October 23, 2014

Top Ten Trader Joe's Shopping List for October

I have been meaning to get this list together for some time but every time I go to Trader Joe's I forget to take pictures.  Let's be honest that place is a little overwhelming, there are so many different products!  I have read lists about the top products and then I never know where to find them.  These are some of my tried and true favorites........like the ones I buy on repeat.  Don't get me wrong there are a few products that have definitely gone back.  Do you know that about their return policy?  You can take anything back!  I've even brought my receipt and told them I didn't like something and they just take it off.  Fabulous customer service.

Here is my Top Ten List for Trader Joe's Products.  First let's start with the staples.

Cold Brew Coffee

This is seriously the best cold brew concentrate I've found so far.  I mix about 1/4 cold brew over ice with 1/2 water and then 1/4 almond milk in a large Tervis tumbler.  The adding of the water is crucial otherwise it's super strong.  I don't even need to add sweetener it is that good.  They have been keeping this by the coffee and tea section right where they hand out samples in the back of the store.

Cluster Cereal

I have to limit my consumption with this cereal because I can pretty much eat the whole box in one sitting.  I mix it with my boring Go Lean and that helps with the longevity of the box.  I pretty much buy this every time I go.

Sparkling Pinot Grigio

I also buy this every time I go.  It has just the tiniest bit of sparkle to it.  It is a very light white that isn't sweet and pairs really well with food.  Definitely one of my top 3 buys!

Pizza Veggie Burgers

True story I could never get Mark to get a veggie burger until these.  They are so good and are perfect over a salad, in a sandwich or when you are exhausted and it's late they are great for dinner.  Mark eats these a lot when he gets back from softball late.  Find them in the freezer section next to all these frozen burgers.

Wild Blueberry Vanilla Chèvre Fresh Goat Cheese

Side note that is not my hand.....they were out when I went......just wanted to clarify.  This is straight up addicting.  It is a little sweet but a little goes a long way.  I usually put it over these crackers with that above sparkling pinot.....that is a perfect dinner in my mind!

Cookie Butter

I honestly try not to buy it because it's so good you can eat it out of the jar with a butter knife....when all your spoons are dirty.  I mean look they were basically out when I went.  I also really like their almond butter and it's the most affordable price around.  Even though I think they recently just brought it back after being recalled.....so may lay off that for a little while.

The Chicken and Tuna Salad

We get this a lot on the weekends for a quick lunch either over salad or on bread with avocado and sriracha drizzled over the top.  I also really like their canned tuna I get this one.  I usually mix the canned tuna with half salsa and a little mayo, lots of flavor and cuts back on the mayo calories.

Beef Ravioli

Really quick dinner to have on hand.  I usually have these with a salad and the package feeds the two of us.  It is all beef and no pork additives.  I haven't bought the pumpkin ravioli yet.....still can't figure out what to put on top of it yet.  Find these to the left of the tuna/chicken salad in the refrigerator section.

Whole What Pizza Dough

Another quick dinner.  Let it sit out for 30 minutes out of the fridge.  Press it out, add sauce, cheese and load it up with veggies. Such a healthier option than ordering pizza.  Also found right near the ravioli in the refrigerator section

Kale Chips

I really wish this bag was bigger and they weren't so dang expensive.  I have tried making kale chips on my own but they still don't compare to these!

Seasonable Mentions.....

Pumpkin Ice Cream

Yes it really is that good.

These Pita Crisps

Dark Chocolate Speculoos Cookie Butter Cups

This is why I love the store.  The last time I was there I was eyeing them at checkout and I simply stated to the checkout girl "I really want to try those but I don't trust myself with the whole thing".  She grabbed them and opened them and was like "let's try them!"  Naturally they were amazing and as I walked out she took a large handful and threw them in my bag.  I mean what grocery store does that?  So naturally the next time I went back I bought them.

As far as the frozen meals.....I haven't really fallen in love with very many of the frozen dinners.  A lot of the chicken dishes use dark meat and I'm not down with that.  The great news is you can take back those receipts and they will give you cash back for the things you didn't like!  I also love getting their peppers and Brussels sprouts, so much cheaper than my local Publix.  

What are some of your favorite Trader Joe's buys and where do you find them in the store?  I also love getting their flowers. Super affordable and add such a cheery pop of color!  This is one of my current lists.  I'll keep adding to it if y'all are interested in hearing more of my favorites!  I can also make an avoid list.....or a certain someone said he would have "no problem coming up with that one".......Oh and for all my local Tampa peeps the best time to go when there is absolutely no parking issues is Wednesday at 5pm.  Don't ask me why but seriously it is like a ghost time every time I head there around that time!  Have a fabulous day!!!  xoxoxo

October 22, 2014

Wedding Updates & Save the Dates with Minted!!!

February 20th y'all we are officially 4 months away.  I am so excited I'm not going to lie.  I have been with the help of my mother and bridesmaids been checking things off the list.  My bridal shower is coming up and the bachelorette party in Miami is planned. I found the best dress for that!

So far you've heard the engagement story.

Seen the venue.

Engagement pictures are done!

Had a fabulous engagement party thrown by my aunt.

I have so many things check off the list including my dress and FINALLY picked the bridesmaids dresses.  I swear that was harder than finding my dress (which was actually a dream to find).

The next thing on my task was our Save the Dates.  I did a lot of research and found Minted had the best reviews.  Mark was really set on magnets and I couldn't agree more.  I still have all the magnets on my fridge from Weddings over the past few years. Since Mark and I both went to Florida and the majority of our guest list we knew from Florida the picture we picked out was pretty special to us.

I cannot speak enough praises about Minted.  They have an address book that you put all your contacts into aka you have to make your guest list and get that headcount early.  The best part is they print the addresses on the front of the envelopes for FREE.  One less thing you have to worry about.  There was so many styles and formats to choose from with the Save the Dates magnets.  I found the style I liked, uploaded my picture from our engagement session and played around with the font placement.  Once I got it where I liked the proof was sent over and their design team spiffed it all up and sent it back for final approval.  I cannot be happier with the finished product!

They are a 4 x 6 magnet, the same size as a standard picture.  The magnets are heavy and the quality of the picture and writing on them was excellent.  I was blown away with how they came out.  I got my mother a stamp from etsy with their return address. It all came together beautifully.

How the addresses come printed (I had to white out the full address but you get the idea).  The envelopes were thick card stock.

How the magnet sat inside the envelope

Finally the Save the Date!

What do y'all think?  That was on the 50 yard line of the Swamp.  I just wish the season was turning out a little differently!

I can't tell you enough how pleased I was with the Save the Dates.  I would recommend Minted to anyone if you have been looking at the various sites!  If you have any questions definitely shoot me an email!  I love sharing all the fun Wedding updates with y'all!  Let me know what you think!  xoxoxo

October 21, 2014

Things I'm Digging Lately - Top 5 List

This whole getting darker earlier thing is really starting to cramp my style.  I usually get so much done after work but when it's dark out when I leave teaching Barre all I want to do is curl up on the couch and finally watch all the episodes of Homeland we have saved on the DVR.  Does anyone else feel like that?  I wanted to share a few of my new favorite gems with you!  I have been really trying to limit my spending so these are tried and true favs that made it past the potential returns.

The Best Pair of Underwear

First I don't know if y'all remember my quest to find the best pair of underwear.  Victoria Secret's quality is just not there anymore if you ask me.  I finally stumbled upon the holy grail of underwear and I pretty much have bought them in multiples of every color.  It from DKNY it is called the signature skin line.

They are super light, has no seams (aka no panty lines) and the butt area stays perfectly in place without slipping or rolling.  They have been washed many times and have held up really well.  I finally feel like I found the perfect underwear.  I got mine from Bare Necessities.  They currently have them 3 for $30 with any extra 20% off with the code BPP20.  Check them out here.  I got them in a size medium if you need a reference point.  Macy's also carries them here.

These Fall Polishes

One of my things on the to do list this weekend was to spend more than 3 minutes on my nails.  I bought a fancy foot scrub thing and did my own little spa mani/pedi.  Topped it off with two of my favorite Fall polishes.  The nail color Don't Mess With Opi has such a great rich pigment and the toe color I Have A Herring Problem (I spared you those pics) is the most perfect grey with just tiny micro flecks of gold that catch the light.  Topped off with my favorite Butter topcoat that doesn't smell like paint thinner like my other kind of scary quick drying top coats.

The Ultimate Fall Uniform

I pretty much have not taken off these Burgundy Tieks since I got them.  You know I am a self proclaimed F21 shopper.  I like the deals and dupes however these ballet flats are the real deal.  If you are on your feet all day long like I am do yourself and favor and finally pull the trigger.  I consider them part of my health and wellness (see I can spin anything).  They have the most cushioned insole and sneaker like bottoms.  I have bought yosi ballet flats and they are good but do not hold a candle to these.  I finally convinced my sister to get a pair and she keeps on telling me she can't believe she waited this long.  Plus they have amazing customer service.....hand written note and all.  They fit true to size.  I'm a 9 and they fit like a glove.  I am absolutely obsessed with the greystone ones as well!

The temperature dipped into the 70's like twice here.  Time to bust out that plaid shirt.  This one has such a great fit and color.  It just sold out but also digging this one.  I got a size small for reference.

Add Some More Layered Ring Sets

I just added this set to the collection.  They stack really well and I love all the contrasting metals.  I added them to this set I got from bauble bar.

My New Favorite Mascara

I can't believe I'm even saying this but I found a mascara I like better than Benefits They're Real.  I am so impressed with this mascara.  It separates but gives thickness and fullness at the base. It makes your lashes so long they basically touched my eyebrows.  It has that same plastic/stiff applicator as they're real.  Here is the best part unlike They're Real which seriously never comes off even with Lancome eye makeup remover.  This washes off perfectly with just my regular face wash.  I am a total convert.  This is my go to dramatic mascara now.  I will not be going back!

So there you have it the top five things that I am absolutely digging and are in heavy rotation right now in my daily life.  What things have you totally been loving lately?!  Hope you are having a fabulous day!  Check back tomorrow for some exciting Wedding news and updates!!  xoxoxo

October 20, 2014

Weekending - The One Where I Got Everything Off the To Do List

Oh Monday you are so much easier to handle when one actually get's some sleep and things accomplished over the weekend! Mark had a softball tournament this whole weekend......I initially was bummed but then I got everything checked off my to do list.  We at least had nice dinners every night!  As always linking up with Biana and Meghan for their weekending linkup!

I started off checking off some Wedding things with my mother.  These aren't my exact colors but wow I never knew upgraded things such as chargers and gold rimmed wine glasses were so much!  I'll stick with the non gold ones please.  I did get the pretty chairs though.

I swung by Target they have quite the Bridal selection!  I picked up this sweet Fall hat and completed my Halloween decorations by snagging the last glitter pumpkin.  It was a dollar and so perfect!

I had dinner with my parents.  I will never get tired of this view.

I got Barre in every morning and then Mark and I went for sushi

I wore this shirt.  It's actually a new shirt I got for Barre I'm obsessed.  Also found it in white almost half off here!  Talk about from studio to street.  This necklace seriously goes with everything!

I did some sample shopping with Kelly.  I have a few new primers and foundations to kick around over this next week.  I did pick up this airbrush foundation brush.

Then I looked at some Wedding shoes.  I definitely have some front runners!  Nothing like trying on those beauties with some lulu Barre pants!

Then we eat at the cafe in Nordstroms.  Seriously those fries are worth every calorie.

Mark brought these little bad boys home.  It will be doing workouts for days because they are seriously the most addicting things!

Have you tried those yet?  How was your weekend?  Can you believe it is almost the end of October??  I can't wait to head up to Jersey to see my sister one to get all my goods I sent there (hello no tax) and two to get to experience all things Fall.  It's time for pumpkin patches and I can't wait to see the kiddos dressed up!  Hope you had a great weekend!  xoxoxo

October 17, 2014

Friday Favorites - Fall Is In Full Swing

Happy Friday!  Can I just say I am so glad this week is over!  I am absolutely looking forward to being home this weekend and doing some major catching up.  We had the tiniest glimmer of hope for Fall weather these past few days.  It has been perfect.  No humidity, cooler temps and maybe just maybe it will be tall boot wearing weather soon enough.  It's the little things right?  I got a lot accomplished this week with Wedding planning so I'm starting to feel a little less anxious about that winding down timeline. Alright enough babbling let's get into these!

Favorite Song

The first time I heard this song I loved it.  I seriously used Concrete Angel as many times as I could in spin.  I totally dig her voice. The beat takes a little bit longer to drop....right around the 2 minute mark but when it does...... Oh and the Ultra video......who wants to go right?  Such high energy!!  Gareth Emery feat Christina Novelli - Dynamite.

Favorite Recipe

I put this over whole wheat couscous......so so good!  Shrimp and Veggie Pesto Pasta full recipe here.

Favorite Workout

My at home workout roundup post is almost done and I'll have it for you next week.  You better believe this workout is on there. This 10 minute workout is crazy.  Like seriously talk about a multi tasking butt kicker.  Try it I promise you will be sweating 2 minutes in.  Popsugar Bikini-Butt Workout.

Favorite Purchase

I have been so good y'all.  Like so good.  No online purchases, no random trips to Target/TJMaxx but then I got the email from SHOPBOP with the annual friends and family sale and I have had my eye on this purse for so long.  I'm pretty much obsessed with taupe and then they had to bring out the competitive spirit in me and tell me there were only two left.  Well.....after I was done.....there was only one left.  The taupe is sold out but I also love this color.

Favorite Funnies

Straight truth

It's like totally the rule you have to start them on Monday and only Monday.

My question whenever we get an invite to a child's birthday party.....during football season.

That commercial still makes me laugh

When I've had a few adult libations and I think I'm using my indoor voice to tell a story......but apparently not

My internal thoughts when Mark asked if I could fill in for one of the girls on the coed softball team......

Pretty much how I felt when he came back from that said softball game and I was attempting to tear into a bag of cookies.....

Finally....maybe she should have just gone for the one spin and not tried to be a showoff with the double spin......on a wet runway.

Alright now it's your time linkup and share your favorites from the week and make sure to stop by all the fun peeps that have linked up!  I hope you have a great weekend!  Tell me your plans!  xoxoxo