Are there any eaters in the crowd? If you nodded your head 'yes' to keep from answering with your mouth full, welcome. You've landed at the right place for The Blended Blog's very first "Tasty Tuesday Progressive Dinner". Pull up a chair, tuck a napkin under your chin and let the mouth-watering begin. Today four of the TBB contributors are cooking up a little comfort food. Not real fancy, but just wholesome and good.
So if that sounds like a dinner you'd feel good about serving your gang, join us. We start this culinary journey with Christy, who blogs at r Squared, for that first course, her palette-pleasing salad recipe. From Christy's house, run over to mine...oh, by the way, I'm Leslie from Once Upon a Time & Happily Ever After. I have the main course covered. But leave room for dessert because whatever Andrea from Living On Cloud Nine has prepared promises to be heavenly. And we will finish up with drinks from our favorite resident TBB mixologist, Katie, the blogger behind The Mishaps and Mayhem of a Solitary Life. So, on your mark, get set, go...straight to our first stop, here.
Happy Monday, friends, Whitney here! I hope you had a refreshing weekend and are feeling ready to power through the day.
Last week, Katie had some great advice for us single ladies about ways that we can improve our alone time. I particularly liked her ideas about treating yo'self (umm, Black Friday sales anyone?) and being alone but never lonely!
I know that when I found myself single again, I really focused on feeling good with me. I did yoga, I indulged in late, sleepy mornings and evening bottles of wine, and I really found peace with myself! Katie's advice on loving yourself is so very important!
But several months later, feeling content with myself, I find that I am ready to continue that search for my special someone! Wonderful, that should be easy, right?! ...Wrong!
|Marta, one of our favourite bloggers over on Sweaters, Stripes and Sweets.|
|Dawn from Fashion Should be Fun.|
Make sure you take a look at some of the great links in our link up and get your post or Instagram picture in too!
These two lovely ladies (who just happen to be best friends) have great style, and if you do not regularly follow their blog, you definitely should. If you are looking for some late fall style inspiration (or some ideas for Thanksgiving) here are just a couple of ideas from some of their most popular posts. Whitney put together this stylish fall look - layering this awesome burgundy utility vest with gray. Blaire styled this trendy striped turtleneck under a sleeveless vest with cognac booties. These two posts are just a glimpse into their perfect southern style. You can also follow them on Instagram for more daily glimpses into their style.
Blaire & Whitney: We love a good utility vest, as you can tell by our Instagram feed! Layering a vest with a cute top, jeans and ankle boots is our fall go to.
|Sarah from Trendy and Tidy|
|Katie from the Mishaps and Mayhem of Solitary Life|
|Sheila from Making the Most of Every Day|
What is your greatest unfulfilled ambition?
My greatest unfulfilled ambition would be finding a job that I truly enjoy and feel fulfilled doing. I have of a lot of interests - in college my major changed several times. I really did not know what I wanted to do. One thing for sure is that I like helping people, so I would really love to find a way to work as a stylist and designer as a full time job. I would like to help others feel great about themselves and what they are wearing, and make a lasting first impression.
I hope that I have built my own design company and that I will be making my living by designing and selling my own clothes. My dream is that my brand will be known and worn by many - and will have grown into a sustainable business that I am truly proud of!
One - Wake Up And Choose to Love your Partner
We learned this at our Engaged Encounter, and we have really taken this with us over the years. After the love and the lust fades away and you're 5 years into your relationship you have to wake up and chose to love your partner. It's so easy to let life get in the way and things to happen, and then suddenly you find yourself drifting apart, you need wake up and remind yourself everyday why you choose to be with this person. Love is not only a feeling, it is a choice. So when the lust and the rose colored goggles fade away, you can remember that you are choosing to love this person because you want to, not because you have to.
Sometimes when Mr. and I are in an argument, to break the tension one of us will say, I am choosing to love you right now. And then suddenly we realize that what we were arguing about is not really that big of a deal, and we can go about resolving the issue with much less tension.
Two - It Takes Two To Spend Money
I feel that a huge part of why people fight in a marriage is money. Someone always wants to spend more, while the other always wants to save more. Mr. and I hardly EVER fight, but when we did, it was almost always about money. He was the saver, I was the spender. We saved for a house, we bought house, and then he wanted to keep saving, drove me nuts, I said we are living in a completely empty house saving all this money for what? We bought the house, let's spend something on furniture...that's when we discovered Dave Ramsey. It helped us to see that it takes two people to do the finances. It is not fair to have one person trying to do it all. Each month we do our finances together, talk about where the money is going and what we want to happen in the near future. At first it was time consuming we spent a lot of time going over things, but now that we're 6 years into it, we spend maybe 15 minutes a month talking about it.
Three - Fight Fair
When a fight does come up fight fair. What do I mean by this? Don't bring up past arguments, if you've already had the argument, agreed to forgive each other and move on, you cannot now throw that in their face. What that really means is that last week when you said you forgave him for spending the extra $50 on golf clubs, or he forgave you for spending $50 on make up, you really didn't forgive each other. To truly forgive, it's in the past, and hardly on your radar. For me, I almost forget what argument we had, unless I really think about it. When I say I forgive, I really do and I mean it. So fight fair, talk about the argument at hand and how you can resolve it.
Four - Blessings
When I was coming up with this post, I had asked Mr. if he had any thoughts, besides the usual guy answers that can't be repeated, haha, he said you should tell them about Blessings. We learned this at our Engaged Encounter as well. The couple leading the retreat had told us that each night before they went to bed they gave each other a blessing. They prayed for the other person out loud, giving each person a moment of gratitude and thankfulness. For us it's a moment when can appreciate, thank and hope for the best for your partner. Ever since then we have done this, so for the past 11.5 years we've been blessing each other each night, and have passed on the same to our children. Saturday night we got home really late and we just put the kids to bed and in their sleepy state, Baby Fox said, I can't sleep without Mini Fox's blessings... It's a way to end the day on a good note, to not be thinking of anything else that happened but our family.
Five - 100/100
Sometimes you hear people say, their relationship is 50/50, but in reality it's not. It should be more 100/100. Both of you have to put in 100% of your efforts. Sometimes you are having to put more effort in and pick up more slack because your spouse is taking college courses or is working extra hours, other times they will have to pick up the slack because you've had surgery and can't do anything other than sit on the couch. Life waxes and wans and it's not always going to be "fair" but you don't want fair you want to give it your all for the other person, because who want to go through life trying to keep track?
I hope these helped you, what would you want to add?
Yes I am and in May we will be celebrating our 10 year anniversary! Wow time really does fly…advice I would give to a couple getting married is to make sure you are on the same page with life goals, values and aspirations. It may sound obvious but sometimes I think couples can get wrapped up in the romantic side of the relationship that they can overlook some of these key issues that can cause challenges later on if you both want different things especially when it comes to children, religion and so forth. Also, make sure you have fun together and do things such as date nights even after having kids.
Friendly, trustworthy, introvert (but I would definitely say I’m an extroverted introvert).
What would you consider your greatest accomplishment and why?
This may sound cliche but by far my greatest accomplishment has been raising my two sweet girls. Parenting is challenging, exhausting and there are those days where you just want to plain quit or call your own mommy for that matter but boy are those two little cuties the joy of my life! There is nothing that can take away my stress or lift me up when I’ve had a rough day at work like the sweet hugs and kisses I get when I walk through the door. It’s also such a great feeling to see your kids become caring and compassionate little people which validates that yes you are doing something right as a parent.
What hobbies do you have other than blogging?
One of my favourite pastimes is watching movies. I’m an avid movie goer and really enjoy everything about movies from the soundtracks, special effects, great story telling and the magic that a film can create. My favourite movie(s) of all time will always be the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
What inspired me to start blogging?
After having my girls and feeling pretty frumpy for a few years I knew I had to get my fashion mojo back and put more effort into self-care. Fashion has always been a love of mine and after spending time following and admiring amazing mom fashion bloggers I felt inspired to take the plunge myself and have never regretted doing so. My blog is my creative outlet that let’s me escape the stressors of my 9 to 5, it really feels like making a dream of mine into a reality.
What is your favourite style season and why?
Fall is definitely my favourite style season, as you can tell by my blog’s namesake I clearly have an obsession with sweaters so this time of year is my all-time fave when it comes to personal style. I also love layering and being cozy in warm fabrics and that fact that you can still dress light. The rich colours always get me and since I also have a thing for scarves and booties fall is the ideal fashion season.
What is your favourite (or dream) vacation destination?
My favourite vacation destination is Sardgena, Italy where the hubs and I travelled for our honeymoon. It’s an island off the coast of Italy and it is beautiful, the water was magical and it felt like you were in Bora Bora rather than somewhere in Europe. The food of course was to die for and we had 2 yummy gelato’s a day…because why not?! It was quaint and we really enjoyed renting a car and driving around the island to see all of the breathtaking beaches. We spent the rest of our honeymoon in the south of France and that was another favourite destination of mine. In terms of dream vacations I have always dreamed of travelling along the entire coast of California by car and hitting all of the amazing places such a Big Sur.
Today is our last post for our Behind the Blogger series. We have really enjoyed getting to know everyone a bit better! We are featuring Alison from Puppies & Pretties today.
"These three popped into my head immediately within a second....
Three words my hubby uses to describe me:
My best friend Mel would probably describe me as funny, up for anything and her person. LOL
I'm laughing all the time and keep her laughing too. Being friends for over 30 years, we have had many fun adventures together. I am always up for anything. Mel's the planner, and I go along for the ride. Both of us are huge Grey's Anatomy fans, so Mel would say I'm her person. There for a good chat, shoulder to cry on, or an ear to listen!
WHAT IS YOUR ODDEST HABIT?
SARAH from FOXY'S DOMESTIC SIDE (Blog / Instagram)
This blog was created after a group of bloggers started a friendship, without ever having met. What they've come to realize is that the blogworld, while huge and daunting, can be a great community of like-minded people. Welcome to our space, we hope that it can help you expand your blog circles too. Read more about us.