Wednesday, November 26, 2014

30 for 30

In honor of Joseph's 30th birthday, which happens to fall on Thanksgiving this year, I thought I'd do something totally sappy and list 30 things I love about the birthday boy, AKA: my husband.

Here's a bonus one: He's very photogenic. HA!

We'll call it 30 for 30, 'cause I'm original like that.

Here's 30 things I love about Joseph:

1. His smile.

2. His kind heart.

3. He's an incredible, loving father.

4. Three words: tall, dark, & handsome.

5. His sense of humor.

6. He works so hard to support our family, and never complains.

7. The way he looks in those jeans of his I love.

8. He helps with the kids, in every aspect. He's a true co-parent.

9. He's a mean diaper changer.

10. Even if he's not a huge fan of what I've cooked, he still eats it and acts like he likes it.

11. He's not afraid of a little PDA.

12. He always tells me how much he loves me.

13. He's great about giving me time to myself away from the house (and kids).

14. He remembers the small and big things.

15. He's not afraid to be a little silly.

16. His generosity and selflessness.

17. He is patient.

18. He always knows how to make me laugh.

19. He's my best friend.

20. He'll do just about anything for anyone.

21. He smells good.

22. He still likes to date me.

23. He loves me unconditionally, even with all my faults (assuming I have any, muahahaha!!).

24. He's a Bama fan!! Roll Tide!

25. He's trustworthy.

26. He does a mean Carlton dance.

27. He tolerates all my music(and singing) when we're in the car.

28. He's crazy smart.

29. He respects our marriage and our wedding vows.

30. After almost 14 years together, he's still madly in love with me. (And I am with him)

I could go on and on, but then I'd have to change the title of this post.

Happy Birthday (tomorrow) to the love of my life, baby daddy, and best friend.
Don't worry, I'm instructing Hudson to inform everyone that you're now THIRTY just like you did for my 30th. Payback, ya know. ;)

Love you to the moon and back!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Cover 'em Up!

Yours truly has some major dark circles goin' on, y'all. 
They've always been there, they're hereditary, and they've only gotten worse over the years. For this reason, the most important part of my makeup routine is concealer. It's one of the few products that I splurge on, because, as I've found, you really do get what you pay for when it comes to concealer. For many many years, I used Clinique. Until a few weeks ago. It just wasn't doing the job anymore and I needed to try out something new. I did a little research and made a list of what other bloggers out there liked and ventured to the mall where I decided to try out MAC. The girl at the counter was really helpful and suggested the Pro Longwear Concealer
She applied it under my eyes so I could see how it looked, felt, and worked on me and I was sold! 
It costs just a few dollars more than the Clinique I had used for years, but is a far superior product (for my needs, anyway) and unlike Clinique, when I put it on once, that's it. I was reapplying the Clinique periodically because it creased so badly and kind of faded away throughout the day. The Pro Longwear does not crease and the formula is just so much better for me. It's not oily, doesn't fade away, and is easily build-able for extra coverage. It claims that it lasts up to 15 hours and I believe it. I plan to venture out and try the foundation when my current foundation runs out.

Another favorite I've discovered recently is e.l.f. Mineral Infused Primer
This stuff makes my face feel so soft, makes my makeup go on smoothly, and helps it stay on all day. It just makes for a great, smooth canvas for your makeup.

I love sharing a good thing when I find it, so I wanted to pass these along. The concealer is a bit of a splurge at about $20, but trust me, it is so worth the investment if you have bad dark circles like me! It covers those bad boys and keeps them covered all day! And I'd put the $6 e.l.f. primer up against any of those big name primers that are easily 4-5 times the price.

Have an awesome Thanksgiving week!!

Friday, November 21, 2014

5 Things About Threenagers

We've all heard the phrase "the terrible twos"....although those "twos" are more like 18 months to about 5 or so.
I'm in the middle of this stage with Hudson, or as I also call it "The Threenager" stage.

*This picture's a year old but I just love it.*

Here are 5 things you need to know about your threenager. 
I could share more, but ain't nobody got time for that. You do have a 3 year old, after all. (or you might someday)

1. They're little tyrants. Oh, you thought you were the boss just because you're the parent?? Haha, that was your first mistake. Learn this now, your 3 year old IS the boss. The sooner you figure this out, the happier you'll all be.

2. They're never happy. Seriously. Much like men see women, "threenagers" don't know what they want. You think that chocolate chip cookie you finally gave into after they've been whining about it for the last 3.5 hours is going to satisfy them? Rookie move. It might pacify them for a short time, but wait for it. Next it'll be that toy they saw in the store 17 weeks ago that they just now remembered, a grape (NOT cherry, are you crazy?) popsicle, they're mad because you had the audacity to turn the sound machine off in their room and didn't let them, or wait...a tiny drop of water got on their pants so now they absolutely must (with every ounce of ferventness inside them) change clothes. Not just pants. All of it.

3. They live off of fruit snacks and air. (and grape popsicles) OK, a little dramatic, but it is shocking the sheer amount of Welch's fruit snacks a kid wants to consume in a day. Sometimes it's not worth the battle and you should just let them have their 17th pack and move on. Kidding....just 13. ;-)

4. They are loud. Imagine someone who's a loud talker yelling into a megaphone, while simultaneously popping bubble wrap in your ear....and multiply that by 27. That's almost the decibel at which a 3 year old operates on the regular.

5. They still love their mommas. And daddies. They may be messy, loud, sometimes bossy and rude, but they love you more than anything. You are their world. Have patience with them, and most importantly, instruct them on how to express their feelings, how to play well with others, and how to be a respectful, productive citizen of the threenager stage.

I've already decided that when the twins hit the threenager stage, they'll just enjoy a trip to boarding school for a couple years or so. ;-) Joke! But seriously.

*Just for disclosure, I certainly do not let my child be the boss in the house, nor does he eat 13 (or 17) packs of fruit snacks a day. It's more like 2. Trust me, he gets disciplined, and he eats healthy foods. 

Have a super weekend!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Inside The Mind of My Husband

I thought it'd be fun to play a little game with Joseph, so I threw out some random topics to him and told him to tell me the first thing that came to his mind.
That went....well, just read for yourself.

And of course, this is my blog and I can expand upon or explain some of these if I so choose. :)

Me(as in Lauren): "Yoga pants" (He claims this is supposed to be a compliment. Somehow it didn't read.)

You(as in Joseph): "Luckiest man in the world." (Making up for that yoga pants comment, there, are we?)

Marriage: "Partners in crime." (We've only committed like 3...4 crimes, tops!)

Blogging: "Waste of time" (Thanks?)
FL/GA Line: "Terrible"

Food: "How many calories are in it?" (Yes, he's serious. He counts every calorie he puts in his mouth. This is how he's lost 50+ pounds in the last 7 months.)

Drink: "Diet Mountain Dew"

Money: "There's never enough."

Football: "Roll Tide!"
TV Show: "Kardashians" (face palm)

Sex: "Is it Saturday?" (Somebody's got jokes!)

Facebook: "TMI"

iPhone: "My love" (I get yoga pants, the iPhone is his love. Super.)

Dance Moms: "Ugh...hate that show."
*This and other uber-flattering pictures sprinkled in at my discretion. Maybe next time you'll think harder about some of your answers. Toooootally love you, babe!*

Continuing on....
Working Out: "Never"

Shopping: "Are you sure that's all we need?" ('Cause we make like 37 trips to the store a week!)

Auburn: "Sucks"

JalapeƱos: "Yum"

Skinny jeans: "On men? disgusting." 

Yard work: "I'll pay for someone to do it." (And he does)
Kids: "I want more." (You're on your own with that one, bud.)

Favorite song: "My Song from Moulin Rouge" 

(moving along)

Onions: "Did you make it without them?"

Kanye West: "Poser"

Ice cream: "Ice Dream Cone from Chick-fil-a. Small. 170 calories." (like I said, every. single. calorie.)
Sweater Vest: "Auburn sucks."

Decorating: "Waste of time."

Vegas: "I should've listened to my wife." (When his wife said put it on red, not black!)

Capri pants: "Soccer mom."

MC Hammer: "Pass." (seriously? I left you wide open for something along the lines of "Can't touch this!")

Thanks for playing my game, babe.
I love you, but this will probably be the only time I ever ask you to play.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

{As Good As Dessert} Sweet Potato Casserole

I didn't always like sweet potato casserole. I'm not quite sure why, and I really don't have a clue what was wrong with me back then, but boy, am I glad I eventually saw the light?!?!
I went from not liking the stuff, to basically appointing myself as the resident sweet potato casserole maker for holidays and gatherings. It's easy, yummy, you can make it the day before, then pop it in the oven, and I just always volunteer to make it.

I've told y'all before, I'm not the best about measuring accurately(unless I'm baking a cake or something) and I adjust to my own taste. These measurements are probably pretty accurate, but it's always better to add a little at a time, until you get the flavor you want.

Not my best picture, but you get the idea.

{As Good As Dessert} Sweet Potato Casserole
4-5 sweet potatoes, boiled, peeled, and mashed
1 stick butter (softened)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 eggs (or 1/2 cup eggbeaters)

1-1 1/2 cup brown sugar (I use light brown)
3/4-1 cup all purpose flour
1 stick melted butter
1 cup chopped pecans


1. In a large mixing bowl, mash potatoes well and add in softened butter. Heat from potatoes will melt butter. Stir until well combined.
2. Add in sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg and stir well. Check for taste. I love the addition of cinnamon and nutmeg. They give the potatoes a little something special and make them just a little more decadent.
*Make sure you do this and get it the way you want it before you add in eggs. I add in eggs last so I can make sure the flavor is right.*
3. After you've added in eggs and mixed well, pour potato mixture into 13x9 casserole dish sprayed with nonstick spray. Now, with all the butter you can probably get away without spraying it, but go ahead and do it, just to be safe. 
4. In a small bowl, mix topping ingredients until well incorporated. Spoon mixture on top of potatoes and spread all over. Sprinkle more pecans on top if desired.
5. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes, until light brown and bubbly.

*If you make it the day before (which I do quite often), let it sit out at room temp for an hour or so. Not too long since it does have eggs in it, but this will keep it from cooking unevenly and taking an insane amount of time to heat up in the middle if it goes in straight from the cold fridge.

Serve with your Thanksgiving turkey, ham, and other side dishes, or just eat yourself a big ol' serving of it alone for a tasty treat, since it's practically your PJs. I won't judge.