Things I’m Loving Friday #145

Chase is officially ONE YEAR OLD today!

Chase Newborn (2)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the little man who brings me more joy than I ever thought possible! I’ll spare you the whole “I can’t believe Chase is one year old” rhetoric that I seem to be saying on repeat right now, but I am feeling a melting pot of emotions this morning as I think about the past year of my life. Let’s just say I’m a mix of teary, joyful and excited. Happy Birthday, Chase! We love you more than you could ever possibly know.

Sleeping Baby

We have Chase’s first birthday party on Saturday and I feel fortunate to have family coming in town today to celebrate his special day with us. (My mom actually arrived earlier this week and Chase knew her immediately which absolutely warmed my heart! It has been three weeks since her last visit – a short time considering my parents live in Florida – but it was wonderful to see Chase know and feel comfortable around his grandma right away!) Celebrating Chase’s first birthday is, without a doubt, what I am loving most this week, but I want to keep things consistent around here and share my usual Things I’m Loving Friday blog post with you guys where we all chat about what we’re loving most each week. Feel free to join in the fun in the comments section of this post!

Things I’m Loving Friday

  • Arranging First Birthday Party Flowers

First Birthday Party Flowers

We’re keeping party decorations for Chase’s first birthday party tomorrow fairly simple and sticking to a mix of yellow, mint green and white décor. Since the party theme is “You Are My Sunshine,” I wanted bright, summery flowers that would make everyone smile for his special day and opted for several bouquets of sunflowers from Whole Foods paired with bunches of baby’s breath. My mom and I picked them up yesterday and I arranged them when I got home using a bunch of random vases and glass jars we already had on hand. Having so many flowers around our house right now is definitely making me feel extra happy!

  • Balayage

Balayage on Natural Blonde

(Pic from my stylist’s Instagram)

I owe you guys a big thank you for introducing me to balayage. When I first expressed interest in lightening my naturally blonde hair up a bit, I told you all how I was SO nervous to color it because I was terrified that I would never be able to get my natural color back if I didn’t like it. I’ve heard how hard it can be to get back to your natural color as a blonde if you dye your hair, so I was always very apprehensive.

When you guys chimed in to tell me about balayage, my interested was immediately piqued since it sounded incredibly natural-looking and very low maintenance. The last thing I wanted as a new mom was to dye my hair and have to show up at a salon every few weeks to get it colored again. Balayage sounded perfect since it basically leaves your roots untouched and color is painted on the hair in a way that looks brighter and natural. I headed into the salon on Wednesday for a brighter color and am really happy with the results. I feel like my old self again… back before my hair seemed to get darker and darker with every day that passed.

  • Soft Shell Crabs

How To Make Soft Shell Crabs

I grew up loving soft shell crabs (we’re a big seafood family, as I’m sure you already know!), and when I saw the incredibly difficult to find crabs in the seafood case at Whole Foods earlier this month, I immediately chatted with the guy behind the counter about their availability. He assured me they would likely have them through July, so I made a mental note to grab them when my mom arrived in town as a special treat. We fried them up for dinner last night and they were SO good!

Church Bells Carrie Underwood

Ever since I started listening to Carrie Underwood’s latest album months ago, this song has been my absolute favorite on the CD. It’s so darn catchy and now that it’s on the radio I find myself worrying that it will be overplayed and my affinity for this song will fade if I hear it over and over again. Let’s hope not because right now I still find myself singing and rockin’ out every time it comes on. Carrie, you did it again!

Nike Flower Print Sneakers

I tried hard to resist purchasing these sneakers from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale last week but I couldn’t help myself! They were just too darn cute to resist! I’m glad I scooped them up when I did because a bunch of sizes are already sold out and I am loving them already. They’re incredibly comfy and the black, white and gray rose print is feminine and fun. Love them!

If your size is sold out there are still a ton of other cute shoes and sneakers on sale through the anniversary sale, so you can still scoop up something cute and trendy!

Also, for any mamas or expectant mamas out there, two different prints of my all time favorite Ju-Ju-Be diaper bag backpack are $80 off through the anniversary sale! (The navy and white ‘Navigator’ print is adorable.)

  • Around the Web

Fitness: Full Body Resistance Band Workout / Four Common Exercise Mistakes / Cable Machine Exercises To Keep Your Body Guessing 

Food: Sweet Potato Noodle Stir Fry / Roasted Salmon with Watermelon Salsa / Grilled Plantains with Brown Sugar Butter Glaze / Peanut Butter Protein Balls 

Parenting: What Was I Thinking? (<— A must read for any work-from-home/overwhelmed parents!) / How To Raise Kids Who Love To Read

Interesting Reads: Today May Be Brighter / How To Use a Bullet Journal / How To Build a Makeup Collection for Under $100

  • Friday Flashbacks

Easy Lemon Vinaigrette (A simple salad dressing made with pantry staples that tastes fantastic on a fresh spinach salad topped with strawberries, crushed almonds and goat cheese.)

Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing

Gentle Prenatal Workout (I shared this workout a year ago when I was in the thick of pregnancy discomfort but wanted a gentle workout I could do to move my body.)

Prenatal Workout - A gentle total body workout! Click for picture demos of the exercises!

Question of the Day

  • What is one thing that is making you smile this week?

Beach Legs Workout

Beach Legs Workout

Get ready to work your legs with this Beach Legs Workout! It incorporates lots of squats and lunges to target your quads, glutes and hamstrings and will make you feel the burn in only 15 minutes. Thank you to Nike for teaming up with me for this post. I hope you enjoy the workout! Last Thursday I shared my first workout post with images shot … [Continue reading...]

All About Collagen

Collagen Benefits, Uses and Why You Should Add It To Your Morning Coffee

This blog post is a reader request from a bunch of you guys all about collagen! I’m diving into the benefits of collagen, how I use it, the taste of collagen, what kind of collagen I use and results I’ve seen since I began regularly incorporating it into my diet. Last year I stumbled upon an article from the Wellness Mama when I was … [Continue reading...]

Monday Happenings + Upper Body Strength Workout

Upper Body Strength Workout

Hey, hey! How are you guys doing? I hope your Monday was a good one! I actually managed to snap pictures throughout the day yesterday in an effort to recap what a random Monday looks like around here and figured I’d share them with you today in a post that is reminiscent of the PBF days of yore when I actually had the ability to blog in real-time … [Continue reading...]

Birthday Party Crafting and Summer Fun


Well this past weekend sure passed by in a flash, huh? I’m not sure how that always seems to happen, but Saturday and Sunday need to s-l-o-w down a bit! We managed to cram our fair share of fun, productivity, relaxation and quality time with friends into the past few days and since I’m trying to get this blog post up before Chase wakes up this … [Continue reading...]