming

Favorite makeup: Bare Minerals

Favorite hair products: is a must try! My hair is the healthiest it has ever been :)

Favorite lotion: Anything with Shea and Cocoa butters in it

Favorite perfume: Givenchy's Irresistable

Favorite blogger: There is no way I could choose...y'all are all SO great!

Favorite thing to blog about: Randomness

Favorite books: The Bible, all Jane Austen books, Francine Rivers "Mark of the Lion" series, the Harry Potter series, there really are too many to name - I love books!

Favorite verse: Micah 3:3.

Favorite thing to wear: You can never go wrong with a cute dress :)

Favorite kind of day: One where I can sleep in, get in a good workout, eat lunch with S, soak up some sun with a good book, cook out with great friends, cuddle with my love, a long, hot shower, then bed!

Favorite memory: Saying yes to spending the rest of forever with the love of my life!

Elements by Franziska Altmann

Meet Cinderella...

My photo
I'm just a small town girl with big dreams and an open heart. I truly believe that all you need is Love and to look to the Lord whatever may come your way. Engaged to my forever love and planning a September wedding, just finished my first year of teaching, and working on becoming a "real" grown-up: This is the story of my journey, however topsy-turvey and chaotic it might be... :)

The Royal Court :)