Thursday, November 19, 2015

Christmas 2015 Craft Roundup

Happy Thursday Friends! Can you believe we are almost to December and only one week from Thanksgiving! I am looking forward to Friendsgiving this weekend! 

Today I wanted to share some fun Christmas DIY's that you can do during this Holiday season! 


Mason Jar Lights from Hoosier Homemade

Christmas Tree Topper from The Wow Style

Crafty Reindeer Games from Jenkim Made

Clay Vacation Map Photo Ornament from Where the Smiles Have Been 
{Isn't this awesome! She made it for me from the Ornament Exchange}

Peppermint Lollipops from Simply Living

DIY Glitter Dear Head from Hey Lauren Rene 


So what did you think? I'm planning to make the glitter deer painting this weekend and I may make a copy of the Clay Vacation Map ornament for my friends as an easy Christmas gift.

To see these pins and get other inspiration ideas, check out my Pinterest board!

Question of the Day: What is your favorite Christmas craft that you've done? 

I'd love to hear from you!

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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Uruguay Days 7 & 8

Happy Wednesday Friends! I hope you are having a great week so far and have a great rest of your week!

Today I am going to share a recap from days 7 & 8 from my trip to South America.

Day 7

Day 7 started with us coming back to Montevideo via the Buquebus at the terrible hour of 7:00 am.  Once we all were successfully on the Buquebus, all of us passed out for the two hour trip.  I was very glad for the nap after getting up so early. 

After arriving back to the apartment, us girls threw some clothes in the washer so we would have some clean clothes when we arrived back from our little adventure.  Essentially we were back at the apartment long enough to unpack our suitcases from Iguazu and re-pack for our next trip.  

After successfully packing for the next leg of the trip, we called a cab to take us to the car rental company at the airport.  This cab driver was particularly hilarious because he spoke almost no English, but was willing to try and ended up making some pretty funny jokes about the fact that I had left my husband back in the United States and it not being a good idea.  However, he also said I was smart for leaving him behind.  We enjoyed a good laugh with him.

After successfully picking up the rental, we attempted to leave the airport.  Both Christina and Sarah know how to drive stick, but the system in South America was a little different than what they were used to.  Up first was Christina and she was hilarious.  Right out the gate she could not figure out how to reverse the car, so we sat there laughing hysterically as she tried to get the car to move

The guy in front of us ended up having to help her by moving his car forward enough for us to just pull out of the spot instead of reversing.  Okay, that hurdle was done.

Upon exiting the airport, you have to go through a gate... that ended up being hilarious as well because we did not know if we needed money or what.  The guard ended up just telling us to go through since we were clearly very confused.  I think at one point he just laughed at how ridiculous we were. 

After successfully leaving the airport, grinding the clutch several times and getting on the highway, ants began crawling out of the vents of the car.  At this point, I was in the back seat laughing so hard I could not breathe while Sarah and Christina are freaking out about the ants all over the dashboard.  At this point in the day we had only eaten breakfast and were starving, so we stopped at a gas station to get some snacks until we could get some actual food.

Now, this part of the story is hilarious because Christina thought it would be a good idea to walk into the gas station and ask for ant killer.  So she grabbed out her phone, looked up the word for ant {hormiga} and walked into the gas station confident she could communicate enough to get what she needed.  Boy was she wrong.  

We walk into the gas station and look around for snacks - I ended up with a bottle of water and Doritos while the girls grabbed their drinks and snacks.  At this point, Christina walks up to the cashier says, "hormigas!" and makes the slitting someones throat motion across her neck.  After she says this she bursts out laughing and the clerk and allllll of the other people in the gas station also burst out laughing.  It was a pretty hilarious site if I must say. 

Eventually they figured out what we needed, but they only had heavy duty stuff that would have been way too much for what we needed. 

After a few hours of driving, we finally made it to our hostel and checked in for the night.  This place was actually pretty neat.  We were able to rent a private room for the three of us that had our own bathroom and key.  This was nice because typically in hostels you share a room with several strangers.  We had fresh linens and a warm bed.

After talking to the guy who checked us in, we went to a local bar to grab some dinner.  At this point I had eaten so much chicken and steak, I was excited to be able to have a nice juicy burger and this one was perfect.  When we talked to the clerk at the hostel, he told us that surfing would not be good and that we really should not go surfing, but the bartender told us that we could possibly get a chance to go with the help of her friend.  So she hooked us up and he came to meet us at the restaurant and made plans to go surfing the next morning with his help.

After dinner, we headed down to the beach to check everything out.  It was a bit of a chilly evening, but it was nice to walk around in the sand and smell the ocean.  We also found one of those workout parks that they have all over Uruguay and took some time to play on them.  Once we were tuckered out for the day we made our way back to the hostel for the evening.

Back at the hostel, we hung out in the common area to use the Internet and catch up on Facebook and Instagram.  We also hung out with Juan Pablo and Jose Maria.  They both work at the hostel so it was neat to talk to them about Punta del Este and the fun things to do.   The evening ended with a good night's sleep.

 Day 8

The next morning we woke up early enough to grab breakfast at the hostel before getting ready to meet Santiago for surfing lessons.  Surfing was so much fun and much harder than I was expecting it to be.  Thankfully we all were able to have a good time - and I only ended up with a few bruises on my arms and legs from the board hitting me. 

After surfing we went back to the hostel to shower and clean up before walking down to see "El Mano" or The Hand.  This is a really neat sculpture in Punta del Este that looks like a hand coming out of the sand.  After doing some research on the sculpture, it was actually made to warn the surfers and swimmers that the water can be dangerous and to use caution when in the water.  What a neat concept. 

Of course, we had to get a few pictures of us on the thumb, so we took turns pushing each other onto the thumb.  This is my absolute favorite picture from the trip and I am so glad Sarah took it of me.  

After The Hand, we grabbed a bit to eat and went back to the hostel to take a nap before heading out for the evening.  In Uruguay, the parties do not start until 2:00 am or so and go until well after the sunrises.  So taking a nap was absolutely necessary.

We ended up going out to a local club that was huge! I have never been to a place this large.  And of course, since it was the day before Halloween, everyone was dressed in costume.  I am pretty sure we were the only ones not dressed in costume.  Oh well!

It was so fun to just hang out and meet all kinds of people.  In fact, some of the people we met were from Montevideo and had come out just to party for the night and celebrate a Bachelor/Bachelorette party.  It was pretty awesome being able to talk to some people and make new friends.

The "evening" ended around 5:00 am when we left the club to go home and sleep for a few hours before heading out on another fun road trip.
I'd love to hear from you!

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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Show and Tell Tuesday: Missions Trip or Service Opportunity

Happy Tuesday Friends! I hope all is well and you are having a great day so far! Today I am teaming up with Andrea for another fun round of Show and Tell Tuesdays.  

Today's post is dedicated to Missions Work and Volunteer Opportunities with which I have participated.  

Missions Trips 

To date, the biggest missions trip I participated with was the trip to Mexico.  The summer between my Sophomore and Junior Year of high school I boarded a plane and made my way to Texas with a few of my friends from high school to do missions work.  Due to safety issues, we stayed in Texas and drove daily into Mexico to bring food and support to the locals.

This trip was very eye opening for me because I never realized how many people have so little.  But I also realized that people with so little could be happy.  I loved working with the people, especially the kids.  They were so fun and so excited that we were there.  

I wish I had some pictures from this particular trip, but they have long since been buried and put away.  

Volunteer Opportunities 

A few years ago I volunteered with my city to help with the Tree Lighting Ceremony and it was really cool. 


They had a ton of activities for the children including decorating stockings and cookies.  There was also a sleigh ride which was really neat.  I remember it being super cold that day, so everyone was bundled up and huddled together outside waiting for the tree to light up.  

They ended up cutting down the tree this year, so I am not sure what their plan is for the Tree Lighting Ceremony.  I will have to check out the website for ideas.

I also have participated in Meals on Wheels.  This was a great opportunity to meet people who otherwise were not interacting with anyone.  Most of these people are excited to have a guest and will tell you some amazing stories if you let them.  I am hoping in the future I will be able to do this again.

If you are looking for volunteer opportunities, check out this website.  They have a ton of options and can help point you in an area that would be good for you! 

Well that is all for this session of Show and Tell Tuesdays, the next installment will be me showing you my Christmas decorations! 

Question of the Day: What volunteer work have you done in the past?

I'd love to hear from you!

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Monday, November 16, 2015

Weekend Highs and Lows #11

Hello everyone!I hope you had a wonderful weekend filled with fun and exciting adventures  If you want more information about the party, please check out this post


Saturday night I went to a Spy party at Sarah's house and it was so much fun.  We had missions we had to do along with playing a fun round of Heads Up.  If you have not played that game, it is so much fun! I cannot wait to play it again - maybe at Friendsgiving next weekend! 

I also got to spend some quality time with my mom.  We walked the six miles I needed to do for my long training run and then went shopping. Unfortunately my legs were not happy by the end of the walk.  


Justin and I have been fighting a cold and it's really been slowing me down.  I had wanted to get some stuff done this weekend and I just was not feeling well enough.  Thankfully today I get to work from home so Ic an use some of that time to catch up on things.  

Well that's all for now! I hope everyone has a wonderful week this week! 

Previous Weekend Highs & Lows

I'd love to hear from you!
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Friday, November 13, 2015

Uruguay Days 5 & 6

Happy Friday Friends! I hope your week went well and you are looking forward to some fun events this upcoming weekend! 

Today I am sharing the third of five posts from my Uruguay trip! I was hoping to be able to do this in three posts, but there is just too much to share with everyone!

Day 5

Days 5 & 6 were filled with some of the most incredible views I have ever had the opportunity to witness, and honestly, the pictures do not even begin to do the falls justice.

Tuesday started with us all getting up early and hopping in to a cab to the airport.  I was very excited when we start boarding our plane because I had never boarded a plane from the tarmac before! It really is not all the exciting but it was neat to do something for the first time.

Once we got to Iguazu, we crammed all five of us into a cab with the cabbie.  To say it was a bit cramped was an understatement.  We had a good time of it though! Our drive to the hotel was very bumpy - but not in the bumpy you would think.  I swear every twenty feet they had a speed bump... it got old very fast.  

After checking into the hotel and dropping off our stuff, we made our way down to one of the paths to get to the waterfalls.  Of course, on our way there, we stopped to put some bug spray on and any other sprays we needed.  For being in the forest, there really were not as many bugs as I assumed there would be present.  Thank you Lord! I hate being surrounded by bugs.

We spent the next several hours walking around and checking out the falls.  To say that they are beautiful really does not begin to describe them.  According to one of the tour guides about one millions gallons of water go through the falls in a minute.  Can you believe that? I wonder if they have ever considered trying to use that power for electricity.  I will have to do some research.

After touring the lower falls, we ran back to the hotel room to grab Papa Jones.  He did not go with us to tour the lower falls because he was really not feeling well.  So while we did the lower tour, he took a nap then joined us for Devil's Throat.  

For Devil's Throat, you have to ride a train to this area and then walk {for what feels like forever} to get to the top of the falls.  Again, the pictures do not begin to do this justice.  One thing I noticed while we were there was the butterflies that we saw everywhere.  There must have been thousands of them and they were all so beautiful!

At Devil's Throat, we just enjoyed the sound of the rushing water and marveled in the beauty.  It is really neat to get that close to the top of the waterfall.  Honestly, my biggest question is where in the world all of the comes from.  When we were walking to Devil's Throat, we walked over what felt like a mile of water to get to the top.  I was fascinated to see the number of birds, turtles and other animals hanging around the water as if it was not a big deal.  Oh - and it was also crazy to see the old walking paths that had collapsed under the pressure of the water.  Thankfully we did not have any issues with our pathway.  

On our way back to the hotel, we had to take the same train.  While we were waiting, Christina decided that she would try to pick up a butterfly.  I think she was successful haha! She ended up with two butterflies - one on each hand.  It was cool to see them sitting there just checking out her hand.  The evening ended with us having dinner at the hotel and going to bed. 

Day 6

The next day we woke up and made our way to the upper path of the falls.  I am so glad that we did this path as well because it had some of the more panoramic shots of the falls.  Unfortunately, my camera died at this point so I only grabbed a few pictures of this part. 

The weather was a bit more lovely this day, so we really were able to see the falls in the distance.  Actually on this part of the tour I ended up sunburning my neck and shoulders and had some rather hilarious tan lines.  It felt so good to get some sun on my skin {even if I was red} and enjoy the outdoors.

In the afternoon, we made our way back to Buenos Aires.  We stayed at the same hotel as last time and made sure to take advantage of the pool while were were here - especially since it had a bunch of water massage things built right into the pool.  Sarah, Christina and I took some time to do some shopping while we were in Buenos Aires and I am glad that we did.  I ended up purchasing a few scarves.  One of them had butterflies on it, so it was a perfect representation of our time in Iguazu.

After shopping, we enjoyed some time at the pool before getting ready to head out for the evening.  Unfortunately by this point I had started to get burned out, so I ended up just going to dinner and not going out dancing.  Honestly, it worked perfectly because I was able to FaceTime with Justin and talk to him for a while.  Plus, that was the day of our anniversary so it was nice to "spend some time" with him.

Okay! That is all for days 5 & 6 and I really abbreviated those days.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Question of the Day: What is your favorite souvenir from your travels?

I'd love to hear from you!

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