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The Fall Update

Cherry Kool-Aid For Life

Hello friends!

It seems as though my updates are seasonal these days, offering super long recaps of life as one part of the year closes and another begins.

Lots has happened since I last wrote.

In fact, this should be a two volume post, but it won’t be.

Just pretend it is and take a break from reading and come back later to finish it. 😊

But don’t forget to come back!

I began writing this on the way to Dallas for OU-Texas weekend, a longtime tradition in the B-Love house and one of our favorite yearly football trips.

Texas bound!

We always have a very strict tradition for how this trip unfolds, especially on Friday:

-Drop dogs off at the kennel
-Leave for Dallas as early as possible
-Stop in Marietta for a free Bevo Burger at the Bevo Bash (Bevo is the Longhorn mascot, incase you’re wondering)
-Arrive in Dallas as early as possible
-Nap (well mostly Will since he does the driving, I usually end up working a little)
-Enjoy a nice dinner at Ruth’s Chris

Only, this year we’ve completely turned everything on it’s head. I’m a creature of habit and always enjoy looking forward to the repetitiveness of this trip, but it was nice to change it up. smile

We got in early and, as usual, Will napped. We had giant burgers for dinner at Gas Money Bar & Grill, and were shocked to watch Clemson lose to Syracuse that night.

Gas Monkey!

Saturday was among the hottest OU-Texas weekends on record. It was misery.

So miserable I didn’t even stand in line for a fried snickers.

I KNOW!

Ya’ll, you know that means I was hot puddle of sweat.

Here I am forcing a smile while sweating profusely. haha

OU-Texas 2017

Since we’re on the subject of football, let’s just get it all out of the way.

I totally drank the Kool-aid and bought into the OU hype this year, for which I’m guilty.

Will knew better, as usual.

So when we watched them lose to Iowa State, in what they’ve deemed the worst loss in Sooner history, I kissed my high hopes goodbye.

Those guys…

Although, there have been some updates lately so maybe, just maybe we’ve still got a chance.

Pass the Kool-Aid…

Life things
Probably the biggest “life thing” since I last wrote is that Will started a new job this summer, and it’s been a huge blessing. It’s long days and hours, but thankfully weekends off.

I thought we were oldies before, but now we REALLY are! Many week nights we’re already in bed by 8:30!

It’s hard to reflect on everything right now, because it’s still fairly fresh, but I am thankful for the Lord’s faithfulness during this time.

When everything first unfolded with selling the business, I felt God was going to do something big and miraculous through it all. The truth is, nothing big really happened (though the circumstances surrounding how Will got hired and how it all worked out were definitely the hand of God).

I definitely know firsthand the Lord shows up in mighty ways, however sometimes His faithfulness seems less evident to our untrained eyes. The truth is, He sustained us and strengthened my faith in ways that never would have happened had I not gone through this trial. Perhaps that’s what’s “big.”

Anyway- there’s that. But wait! There’s more!

P gave birth to Gemma Grace (GG for short- how adorable, right!?) on October 12th.

What’s crazy is here’s a picture of me holding P, and now P has a daughter old enough to hold her baby sister nkw just like I did! WHERE IS THE TIME GOING!?

Introducing Gemma Grace

More fun stuff

Because we’re crazy football fans, we’ve had the September 2019 marked on our calendar forever. It’s when the Sooners play UCLA in the Rose Bowl, which naturally means we have to attend!

With so much time between our last major trip and then, we decided to take a small vacation in between. He threw out an old favorite, which I sort of dismissed quickly.

Will’s vacation policy isn’t as generous as we’d hoped, so we had a couple options- either take a trip at the end of the year, or wait until the summer. Will left the decision up to me, figuring I’d pick something next summer.

Which is what I started doing!

The truth is, though, I kind of felt lost planning a trip in July or August.

For one, I hate summer.

Two, it just didn’t feel right.

For our 13 years of marriage, we’ve always planned trips around fun football games, and for 13 years I’ve always ribbed Will about it.

Only, when it came down to it, I kind of couldn’t see us doing anything else!

(Did this guy wear me down or what!?!)

Stay tuned for more on that. I suppose it will be in my winter update! 😊

In no particular order...

- Guys- they are ending NBC’s The Middle after this season!! It’s hard to find family friendly comedies, and I have come to love the Heck family. WHAT THE HECK AM I SUPPOSED TO WATCH NOW!?! (Pun intended)

- Mason Jar Mania continues! If it can be made ahead and go in a jar, I’m basically going to make it for lunch these days. 😂
Mason jar mania continues!

- Speaking of food, my mom, sister, and I had a Freezer Meal Crockpot Day a couple of weeks ago and it was so fun! We each picked a few recipes and brought enough to share, made them into easy to dump portioned recipes for the crockpot, and then each took home what we made. So smart! Convenient for P with the baby keeping her busy, too.

Freezer meal fun day!!

- Have you ever heard of a foot detox?

I’m always super skeptical about “detoxes” but Will heard all these interesting things about them and really wanted to give it a try.

So, he challenged me to a foot detox contest to see whose water was the best.
Foot detox day! We had a contest to see whose was the worst. 😂Absolutely CRAZY!

While technically you could say I won, I would argue there were definitely no winners here.

Foot detox day! We had a contest to see whose was the worst. 😂Absolutely CRAZY!

As you can see, the results were HORRIFYING! What’s fascinating is that there’s a color chart that helps you understand what the toxins mean, and they are shockingly accurate. Will’s water was dark brown and bubbly, attributable to poor diet 😂 and mine was mostly orangey which is tied to joint health and likely from intense workouts and lactic acid buildup. Check and check. I also had fatty triglyceride buildup. So crazy!!! 😳

All things Jude

I finished my James study at the end of September and plan to devote the rest of the year to Jude.

The book is essentially a single chapter of 25 verses, and while it’s short, I have no doubt it will take me the rest of the year to complete.

I suppose before I get into Jude, though, I ought to backup and share a little on James for posterity sake.

I never thought it would take me 9 months to get through the five chapter book of James.

I knew it would be full of rich content that would challenge me, but I completely underestimated how much it would flip my heart upside down as I examined what was within.

Every single passage full of a variety of elements that pricked my heart. Constantly convicting and humbling me.

While I didn’t realize it, I approached James with a degree of pride. I didn’t mean to have it, but I certainly did. It didn’t take long for the chair to be knocked out from under me! Chapter one started with a loving gut punch and things spiraled from there. Haha

I act as though I came out of James bloodied and miserable, but that’s not the case.

James was a study I so desperately needed in 2017. It challenged me in ways I expected, and in others I did not.

The Lord used it to strip away more of myself, though there’s still a lot of work to do!

I am so thankful the Lord led me to study James this year. I can look back and see how much I needed it!

At the start of the year I was eager to study Jude, too.

You ought to do a quick read of it today. It’s mind blowing how pertinent this book is today.

Just as urgently needed today as it was when Jude first wrote it.

I am excited to do a deeper dive into this book because I already feel a sense of urgency over so much of what he shares.  I know it will strengthen me all the more to study it in-depth.

Wherein a put in a plug for my new “blog
And by blog I don’t mean blog.

I mean Instagram.

It’s pretty much the only place I consistently post these days.

I share various content, but mostly what’s going on in my life as well as spiritual devotional type things.

Each picture essentially comes with a mini blog post, if you will. 😊

While I’m not posting as regularly here, I am there, and would love to become Instagram friends. Haha

Is that a thing?

Anyway, you can find me here

So yeah! That’s the update!!

More to come, but for now, tell me what you’ve been doing! 

Summer June (and July) Update

Hello Dearies!

Let’s catch up!

How have you been?

Are your kids on summer break?

Are you taking any vacations?

Fill me in on everything.

As for things here, it’s been busy in the B-Love household!

Here’s a quick look at random and (not so) noteworthy things:

Home Improvement
Since we’re not in the throes of football season, we have a little time on our hands during the spring and summer weekends.

We decided to undertake some of the many projects we’d been putting off, pacing ourselves over the spring and summer months to get lots accomplished without burning ourselves out on the first project and never accomplishing anything.

Because we’re totally prone to procrastinate.

Well, mostly Will. Never me. (Haha)

We’ve redone our closet, done major yard work, and restarted our Aerogardens. We’ve got some more projects lined up this summer so here’s to keeping the momentum!

Hello there baby kale!

Oh and the Aerogarden? I’m growing kale and it’s the best decision I’ve made with this thing! I use greens everyday for my morning smoothie and it’s thrilling (yes, thrilling) to get to pluck my own leaves from my own garden.

Oh and since we’re still talking home stuff we had another snake sighting.

My house is officially for sale

Pretty sure we’re officially selling the house now. 😂

Softball is in Full Swing!
Well, actually, it’s kind of winding down.

Spring ball was lots of fun for Will. I didn’t go to several games because many started at 9:30.

As a complete granny, 9:30 is past my week night curfew.

I’m sure you don’t understand.

Summer ball is around the corner, and I know Will is playing. He’s cute because he’s pretending to be somewhat on the fence about playing- but we both know he totally is.

Funny story.

Will plays coed softball and they’re always short girls. You have to have a certain amount of girls present in order to play.

One week they were short, as usual. They were desperate and it was a few minutes before the game.

I felt them staring me down, contemplating how they could legally physically drag me through the dirt and lay me in the outfield as their token final required girl.

I felt my body begin to tense as they approached.

Oh- and as a side note, incase you’re wondering why I dreaded the thought of playing?

It’s because I don’t play.

I’m a wilty flower.

No concept of sports.

Do I need to remind you I HATE BEING HOT?

Also, I have complete hands like pans.

You’d find me ducking to avoid the ball rather than diving to catch one.

I’m that girl.

Picking flowers in the outfield.

Afraid to get dirty.

No concept of batting or catching.

Please, for the love of God, don’t make me play!

Anyway, they approached me and another girl beside me I knew with the dreaded request.

A daughter of one of the players was sitting with us. A big tomboy and softball fanatic herself. She looked at them and said, “ She’s not going to play! She’s too pretty to play!”

I’m pretty positive that was not a complement, but she was right- I was NOT going to play.

I do, however, go and show my support. That counts for something, right?

Curly-Q
34 years into life I decided to master the curling iron.

I used one occasionally “back in the day,” but for the last 13 years or so only used a straightener to curl my hair.

Yes, I realize it sounds counter intuitive.

Anyway I did tons of research and ended up with a regular old gold Hot Tools one inch barrel curling iron.

It’s fantastic, and super affordable. Plus my stylist said it was a good choice. So yeah! Mid-30s and curling my hair with an actual device made to do just that. Go figure!

Wherein I rave about grocery store food
I went to Boston last month for work. Aside from one night, all my dinners came from the Wegmans deli.

Yep, the local grocery store.

If you have a Wegmans, you get it. If you don’t, you probably just think I’m weird.

All About That BOD
Are any of you guys Beachbody On Demand subscribers?

I signed up for the free 14 day trial to participate in Shaun-T with my blogger friend/Beachbody Coach, Erin.

It was so much stinkin’ fun! Well...fun if you enjoy being miserable and sweating your butt off during workouts, that is. Haha

I still have my gym membership but workout still home so much these days and could easily see myself buying a year subscription to it.

It’s got something for everyone and content is always updated which is good too. Definitely a win!

Other randomness
*We took an impromptu trip to Tulsa this month just to eat lunch at this delicious Mexican restaurant we enjoy.

We’re old fogies, so to up and decide at 10:00 on a Saturday that we’d go up there was spontaneous and fun. Haha

*We finished Fraiser for the second time and are back to The Andy Griffith Show.

Yes, real life. Black and white and all. We mostly only watch one a night as a “filler” with all our shows on break.

What I love most about watching Andy is that Will grew up watching them and knows so many of them. It’s so cute and reminds me what an oak tree he is.

*Amazon Prime music had pretty much been the best thing that’s happened to me.

In terms of music, that is.

I have the unpaid Spotify version which is nice, but I love Amazon because you can skip as many songs as you want- and no adds. The only downer is their selection is more limited than Spotify.  But.No.Adds.And.Unlimited.Skips

*Mason jar salads have changed my life. I realize I’m about four years late to the party but…
Wherein I become obsessed with food in mason jars
Known to occasionally use Pinterest

Good old Jimmy continues to kick my tail, & other related things

Guys, it’s JUNE and I just now reached chapter 5 in my study of James.

This book…

When I first felt the tug to choose it as my 2017 study, I honestly didn’t think there’d be much new to glean.

You know, since I’m so perfect. Ha!

I’ve allowed myself days upon days to sit in some of these passages, digging deep and really meditating on just how much I needed to read the words before me.

I’ve been so convicted over how I approach my life, how I speak, how I see others, and more.

If you want to be humbled in virtually every major aspect of your personal and social life, study James. I say it jokingly, but also seriously.

Wherein I started this in June and now it’s July. Ha!

Other randomness to catch you up:

So I started typing this last month and am already behind. 😊 Layla turns (or turned depending on when I get this up!) 5 on the 5th, so I’m pretty much dead she’s already a kindergartner.

Fireworks with my favorite gal

Layla turns 5

And- P is prego again! 😍😍😍 Real life.  Another girl too. Watch our world!

I took off a few days for the 4th and while I worked, it was still nice just to be home. We also made another quick trip to Tulsa to eat dinner at a place we enjoy. Crazy kids!

I signed up to be on our neighborhood welcome committee which I think will be a good thing, right?

So yeah- a huge, giant, slightly random and boring update.

It was necessary.

More to come- I promise.

Until then, I’m off to figure out how I can legitimately make s’mores fit into macros the rest of summer…
Binge smore-ing

Thursday Things, 21 May 2015

The death of me.
I opened a Pinterest account last week.

I’d been fighting it for years, but at the (persistent) nudging of my sister, I opened an account.

I’m still fighting it (I only have a couple pins- sent by my sister), but I’m sure I’ll be a pinning pro before long.

(HELP!)

If you are a pinning pro, feel free to add me. I’m found at TheBloveLife.

Saturday’s Treat Meal

Will and I got Freddy’s to go Saturday night before the bad weather hit.

I ate their veggie burger sans “Freddy’s sauce” and thought it was delicious!

I got fries too.

I pretty sure I was stress eating (bad weather= burger & fries), nonetheless it was pretty darn good.

The “Dad Bod”

Let’s discuss the latest discussion to sweep the Internet-:

The Dad Bod

I know there are tons of opinions out there, and I have to know- what do you think?

This sermon on loving the Church

It kind of ties into what I was saying Friday. It’s number three- Unity

The Fog

I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ll say it again. I’m a huge perfume hoarder.

It’s a problem, really.

I don’t always like to use my “nice” (read: expensive) stuff for everyday at work. I’d rather save it for dates with Will.

We both needed new “everyday” type perfume/cologne, so I did some quick looking and turns out Walgreens is currently having a half price sale on their knockoff brands!

The idea of two for the price of one was too good to pass up, so we spent about 15 minutes in their fragrance aisle spraying and testing a variety of fragrances. Some good, some not so good.

We both completely fogged the joint and had headaches from all the various smell combining. Haha

We each bought two, and spent less than $25. Real life. I find mine smells just as good, but the staying power is weaker. Other than that, I consider the outing a success!

The itsy bitsy huge, numerous spiders

We’ve gotten about two feet of rain over the last 10 days.

Real life.

Apparently large quantities of rain flush spiders from their dwellings and often indoors for shelter.

That means they’re freaking EVERYWHERE.

Guys. I’m not kidding. In the span of five minutes last Sunday we found three in various locations.

The bad news is, we have about a million chances for rain this week.

The good news is, I’m having Will barricade us in with lots of bug spray.

The super long one
Today I started a five day vacation! Woo hoo! Memorial Day weekend fell on my usual Friday off, so I added Thursday to the mix and created a lovely recipe for relaxation!

The days quickly filled with various events and outings, but I’m thankful for the time off and hope to enjoy myself, and even clean out our closet.

Party Time, Excellent!

Guys. I had the weirdest dream ever a couple nights ago.

I was in a vehicle with a lady I barely know from work (seriously- hardly know this woman), and we were chatting it up like we had been longtime pals.

Will strolled up and stood outside the window and talked about how happy he was we were talking (I can’t remember what it was about).

Then.

Then

He started talking all crazy. Saying stuff like “Party time! Ex-cell-ent!” In a total Cali voice.

Not kidding.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, we kept talking and at some point in the conversation he says something weird and then says some odd word I’d never heard him say before and made a weird gesture.

What the heck!?

I remember being totally confused in the dream.

Thankfully, my alarm clock woke me so I didn’t have to endure the uncharacteristic oddities of my husband.

As I tried to dissect what just occurred, it hit me.

I was dreaming my husband was part of Wayne’s World and mimicking their words and actions.

(WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME AND WHAT DOES THIS MEAN!?)

Weirdest part about it?

Im pretty sure I only saw the movie once… Over twenty years ago.

Psychedelic dreams.

Should I get a pregnancy test?

In an instant
On Memorial Day 2008, Will and I flew into Oklahoma City to make our lives here after three years of life in Kuwait.

It feels just like yesterday, and sometimes it makes my heart a little sad.

That’s it for today, friends. Check in tomorrow. For now, I’m going to enjoy my day off! 

Thursday Things, 2 April 2015

Peachy Keen
My mom visited my grandparents last week and brought home the most out of this world homemade peach preserves.

I’m dead over this stuff.

I got a small little glass jar, and then a big mason jar. The little glass jar is completely empty. With the exception of a tablespoon my dad had, I killed the entire jar on my own.

I suppose I should have just taken a picture of a spoon in the jar for my Tuesday post?

Since we’re telling secrets about junk food...

I had french fries for lunch Monday.

Real life.

And yes, I did take a picture for posterity. You’ll see it next Tuesday.

We took a quick trip to El Reno, Oklahoma. El Reno is famous for their onion burgers and has been highlighted on national TV.

I didn’t have any healthy options (none at all). Sometimes I’ll forgo eating until later, but I was famished and desperate times call for desperate measures.

We cleaned the office

I shared pictures of our empty office on Monday, but what you did not see was the before state.

It was awful.

With lots of hard work and lots and lots of shredding (so much shredding!), the office is actually serving its full purpose.
Office overhaul

It needs some decorations, but I’m not too worried about that right now. I’m just thankful it’s not covered in stacks of paper and junk!

Oh the treasures we found…

I am so incredibly pumped for Easter weekend!

For lots of reasons.

First, I’ve never worked anywhere that had Good Friday off, so tomorrow will be a special treat.

Two, I have lots of things planned.

Normally that would stress me out a little, but I’m pacing myself and am going to try my best not to freak out if the house isn’t perfect or if the laundry doesn’t get done.

Three, I’m excited about multiple family and friends outings.

Will’s family on Friday, a special friend on Saturday, and brunch with my family Sunday. Wee!

Four, Easter brunch. I pretty much need to plan my entire macro and caloric needs around this meal. You’d die over the stuff we’re making.

Oh, and Easter candy.

It’s pretty much the best candy EVER. 

White Reece’s eggs? Dead.

Cadbury chocolate? Dead.

The Cadbury crunchy chocolate eggs? Dead.

Starburst jelly beans? Dead.

Pretty much all the Easter candy.

Five, early Easter service.

We usually go on Saturday to free up space for big Sunday crowds and I’m looking forward to it.

So yeah, yay Easter weekend!

The Break-up

I broke up with my phone and social media over Lent and it was the best.decision.ever.

There were a few important things I missed, like details about our friend in the hospital, but God intervened without Facebook (gasp 😊) and we found out anyway.

It was such a nice break and quieted my mind. 

April Fools

Did you prank anyone?

I’m old and boring and did not fool anyone this year.

My favorite one was when P took a pregnancy test for me when she was pregnant with Layla so I could fool Will.

Good times.

April Showers

We had our first bout of bad weather last week and thankfully came through unscathed.

I totally wish we could fast forward from March to June and skip storm season. I hate it!

Thankfully we have a storm shelter I intend to overuse.

Will, God love him, is the guy standing outside watching everything roll in at a distance. I pretty much have to force him in there with me.

Crazy.

Let’s end on a happy note

Check out Rocky.
Dad's little helper. That face! 😂

That face.😂

He looks so happy, right?

Will did some major dirt work in our yard a few weeks ago and snapped this picture of Rocky helping.

I love that dog.

That’s it for now! Check in tomorrow for Good Friday. 

Thursday Things, 26 Feb 15

I’m kind of going mildly crazy over Qdoba’s gumbo.

I love it with brown rice and veggies. So good for fast-ish food.

Sooo in the very near future we need to discuss my weird daily rituals for getting around each morning.

Today, however, we’ll just discuss the fact that Will often knows me better than I know myself.

He got me an early birthday present a couple weeks ago:

Early birthday present
The Eden Pure Bathroom Heater

This thing.

Perfection.

Will’s parents bought us our first Eden Pure space heater when we first moved back to the US.

We were used to much milder winters back then, and the Eden Pure was fantastic when the frigid air hit.

We ended up buying two more for the rest of our house.

This little thing, though, not only heats but also cools!

Which is perfect for me.

Like a space heater, but a space cooler...except both.

I pretty much always have a fan on when I get ready, even in the dead of winter.

I love the versatility of this thing and the fact that it’s like having an actual AC in the bathroom instead of just a fan.

I feel quite spoiled. Does my husband know me or what!?

Today’s TBT comes courtesy of a slide show I put together for P’s birthday.

Check out these gems.

Brittny FLint-14 yrs; Carissa-7 yrs playing on the trampoline

Brittny & Carissa at hockey game in OKC

Britt & Carissa-polka dots anyone

We’ve been stung

We recorded the new series Scorpion when it first aired, but never watched it until this week.

We’re pretty into it. Anyone else watching?

It’s no substitute for Parenthood, obviously, but at least it’s something new to try. 

I can’t wait until the cancel it and break my heart just like they do with every other show EVER.

Trucked

Will is a truck guy.

Always had been, always will be.

In fact, I realized just how badly he wanted to marry me way back in 2003 when he sold his beautiful GMC so he could free up money for our condo.

Last year we decided 2015 was the year to sell the truck, but it hit Will harder than I thought it would, which makes me feel sad!

Sure the truck was old and paint was starting to oxidize, but he took care of that thing like it was brand new. He’s a truck guy, after all.

We’ve been without it a week, and poor Will is already having withdrawals. We won’t be without one forever, but I know however long will probably feel too long!

Snow day morning

Remember last week’s whining about wanting a snow day?

Well, we got snow this week. Enough for a snow morning. We got to go on two hours late, but no work from home snow day.

I did, however, get 9 hours of sleep. Fantastic!

A hot date

I think Will and I are going to take Layla on a date this weekend.

For the whole frozen yogurt experience.

You know, the place where you build you own?

Anyway, history shows Layla will build her own and eat half.

Maybe.

Maybe less.

Either way, there’s a large portion of deliciousness, complete with incredibly unhealthy toppings- all the ones I want but never pick.

I think you know where I’m going with this, ya’ll…

Alright, that’s all for now. Anything you care to share?

The Birthday Weekend & Look Ahead

High...

Friday selfie

It's got spinach, so it's healthy, right?

Time for a birthday party

Time for a birthday party

Weekend things

Weekend things

Snuggle bug

Backseat driver

Weekly blood pressure checks for Heart Month (yeah, yeah, it’s high. What do they expect when you take it at work!?), Birthday party fun, lunch out with my sweetie, workouts, house stuff, food prep, an excellent message at church, dinner with my parents, movie marathon with Will (The Karate Kid 1 and 2 😊), and a little indulging.

A wonderful weekend of fun.

Check in this week for

-Tuesday Things
-The Workout Pants Debate
-February Ipsy
And more!

We’re getting snow today in the metro, but nothing to write home about. So much for my snow day! smile

Here’s to a good week and blessings. Check in tomorrow!

Christmas Things

Wrapping party and a rocky photobomb

It's about to get real.

Christmas beauty

Christmas things

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas

Family ❤️

Merry Christmas!

O Christmas tree

Christmas light fun

Something Will instantly regretted.

Please disregard the munchkin box in the background...

I sure hope you had a wonderful Christmas weekend.

We did. It was so very peaceful and full of good memories.

We spent most of the day with my family Christmas Eve, and much of Christmas day with Will’s family.

I’m off this week and am so very excited about it.

Check in this week for fun.

Have a good day! ❤️

All Things Christmas 2014

Let’s talk Christmas stuff today.

About how I love Christmas and all the trappings. From the commercials, to the stores, to the cookies at my parent’s house, the candlelight services, advent studies, and everything in between.

We all have family traditions and favorites and I would LOVE to hear yours!

Feel free to share below in the “share the love” section.

We’ve had lots of traditions over the years.

Some have stuck, some have changed, and some have only recently been adopted.

I would love to do a Christmas post devoted to aaallll the Christmas things, but today’s post is devoted only to all things Christmas for 2014.

Which will be enough.

We have a few things coming up this month that I’m very much looking forward to, and feel the need to share on the blog.

Sorry. smile

Because of all these changes I keep talking about (and not sharing!), Will and I opted to minimize Christmas stress wherever possible.

That meant we opted not to go to our company Christmas parties. While super fun (I enjoy them way more than Will), our time is valuable and important so I opted to give that one up in favor of more time with family (and taking care of all these changes that I keep talking about but not talking about).

We also opted to do a joint Christmas present early next year.

We’ve always done joint Christmas presents with each other, and I love that we do this instead of buying each other presents.

Will is impossible to buy for.

Even with no Christmas parties, there’s still lots of fun in store.

We are attending The Nutcracker with my parents this year!

Funny side story.

I think I realized just how much Will liked me back in 2002 when he skipped an OU game to take me to The Nutcracker and acted like it was no big deal.

We both know it was a big deal.

That guy bleeds Crimson and cream!

Anyway, we’re going again, 12 years later, and I’m looking forward to it.

We will also enjoy some of the gorgeous lights and decorations downtown OKC.

We also love going to the movies this time of year.

I’m the annoying person that whips out my not-so-quiet carrot sticks and proceeds to eat them at the worst ever time.

During quiet scenes when you need to pay attention.

All of a sudden you hear, “Snap! Crunch. Crunch.Crunch.”

I’m sorry.

I don’t mean to eat at the worst times, but it often happens.

Anyway, Will isn’t a carrot stick smuggler.

He’s all about the movie theater popcorn.

Understandably.

It’s delicious.

Every Christmas, our theatre has deals on refillable drink cups and popcorn buckets you can buy and use for the following year.

It’s a must-do in the B-Love house, so we’ll be making a stop to the theatre at some point so Will can buy his tub.

Speaking of movies, here’s a fun fact.

My sweet Will had never seen It’s a Wonderful Life in its entirety until just a few years ago.

Real life.

Now it’s among his top favorite movies.

Naturally.

That’s on the to do list, too.

Oh, and while we’re at it, if you haven’t seen it, you should! 

Now.

As for Christmas music this year, I typically alternate between Pandora’s Christmas Radio and their Christmas Choral Classic stations.

Something about Christmas makes me adore the choral classics. I can rock around the Christmas tree with the best of them (um, and I totally do), but I can’t beat a beautiful rendition of my favorite Christmas hymns.

My family also had a yearly tradition of going out to eat together sometime the week of Christmas, followed by a huge tour of Christmas lights!

There are some fantastic public displays in OKC, as well as in neighborhoods. We hit them all.

Now that we’re responsible old, P and I opted to simply do a $20 stocking challenge for each other’s gifts this year.

Oddly enough, I had a blast with it! I think this will be a new tradition. You might be surprised at the good stuff you can get with only $20.

My mom kills me with baked goods.

This is a yearly tradition, however this year I hope to take some time while I’m off to help bake.

You know, seeing as how all I usually contribute is my appetite for delicious Christmas cookies.

Layla has been my mom’s helper this week, and I can only hope to live up to her superior stirring (and testing!) skills.

Speaking of Layla, can I please just tell you how much fun she’s been, especially this time of year!?

That is all.

While Will and I are ever-mindful of advent, we’ve never really done anything on our own for it aside from church stuff.

This year I bought candles to light for each week and have been doing an advent study. I have been so very blessed by it.

It’s a story I’ve read a million times, but when I quiet myself and really think on God’s love for humanity and how I need to love others, it reminds me why I even put up my dang decorations in the first place.

To celebrate Him.

If you haven’t done an advent study, I would definitely encourage you to do so. It’s easy to get caught up in the commercialism of Christmas (because, let’s face it, it’s kind of wonderful).

However, I cannot express the value of quieting yourself amidst the hustle and bustle to really contemplate the meaning of Christmas and the beauty of its simplicity.

I don’t know about you, but that simplicity can get drowned out by the tissue paper, cookies, movies, and Pandora music.

Oh friends, it probably clear to see I truly do find Christmas to be the most wonderful time of the year!

Thanks for letting me share some of the things I’m looking forward to this year.

I would absolutely love to hear some of the things you’re excited about this year. Share away! ❤️

A Week of Thankfulness: Family

Like many of you, I have much to be thankful for.

Today’s post is all about my family.

Let’s start with Will’s family.

Oh man, guys. I married into a good family.

A godly family.

A family full of care, and warmth, and kindness, and goodness.

I’m often overwhelmed at the graciousness of Will’s family, especially his grandparents.

Celebrating 65 years. ❤️

I love them dearly, as my own.

They are most certainly some of the best people I’ve ever met in my whole life.

I love their spunk and godly character, and pray the Lord blesses us with their same love and energy toward others one day.

Will’s parents are also great. I am thankful for their hearts and how involved they both were and are in Will’s life. They raised a terrific kid, who has grown into a terrific man.

I’m also thankful for the relationship Will has with his dad, too. They are very close and I’m thankful we are close enough for them to see each other fairly often.

img767

(That picture is hilarious!)

I’m also thankful for Will’s brother and his wife, as well as the rest of Will’s extended family. I enjoy Thanksgiving and Christmas and getting to see everyone.

Christmas 2013!

Now my family.

My parents and I live on the same street.

Cheesecake Factory!

It’s wonderful.

I am so thankful to have them so close, and know they’re always there.

I can’t imagine ever being too far from them.

I have an entire lifetime worth of memories I could share so you would know how special my family is.

Today, however, I will simply say I’m thankful for how hard they worked and how much they encouraged me.

I’m thankful for my dad, a veteran, that taught me the importance of patriotism and diligence.

I’m thankful for all the places we got to travel and see, far more than most.

Carissa-3 years; Brittny-10 years at the Eiffel Tower in Paris - Copy

I’m thankful for my mom. We were blessed enough to have a stay at home mom, but it’s deceiving to say that because she was always doing something for our family to take care of us.

I’m thankful they took us to church every time the doors were open. So thankful.

I’m thankful for the opportunities they gave me, and the many sacrifices they made that I probably didn’t even know about.

I have wonderful parents, and while Will and I do not have aspirations of having kids, I do hope one day we can show this same love to needy kids or in some other form of ministry. 

Then there’s P.

Brittny & Carissa-Christmas 1990

And Layla.

Beyond blessed by this smiley gal

My huge love for these girls is definitely no secret.

In fact, P got pregnant during my blogging hiatus. I never got to share the story of how she and I Facetimed the November Friday morning when she took the pregnancy test that announced Layla’s arrival.

If I told you the days and weeks after that FaceTime session were easy for P, I’d be lying.

But now, a few years removed, I can tell you how thankful I am for those moments and for P’s return home.

So thankful to have here nearby. So thankful to watch the birth of Layla, and to cut her umbilical cord.

So thankful to get to be part of their lives and to watch Layla grow up.

Such love.

I’m also so thankful for my extended family. I have such wonderful memories of visiting them growing up. I used to see them so much more often than I do as a grown-up, which means I need to make time to visit!

I was able to spend last Thanksgiving with my mom’s side of the family, and it was wonderful. I’m so glad I was able to go.

Layla and grandma

Now Will.

Last, but certainly I not least.

Oh man did I marry up or what?

Will & Brittny-Feb 2003

So often I hear people talk about how they plan to start a family in “x” years. Obviously, I fully comprehend what that means. However, I also find myself thinking about my own family.

Although perhaps people see Will and I as a couple that never decided to start a family, I say we started a family ten years ago when we got married.

Will is my family.

Future Sooner anchors

I am so thankful for his wisdom and leadership.

He is unlike anyone I’ve ever met.

Chilly Willy OU-OSU

I’m thankful for the blessings given to us, and praying the Lord will remind me of the many things I am thankful for as we head into a year of changes and challenges.

I only scratched the surface.I have such an abundance of thanks to go around.

I know there are those who may not feel so thankful for their families today, and I pray for healed hearts. I pray for peace. I pray for change. Most of all, I pray for a church family that can come alongside these and love them as their own.

Day one down. Check in tomorrow for a Work it Out Wednesday of thanks. ❤️

The Snowy One & Look Ahead

Oh my,where do I even start!?

You know how your kids get overwhelmed with glee about things and string incoherent sentences about various elements regarding each excitable topic!?

Yeah, that’s me.

Sure, it’s Monday, but next week is Thanksgiving!

We just have to tackle this giant and challenging week ahead of us to get to a short week of family, relaxation, ridiculously delicious food, and sweet bliss.

Whew.

Can we please get excited!?

Thanks.

Sooo I want to tell you about how much it snowed.

In Oklahoma.

In November (because it never happens).

However I think we should start with Friday and lead up to the white stuff.

Friday.

Oh my stars.

So, Will is a huge Garth Brooks fan.

Like super big man crush.

Back in the 90s my guy had boots, tight jeans, and a fancy cowboy hat.

Um he even had a license plate cover that said “Kountry.”

With a K.

Real life.

Thank God the good Lord intercepted our paths after this phase.

Anyway, while the boots and hat have been retired, his life for Garth stuck.

You may know he is touring again. He will be in Tulsa in January, and tickets went on sale Friday morning.

They sold out in minutes, but Will managed to score tickets.

Incase your wondering, he’s happy in a scary way right now.

Like, I want him to dial it back a little.

Anyway, that’s how Friday started.

Friday night was busy. We got our cars detailed last week, so we had to rush to the shop to pick them up before they closed. Then it was off to run a few more errands.

The rest of the evening was quiet and relaxing.

Saturday was tons o fun! Will and his friends scheduled a big paintball outing weeks ago, so that’s what he did almost all day.

Check out this mean mug.

Paintball face

I had big plans for the day, too.

I did a crazy leg circuit complete with cardio, too.

After getting cleaned up, I headed to my sister’s house to make chocolate chip pumpkin pancakes with her and Layla!

Only… I mis-measured one of the ingredients, which led to super thick pancakes that didn’t flip easily.

Pumpkin pancake massacre

Or at all.

Sooo we made delicious muffins instead!

So so so good.

The save: delicious pumpkin muffins

I spent the rest of the morning hanging out there and enjoying time with the girls I love.

Beyond blessed by this smiley gal

I came home early that afternoon and did laundry and a few other not so exciting chores.

Will got home, grinning from ear to ear. It’s an understatement to say he had a good time. He had a blast!

He was tired from his strenuous day dodging paintballs, so we stayed in and watched some college football.

We watched the news and knew snow was in the forecast, so we decided to sleep in and go to a later church service, or do church online if it looked like it was going to be slick.

I set my alarm for 6:30 to get up and workout.

Yeah… I didn’t get up until 8:30!

It’s been a long time since I’ve slept so late, but it felt wonderful.

We tuned on the TV to catch the weather and decided to stay in for the day.

Oh my, it was fantastic.

Snow day! ❄️

Sure, I’d get stir crazy if I had to do it for several days, but snow days are the bees knees in my book.

The only thing better would have been if work was cancelled today smile

We watched church service online and spent the rest of the day completely nesting. I made a giant lot of soup for the week, and we just hung out and were “forced” to relax. I’ll take it!

I even sneaked in a workout at home, leaving me feeling quite accomplished. Haha

So now we are back to Monday. A long week, and I have a full plate.

The good news is that I’ve got some fun stuff lined up.

Here’s a look at what’s ahead this week:

Tuesday Things
Thanksgiving Prep Workout
November Ipsy
Ezra Ten (the last chapter!)

Here’s to a good day and happy thoughts for next week! 

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About

brittny I'm B-Love. Lover of God, my husband Will, my doggies, OU football, weight training, plyometrics healthy eating (mostly!), peanut butter, and all things health related. Buckle up and get ready for my constant embarrassing moments, health and fitness tips,and my effort to rely on Christ while living life in the real world. Follow me on Feedly! Sign up for monthly emails at blove@theblovelife.com!


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