July 28, 2015

30 day challenge.

Exercise. We have a love/hate relationship. Before having Jack I could confidently say that I was a runner. Hubby & I were in a running club and I enjoyed the challenge of keeping up with him {even though I never could} by running a few half marathons and was actually to the point where I was in the habit of running several times a week. I finally understood what a true runner's high was and I get it, exercise of any kind makes you feel better mentally, physically, and a happier person in general.

So why is it so hard to motivate myself to get out there again? I'm not quite sure, but I am definitely the queen of excuses. I go for brisk walks on a daily basis sometimes only making a small loop around the block because I am just too tired. Lately I have been longing to get back into a great exercise routine. I actually get a little jealous when I see that extra fit mom run by me with her baby younger than Jack....it's time to get back out there.

I've created my own challenge starting August 1st to complete 30 days of exercising for at least 30 minutes each day. And what better way to hold myself accountable than by sharing it with you all and asking you to join me? I realize that it may not be everyone's goal to get back into running, but perhaps you would like to challenge yourself to walking, going to the gym, or taking a class. Whatever type of exercise fits your lifestyle best for 30 days starting August 1st through August 30th. On the 31st we get to celebrate the fact that we exercised for 30 days in a row, give yourself a well deserved pat on the back, and then decide whether or not this is a habit we will continue with into September.

Will you do this with me? Will you commit to 30 days of exercise?

I'd love to know if you are joining me on this as it will certainly keep me more motivated throughout the month. If you are on Instagram I'd love for you to follow me & let's use #30dayswithSS to share our 30 days of exercising!


July 23, 2015

chicken marinade.

I've always struggled with cooking chicken. I would always under-flavor and over-cook it only to get more and more discouraged with cooking meat for dinner. I searched high & low for the perfect way to cook chicken and as you can probably guess it took many tries and mess-ups to finally find my perfect chicken recipe. The best part about this recipe is that it is actually a marinade that you can prepare the night before, the day of, or hours before you want to cook your chicken. Preparing the marinade in advance makes the meal prep time feel like it is cut in half, which is exactly what I need seeing as how I have a one year old constantly trying to climb up my legs when I'm cooking. 

I originally found the recipe on Once Upon a Chef, but changed it slightly as I don't always have lemons at home, but do always have garlic & herbs. It has become my absolute go-to for every single chicken meal regardless of what recipe I am making. This marinade makes the chicken so flavorful and moist that it is a great compliment to all recipes. 








So here it is...my favorite chicken marinade recipe.

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
chicken (I use chicken tenders because I find them easier to grill on the stove, but feel free to use what you prefer)

Mix the olive oil, herbs, salt & pepper in a glass container. Mince the garlic and stir in. Add the chicken and cover all sides with mixture. Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to cook the chicken. 

I cook our chicken on the stove in a grill pan during the week, but we use our grill on the weekends so both work fine with this. If you are cooking tenders, cook the chicken on medium high heat for 5 minutes on each side. I then continue flipping the chicken in 3 minute time increments until done. Depending on your stove it may take several flips or not many at all. I like to cut slivers in the thickest part of the chicken to make sure the juices are running clear. Once done, I let the chicken rest for about 5-10 minutes before cutting. 

**for chicken breasts I cook them starting at 7 minutes on each side and then go down to 5 minute increments until cooked. 

Our dinner pictured above is grilled chicken, cucumber, hearts of palm & feta salad. Extra fresh, extra delicious & so easy to put together. The perfect weeknight meal. 

bon app├ętit! 

July 20, 2015

espadrilles.

Well friends, today is my last day of vacation. It has been wonderful spending so much time with family, but I am eager to get back home and reunited with my hubby & pup. Not to mention Jack is so close to walking on his own that I would love to be safely home before he fully discovers his love and ability to walk.

This summer my obsession with espadrilles went from so-so to must have. It all started with my initial discovery of these bright Manebi espadrilles. How could one not want these in their closet. Better yet, on their feet?! Extra bright, extra comfortable, the perfect summer shoe (that's not a sandal). So on went my search for other amazingly bright & ever so adorable espadrilles. Soludos, Aquazzura & Manebi have my favorites. Now the only decision is which one?

























one // two // three // four

July 15, 2015

summer brights.

We are having a great time with family this week in Florida. Despite the rain showers that really put a damper on our beach time.  But let's look on the bright side...rain all day is a great excuse to go out for ice cream for dinner and go on a nice stroll through downtown to make yourself feel better for having ice cream for dinner.

Today I was all about bright colors. This J.Crew top has been my go to this summer and I couldn't resist but buy it in both navy & yellow (both colors are on sale now!!). I especially love the subtle cross-over in the back. It's perfect for my conservative dressing self. My Kate Spade cross-body bag is a staple for every vacation. Stylish, yet compact, it makes packing my every day essentials much easier.




July 14, 2015

anniversary sale.

Spending the last four days in the 90's makes it difficult to think about sweaters, coats, and cooler weather. But with the much anticipated Nordstrom Anniversary Sale only a couple of days away I can't help but do just that. Honestly it makes me a tad bit excited to pull out my boots & sweaters, but until then I will take in all the sun and warm weather I can.

I took a quick sneak peak and here are a few items I added to my wish list...








What goodies are you going to add to your closet on July 17th??

images via Nordstrom

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