Friday, January 30, 2009

My First Award

The beautiful and oh-so-sweet Laurel nominated me for my first award! YAY! Thanks so much, girl :-) Ya'll check out all 3 of her great blogs!

The rules of this award:
1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
2. Nominate at least 5 (or however many..) blogs which show great attitude and/or gratitude.
3. Be sure to link to your nominees within your post.
4. Let them know that they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
5. Nominate your favorites and link to this post.

I may be nominating people who already have this award - not sure! But these are some of the adorable blogs I love!

French Kiss

All Things Fluffy...Fashionable...& Famous

Jimmy Choos and Tennis Shoes

Jeune Marie

Weight For Me!!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

House Sitting

The past two days at work have been CRAZY! I feel more exhausted after coming home than I have in a long time! We were told today that there could possibly be a layoff starting Monday. I absolutely despise talking about the economy and all that that includes, but when hard-working good people are losing their jobs I have to show compassion. I am very blessed (like I have said) to work for my family's company. I make good money and work with wonderful people; and I actually enjoy what I do! But I am a 21 year old with a car payment and cell phone bill. I don't have a spouse and multiple mouths to feed every month. I absolutely cannot imagine that kind of responsibility. So I am torn. I really don't think I will be laid off (even though I am one of the most recent to be employed), but I also don't think it's fair that just because I am family I get to keep my job. Does anyone else share a struggle like this? I honestly couldn't live with myself if I saw 40 other people with a mortgage and a family be let go and me not. (NOT saying I want to be let go - PLEASE don't get me wrong!)

Let's change to a lighter subject! I am house sitting this weekend for my parents. They are out of town with my step-dad's business and I have been called to "babysit" my 13 and 17 year old brothers...just to ensure there are no throw downs while they're gone. This also includes cooking gourmet dinners of Ramen noodles and Moose Tracks ice cream. Easiest weekend of my life! Not to mention drinking marvelous Cabernet while watching Sex & The City...ah - relaxation! Tomorrow will consist of shopping for Valentine's gifts, taking some clothes to Goodwill & shopping for an elliptical trainer. I am super excited about that! Do any of you have one of your own? I need to know the best kind to get, but I'm kind of in the dark.

I was also thinking today (today has been a very reflective kind of day) much effort does it take to give someone you care about a compliment? Do we ever really stop to think about how one kind sentence out of our mouth could make someone else's day? If you love someone - tell them. If a girlfriend of yours has great style - let her know. If a family member does something out of their way to make you happy - let them know you appreciate it. Ten seconds out of your day could make someone else feel like they are floating in the clouds. Not to say you should base your worth on what other people say about you! It's just nice every once in a while to hear something to make you feel special. Just a thought...

Well it's off to fabulous Mad Housewife wine and movies for me...I will let you know how the shopping goes tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Playing Dress-Up

Is it so much to ask to just want to get dressed up for a night out or a fancy party every once in a while? I am a big time sucker for a cute dress and pair of heels, but I VERY seldom get to actually wear such an outfit. My everyday work outfit consists of blue jeans, a t-shirt and a hoodie or thermal shirt (it's too friggin cold in GA right now! Summer...come to me!) The closest thing to me being able to "dress up" is when I go out for Mexican with my family every Thursday. Sad. I know. So I put on my skinny jeans, a cute top and heels only to be surrounded by people who :

A.) Just got off work and don't give two craps what they look like

B.) Are moms with 8 screaming kids - complete with "mom" jeans and sweatshirts

C.) Redneck men with Wranglers and Skoal rings (no offence to those of you whose boyfriends/husbands rock this look...I'm just sayin!)

Moral of my story is this is pretty much the only time I get to feel like a girly-girl. That's why I'm absolutely giddy about visiting my boyfriend for Valentine's Day. I am V-Day freak! Repeat - FREAK! I loooove this holiday and always have! I know some people think it's too commercial, and you shouldn't have to only show the people you love special attention one day out of the year - agreed. I love it anyway! I always start planning way in advance cute things to get the ones I love. No one is left off the list; from my boyfriend to mom to little cousins. So I thought I'd share some of my ideas so far :

My Mom is a very frequent grocery shopper and is always talking about these cute reusable bags...and since I'm always trying to save the environment, what could be better?


Weird that I get my brothers boxers...? Nah! One less thing my Mom has to buy them!


I LOVE baking! These super easy sugar cookies are adorable wrapped in colored cellophane with ribbon.

My BF is a different story. I'm still on the fence about something for him. I'm trying to get really sentimental and sweet this year. Music is his passion in life and he plays a ton of instruments plus listens to music pretty before his time. ( Think Eric Clapton, Jimmy Hendrix, The Beatles) I asked him what a few of his favorite albums ever were, and he said he'd have to think about it for a while. After he gets back to me on this one, I'm going to attempt to paint it on a canvas for him. I'm pretty artsy (used to be, anyway!) and have wanted to get back into painting for a while now, so hopefully this will be a jump start. What do you girls get your guy on Valentine's Day? Any other good ideas?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

This weekend has flown by at full speed! Friday night was the first "Girls Night" I've had in seriously about a year! I've been so used to being busy during the week with work and just hanging out with my family on weekends that I have totally lost contact with the outside world. Plus, I really just can't find many girls I want to get close to...maybe that sounds bad - oh, well. However, the three girls I ADORE hanging out with met up with me for sushi then it was off to their house for yummy margaritas and hot tubbing. It was so nice to hang out with them again! Like I said, it has been about a year since I've seen them, so my weight loss was a big shock to them. They were SO happy for me and supportive! Most people - let me start over - EVERY person I know thinks I'm pretty cookoo for being vegan and I get hell on a daily basis for it. It was so refreshing to have people commend me for it. I really needed that!

After trying on a bathing suit for the first time since summer, it was pretty clear the girls up top and the junk in the trunk weren't going to look too nice in my old one. That leaves only one thing to do - SHOP! How sad...I know. :-) So since my parents were heading to the mall anyway I figured I'd tag along and try to find one. I needed to go into Victoria's Secret anyway (Valentine's Day is coming up - hello!) So as I walked in I saw the most wonderful thing EVER...they were selling bathing suits in the store! Maybe this isn't a big deal to everyone else, but I have never seen them sold in the actual store and I was doing about four different happy dances! I found an adorable bandeau bikini with watercolor looking flowers on it and had to at least try it on (Top = $55; Bottom = $55; Me = broke until pay day next week). I have never been a big fan of the bandeau style because I always feel like it's a struggle to keep them up, but this one had a removable strap to go around your neck, so I was in business. Much to my dismay, the small was to small and the medium was too big - what the crap!? So today has just been online browsing for SALES on VS, and let me tell you - there are some good finds right now! If you need a suit and know your size I highly suggest checking them out. This is what I'm leaning towards -

This is so cute and pin-up girl to it comes in pink :-)

So cute and colorful! It just screams summer to me.

Call me crazy, but I just love this sailboat print!

Now the rest of my day consists of laying around watching Food Network and eating leftover veggies from some kick-butt fajitas last night. Nothing is better than spicy jalopeno goodness with a Hungry-Girl margarita to wash it down. If you've never been to you MUST check it out! I could go on and on about this gem of a site, but I'll save it for another day. I hope everyone else had a fabulous weekend! Tomorrow's back to the work week - whoohoo! (dripping with sarcasm)

Friday, January 23, 2009

Well hello!

After many weeks of toying with the idea of starting a blog I've finally succumbed to the peer here it is.

Hi - I'm Ashley...nice to meet you, too!

There are so many things that describe me that if I tried to type it all I would have some serious finger cramping. So the basics.

Background - I've lived in the same small town my whole life (minus the two years I went to college about an hour away). Don't like it one bit. Small town = close minded people, very boring, never anywhere to go or anything to do that requires me actually getting to dress up. I'm making the most of it, though. I just got a great job a few months ago which I am LOVING! I get pretty dirty sometimes, which I'm not too fond of, but I work with great people and it pays for my number one addiction. Retail. I'm just a LITTLE obsessed with shopping and fashion - and I'm not sorry. Shoes and bags in particular. I could go on and on about this subject, but I'll spare you for now.

Another big part of my life is FOOD. For many reasons...
1. Ever since I was a little girl I have wanted to be able to cook, but once I actually tried I discovered something shocking. I sucked. I could burn water. However, there is a silver lining in this story! Just recently out of the blue I became really good at it. It's definitely an obsession now. I love trying out new recipes and coming up with my own. Seeing people like the food I make is such a great feeling!
2. I am a very strict eater...very! I have been a vegetarian for about a year now and just recently have tried my darnedest to become vegan. I'm sure most of you know this means I don't eat any animal products at all. *DISCLAIMER FOR VEGANS* I am sorry to say, however, I don't always do such a great job at it. I'm not going to throw this in everyone's face and look down on anyone for eating meat. Hell, I'll cook it for everyone else...I just don't eat it. I'm also not going to pitch a fit and refuse a meal someone else cooks me at the expense of being rude. I love animals, but my choice is based on sheer selfish health benefits. Shoes and purses are made from leather...have I mentioned I loved shoes and purses? SORRY! There is only so far a girl can go.
3. In the past few months I have lost a good bit of weight I packed on from college (pizza, beer, late night McDonald's - we've all been there). Since I have lost the weight I am always trying to make the food I make healthier. I love learning about nutrition and keeping my body in shape. I'm not crazy about working out and giving up certain foods, but I love my new body more than I love Krispy Kreme.

Let's talk about LOVE! Mine is hundreds of miles away going to school in the north. We have been together a little over a year and a half, and I'm simply smitten by him. He is my rock and my best friend. It's tough not having him here, but it makes the time we do spend together so much more precious. He will probably be talked about quite a bit. Along with my bee-eff, I am in love with my family. I grew up with a lot of rebel in me and didn't want to be around them as much as I should have, but now that I'm older I'm so blessed to be as close to them all as I am.

Whew! That was a long one. Now that I've spilled my guts through words I need to start showing my life through pictures. First I need a digital camera. I'm aware I'm probably the only human that doesn't own one - don't judge me! Pictures will come soon!

So now tell me about yourself...I can't wait to start "meeting" you all! :-)