Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Spring Styles

It's finally time for my spring styles post. I've been scouting out all the spring stuff coming out the past few weeks and I have not been disappointed. I'm still waiting on Target to relase their spring shoes, but other than that I've got some great things to share with you guys.

First up is this adorable floral shirt from Old Navy. I can see this going with a lot of things. Skirs, shorts and you could always throw a cardigan on top of it. LOVE this!

I'm a big fan of graphic tees, and Old Navy has a ton of beach and summer related ones on their site right now. This is one of my favorites.

I'm always wanting to buy Victoria Secret swimsuits, but the cheapskate in me won't pay full price for one. So, I've found a few bikinis off of Old Navy that I'm loving.

I really wanted just a basic black suit and I think this fits the bill.

I also wanted a new super cute and summery bikini and this one is getting great reviews.

I love dresses for spring and summer and Old Navy has a ton of cute one this year. I love the simplicity of this yellow dress. I want the yellow dress, but am instead getting the black dress in the same style, as I need a good basic black dress that goes with anything. Hopefully the yellow dress doesn't sell out before I can get it!

Another warm weather staple for me are flip-flops. I always get basic black, white and solid colors, but I love these zebra print flip-flops from Old Navy.

I didn't intend for this to become an all Old Navy product blog, as I had some Forever 21 pieces to share with you. However, all the Forver 21 outfits I had picked out are sold out. Bummer.

Have any of you found some great spring fashions or pieces you'd like to share?

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sunday Snippets

I'm back after a very busy week!

Our trip to Seville was amazing. If it works out that is our last trip while we are in Europe, I'll be happy with that because we had such a great time. I told Sean after coming back that I really wish there was an Army post in Spain, because I'd try to live there. Hopefully I'll have pictures edited from the trip to share with you soon.

I had the opportunity in the last week to meet two awesome bloggers. I've been very excited for months because I knew Annie from Blonde Glambition was moving to Italy and I've got to spend a lot of time with her this past week. She's just even more awesome in person than she seems in her blog. We went to Carnevale this week and met up with another blogger, Jess from Jessica Lynn Writes. I've been wanting to meet up with Jess since she moved here in September, so it was fun to actually get to meet her after all this time. It's been so nice meeting new people and just enjoying time with some great girls. I'll have to put up pictures from Carnevale sometime soon too.

I'm finally getting back in the groove of working out. I've done spin, power pump and yoga this week. I'm hoping to add some more workouts to the mix this next week. The only downside was I pulled a trapezius muscle in my back sometime during yoga this week and I've been trying to get over it. I've pulled it once before and it makes laughing or swallowing very painful. I suppose this is my body getting old and quite frankly, it sucks.

It's finally getting a little bit warmer here in Italy. This is the first winter since I've been here that it's been so cold for so long. It hit the 60's this week and I'm hoping it stays this way so I can start tanning. I've already been scouting out bikinis on Old Navy and Victoria Secret.

I just found out this week that my cousin is engaged and getting married in June. This means there are now two weddings in June that I really want to be at (especially since I'm the photographer at one of them). Still no word on when we leave Italy. I'll be fine as long as I get home by June. Although I'm thinking it'll be April or May when we move. Supposedly we are supposed to find out soon where and when we will be leaving.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Honest Observations

1. Driving in Italy makes me angry. Inevitably I get honked at for things Italian drivers do everyday. I do not understand this.

2. I am not a phone talker, at all. I have tried explaining to my parents why I'd rather text than call people, because I guess their generation doesn't get that. I get so nervous on the phone and feel like I babble/talk quickly/make no sense.

3. Boomer (my Min-Pin) has some sort of stomach sickness a couple of nights ago. It ended up with me getting very little sleep that night and a vet visit in the morning. I realized that's just a small taste of what I can expect when I have children. Scary....

4. Speaking of children, when I see women on TV, in blogs, on Facebook that actively try to gain as little weight as possible during their pregnancy and then brag about it, I judge you. I don't mean that I think women should gain massive amounts of weight during pregnancy, so that it's unhealthy for them or the baby.  But I also don't think you should limit yourself to ridiculous amounts of food or exercise in an unhealthy way just to keep from gaining weight. Frankly, I think it's selfish. It's not about you, it's about the baby you are growing in your body. If you can't realize that, then I think you have deep seated issues.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Getting in Shape and Feeling Overwhelmed

Ok ladies, in this post I'm going to be perfectly candid and honest with you. Normally I try to keep things personal, but at a certain distance, but I'm laying it all out for you in this post.

A few weeks ago I blogged about how I was tired of getting on the scale and being disappointed by the numbers and how I wasn't going to do that anymore. I'm happy to say since then I've only gotten on the scale maybe twice. It's hard to break that habit. I have been going to the gym more, my goal is four days a week and if I do it more than that, then great.

However, I had a gym failure the other day and felt so frustrated that I honestly wanted to just cry. In the gym. In front of people.

As a little backstory, I started doing Crossfit this past summer and really enjoyed it. I started seeing results quickly and could tell I was becoming stronger. Then around September the class time changed to a time that was too late in the day for me and I hurt my back doing deadlifts. It was my fault that the injury happened, as I hadn't warmed up enough and I knew it, but I wanted to see how much I could lift and ended up hurting my back. Thankfully when I had it checked out it turned out to only be a pulled muscle, but I foolishly didn't realize how long a pulled muscle in the back could take to heal. I also discovered that one of my legs is slightly shorter than the other, which my Crossfit trainer had actually pointed out the very day I got hurt and the physical therapist and doctors think that contributed to me getting hurt. Anyway, my back still hurts on occasion and for several months after that I rarely did Crossfit and got into a not working out funk.

Fast forward to last week and I started doing Crossfit again. I went to the lunchtime class and was very disappointed with it. Not because our trainer isn't awesome, because he is, but because I felt like an outsider with the rest of the group. Not one of them talked to me, except our trainer (who I'm friends with in real life and on Facebook). None of my friends from the previous class go to this lunchtime class, so I have nobody that I know and it's just very awkward. Not to mention all these people can do everything so much better than me. I am not a natural athlete and I have not done anything really physically demanding in awhile, so that already puts me behind these others, but it was just down right embarassing. Every skill that we worked on that day I could barely do.

The next day I emailed my friend/trainer and asked him what I could do to improve, because I just felt like I wasn't strong enough to do these moves and I needed some help. So now, he's put me and one of my friends from the previous class, on a strength building program and told us we also need to do Crossfit regularly to help build our skills. Here's the problem, I don't like the lunch class because I feel so alone in there, so I'm thinking about doing the workouts on my own. Plus, as much as I like Crossfit, I don't feel like it's the be-all, end-all of workouts. I like doing yoga, and spinning and dance stuff too. Plus I need to fit building up my running on the Couch to 5K program in there too. I just feel like there is so much stuff I need to do and so little time to do it. I don't want to burn out or hurt myself, but I want to get in shape. Now I'm to the point where I almost feel overwhelmed and I don't even know where to start.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Well, I've Never Been To Spain

Ok, actually I have been to Spain, but I thought it made a good title.

Anyway, Sean and I decided for the upcoming four day to head to Seville, Spain for a bit of warmer weather, tapas and flamenco.

So, my question is this: Has anyone been to Seville? Any advice, tips, must-see or must-do activities?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Fashion Faves

In a few weeks I'll be doing some of my favorite fashions I've seen for spring, but for now I want to share some of my favorite fashion purchases in the last few months.

Some of you might remember me mentioning in this post how I've been buying clothes off Ebay. Honestly, in the last few months that's where I've been buying a ton of my clothes. I've found some really great deals on there and wanted to share them.

Item #1

I actually just bought this on Ebay yesterday. I love to wear yellow in the summer when I'm tan, because it goes well with my complexion and hair. Now I also have the perfect pair of yellow wedges to go with it, so I'm all set.

Item #2

This is probably my favorite item that I've bought the last few months because it goes with everything. It's Old Navy and I got it for super cheap. It's awesome with jeans and a cardigan and I'm sure it'll be great with shorts or a skirt come summertime.

Item #3

Speaking of cardigans, my favorite cardigans are from Target. They are Merona brand and the 3/4 length is great. I have the cardigan in two colors and wish I'd bought more. They are that great.

Item #4

I bought this shirt in anticipation of spring/summer. I love lightweight t-shirts for warmer weather and although this shirt is really simple, it really appealed to me.

Item #5

Several months ago I asked my readers about jeggings. A few of you mentioned Old Navy's Rock Star jeggings. So when I was home for Christmas, I popped by Old Navy to try on a pair. Instant Love! Not only are these flattering on me when I wear them with boots, but they also look great with stilettos. I never thought I'd be able to wear skinny jeans with stilettos and not look ridiculous, but with these jeggings, I'm able to do so.

Item #6

There are some basics that I feel like I need in my closet. I've been searching for awhile for the perfect 3/4 sleeve, white, button-down shirt. Usually I'd try one on, I wouldn't like it or it was more than I wanted to pay for a basic shirt. Finally I found this one on Ebay and fell in love. I always imagine me wearing it in the summer with a pair of shorts and a cute pair of sandals like in this outfit (just subbing out the jeans)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

If You Can't Say Something Nice...

So this morning I'm surfing through the blogosphere and come across a milspouse blog I normally read. In the post, the blogger expressed some feelings of disappointment about her current situation, and reading through the comments I was shocked.  Fellow military bloggers were being downright rude about the fact she voiced her opinions and disappointment over her own personal situation.

First of all, the military and the various situations that we encounter in it as spouses, are not a pissing contest. I don't care what someone says, you do not start complaining about your own situation and how the person who's blog you are commenting on, has it so much better than you. That's rude and not necessary at all.

Secondly, I realize there are times when we don't agree with what a blogger has to say. I know there are at least a few times a week where I read a blog and think how ridiculous the blog post is or how aggravated it makes me. Instead of telling the blogger how stupid I think their opinion is or how mad their post makes me feel, I do one of two things.

1. I go and complain to one of my good friends about how ridiculous the blog was
2. I let it go and don't comment on the blog

If you don't agree with someone, you don't have to be rude and tell them to suck it up or how they shouldn't be complaining. It's their blog, they have every right to complain or say whatever they want. If you don't like it, then don't read it. It's that simple. Please don't take this as to mean I think you should never leave a comment disagreeing with someone. However, when it has to do with someone's personal situation and they are venting, I don't think rude or unhelpful comments are necessary.

What especially bothers me is that I think military spouses should be a little more supportive and understanding when a fellow mil-spouse is having a bad day or is bothered by something. Remember that when your time comes to be upset, you would want someone to be nice and supportive to you. Not people telling you to suck it up.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Cleaning Out My Closet

First of all, thanks to everyone for the encouraging words about my photography in my last post. You have no idea how much you guys taking the time to comment and encourage me means to me.

Now, for the fun part of this post! I'm cleaning out my closet and have been over the last six months or so. Most things I try to sell on Ebay, but I have three items that I've tried to sell multiple times with no success. So, I'm offering the chance for my readers to get them, if you want them. This is the way this is going to work: I'm going to list three items. If you have interest in one or all of the items, please leave a comment saying which ones you are interested in. If more than one person is interested in an item, I will do a random number generator to pick the winner. If only one person is interested, well then by default you get that item.

Item #1:

This is a cropped jacket from Forever 21. Size medium. Outer material is linen, inner shell is polyester. I've only worn this item twice and it's in great condition. If you can't see it, there is a belt that goes with it. Very cute, I just don't ever wear it.

Item #2

This is a blouse from Forever 21. Size is large. I've never worn this, as it is a bit too big for me. There is a belt that ties around the front. Material is 97% cotton and 3% spandex.

Item #3

Skirt from Forever 21. Size medium. I love this skirt, but with my booty, it's a bit too short. I've never worn it, only tried it on. Material is rayon and has an wide elastic top to it.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Photography Goals

Several of my resolutions/goals this year were about photography.

1. I will not compare myself to others when it comes to photography and I will not let some of the photographers around here get to me.

To explain a little, I'm sure a lot of you have noticed that pretty much everywhere these days, people get a new camera and think they should start taking pictures of people and calling themself a professional. It's one of my ultimate pet peeves and last year I wasted a lot of time venting about how much it bothers me. It still bothers me, because I honestly think a lot of people need to spend a lot more time with their camera and figure out how to actually use it and use it well before they start charging people and calling themselves professionals. I still don't call myself professional and won't for awhile, simply because I know there is a lot more for me to learn. Anyway, I don't want to compare myself to other photographers anymore either. There are some insanely talented people out there and I also have a bad habit of comparing my work to theirs. Not really a good boost to the ego, so I'm going to stop doing that too.

2. I will upgrade my camera

Ideally I wanted to upgrade my current camera (Canon Rebel XSI) to the Canon 5D Mark II. In terms that might better explain it, my camera is a generic brand mixer, while the 5D Mark II is a Kitchen Aid mixer. There are some features of the camera I want, that my camera doesn't have. Unfortunately, the 5D is also way out of my price range, but I still need to upgrade my camera. So..I've decided to upgrade to a bit of an older model, the Canon 40D and continue to save up for the 5D. I'm also trying to add a couple new lenses and an external flash to my equipment this year too.

3. I will do things that challenge me

Last year I started a Project 365, but failed somewhere around April. So, this year I started again, though I have yet to edit any of the pictures I've taken so far or post them. I'm hoping that will happen this weekend. I swore when I first started doing portraits that I'd never do a wedding. For one, weddings scare me. If I shoot a maternity or newborn session and something happens where I'm not happy with the pictures, I can always do it over. With a wedding, you don't get that luxury. I also know that a lot of prep work and equipment are needed for weddings and that's scary for me. However, this year I've been asked to do two weddings. One is just a ceremony, nothing extra and the other one I'm really excited about, because it's one of my very best friends. I know that's going to push me as a photographer and make me better, which is really the whole point

4. I will make a business plan

I find this one boring, but necessary. In order to make it as a photographer you not only have to be a good photographer, but you also have to be a good business person. That is something I'm going to have to work on. I have a vision of what I want my business to be 5 years from now, but at this time, I'm not sure how to make that happen. I know when I get back to the States that I can't just set up a photography business and go from there. I'm going to have to have another job in order to get income to set up my business. Not to mention attract and keep clients and grow my business from there.

Right now I enjoy taking portraits of people. What I'm most requested to do right now is maternity, which I like doing. I'd like to do newborn, but it seems these days there are so many props you need for that. Also, I'm kind of over the whole baby in swing, bright backgrounds, cute hats, babies in baskets/bowls/etc. Don't get me wrong, I think it's super cute, but I think it's a tad overdone. If I did do newborn photography, I'd want to be different and do something not EVERYONE is doing. My ultimate goal is to one day do just boudoir/pin-up photography. I really, really enjoyed my boudoir shoot that I did a few years ago for Sean and I'd love to re-create that experience for other women. In Oklahoma right now there isn't a lot of people doing boudoir and I really think it's something I would enjoy. I have a few friends lined up to let me practice that sort of shoot with them (once I get back to Oklahoma), just to see how I like it and if I'm good at it. If it goes well, that will probably be my main concentration for my business.

So there you have it, some of my resolutions and goals for my photography. Hopefully I'll have progress to report later this year!