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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

July: 31 Days, 31 Ways

31 Ways to Make July Super
1. Eat warm chocolate chip cookies
2. Have a spontaneous get together
3. Go to a concert with friends
4. Enjoy the Fireworks
5. Have a date night
6. Take a walk
under the stars
7. Make a DIY project
8. Try a new cocktail
9.Hang out at the pool with friends
10. Wear all white on a night out
11. Make an ole school playlist
12. Get photographed
13. Celebrate family
14. Create a 10 minute look
15. Celebrate Christmas in July
16. Buy a pair of shoes
17. Celebrate marriage
18.Get lost in a book
19. Get on a Boat
20. Take a break and get calm
21. Make over a room in your home
22. Get a sun-kissed look
23. Get to grillin'
24. Pack a travel kit
25. Go Restaurant Hopping
26. Set up a Hot Dog Bar
27. Have a outdoor game night
28. Do YOU!
29. Change your routine
30.Go to the Farmer's Market
31. Make Chicken and Waffles for dinner

Have a Wonderful Month!

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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Inside Out

Inside Out is one of the cutest movies I've seen in a long time, and the timing for its release couldn't have been more perfect. I have been doing some research on how to help Tamia control her emotions. She is a wonderful child, but her feelings (like those of most preschoolers) get the best of her sometimes, and as a result, she loses control, and in turn, I lose patience. A "lose-lose" situation which proves that I too need help with my emotions. That's when a movie like Inside Out, a movie about feelings, becomes relevant.

Inside Out is really one of those movies that teaches more of a lesson to the parent than the child. And that lesson is that all feelings matter.  The movie helped me understand that trying to put on a strong face in an effort to avoid any unwanted emotions or feelings that make us uncomfortable or uneasy is actually unhealthy for everybody. It highlights that life brings us many experiences, both wanted and unwanted, and how we respond to those experiences is what makes us stronger. Our experiences teach us that our feelings matter. That in life, we have to acknowledge not only Joy, but feelings such as Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust as well. That our acceptance of these emotions allows us to become more balanced and makes way for more growth to occur.

I honestly can't believe that I was on the fence about taking Tamia to see this movie, but I'm glad I did. I learned some valuable lessons about parenting and about balancing emotions. And the movie really is well done. It is well thought out as well as well written. So, if you were wondering if going to see Pixar's latest phenomenon is worth your time and your dime, then I say yes. In fact, take the whole family, so everyone can get in touch with who they are inside out! Enjoy!

Books that I bought to help Tamia understand her emotions.

Affiliate links included in this blog post.

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Wear what you think?

Lately, I have been really into graphic tees. Years past, if I was seen in a t-shirt, it was probably because all of my good clothes were dirty, ha! Well, since there are so many "quote-perfect" tees on the market, I thought I'd show you some of my favorites, and host my first giveaway! Just leave a comment on this post about #summercomfort, and you're entered in the giveaway! 2 T-shirts, two winners! Enjoy your Sunday; enjoy your week!

Laugh Love REPEAT (Old Navy)

"find your anchor" (Zumeiz Empyre)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Saturday, June 27, 2015

4 Looks for the 4th

Whether you are attending a BBQ, Picnic, Pool Party, or Fireworks, 
here are 4 looks to fit the festivity!

Shop Your Look for the 4th Here!

Born in the USA T-shirt sold out// similar here

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Bored- Redefined!

Thanks LBC for the inspiration!

We are well into week 3 of summer, and I know that some parents are having a time keeping their little ones entertained. Well if this is you, consider changing how you define BORED and get busy filling your day with some worthwhile activities!

Been Creative?
I'm working on an a creative project, and you might be surprised (stay tuned)! But in the meantime, get ready for your 4th of July celebration with Pinterest! Start here!

Outside Play?
I know, I know, with this heat wave, the struggle is real, but create opportunities for outside play by finding local places to visit for the day or go swimming!

Fun at Waverly Place Wind-Down Wednesday
Read a Book?
I have a list of 5 books that I plan to tackle this summer, and I have devoted my reading list to ALL WOMEN! #GirlPower #GirlBoss
Gone Girl and Dark Places
Among the Ten Thousand Things
Lean In 
Girl on the Train

Exercised 20 Min.?
Check out this article on Parents.com "10 Ways to Exercise as a Family"
Talk abut a happy, healthy family!

Done Something Helpful?
(or useful)
Make yourself useful to the community and Volunteer! There are numerous opportunities available for all ages, just choose the opps that work best for you and your family's needs!
You can start here if you're in Wake County!


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Currently Crushing: Summer Savings

Being a dreamer often makes me do foolish things, and one of those foolish things is overspending. I simply consume too much. However, I am adamant about changing the way I view what I want and what I need. I am becoming more committed to saving money in all aspects of shopping.

1. Food Savings: Stop eating out! Most of the time, it's not great anyway!
WRAL SmartShopper has become my best friend. I have begun to preview the blog (I love blogs) before going shopping and it helps. Another way to save is to actually break out the Slow Cooker for some year-round savings. I already know that slow cooking saves time and money, but some people y'all might still need some convincing. Well, here's an article that pretty much sums up how to master the "Art of Slow Cooking".   
Other ways to save:
-write a shopping list and stick to it
-make your list from the sales flyer
-invite friends over instead of going out
-kids eat free!?!? Where?
-know what you buy regularly and where to buy it cheaper or price match     

2. Clothing savings: Stop Collecting and Start Selling
About 3 months ago, I joined Poshmark about 3 months and within days, I had sold 2 of my Coach bags that I no longer carried. No, I didn't get rich, but these bags were getting no use. Now they have new owners, and I have a little more cash. Poshmark is easier than easy. Just download the app, and start selling! Use my code, PPIKT, and receive a $5 gift card for signing up!

3. Practice Patience: Ask yourself is this a need or a want? Will I regret buying this item?
10 second  rule
30 day rule

4. Don't Spend Big Money Entertaining Kids! This box entertained her until she fell asleep!

Museums (pack a lunch and go)
- NC Museum of Natural Sciences
- NC Museum of Art

Carolina Parent- A Daily Event Calendar
Local Libraries and Book Stores- Barnes and Noble

5. A Beauty Regimen doesn't have to break the bank!

I have a 5 minute beauty routine that I love. It includes 5 items, and makes me look sun kissed and summer ready!

Mary Kay gets you ready!

MK Primer (with SPF 15 sunscreen)

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Father's Day Prayer

"Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." 
Proverbs 4:23

Your family is your heart, and you are our anchor, our guiding light, and our sail. I pray for your continued strength, patience, and guidance. I pray for your success and that your knowledge of our Father be nurtured and deeply rooted in all that you do. I pray that your "soul be anchored in the Lord" so that our journey is on the right course.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

15 Gifts for the Man in Your Life

As a woman, I am always aware of what I need and I am most aware of the things I desire, but when it comes to knowing what my husband needs let alone wants, I don't have a clue. In honor of Father's Day, I looked for a list of must have items for men, and to do that, I went to a man who knows about men, Tom Ford, and here's what I came up with.

  1. have the ability to laugh and make others laugh- rent a movie
  2. be up to date with current events- USA Today subscription
  3. be in love with a sport or sports- a little competition is good for the soul
  4. be well groomed- no woman wants a messy man
  5. have a signature cologne- fall in love with the smell of him
  6. have the right 007 suit- Because Bond does it best
  7. have a pair of black lace-up shoes- shoes are a necessity
  8. have a blazer- because every man needs one
  9. have the perfect pair of dark blue jeans- to go with the blazer
  10. have more than 1 crisp white shirt- to go with the jeans and the blazer
  11. have great underclothes (should be replaced every 6 months)
  12. have a worthy time piece- one that fits his personality and profession
  13. have a pair of sunglasses- for the complete look
  14. have a knock 'em dead smile- pearly whites are a must
  15. have a tux- because that formal invitation is in the mail

Items he needs all year long!

Friday, June 19, 2015

5 on Friday... Been busy living

Summer is off to a great start for me and my crew, especially the wee one! We have had an exciting week, and it's only fitting that I share it with you!

1- Favorite Experience: Our week kicked off on Sunday with us going Plum Crazy at the Kidz Bop Make Some Noise Tour at the cutest theater in the Triangle, The Carolina Theater. We had a great time with friends jamming to the vocal talent of the Kidz Bop Kids. Tamia and I dressed similarly and she loved it (Plum coordinates)! I secretly enjoyed the show just a bit too much, but I do love music!

Shop our Plum Crazy Look for Kidz Bop.  It will not break your budget!

2- Favorite Outing: On Monday, we ventured to Holly Springs to see the Holly Springs Salamanders take on the Wilmington Sharks, and boy did they "tame those Sharks"! The game was exciting and I even won an ACME Pizza for winning the "Who can be the loudest?" Who would've thought I could be so loud. The pizza was fabulous, and not to mention FREE, just how I like my pizza! We had an awesome time, and we will go again!

3- Favorite Deal- Regal Theater's Summer Movie Express! By now, the $1 movies are no secret, but I still have to make it my duty to share and remind every mother, sitter, and childcare provider about the Summer Movie Series. On Tuesday, we went to see the Nut Job for just $2! It was close to 100 degrees outside, but the theater was nice and cool and the popcorn was fresh. Grab your Regal Card and get a deal on the popcorn too! 

4- Favorite Meal! I'm truly a Slow Cooker fan especially when it is as hot as it is. So this week I made one of my family's favorites finger-licking good Baby Back Ribs. They are too easy not to cook, and they are delicious! I have nothing against grilling, but I gotta tell ya, Slow Cooking is much cooler!

5- Favorite Image: Tamia is getting a hang of taking pictures. She took this one of her feet and the anklets she made earlier that day. I love her little feet! Baseball and bare feet = Summertime!

I hope you enjoyed the rundown of our week! 

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

"every 40 seconds"

Now that summer is finally within reach, people are gearing up for those long-awaited family vacations to theme parks, the beach, or just an outing somewhere local, like a baseball game or a concert in the park. The venue is really not that important just as long as everyone has fun, fun, fun. Well, whatever your plans are, please make it your ultimate goal to keep your family, especially your little ones, safe because "every 40 seconds, a child goes missing," and this is not fun. We all would like to think that something like this will never happen to us, and as a result, we form a false sense of security.  But it is because of this complacency, that I experienced the fright of my life. 

Not too long ago, I lost sight of my 41/2 year old for 2 minutes while we were at the lake, and in that 2 minutes, my world literally came tumbling down. My mind struggled to even understand that she might be missing, but I knew I did not see her. After I yelled her name out for what felt like the 100th time, I immediately became a bumbling fool. I did not know in which direction to move. My body was heavy. I was a ball of emotions. All of a sudden, I had become that mother who turned her head away for a fraction of a minute and had lost sight of her child. A fraction of a minute was all it took. As I scanned the play area to find her, everyone I saw had instantly become "the big bad wolf". No one was to be trusted. All sorts of thoughts flooded my mind, and the ache in my heart was inexplicable as I experienced a pain I wish for no other mother. And then, I saw her. She was perfect, she was fine. She had been looking for me while I was looking for her. I hugged the older gentleman responsible for setting my world right again. I hugged him tight. My heart was happy. I was relieved, but forever changed.  

Now that it's all over, and I finally mustered up enough courage to tell my husband that I lost our daughter (not a happy conversation), I can share my experience with you. I want others to know that anything that takes your attention away from your child is a distraction none of us can afford to have. As parents, we must always be on alert; it's our most important job. 

Useful Safety Tip 

Ways to be a Cautious Parent

1. Put the cell phone down, pay attention to your children, and your surroundings.
2. Teach your children your personal information: your real name and your cell phone        number.
3. Drill your children how to behave when they are separated from you. 
4. Visit your local Police Department to have officers speak with you and your family  about safety.
5. Take frequent pictures of your children when you are vacationing. Take one every morning if you are traveling.

Remember, the best way to have fun on 
any vacation or outing is to keep your family safe.  

Follow Tamara//while i was busy thinking's board I'm a Cautious Mama on Pinterest.

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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Floral Fun

Your dresses should be tight enough to show you’re a woman and loose enough to show you’re a lady.
  Edith Head

It was love at first sight when I saw this dress, and I think many others thought the same when they saw me wearing it at our graduation. This dress is not only beautiful, it's comfortable, and what's more, it's pink! 

Floral Fun

Asos Floral Pencil Dress similar 1similar 2 // H&M Fitted Jacket Natural White// Jessica Simpson D'Orsay Nude Pump// Kate Spade Tear Drop Earrings// 

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"Summer Sundays"

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Friday, June 5, 2015

Feel-Good Friday #freedomfinally #NationalDonutDay

I am excited for 2 reasons today

Reason # 1

It's #NationalDonutDay, and my favorite Donut place, that's right Duck Donuts, is offering free donuts with the purchase of a beverage. Plus, I just found out that Duck Donuts has extended their hours for the summer, and will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. ALL SUMMER LONG! Haven't had one yet? Try them today for free!


Reason #2  

Today is the last official Friday of the 2014-2015 school year and to say that I am excited is an understatement. So I'll just let the video speak for me! Happy Friday, y'all, and have a great weekend!

Clocking out after a long day... www.hot1061.com #WorkFlow #Freedom
Posted by HOT 106.1 on Wednesday, December 3, 2014

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Thursday, June 4, 2015

A Week in June!


Let it Grow, or Let it Go?

I go through phases. I love all three versions of me, but I'm at a place where I want to know which look is really me. Tell me what you think! Vote Below!

Long Hair, Don't Care

Cute Medi Cut

Short Sassy Do 

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Wednesday, June 3, 2015

currently craving "summer comfort"

Throughout the school year, I am the fashionable teacher, but during the summer, I add comfort to the mix, and this summer is going to be no different. I snagged these items from Old Navy, and every piece offers the kind of comfort that summers are made for. I plan to spend my early summer evenings in these wearing these tops, these soft pants, and chambray bomber (my favorite), made especially for those movies at the park!

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Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Ways to "Seize the Summer"

If you ever find yourself looking for something to do around the Triangle, Offline is the site to visit to find out what's happening near you! Thanks to Offline, I have some pretty neat Summer Events to share, and the best part is some events are free!

Sounds of Summer

I love a summer concert, especially the free ones. Get out this week and enjoy the sounds of summer. There are too many options for excuses!

or enjoy 

Family fun for all at Waverly Place where they offer just what you need to get over the weekday hump!

Tastes of Summer

Did someone say Rodeo? That's right! You know summer is officially here when the Food Truck Rodeo returns. It all goes down on June 14th, so be there! Bring your wallet and your appetite because these vendors are bringing the goodies! Last year, I had a banging cheesesteak with my Bestie and her family. It was a good time. So wear some comfortable shoes and something loose around the waste to enjoy the tastes of summer!

or just skip to dessert!

I do love to cool off with a good milkshake or a scoop or two! If you like to enjoy a nice cool cone in June, check out Howling Cow at the Creamery and get your scoop on!

Sights of Summer

Another one of my favorite summer outings is going to see a movie in the park. Movies by Moonlight at Koko Booth and the Movies in the park at NC Museum of Art summer are in full swing starting this week. For as little as $5, you can enjoy an outing with your family, friends, or both. I know where I'll be this Thursday night! That's right, at Koko Booth watching Jurassic Park, just in time for the release of Jurassic World on June 12th. Pack a picnic, and enjoy a movie in the park!


Venture to the North Carolina Museum of Art for a movie under the stars!

Get started Seizing the Summer now! Don't spend time counting the days, but by making the days count!

Monday, June 1, 2015

June: Survive and Advance

Hello, June! I have been longing for you so! 

If you are a teacher, then you know that the countdown to the end of the year is when the struggle is the realest. May was a month of  survival for me, so that's why you didn't see much of me. I was a busy bee! But as of today, June 1st, I am finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel! So with the beginning of June and summer, I plan to breathe, relax, and step up my blog game! There are only 10 days remaining in my 15th year of teaching, and I plan to survive and advance! Here's to the start of a great summer!