Monday, December 22, 2014


Should I start out by saying sorry? Or should I just carry on considering it's been over 5 months since I've written anything. I'd love to just dive in but I feel that I  owe an explanation.   I also  need to hash all this out on my own.

Write it out.

So.  :)

I lost my voice.  Not my speaking voice (don't you fret,  I can still talk about nothing for hours), but my writing voice. For years writing has been a wonderful outlet for me. Sharing notebooks with friends in high school, filling prayer journals and future life plan books in college, to writing out my emotions and heart bits on this blog. There had never been an empty space in my writing until this fall when I just flat out stopped. I stopped caring. I felt like I had nothing to say. I neglected to take time to write for myself because, well? I have no good reason other than  I became discouraged.

You see, writing has been and always will be therapy for me. I write because I dream, I breathe, and I have feelings. LORD do I have feelings. And this fall, I bottled them up and stopped sharing them. Forgive me because I have this sense about me that all. the. feelings are about to come spewing out.

I've been hiding from it.

I'm struggling again. The weight has come back and previous blog posts where I was all IF I CAN DO IT YOU CAN DO IT! Make a plan! Pray! Search for the Lord's strength! Weight Watchers! Run! YAY! RAH!  feel so hypocritical right now.

I stopped WW in July because we needed more wiggle room in the budget.

I stopped running consistently after my 2nd half marathon in September.

I ate all. the. foods. all. the times. all fall. they tasted good.

And here I am.  25 pounds heavier. Discouraged. Unmotivated.  BUT FEELING HONEST.


and maybe you have as well. Perhaps it's not weight you struggle with. Or those delicious Lindt truffles that awwwww jeeeezzzz are amazing. Perhaps it's patience with your kids. Or  gossiping. Or infidelity. Or Lying......or any combination. But I struggle and I know you do to--but we don't talk about it. Because we're mothers and we're the glue of the family. We hold crap together. And we fake it until we make it. Until we don't make it anymore.....

 How do you get back on track when things go into tailspin? Do you really want to make changes? What gets us beyond the I SHOULD CHANGE   to the I WILL CHANGE.

I've been on the top of the mountain & unfortunately ( or maybe honestly is the right word) I've  bumped and backslid instead of reaching the summit.

There is accountability in my words more than my actions. That totally seems backwards, right?  This fall while my running shoes sat untouched  I didn't feel guilty. It was when someone mentioned my blog that guilt crept in. My blog is where I wrote about becoming healthier & during those conversations healthy choices were NOT being made. It felt fake. I was ashamed...because "oh yea, I wrote that." A post of mine started making rounds on pinterest and I felt ashamed because if they only knew ....

I hope you appreciate and can relate to my honesty. This space feels fraudulent right now---but being honest with you ( and myself) this  is truly my first step in turning things around. I WANT TO MAKE CHANGES as I'm sure you do too.  Let's do them together......again.

Laura Beth

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Guacamole Made Me Do It

It's fitting that it's the beginning of July and I'm typing these words. It's been a complete year since I aligned my head, heart, and body and truly got serious about making myself healthy. Last July I was obese for my height, I was uncomfortable in all my clothes, I was dreading going to the pool, and was really at a low point with my self esteem and overall self confidence.

I hit my goal in January and celebrated big. How fun was it to make a goal and meet it! I didn't want to stop there so I made a fitness goal to challenge myself. I began to fall in love with running in September and decided that a half marathon was my next goal. I worked very hard and crossed the finish line with a best friend by my side and tears in my eyes.

and then I took a break.....

this is where things get all sad and wonky.


I decided that the rest of my summer was maintenance. I'd lived for 10 months counting points, measuring portions, and telling myself that I craved bananas instead of chocolate. So I took June off and I did whatever I darn well pleased.

and it was a flippin blast.

My husband and I went to Mexico on our first vacation together since 2007. No kids. and it was glorious. the weather. the company. the guacamole. the chips. the icecream. the guacamole. the guacamole. the guacccccaaamooollleeeee. I enjoyed every indulgence on that trip. Upon returning I planned on returning to my healthy lifestyle.

Only I didn't. I stopped running (it was hot...wah). I got lazy with meal planning ( chicken nuggets and mac n cheese with the toddlers).  Ice cream here. Brownies there. McDonalds fries. Dr. Pepper. and now I feel so bloated, dehydrated, and cranky from my poor habits that the thought of running makes me wanna fall over dead.

I currently have three pairs of pants that no longer button. I worked hard for those pants....and now they don't fit.  I feel like I am RIGHT BACK AT  MY LOW POINT.  and I'm totally discouraged. and sad. and royally pissed off. I've gained weight and I know it. I haven't weighed myself  since June 2nd.....and honestly I'm frightened.

So it's obvious that I need some realignment here. I've messed up. I know what happens if these habits of over eating, over indulging, and not exercising continues. Weight packs on, pants don't fit, and I go back to feeling weak and sorry for myself.

I've decided to return to my roots, where it all started. I want to remind myself how far I've come (because gaining 15 pounds doesn't derail everything I've worked for), get back to what works for me (weight watchers online), and give myself some grace ( because punishing myself will do nothing). I'm going to go back through the 6 week devotion study, GODFIT that I did a year ago. Realigning my devotion to the Lord and giving him my struggles (choosing healthy foods, making wise choices) is the only way that I can keep up. Would you like to join me? You can purchase the YOUseries through the GODFIT website.  It's fifty bucks for the manual, workout video library, and shirt----and its yours to utilize. I'm going to post weekly about the devotion topic, workouts, and my own personal thoughts. You should totally join me. We can do this together. Please introduce yourself in the comments below and we can continue a conversation there.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

5 Tips for a Knockout Fix every. single. time

Stitch fix. Again. Friends, you love you some stitch fix posts. They are hands down my most read writing. When I read other posts around this styling service I always love them too. It's like a great big snoop sesh. What'd they get? What'd they keep? How'd they style it?  It's the same reason you wanna know what's in your friends closet. It's interesting and it's a peek into someone else's life. And we like to be nosey.... and lucky for you I like to share. :)

What is stitch fix? Click Here!

Maybe you've tried this service once or twice and weren't blown away. I understand that. I have friends who were just ehhhh about the whole process. I'd consider myself a Stitch Fix veteran now after just finishing my 6th fix. I'm getting consistent fixes that I love and I believe this is why.

1. I've curated a killer pinterest style board that is ME and only me. Here's mine! I've linked it in my style profile and I update it frequently. I pin images I am drawn to and delete ones that I'm on the fence about. If it's in my style pinboard---it's me. Last month I was really loving the bright florals I was seeing--baddabing badda boom....this showed up in my fix.

2.  I'm not looking for specific items--that's called online shopping. I'm looking for an experience that helps be determine my personal style. Why is style important to me? Plain and simple I see it as a way of expressing myself. I love color and pattern--and I believe that feeling my best on the outside helps me feel better on the inside. I'm more confident when I take time to style myself in a way that boosts my self esteem. This doesn't mean name brand pasted all over. This doesn't mean that I don't feel confident in sweats. It means that I enjoy wearing things that are beautiful, interesting, or inspiring.

3. I mention my style esthetic in each 'comments for my next fix'. I pick a celebrity style crush or familiar brand store to reference in helping my stylist find something that I would love. Currently I love everything that Julianna Hough is photographed in. I mention her in the comments. I also mention that I belive my style is a healthy mix of JCrew & Anthropologie. I love classic lines and silohettes but also enjoy a bohemian edge to my tops. Whether or not you can afford to shop at your staple style stores ( I cannot!) I pick them because they are style specific. Target and Old Navy aren't style specific. Examples could be  Madewell, Banana, Ann Taylor, or Free People. Try referencing them each time.

4. I pass on the accessories-- Use this service to build your wardrobe with eclectic and fun pieces. I ask them not to send accessories anymore. Each fix I want clothes......and only clothes. Looking for phenomenal accessories? All my jewelry in these photos is from Stella & Dot. This stuff can't be beat. I named the accessories I'm wearing in the photo caption.

5. I only keep my favorites. It's no secret that the items sent will be more expensive than your target/old navy/F21 pieces. That's okay for me because I know that in order to keep it---it has to be PHENOMENAL. I'm getting rid of all my clearanced tops that don't fit well, are a funky color, or wayyy to trendy. They were $10, yes----but I don't love them. Having a closet filled with 15 $10 crap shirts  doesn't do me any good and I still feel like I have NOTHING to wear. Right now I have 5 tops that I LOVE and rotate each week. I'm much happier. Ahhh---clarity that comes with being in my 30s.

My January/February/March Fix
My April Fix
My May Fix

As usual I feel it is important for you to know that if you want to try Stitch Fix I'd love if you clicked through the below link. A great way for Stitch Fix to get the word out about their service is through happy customers. I'd consider myself one of them and to reward happy customers who refer others they give you $25 credit for each referral. It's really great!

Stitch Fix

Monday, June 2, 2014

anxiety is my secret

I wrote this post in 2010. It's been sitting in my drafts folder for FOUR years. The words that I wrote four years ago still rattle in my brain today. Mental illness is scary, carries a lot of preconceived stereotypes and I believe is extremely common in women. I've battled anxiety for a long time. Why am I pressing publish now? Because it's time for me not to be ashamed anymore. I am not perfect. This is my biggest silent struggle. I'm on the other side of treating my anxiety now but I know there are mothers, sisters, and friends of mine that are not. Perhaps you are in the thick of it now....hold tight my dear. I am SAVED BY GRACE and you can be too. The darkness you feel? I can silently shake my head and say "me too".  God gives me healing and beautiful grace every day through medicine and His unshakable love for me. Reading this post from my past makes me remember how dark it was and how LIGHT IT IS NOW. Sooooo let's publish this sucker. DEEP BREATHS.

From 2010.

i've been embarrassed and ashamed about this for a long time. i've hid it from everyone.. i thought that it meant i wasn't a good mom. i thought it meant i couldn't handle things. i thought it would mean that no one would want to be around me. i thought it meant that i was crazy. i thought it meant that God wasn't enough. i thought it meant that i was an unstable person. i thought it meant that i failed. i thought it meant that i just couldn't cut it.
i was wrong.

it creeps in haunting my every thought. you're failing. you're awful. everyone is better without you. you're failing.  it consumes my thoughts and i feel trapped by the darkness of them. silent sobs pull from my throat and i cannot rationalize where they are originating from. the inside is hysterical and my outside knows that i'm being irrational. i then spin into a battle of wanting to disappear and knowing that I shouldn't. my heart physically hurts. it aches. my throat tightens and my breath quickens. i want it to stop. i pray for it to stop. the screams from my head are unbearable. get it together. get it together. but something is preventing me from it.

i've battled post partum anxiety since Lilly was born.

that's a hard statement to type. really hard. and even now I feel like I'm admitting that I'm a failure. but I'm not.

anxiety attacks are frequent. i can't sleep. i cry constantly. i'm even avoiding my friends. i don't want anyone to hold lilly because i'm afraid they will judge her. she's a baby! how could they judge her? perhaps they will judge me?

i can't breastfeed her. (you're failing). she cries more than my friends babies ( you're failing).

you see ,i've been lying about it to everyone. everything isn't okay. being a mom hasn't been great. it's been really hard. i've wanted to stop everything. my thoughts hold me captive most days and I know i'm not myself.
turning down a girls night because i'm afraid that if someone asks how I'm doing I'll being to sob? that's not me.

one morning in december i realized that i couldn't make myself get over it. if i had heart problems would i not get help? if i had trouble breathing would i ignore it and hope it went away on its own? i called my doctor and cried to her in the office for a long time. she told me it was okay. and medicine would help me get my life back.

and it did.

i've been taking the little white pill for a while now and now things are starting to get better. the fog has lifted. i feel peace and joy again. JOY AGAIN.

it's hard to swallow a pill each day to help me feel like Laura. six months in---and that's still a yucky feeling. i still hate looking at the bottle every morning. mostly because of the words that pop up in my head ( weak, crazy, unstable, imbalanced,....) but i know the pills are  helping me become a better mother and wife.

oh man, i'm never gonna publish this. but it sure feels good to type that out.

it is okay laura. God will get you through this. you are still made in HIS image. do not forget that.


Thanks for letting me share that with you today. Thanks for supporting each other. 

Friday, May 30, 2014

S T I T C H F I X summer getaway edition

My new stitch fix box arrived. There were some GEMS in this box! Including this coral tank and aztec print dress.  I love both! If you haven’t heard, stitch fix is a service, where you fill out a style profile and receive a box of 5 items ((clothing/accessories)) on your doorstep. You can try them on at home, keep what you like and send the rest back. I love being able to try things on with what I already have–to see if the pieces will work or not. This blog post is not sponsored but does contains affiliate links. 

This summer is going to rock my face off. The main reason is that my husband and I are going on our FIRST! VACATION! WITHOUT! CHILDREN! !!!!!  !!!!! !!!! ! ! !
Raise the roof, friends.
I'm twelve types of excited and nervous and I knew I wanted to find some fun style pieces to wear while I'm galavanting on a beach with my baby daddy.
In the special notes to the stylist I made some requests. I wasn't specific---because they are shopping for me. I don't believe this process is all about picking a certain top and requesting it specifically, more like  requesting a style, color block, or event attire. It's part of the fun, honestly. It's not online shopping----it's a styling service.
She hit all my wishes, no? Such a fun pattern---and downright adorable. I'm digging  the abstract version of chevron.
The detail on this tank is phenomenal. A big YES was said upon unfolding this pretty little coral gem.
I enjoyed how the stylist I had this month stuck with my wishlist. Ever piece from this fix could fall into one or all categories. Making a style wishlist in your notes to the stylist really is my top suggestion for getting a fix full of items you love.

Oh this dress makes me chuckle. I almost didn't take any photos in it. It is the ideal beach vacation dress---however--my girls don't do it justice. So sad. Every year since 7th grade I've been waiting for them to show up.....alas........((sigh))

What fun items, right?! I just adore getting a fix each month. It's a special treat! I don't keep everything---the reality is I can't afford it. It really is about the experience.
the surprise of the items//the fit and cut// the refining of style// piecing an outfit together// questioning how items can work into current wardrobe// picking favorites//selecting one to keep
Have you tried giving your stylist guidelines and/or  a wishlist? Try it next month! Let me know how it works for you.
Stitch Fix
The above photo is my referral link. If you sign up using this link I get a $25 credit onto my account. It's free clothes and I don't know a single soul that wouldn't get excited about that. ;)

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

M A R R I A G E when mom and dad clock out for the day

Each day is spent giving pieces of myself away. I give a piece of myself to my children, a hunk to my job, a slice to daily duties, more sections away to family and friends, a piece I give away to myself through running, and at the end of the days what's left often goes into checking social media sites under the umbrella of "unwinding" at the end of the day. Come 9 PM, and there isn't much of Laura left. I'm spent and there is nothing left to give.

Work. Commute. Pick Up. Dinner. Baths. Chasing. Cuddling. Reading. Pajama Wrangling. Bed. Back into bed. Back into bed. Back into bed. We both collapse on the couch--- click on the TV---and sink into our own worlds of our phones and mindless programming.

We're exhausted. We love each other---but we're exhausted.  We communicate about our day and make sure to fill in important details---but connecting? Truly allowing each other into each others lives that aren't veneered---it doesn't happen as much as it should.

The other day we both plopped down in our usual spots post bedtime and sat there without talking for twenty minutes. I was on my phone liking all your beautiful photos on Instagram and pinning my next week's dinner menu. He was checking scores of every. single. sporting. event. possible. We both looked at each other and started laughing. It was ridiculous. We hadn't had a single moment of our Thursday that we had been alone. We were mom and dad---and now we were Scott and Laura and we had nothing to say.

Don't you love the first 10 minutes of date night?! Oh I surely do. Those moments where you've kissed the kids, practically ran to the car, rolled the windows down, and sped off----to 3-4 hours of JUST US. We grab hands and look at each other as if to say. Hi, Friend......its our time. It's just us......we can just be......and a deep exhale and inhale fills this momma up to the brim with contentment, happiness, and love for the one whom I married.

Reconnecting on nights that aren't date nights? Takes more work. A half an hour after kids have been snuggled in their beds has been scheduled to be our at home date night. No phones. No TV.

We have to save a slice of ourselves for each other. We have to make communication a priority. He's my favorite person on this planet. He's mine. One day we won't have preschoolers hanging from our limbs. They'll grow up----and don't we all want more than anything else to experience the feeling of date night---every night?

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

My First!!!!! Half Marathon Experience

I thought they were going to. 

but hooray! They did not.

We arrived in downtown Indianapolis before the sun arose by my master plan. We were NOT going to be struck in traffic. We were NOT going to have trouble parking. We were GOING TO BE PREPARED. We would be there early and enjoy the atmosphere of the Nation's!! Largest!! Half!! Marathon!! It was going to be perfect. We left our house with plenty of time for unexpected issues----we got to the corral.......and due to my wonderful  slash psychotic planning---WAITED. for. two. hours. before anything happened. 
Due to my planning I had just enough time  to worry about BMs, Energy Shot timings, shoe lacings, outfit adjustments, and race day jitters to royally annoy the snot out of everyone. It was great. Two hours they will not soon forget as I asked frequently asked if they loved the new  RUNNING BELT *ahem fannny pack* that I purchased at the expo. They nicely told me it looked 80's and I assured them they were jealous----cause it was awesome. (it is awesome.) See...

After the longest two hours of everyone's life we headed to our corral. Due to the Jelly Belly sport beans I consumed I became very confident and decided that we should really try to corral hop. We didn't belong in the back of the pack----clearly. My running belt catapulted me into baller status for a runner and we successful hopped two letters in the alphabet. Stealthy and hopped up on sugared/ caffienated jelly beans I was ready to begin. Not to be dramatic (okay, a liiiiiitle dramatic), but this race signifies so much progress in my life. This race was the endcap to a lifestyle transformation. I was hearing slow motion motivational music in my head. Chills were covering my body. I was ready to do thiiiiissssssssss....... and with a quick pop of a gun...we were off.
I told myself I was going to pray for the first mile. It was a goal of mine to talk to God and praise Him for the changes and challenges I faced during my training and weight loss the past year.  I wish I could say that I did complete that goal during the half marathon but sadly, I didn't .  But I know God understands why I simply could not. For a  quarter mile we were stuck behind a middle aged man  with the shortest American flag shorts I've ever seen. It's really hard to pray when you're laughing and wanting to vomit at the same time. I doubt anyone could have a legit conversation with our Creator while  trying to dodge ones eyes from seeing a mans bits out on display through splashes of red, white, and blue.
Thank goodness for God's grace and those jelly beans.
We sprinted around that fella and carried on.

The first 7 miles were fun. I  laughed, chatted, and people watched with my runner girl Jess while keeping a steady pace. Can I tell you about my friend Jess? She was my rock during training. She was my cheerleader, butt-kicker, pace keeper, and off the ledge talker for 15 weeks. She ran with me so I wasn't alone. She wouldn't ever say this---but she SLOWED HER PACE for me while denying that she was faster than me. She listened to me mutter curse words and Get me through this Lord all in the same breath without judgement. She let me believe that my "running beans" really did help me maintain pace. She told me I could do this---when I didn't yet believe it myself.  She let me drag her to a race two hours early and was still my friend afterwards. Yay Jessica. If you're going to run a half marathon----you should really find yourself a Jessica.  I hope to be a Jessica to someone else one day.
Part of the Mini Marathon in Indianapolis is running around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway---I get it. Wow so cool to run where the racecars race...........As we were entering the Speedway I felt it too. OMGsh! The speedway!!! COOL! FUN! water stations? just asphalt? you want me to kiss what? the bricks?  During the speedway it got hard.  Your mind gives up long before your legs do. My mind started to give up and it doesn't take much for me to go to crazytown. So naturally, I ate more jelly beans and tried to distract myself.  
I read a running memoir called Running Like a Girl a few weeks back. The book is great and really interesting to read if you're trying to spark a love for running. One of the biggest takeaways that stuck out was that  she suggest painting your fingernails a fun color before each race. Her reasoning was that at the end you're GOING to look like hell so you might as well have your nails in order. Annnnddddd.....there is nothing like a splash of color to distract your crazy brain. My nails were neon blue----and she's a genius. I held out my hands in front of me and looked at my ridiculous nails and started laughing.  Because running with your arms straight out in front of you makes you look completely ridiculous. Mind. distracted.
There was a girl who was in front of me for most of the race who I convinced myself was a Runner's World Model runner.....She was tan with a runner's physique and her long fishtailed braid sticking out under her neon running hat taunted me for a few miles. "You're slower than me" the braid said. "I'm so much awesomer at running than you"....the braid said. I found myself wishing I could be more like this pretty  runner girl. I wanted a braid....and then I realized  Braids were taunting me---so I passed runner's world perfect runner girl---and it felt really good. Sorry pretty runner girl----you're probably really nice---but your braid is kind of a meanie--you should probably cut it off.
Runners come in all shapes and sizes and the Mini taught me that. There were people of all shapes and sizes running faster, slower, and more awkwardly than me. Running is something everyone can do---and while runner fishtail braid girl taunted me ---the remainder of the race I tried to focus on how beautiful runners are. They are strong and mentally confident. I am strong. I am mentally confident. There was camaraderie in that---and perhaps that what keeps people coming back for more.
Thirteen miles ---whew.
My longest run prior to race day was 10 miles---crossing the 10 mile mark during the half was do or die time. And turns out it was DIE time. My phone died. This was super sad for a few reasons.
1. running without music---tragic.
2. running without my pleasant running app talking to me with my pace and mileage ---super tragic.
3. running with JUST your thoughts and no Beyonce?? EPICALLY TRAGIC.
The first 7 miles were fun. The middle 3 miles were a little crazy. The last 3 miles were HOLY MOLY HARDDDDDDDDD AND PAINFUL. My feet hurt. My toes burned. My knees pounded. My hips ached. I wanted to give up. Why do people do this? All 30,000 people running through Indianapolis that day were hurting and aching----WHY?  I think it's because we like to prove to ourselves and to others that WE CAN DO HARD THINGS.
and we did. and I did.
During the last mile I saw a familiar face along the street. An acquaintance that I met through my handmade business,  Lillypie. Seeing her and having her recognize me and shout "Keep going Laura!! You're almost there!!!" was just the boost of confidence I needed to pull strength out of my fanny pack and push through.
I finished the race.
I cried.
a wave of emotions flooded my mind and heart.

My biggest nugget learned from my first half marathon? People don't run races because they are easy. People run races because it feels flippin amazing to finish something you set out to do. 
Will I do another one?

I have more jelly beans to eat. and I definitely need to wear my 80s running belt again. It's super cute.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

S T I T C H F I X // april

Monday was a bit gloomy around our house. Kids were cranky. Mom was cranky. We were running low on food and it was lunch time. Noah and Lilly fought over the same dang green train all morning and I was ready to light the thing on fire. No one in our family was the best version of themselves. and then the doorbell wrang.


with my April Stitch fix. RAISE THE EVER LOVING ROOF.

a bright spot in a gloomy Monday friends!
Tops this month were two tab sleeved blouses and a striped tank.

  • While I think the tab sleeved blouses are adorable I already own one from my last fix. I do think the polka dot one is quite precious.
  • White blouse is cute---but not workable into my current wardrobe. That means it will probably hang a lot and that means I should not keep it
  • The tank is versatile, cute, unlike anything I already own, and different --I also have a love affair with stripes. It hung oddly on me though. And that made me super sad---I was going to keep it--but decided that I didn't need another adorable tank that fit weird. I would WANT to wear it but know that it would probably end up in a frustrated pile during a rushed morning because it just felt weird on me.
This month they sent me two bottom pieces:
  • Shorts were adorable.
  • Jeans were boot cut. I KNOW that it's making a comeback. However I cannot get back on the boot leg jean wagon. Too many bad memories of wet pant legs, fraying hems, and hiding of my shoes. #toomanyjncosinmiddleschool To be honest slipping on a flared jean makes to slingshot back to 1997---thanks but no thanks #longlivetheskinnies
This month I kept one item, the shorts.

This fix didn't knock it out of the park for me. I was expecting puppies, rainbows, and fireworks like the MARCH fix.  This might happen and I understand that. Someone who doesn't know me personally is picking out items for me---it will happen. I had to ask myself some questions..
  • did I have fun? yeppppppp
  • was this easier than dragging preschoolers to the mall? yeeeppppppppp
  • did I find something i loved? yeppppppppp
  • did I spend crazy amounts of money? nooppppppeeeeee $33 for the shorts.

Stitch fix still has my shopping heart. I'm already looking forward to next month. I requested some fun vacation attire for my excursion to the beach. I can't wait to see what they pick!

Check out my three month review  HERE!

Would you like to give Stitch Fix a try? Use my referral link  below if you want. I'll be honest, if you sign up through me I get $25 to spend on my next fix. and that's awesome. the end. :)

Stitch Fix

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Inspired by real women // now is your time

Keeping myself inspired is the name of the game in weight loss. I'm sure of it.

You're either inspired by chips, ice cream, bread, and mounds of chocolate several times a day....

or you're inspired by other's weight loss journey, healthy food choices, and activities.

Only one set of inspirations will aid in your weight loss. My college education tells me that being inspired by other strong women is the one that will finally allow you to kick the flub to the curb.

When I reflect on my own struggle and journey I can see how I was inspired by the wrong set for a long time. I turned to food as comfort. I chose to celebrate with "treats" that turned into binges. I selected to wish away the pounds rather than to do the hard work. It got me no where---well exept overweight and unhappy.

So choosing to find inspiration in another form was really the only way I was going to be able to lose weight and KEEP IT OFF.  The first place I turned for inspiration was to my relationship with God.  Ashamedly I had never made that connection that my relationship with God could fuel the inpiration to get healthy. Once I successfully aligned myself to the mindset of being devoted and committing my weight loss to  Him the other parts of losing weight fell into place. And before you think it---IT HAS NEVER BEEN EASY. However knowing that the reason for getting healthy was for God to better use me rather than to just look good did make the task ahead of me more manageable. If you're looking for help to allign your spiritual and physical transformation I highly reccoment GODFIT. It's a 6 week devotional complete with workout and fitness routines that WILL help you begin your journey.

Staying inspired is something I constantly need to do. I must look around me to other mothers, different types of food, and varying ways to challenge myself physically in order to LOSE the initial weight and maintain this lifestyle that I've come to love.

I decided that it might be beneficial to others reading to see where I pull inspiration from . Perhaps this can help you KICK YOUR OWN REAR IN GEAR. Have you been waiting for a better time?  NOW IS THE TIME. Some of you stumbled onto this blog JUST TO READ THAT.  Your time is now sister.


Here are some inpiring blogs that I recommend. None of these ladies know I'm about to name drop---there is nothing in this for me. These are the gals that I began following back in June. Some of them I have internet relationships with-- others I don't.  Their own journeys inspire me and I enjoy following their story oh-so-much


MARY GRAHAM //Trusty Chucks

These ladies are mothers. These ladies aren't professionals....and they inspire me. Let their journey inspire yours.

I also have a secret board (love those!) on pinterest that I use to pin images that inspire me to keep going. At least twice a week I scroll through and remind myself WHY.

You can also stay inspired on your weight loss journey by finding fun and exciting ways to enjoy eating. When you're losing weight you're saying NO to a lot of things that you used to indulge in. It can be a huge bummer ---oh who am I kidding it's a MAJOR WAHHHHH BUMMER to say no. So in order to stay inspired in the kitchen and not allow yourself to quit because the FUN of eating is gone---find new ways to have fun!

Here are some of my favorite food inspirations that I make frequently. Delicious and not a diet derailer! WIN.

and I love EVERYTHING from
Hearing others tell me that they are inspired by my adventures in getting healthy makes me happy. I write about all this as a way to keep myself accountable and to help others. The ladies above inspired me one day to a pointt where I thought to myself---DUDE IF THEY CAN DO THAT----SO CAN I!  It's attainable girls. Don't quit this time---you're worth it.

xoxox ladies. have a great butt kicking weekend.

Laura Beth

Thursday, April 10, 2014

You Can't Fake Running

You can't fake running----so I'm not sure why I've thought of myself as a fake runner for the last 5 months. Running is the least fake thing you can do. You can't pretend to love it if you don't. You can't walk and pretend it's running. You can't fake a faster time. You can't fake a sweat. You can't fake the pain. You can't fake the release of tension. You can't hide behind anything when you run.

The multiple plates I spin on a daily basis stop spinning when I run. When I leave my house laced up with headphones in I escape from the busyness of my life. The toddlers can't demand anything from me.   The housework doesn't scream. The emails don't get read. I don't have to have the answers. I escape from the crazy.

The first few steps of my run always ache a little. My knees remember the miles from the other day and my lungs fill the familiar burn of quickened breath. The beginning strides of my run are always freeing---I am literally running away from my day. I don't need to tell you how much I adore my family because I know you understand those moments where you  need escape from your blessings for a few moments.

Once I flee from my day the routine sets in and I find my rhythm of my strides. I work through the pain of the first mile and fight off the insecurities that always creep in. The self doubts I have about myself in all aspects of my life line up before me and that first mile is always spent knocking down and assassinating each one. You're a mess of a mother and it's harder for you than it is for others. You are weak. You will fail. You are failing. Each aching stride crumbles those insecurities under my feet.

I love that feeling.

The feeling of conquering an insecurity and running all over it and proving it WRONG is what keeps me lacing up my shoes. Every time I run I'm reminded that I'm doing something that I COULD NOT do a short time ago.  Every time I run  I remind myself that I'm stronger than I thought I was. Every time I run I'm encouraged that my fears don't own me.

In a world where it's easy to fake a lot of things---I love being reminded that you can't fake running.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

S T I T C H F I X a three month review

I have had little brown boxes with   turquoise tape delivered to my doorstep for three months now. I received gift cards to Stitch Fix for Christmas and was thrilled to give this styling service a try. I've waited to do any sort of review on Stitch Fix because I felt like I needed to get some fixes under my belt before I could best form an opinion.

Stitch Fix has no idea who I am---well maybe Shelby does, she styled my last fix. They didn't contact me to do a review and I am getting nothing from doing this. It is really just my honest opinion on this monthly subscription box. I really just want to have a conversation with you about it like I would a good friend. :)

Over the past five years my body has gone through a lot of changes. There hasn't been a single year where I haven't been in the process of gaining, being pregnant, birthing a baby, recovering, losing weight, pregnant again, birthing, recovering, losing....... what a beating my body has taken.

My pre-children style?? Well?? It was awkward in my opinion. I was straddling the fine line of still shopping at American Eagle and Junior's section at Kohls to feeling like I reallllllly was too old and should be shopping Eddie Bauer or the misses section of JC PENNY...... Did you go through that phase? Not feeling like an adult yet because YOUNG! AND I SLEEP A LOT! AND MY TIME IS MY OWN!  but also feeling like I should be more conservative and responsible because STUDENT DEBT! BILLS! MORTGAGE PAYMENTS! and OMG where is my dad so he can fix my dishwasher!??!

After creating, making, and birthing my lovely babies----my body is just. DIFFERENT.  It's not bad---and I mean that. It's just---different. Trying to wear clothes that I had saved in the back of the closet for my "someday these will fit again" left me disappointed. They still just don't look right---and my style has changed.   Just the thought of LOW RISE pants makes me want to scream like I've seen a hairy spider. SICK!! GET AWAY FROM ME! NO. PUKEFACE.

What I'm getting at is that Stitch Fix has been a way from me to really narrow down my style. How? Well to start you fill out an amazingly detailed style profile before you even begin. You begin to feel like you're filling out a personality profile after a while---and I guess you kinda are. Do you know your style? Do you have one? Those of you thinking at this moment:
" I don't have a style, I'm terrible at this, I just buy what's on sale...."
Girl, listen to me when I say in my most loving tone ---
shut up hooker, you have a style---you just need help defining it.

Stitch Fix helps you do that---over time. Go fill out the profile even if you don't schedule a fix. It will help you greatly when trying to decide what you do like. Pinky promise.

So I scheduled my fix to be delivered monthly ( you can choose when and how often you want one) and waited. So hard to wait. I wanted it immediately and apparently so did everyone else. :) I was super happy with my first fix. I love stripes and they delivered. I kept both striped shirts and wear them frequently. What I love about this service besides the obvious of clothes showing up at your doorstep is the ability to learn things about your own style that you might not have known. The other two shirts they sent were great---but after trying them on with the clothes already in my possession I realized that  I don't really like navy on me.
After trying on your clothes you have three days to ship back the unwanted items in a prepaid shipping bag. Then you head to your computer and fill out detailed feedback. DETAILED is the key to making sure your next fix is even better.

I told my stylist that STRIPES! I LOVE THEM! THANK YOU! But please don't send me more--after this fix arrived I counted TWELVE striped shirts in my closet. GULP. I also told them that I liked the two tops but wasn't a fan of navy blue. I asked them to no longer send navy items. I also told them the reason I didn't keep the gold necklace was that I like more beaded colorful jewelry. I like my necklaces to make statements.
I told my stylist I'd love to see some dresses that could transition to Spring in my next fix.
30 days later my next fix came!
When working with Stitch Fix they listen to your feedback. My next fix had two tops in bright colors, a pair of black skinnies, and two patterened floral dresses

color--they listened
loose fitting tops---listened
So what did I learn about my personal style in this fix? I was reaffirmed that I love dresses---but I realized I don't love chiffon dresses. Looking in my wardrobe I don't have any in that material and never really realized that I gravitate away from it. I have no idea why---but I had a definite NO WAY opinion when I tried to two dresses on. It took me a while to realize why.
I decided to keep the pink sleeveless blouse.

I was so grateful for this fix because I really didn't know that I didn't like chiffon until this fix. Typing this sentence it seems so silly, I know. "I didn't know I didn't like chifffooonnnnnnn "whiny weirdo! But really, I am grateful because now when I do shop in stores I know not to even look at a dress if it is chiffon. If I buy one--I likely won't wear it and I will have wasted my money. I think that's pretty great.
If you get a fix that isn't superb----you'll learn more about refining your style. What worked? What didn't.....and most importantly WHY.
Do you feel like a service like this could help you with your day to day look?
Could a service like this help you define your style and perhaps help your self-esteem?
I'm all about that.
So my third fix came. Two months of detailed feedback preceded this fix. I felt that if I really wanted my fixes to be spot on and really me I needed to really be specific --and I was. To me this was the make or break it moment for me. Would I continue? Or would I stop? This fix needed to show me that the stylists were listening and truly interested in finding something for ME  that I would love.
Boom. They nailed it. High five Shelby. Fist bumps all around.
The color palette is spot on. The fabric choices are my preference.
The cut of the tops are my favorite.
There are items I would not have picked out on my own---that really make me feel great.
Do you struggle getting multiple uses out of your higher priced items? I love that they send you idea cards with the items.  Take the cards and try to recreate the looks with what you already own if you like it! I've done that many times.
statement necklace-----seriously shrieked when I took this outta the box.

Scalloped Dress---SOLD. Perfect transition dress that will be very versatile.
And it's a rayon poly blend----MUCH better given my chiffon aversion. :)
Watercolor print blouse
Great color, out of my comfort zone, like the watercolor element, i think it's flattering.
jury still out.

Jeans are a great fit---but pricey
sending back

Black drapey cardigan
Cute--but could buy at target at 1/3 the cost.
Are the items more expensive than your go tos of Target, Old Navy, and Loft----YUP. I can't sugar coat that for you.  And that kinda stinks. But let me tell you why it doesn't bother me.
1. Because I have NEVER had trouble spending dollars.
2. Because I will not keep a stitch fix item that I would consider a basic. The basics---will need to be replaced often and thus should be purchased for a cheaper price. ABSOLUTELY. However, your exciting pieces--the ones you are thrilled to wear that look great, feel great, and make you feel more confident? I don't mind spending more. And by more I mean 40 for a shirt.....
I have "cheaper the better" selected on all my items in my settings. While I would definitely not consider 40 for a shirt CHEAP----I understand that they aren't a bargain chain store like our go tos. They shouldn't be competitive in prices because the items selected are unique and uncommon in the main marketplace.
I deserve a few key pieces in my wardrobe that excite me AND SO DO YOU. I know the kids need new clothes, the dishwasher needs repaired, and you have bills to pay so beauty and personal style for you must come last. I get that girlfriend I do. I also think that when you're happy with how you look it spills over to other avenues of your life. We are women---and wired that way.
Could you use some help learning how to style and select clothes that work with your body type and preferences?
Do you find spending time on yourself difficult because of multiple plates spinning with your family, children, career, and hobbies?
Are you looking for something fun to treat yourself?
Do you really want to amp up your style and try new things?
I think you might enjoy Stitch Fix. If you decide to try it---give it time. Don't write off an "off" fix and give up. You can see through my experience that FEEDBACK is key and being as detailed as possible pays off. Really reflect on your daily life and what you want your clothes to do for you. 
Girls, its so fun. I don't think you'll be disappointed!  If you are ready to try it, I'd love it if you went through my referral link it's the Stitch Fix photo below. Why? Well for every person who schedules a fix through your code you get a $25 credit----free clothes ladies, free clothes. Can you blame me?
Stitch Fix