Getting Through the Hump: Part 2

Oh, Wednesdays…

It’s like if I don’t have any food pictures to share then I don’t know what to do with myself. Not to worry though because I happened to remember that Wednesday is also ‘hump day.’ And who doesn’t need some extra laughter on a hump day (especially during a week before a holiday)?

Today I come baring some gifts that will hopefully make the fact that it’s only Wednesday a little less painful : )

Talk about the struggle…


I have no doubt in my mind that this will be me in the future:


I might have texted this to one of my best friends this week who had some winners of ex-boyfriends and we might have laughed a little too hard.


This was probably the best text I have received in a long time. Thankfully, my boyfriend always has my back (even if he is completely joking).



Last week, Orange Theory Fitness left me all…


A deep thought to end on today…


I hope you have a great Wednesday! We are almost to the Fourth of July fun – hang in there!

Do you have a three day weekend for the Fourth of July?

What are your plans for the holiday?

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Vacation Recap: Louisville

Well hello again there, friends!

I’m back from my mini vacation with my family and trying to get back in the swing of things. Fortunately, this work week is only four days (Thanks, America!), so I’m hoping my post-vacation blues aren’t too overwhelming.

I just have to start off today by saying a huge thank you to all of you who completed my blog survey last week! I was overwhelmed by your kind words. Y’all sure know how to make a girl blush! I really appreciated all your honest answers and will hopefully be delivering more of the content that you want to see. So, thanks again for being awesome blog friends. I’m so appreciative of you! : )

OK. Back to regularly scheduled programming around here…

Last week, I went on a mini vacation of sorts to visit my family in Kentucky. I hadn’t been up there since New Year’s, so it was good to see everyone again even if it was for a short time frame. The main highlight of the trip? Getting to see meet my new cousin, but we have to build up to that part naturally, like any good story.

The day before my cousin, Laura, was scheduled to give birth, my mom and I met up at the Louisville Zoo with my Aunt Val, my cousin Missy, and her three children, and Laura, and her baby. We had such a great time walking around enjoying the perfect summer day and seeing all the animals. There is nothing like going to a zoo with kids especially an 18 month old. I loved seeing Ford try to imitate all the animals!


 Can you believe my cousin Laura gave birth the day after this? She makes the whole pregnancy thing look so easy!


 My three favorite boys!


 Another highlight of the trip for me was going to see the Derby Dinner Playhouse’s production of Peter Pan with my mom. I’ll be honest, going into the evening I was expecting a pretty mediocre local musical. However, I was completely blown away by the quality of the cast, sets, music, theater, everything really! If you are ever in the Louisville area, I highly recommend you check out a show at the Derby Dinner Playhouse. I’ve already told my mom I want to go back next time I’m in town.


 The theater itself was set up with various levels of seating in the round which gave the theater a nice, intimate feeling. The cast did a great job of playing to the entire room too, so there really wasn’t a bad seat in the house.


 Plus, the food! Did I mention it was a buffet of practically Thanksgiving food?


 But the real highlight of the week came on Friday when I got to meet the newest addition to my family: Baby Macallan. 

I have to admit, I’ve never been a fan of newborns. 97% of the time, I’ll tell you that I think newborns look like aliens. And the thought of holding a newborn? Terrifying. Please don’t hand your tiny human, who can’t even hold its own head up, to me to hold because I will start sweating and have nightmares about dropping it.

But there was something different about Macallan. Maybe it was because he was the first true newborn I’ve ever been around. Maybe I just am obsessed with his older brother, Ford, so much that my love automatically rubbed off onto him too. Who knows. All I do know is that he officially wins as the cutest newborn of all time. He looked like a real life doll in my hands. 



 I told my cousin Clay and his wife Laura that they need to stop having such cute kids. They are putting everyone else on Facebook to shame.

And that was my vacation in a nutshell (or at least the parts that I actually took pictures of). I can’t help, but think that the next time I see Macallan, he will be so much bigger. I need him to stay doll size forever.

Thanks to Erin for the Weekened Recap link-up (even if this was more of a vacation recap)!

How was your weekend?

What is your favorite animal to see at the zoo?

Newborns: cute or aliens? : ) 

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A Survey for You!

Hey there and happy Wednesday!

I have a lot to be happy about today because I am officially on vacation for the rest of the week!

I’m not anywhere super exciting, but I am getting to visit my family and my crazy cute cousins. Plus, my cousin, Laura, is scheduled to have her baby boy on Friday, so I will get to be here to meet the little guy.

 Today I don’t really have anything planned in the way of posts, but I do have a HUGE favor to ask of you……As much as I view this blog as an online journal of sorts documenting my life, I also want it to be a place where you can look forward to visiting because you know you will see unique, uplifting posts and content. Plus, it never hurts to get some constructive criticism and find out ways to improve and better ourselves (or in this case my little blog).

Sooooo, would you mind taking just a few minutes of your time to complete a survey for me? It’s less than 10 questions and relatively pain-free I promise! It would mean a lot to me and I would love to receive some of your feedback about how I can improve and deliver more of what you as readers want to see!

To access the survey: click here.

Thank you in advance for sparing a few moments to do that for me! I really do value and respect your opinions and will try my best to implement the advice and suggestions you may have.

Please feel free to leave any feedback in the comments as well too if you don’t want to take the survey.

Also, you can always e-mail me at!

What is the best thing that has happened to you today?




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Weekend Recap: Friends and Family

Ahhhhh Monday, we meet again. I’m not going to complete bash Monday this week though because I only have two work days before it’s vacation time for me!

Part of the reason that I struggle with Mondays in general is because my weekends lately have been too good to leave behind in the past. Take this weekend for example, it was the perfect mix of spending time with friends and family.

It all started on Saturday morning with a road trip with three of my closest friends: Kerri, Dom and Josh.


 Inwardly, Dom was just as excited as we were : )

The reason for our excitement? We were heading to the Historic Banning Mills in west Georgia for a zip lining adventure!

The Historic Banning Mills is a lodge out in the middle of nowhere that offers zip lining (specifically the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest zip line), rock climbing, kayaking and tons of other outdoorsy activities.


 It was a little bit more intense than my last zip lining adventure mostly because all the lines started from either up in the trees themselves or even a few started above the tree lines. The highest line we did was 100 feet in the air and reached close to 70 mph.


 Our tour also included some of these sky walks which were honestly more terrifying to me than the zip lining. Even though I was hooked up to a harness, I was convinced that if I slipped that I would fall to my death or something. Therefore, I relied on my upper body strength to carry me over these walks a good bit despite our tour guides efforts to try to get us to walk across ‘no-hands.’


 Speaking of our tour guides, I have to give those guys a quick shout out: they were amazing! They kept our group laughing the entire time even when a freak thunderstorm came and stranded us in the treetops for about 30 minutes.


 We finished up our tour around 6 on Saturday night and headed back home to Augusta very sweaty, very gross, very tired, but very accomplished.

On Sunday, I was able to sleep in for a little bit before getting ready and going to church with my dad. After church, we went to Bonefish for brunch. (Did y’all know they had brunch – bottomless mimosas too?!)

My dad ordered the bang bang shrimp eggs Benedict while I had the California avocado. Since it was Bonefish, you know it was delicious!


 One of the things I love about Augusta? You will always run into someone you know. Right when we walked into Bonefish, I saw Kerri’s dad (who is like my second dad over the years), and discovered that her whole family just so happened to be eating there for lunch too. I might have taken advantage of this coincidence to snap a quick picture of my Dad and myself.


 Once we were so full we didn’t want to move, we came home and watched American Sniper per my Dad’s request and called it a day.

Thanks Erin or the link-up!

Do you like outdoorsy thrills like zip lining or rock climbing?

Did you do anything special for Father’s Day weekend?

Brunch vs. lunch?


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A Father’s Love

Happy Friday everyone!

I am officially less than a week away from some much needed vacation time with my family and exactly two weeks away from Fourth of July weekend, so I’m feeling pretty excited about life over here.

What am I also excited for? Father’s Day. Since my dad moved back to Georgia recently, it means I get to spend Father’s Day hanging out with him which for the past seven or so years hasn’t always been the case.

Growing up, I guess I was somewhat of a Daddy’s girl.

Dad and Bill Clinton

My Dad and I have very similar personality types which means that our relationship has always come pretty easy and naturally.

We both love a good rainy day movie. We both try to workout and eat healthy, but indulge in the occasional DQ Blizzard from time to time. We both can keep our thoughts a bit to ourselves; but whenever we do speak, it’s because we really have something to say.

I know it’s been said that a father probably plays one of the most significant roles in a girl’s life growing up. From my experience, I would tend to agree.

Fathers have an important role of showing us the kind of love that we deserve and really setting the standard for any other man that should come into our lives. Because of this, I’m thankful that I have a father who has set the bar pretty high.

I’m thankful for a Dad who:

- Taught me about the ultimate love: our Heavenly Father’s

- Worked hard every single day to provide for our family

Yes, the Exhibitor set-up for this meeting will take place in the Kohala Promenade at 11:00 AM on Sunday, July 19th.  The Exhibitor hours are as follows: Sunday, July 19: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM Monday, July 20: 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM Tuesday, July 21: 7:00 AM – 4:45 PM Wednesday, July 22: 7:00 AM – 5:45 PM Thursday, July 23: 7:00 AM – 2:00 PM Friday, July 24: 7:00 AM – 12:15 PM  Also, I wanted to alert you of a small change in the shipping information that I sent you earlier. Everything remains the same other than the name any packages are sent in attention to. I have highlighted the change below.  Hilton Waikoloa Village 69-425 Waikoloa Beach Drive Waikoloa, HI 96738 Attention: Rachel Strauss Hold for 2015 USCAP / (place your name or vendor name here)

- Made countless sacrifices along the way so that I could have only the best and experience things he was never able to experience growing up

- Instilled in me a love for travel and seeing the world

- Always supports my overwhelming desire to go to Disneyworld/Universal Studios/Seaworld (and rides along like a good sport on Space Mountain)


- Tells me how proud he is of me even when I feel like a failure

- Tells me how beautiful I am even when I’m a complete mess

- Supports me even when he may not 100% agree with my decisions

Yes, the Exhibitor set-up for this meeting will take place in the Kohala Promenade at 11:00 AM on Sunday, July 19th.  The Exhibitor hours are as follows: Sunday, July 19: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM Monday, July 20: 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM Tuesday, July 21: 7:00 AM – 4:45 PM Wednesday, July 22: 7:00 AM – 5:45 PM Thursday, July 23: 7:00 AM – 2:00 PM Friday, July 24: 7:00 AM – 12:15 PM  Also, I wanted to alert you of a small change in the shipping information that I sent you earlier. Everything remains the same other than the name any packages are sent in attention to. I have highlighted the change below.  Hilton Waikoloa Village 69-425 Waikoloa Beach Drive Waikoloa, HI 96738 Attention: Rachel Strauss Hold for 2015 USCAP / (place your name or vendor name here)

Even when there were things going on that made me question life in general, I never once questioned my father’s love towards me. As I type that sentence, I can’t help but realize just how incredibly blessed I have been in my life because of that alone.

So, Happy Father’s Day, Dad!

Thank you for raising me, loving me and ‘spoiling’ me (although, I’m still waiting on my Disney Princess dress – just sayin’)!

What are your weekend plans?

If you are spending Father’s Day with your dad, what are y’all doing?

Do people tell you that you look more like your mom or dad?

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WIAW: Greenville Eats

Happy Wednesday!

See, I promised I’d be back as usual : )

Today I want to hop back on the WIAW train and share some of the amazing food I got to eat this weekend in Greenville. Greenville has become a pretty big foodie town over the past couple of years, so narrowing down restaurants to eat at while there is always a major task. I think we did pretty well for ourselves last weekend though by going with Soby’s and Passerelle Bistro.

We started off on Friday night with late dinner reservations to Soby’s which specializes in Southern style food with a twist. I’ve heard so many good things about Soby’s from my aunt over the years, so I’m happy to report that it did not disappoint!


We kicked off the meal with some fried green tomatoes for an appetizer because how could we not? Plus, our waiter told us they are one of Soby’s specialties. Normally, I’m not a huge fried green tomato fan, but these were really good.


For my entree, I went with Southern vegetable plate which included: Spring Peas, Sorghum Glazed Carrots, Sweet Corn Maque Choux, Asparagus & Braised Mushrooms Ragout, Garlic Crusted Potatoes and Stewed Sea Island Red Peas. This was seriously one of the best meals I’ve had in awhile. I am a vegetable girl all the way, so having a plateful of fresh veggies made my night.


Since no meal is complete without dessert (and I had eaten entirely too many vegetables in one sitting), we walked down to Spill the Beans for some much needed ice cream. I had the blueberry cheesecake ice cream in their homemade waffle cone. Even though I ordered the kid’s size, I still wasn’t able to even eat my way down to the waffle cone part. It was a sad day.


On Saturday morning, we woke up to go wander around the downtown market. Lots of fresh produce was purchased along with some passion tea for hydration.

Once we’d done our rounds at the market, we headed to Passerelle Bistro for some brunch. Passerelle Bistro is a French restaurant overlooking the Falls Park area in downtown Greenville. It’s so quaint and charming. I seriously felt like I was in Europe and not South Carolina of all places.

We split the croissants at our table with fresh fruit and jam. I’m normally not a big croissant person. I can take them or leave them. But these guys…sold!


For my entree, I ordered the ham, onion and arugula omelet which came with a nice mixed green salad. It was a pretty standard omelet. Nothing too special. I think I had been ruined by the croissants.


We continued our tour of downtown Greenville by walking around the gorgeous park and then doing a bit of shopping. Before heading home, we had to get some fuel for the road in the form of smoothies from Southern Pressed Juicery. I ordered the Sunrise Salutation which had coconut h2o, pineapple, mango, coconut meat, dates, and spirulina. It basically tasted like a healthy version of a Piña colada, well, minus the rum and all.


Not a bad weekend of eats in Greenville if I do say so myself. I’m already looking forward to my next girls’ trip there in July. So many restaurants – so little time!

What’s your favorite city to eat in?

Are you a fan of the whole juicing thing?

What was the best thing you ate yesterday?


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Weekend…Well, Life Recap

You know it’s bad when you receive a text from your mom that reads, “Hey, are you still blogging?

Yes, Mom, I’m still blogging : )

I have no explanation or reasoning behind my ridiculous absence from the blogging world. Let’s just chalk it up to being busy or something like that shall we? (Even though we all know my definition of busy usually involves Netflix marathons…)

Since there is no way I can even attempt to write a decent recap, here’s some fun pictures of what I’ve been up to lately instead.


 More hanging out with the usual game night crew. We’ve been venturing out a bit the past two weekends by playing Putt-Putt one week and then seeing a movie the next. By the way, Jurassic World. Whoa. My inner child was so happy.


 Phil came to visit Augusta last weekend too, so I was able to show him my ‘hometown.’ I took him to Augusta’s biggest attractions which mostly involved lots of food.


 I did at least take Phil to the Augusta Canal in an attempt to convince him that Augusta is a beautiful place to live. It was a hard sale though because he was all “I’m from Florida and have beaches and Disneyworld.” Yes, you win, Phil.


 Girls trips to Greenville are becoming more and more of a thing and I’m completely ok with that. This past Friday, we went up for a fun dinner out in downtown Greenville and then spent Saturday morning exploring the farmer’s market and the gorgeous park downtown.







 What can I say? I’m still a rebel at heart.

I think this is about as good as it’s going to get today! I promise I’ll be back on Wednesday with the regularly programmed schedule.

What have you been up to lately?

When was the last time you played Putt-Putt?

Anyone see Jurassic World? Thoughts?


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Travel Tips: What I Wear on a Plane

Hello, Hello!

I’ve been thinking a lot about trying to do more travel tips on the blog. Not that I am some seasoned world traveler or anything because I am far from that still (life goals!). However, I do feel like I have traveled a good bit in the past year and have picked up a few things along the way that maybe can be a little helpful. What do y’all think about this?

So today, I figured I would start with something pretty practical and that is an issue everyone who travels has to face at some point…What the heck do I wear on the plane?

Of course, this question can be answered a million ways depending on where you are traveling, what time of year it is, if you have time to change in your hotel before an event/meeting, etc. However, for the sake of this post today, I’m just going to focus on my tips on what to wear in general when you fly.


So, here is a nice 7:00 AM picture of me at the Atlanta airport from my most recent flight a few weeks ago. I think this outfit really sums up how I dress 90% of the time when I fly. Here’s a breakdown of what I’m wearing or similar items:

Pants: Max Studio Quintessential Heavy Ponte Leggings (via Marshall’s)

Shirt: Target Drapey Rib Knit Tank

Sweater: Target Lightweight Open Sweater (similar)

Shoes: Target Tilda Ballet Flats (similar)

Purse: Ora Delphine Adele Satchel

Carry-on: Solo Classic Tote

Now that you know what actually wear, let me tell you about some of the tips I’ve picked up along the way so far.

  • Wear Layers

Planes can be fickle little things. I’ve been on planes so cold that I seriously considered snuggling with the stranger sitting next to me. However, I’ve also been on planes so hot that I thought I somehow had been flown to the equator to die. Because of this, whenever I fly, I always try to layer my plane outfits so that I can add on or remove items as needed. Of course, this all depends on where I’m going and the time of the year. If it’s December and I’m heading to New York, then I’ll carry on my heaviest coat as well which can then act as a blanket if needed.

  • Comfort, comfort, comfort

That is my number one rule when I fly. Being stuck in the same seat for hours at a time can be a major pain, so you might as well make it comfortable as possible. Sometimes when I fly I ask myself: “How can I get away with wearing practically pajamas?” Leggings are a staple when I fly. They can go well with multiple climates and are like wearing cuter yoga pants. I always make sure I wear my thick, ponte leggings though which give more coverage. Another great option when flying in the summer or to a more tropical destination is a maxi dress.

  • Wear practical shoes

Your shoe selection when traveling is probably the most essential part of your outfit. If you’ve ever flown through the Atlanta airport, then you know just how vital your shoe selection can be when you’re walking (or running) the half mile (or so it seems) stretches between each terminal. So, let’s just go ahead and clear a few things up right now. Heels? Never! I know a lot of people travel for business and have to leave straight from their plane to a business meeting. I get it. I’ve been there. But that’s why God gave us carry-on bags. Stuff your fancy sky-high heels in your carry on to switch into when you land and save yourself the pain of trying to navigate an airport like Carrie Bradshaw in Manhattan.

I personally love to wear flats because they are easy to slip on and off at security. I used to only fly in some sort of tennis shoes or boots, but sometimes those can be a hassle to take on/off. So now I just wear my flats and bring some socks to slip on if I have to take them off. Remember, the biggest key when traveling is to make sure you are comfortable!

  • Utilize your carry-ons

I’m not normally a big purse girl. Cross body’s are much more my style. That being said, I’m not a light packer. At all.  So, I now fly with my carry-on which is usually a plain tote that will hold my laptop, any books/magazines, chargers, work files, etc. For my personal item, I use the biggest purse possible to stuff in my headphones, snacks, water bottles, my travel Bible, jewelry, etc. With airlines becoming stricter and stricter about what is/isn’t allowed. Your carry-on items can be your best friend or your worst enemy, so always check with your airline before flying to see what their policies are.

  • It’s OK to dress cute

Just because you are going for comfort, doesn’t mean you can’t still have fun with what you wear! Traveling can make you feel gross to begin with, so I always try to at least make myself feel presentable from the start. Adding on a fun accessory or a new shirt can sometimes be all it takes to take a boring plane outfit into something you look forward to getting up at 5 AM and putting on…well, almost.  You never know who you just might run into at the airport after all ; )

Hope you have an awesome Wednesday – we are almost to that weekend my friends!

What do you typically wear when you travel?

What travel tips/advice would you be interested in hearing or talking about?



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Weekend Recap: Not a Plan in Sight

Happy June, y’all!

This weekend was so nice and relaxing. I didn’t have any major plans (unless you count running and laying by the pool major plans). Everything I did this weekend was super low key. After a few weekends of going non-stop, it was nice to sit back and just be. It was also nice to take naps on both Saturday and Sunday. Oh naps, how I have missed you in my life!

Since there isn’t too much to report from this weekend, I’m just going to do the old fashioned (a.k.a. lazy girl) sentence per picture recap. Sound good?

Weekends that start off with fresh guacamole are the best type of weekends.


I have no clue what this is, but it terrified me.


I love seeing the beauty in my own backyard (so to speak).


The perfect post-run treat courtesy of Whole Foods.


I caught up on some important reading by the pool and learned even more information on why being a cat lady is a good thing.


Well, that’s all I’ve got for you today. Hope your Monday is off to a great start!

 Thanks Erin for the weekend recap!

Did you go to the pool or beach this weekend?

What big plans do you have for June?


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Friday Faves: May 2015

Happy Friday my lovely friends!

It’s crazy to me to think that we are pretty much halfway through the year. Seriously, where have the past few months gone?

This weekend is the first weekend in…well, I can’t remember when… that I don’t have anything planned. Not one single thing. Scratch that. I do have a run planned on Saturday morning, but other than that my weekend is wide open and it feels glorious. I can finally catch up on all my shows that I’ve been neglecting on my DVR (Scandal finale anyone?)

In celebration of a plan free weekend, let’s move onto some of my Friday Faves shall we?


Fave New Drink: bai5


Phil introduced me to these bai5 drinks last weekend and to say I’ve been obsessed since is an understatement. They come in so many flavors, but my favorite hands down is the Molokai Coconut. When I got this, I was expecting basically a coconut water taste, but was pleasantly surprised when it was more like a pina colada! I’m considering adding rum to it sometime to make a super lo-cal summer drink. I’ll report back how that works out for me ; )

Fave New Snack: Bark Thins


Clearly, I’m on a coconut trend over here! But really, what goes better with summertime than coconut? I’ve tried several of Bark Thin’s flavors, but this one is definitely my favorite. It makes for a great healthy snack whenever I am craving some chocolate (everyday of my life)and don’t want to eat something completely awful for me.

Fave Animal


How sweet is that face?? This little girl visited my hair salon when I was getting my hair done yesterday. Naturally, my stylist and I both completely stopped mid hair treatment to go play with the puppy. She was found behind a Rite Aid. How someone can just dump such a sweet puppy is absolutely beyond me! People are crazy, y’all.

Fave Clothing: May 2015 Stitch Fix


I received my first Stitch Fix box since February the other day and completely remembered why I love Stitch Fix so much. Sometimes you just need to take a break to better appreciate things. I didn’t intend on taking pictures of my fix (hence the lack of make-up and hot mess going on with my head), but once I saw how perfectly this outfit matched the headband I was wearing, I knew I had to get photographic evidence. This made me feel like one giant Easter egg, and I loved it.

Fave Workout: OrangeTheory Fitness


An OrangeTheory studio recently opened up by my office, so I’ve been doing a two-week trail membership with them. I’d heard a lot about OrangeTheory over the past few months in the blogworld and was really excited to try it first hand. The simplest way I can describe OrangeTheory is that it’s a one hour class that uses cardio and strength intervals to get you into your maximum heart rate zone which allows you to burn the most calories and fat. I really like the fact that you wear a heart rate monitor throughout the whole class and are able to monitor your progress on the screens throughout your workout. That alone helps me to push myself more than I normally do in any other workout class. I always walk out of OrangeTheory drenched and feeling like I really had a good workout. I’m pretty impressed with the results that I’ve already seen and am excited to continue to track my progress.

Well, that’s all I’ve got for ya today. I hope you have a great weekend and we’ll catch up again on Monday! Sound like a plan?

Have you ever been to an OrangeTheory class?

What plans do you have this weekend?

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