Monday, May 22, 2017

Three Things Tag

I've so enjoyed reading some of these 'Three Things' surveys that have been floating around! Learning about other people is one of my favorite things to do, so maybe you're interested in my answers as well. (See Erica, Julie and Samantha's posts! Hi Ladies!) 

Three Things I'd Never Give Up
I can nail it down to the 3 F's : Family, Friends and my Faith! Those relationships mean the most to me and I would never want to give them up. I think I could survive without everything else.

Three Favorite Vegetables
Tomatoes, in every form. Cucumbers, for that cold crunch. & Carrots, but only when they are raw. I really should be better about eating veggies! 

Three Shows I've Watched Faithfully Till The End
Netflix has helped me cheat here, so I'll go with the shows I watched weekly on TV! LOST was something I never missed. It was actually something that Blake and I talked about the first time we met! Smallville was also something I watched every episode of, even though I started it in re-runs on ABC Family. I caught up and watched the last bit in real time. And more recently we really loved Person of Interest and watched every week until it's premature canceling. I've watched TONS on Netflix though, like Gilmore Girls and stuff like that. 

Three Places I Want To Visit In The US
I'd love to see the Pacific Northwest, specifically the Oregon coast. I've been to California, but I was only 14 and would love love love to go again. I've also seen tons of blog posts about Charleston recently and now that is definitely on the list. 

Three Places I Want To Visit Outside The US
This list is much longer than 3! My top three places to visit are Iceland (because of Kaelene's blog, it's seriously the top of my list), Scotland (accents!) and I'd like to stay in one of those resorts on the water in Fiji

Three Things I Always Have With Me
My phone, my keys and probably my wallet. That's all you really need right?

Three Things That Are Always In My Car
I try to keep my car clutter free but I'd say: extra napkins, reusable grocery bags and hand sanitizer. Because who likes to think about all the germs on gas pumps?! 

Three Most Recent Calls Were From/To
Blake, my sister Amy and Chabeli who I butt dialed. I feel like who I texted might be more revealing, because let's be real, I rarely call anybody but my husband, sister and mom. 

Three Most Often Used Makeup Products
If nothing else I definitely have on the Stila Stay All Day EyelinerTOO Faced Better Than Sex Mascara and Burt's Bees Lip Balm. I really don't wear a lot of makeup, but with blonde eyelashes, a little mascara always makes me feel a little more bright-eyed. 

Three Things That Make Me Laugh
Conversations with my niece and nephew. One is almost 3 and the other is almost 4, and they are literally SO funny. The things that are going on in their head is amazing. (Honorable mention, my other nephew who just turned 2, but he doesn't say much. He is however hysterical when he starts dancing!) Conversations with my husband. My favorite thing in the world is to make him laugh, so we are always having funny conversations. Certain shows like The Office or Arrested Development are always funny, no matter how many times I watch it.

Three Things That Make Me Cry
Whenever sad music plays. Music tugs on the heartstrings, and a well placed song can really bring on the waterworks for me! Seeing a proposal. Doesn't matter if it's on Youtube or the Bachelor, I tear up everytime. And annoyingly, anytime I get mad or embarrassed. It's a dumb involuntary response! 

Have you done this tag? Leave a link below, I'd love to read it! Leave a comment if you and I have any 3 things in common!
This post contains affiliate links!

Monday, May 15, 2017

A Few Snapshots From Our Latest Disney Trip!

Blake and I swore we'd never go back to Walt Disney World in May ever again, after I almost had a heat stroke one May a few years ago! We made an exception to go to the parks with my family this past weekend. It was pretty hot, but not the worst we've experienced. 

We had a great time, as usual! It's SO nice to be able to visit frequently. We never feel pressured to see and do everything in one day. I see so many stressed out families and it's nice not to be one of them. This trip was all about being with family and getting to know my brother's girlfriend. But, if we're all honest, it's all about my nephew! He's the only grandkid and everything he does is adorable. We had a blast taking him to meet Baymax and seeing Disney through his eyes! 

Here a few snapshots of our weekend! I alway intend on taking a million photos to blog about and I never succeed. I'm okay with that though, because I think that means I'm enjoying the moment! 

Hope you guys had a great weekend, and happy Monday!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Navy is My Neutral (Plus My New FAVORITE Shoes!)

 Tee // Jeans // Sunglasses //Sneakers // Purse // Belt // Watch // Keychain // Earrings // Necklace //Hat
Photos by : Black Tie Cinema

Florida doesn't offer much in the way of Spring, but it's still my favorite time of year! I don't have to bundle up to take the pugs outside, you get to start riding with the sunroof open, and we get the most gorgeous wildflowers you've ever seen. Sometimes the fields are carpeted so thick with these neon yellow flowers, it almost glows in the dark. With our lack of rain and the early heat, I know this gift won't be around much longer. Nor will my ability to wear jeans!! 

This outfit is pretty much as 'me' as it gets. Preppy casual, I guess? That's why I fell head-over-heels for these shoes! I've tried Converses for a more casual sneaker, but I never felt the passion some people feel about them. These Sperry's are a totally different story. They are easy to slip on, comfortable, and they match every single thing in my casual closet. Not hard to do when everything I own is navy blue! 

Leave a comment below with your favorite part about this time of year! Are you an avid Converse fan? Am I the only one who is continually drawn to striped tee shirts, even though I already have several? 
Affiliate links were used in this post, but they don't cost you anything!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Sobbing As I Took My Baby Brother's Graduation Photos...

My photography experience is basically limited to this blog. (I did do one of my best friends a favor and take her family pictures a few years ago.) But, my mom asked me to take a few pictures of Cameron for his graduation announcement and party. 

I have never been more nervous! I can't imagine if it had been a paying customer. I'd be dead! Posing guys could not be more difficult. My research ahead of time for locations and ideas only had girls as the subjects. Beautiful pictures, but my brother can't lie down on a fountain and look quite the same... Honestly, girls look good just standing there. Guys look pretty goofy. 

To make matters more stressful, I asked Cameron if he had any ideas that he'd like to try. He had a great list of locations, but then he showed me a photoshoot one of his classmates had just posted. These pictures were STUNNING. I knew I couldn't do that. I tried to be confident, but I had to tell him to lower his expectations a bit. 

One more stressor was that we weren't the only ones on campus trying to get our photos done. The first location we tried had a LINE of people and their photographers waiting to stand in front of the famous fountain. Whole sororities were out taking pictures with their graduates. That's what we get for doing this a week ahead of time I guess. 

The next location was vacant, and we took our time there. But I knew we wanted some shots in more iconic FSU places, so we wound up standing in one of those lines. I was pretty self conscious, even though I wasn't the one in the big tent of a gown! There were actual professional photographers in front of and behind us. People who legitimately knew what they were doing and how to direct their subjects...haha! 

It was all in my head. I made friends with the photographer ahead of me, and realized everyone was really relaxed about these lines of people. In fact, no one seemed to be paying attention to any of the other groups. Everyone was just drinking their 'prop' champagne with their friends. I was able to relax a bit after that, but I wasn't fully relieved until I was able to get on the computer and make sure my lens cap wasn't on the whole time or something! 

We got a few really nice shots, so I thought I'd share. Especially if you plan on taking any pictures like this, or need inspiration for how to pose guys!


Okay, so I wasn't really sobbing during this photoshoot, as much as I was sweating. (Gotta love that Florida heat.) Not only was I incredibly nervous, I simply cannot believe my little, baby, brother is graduating college! I was 6 when he was born, so I can remember his whole life vividly. There is no way he is about to be 21, and going to be called Mr. by his students! 

Leave a comment below if you refuse to acknowledge your younger siblings are getting older! ('cause that means you're getting older too!) I'd love to hear from my fellow bloggers about your confidence in your photography skills. Taking a picture of a product is so much easier than people right!? 

Monday, May 1, 2017

Personal Project: Not Being Irritated By Everything

Maybe you've been reading along for a few years, and in that case you'll remember my .blogspot days and this blog having a slightly different name! Pugs, Pearls & Positivity just didn't roll off the tongue, and I dropped the positivity after a while. Being positive is such a huge part of my identity and that's why it was important to me to include in the name of my blog. I figured even if it wasn't in the name I could still keep this space positive and motivational! 

I enjoy talking about and sharing the good things in our life, so this blog has indeed stayed positive! I can't even remember the last time I vented about something bad. But, somewhere along the way my brain forgot to keep up with this. I love the quote above: "Positive people also have negative thoughts".  Everybody has bad days and sometimes you can't help but feel a little negative. 

What I'm talking about here today is something that goes a bit further than just the casual negative thought. One day I was talking to my sister about something that was driving me crazy, and I suddenly had a realization right in the middle of my sentence. I noticed that complaint was my third complaint during our car ride. Amy was politely listening to me and she lets me vent whenever I need to. But, I had been doing that fairly frequently. 

I don't know if she noticed me suddenly getting quieter during that trip, but I spent a lot of time thinking about this little habit that I had gotten into. It bothers me that as a person who is constantly trying to improve that I could retrogress in this way. And I'm not even sure when it started, but basically, I began just being irritated by everything. 

As I get closer to being in my 'late' twenties (eek!), most days, I feel like I know myself pretty well. I've always had a tendency to be critical. That quality has actually served me pretty well! I like to critique myself and try to find ways to improve. However, I realized that it's not okay to critique other people. Not everyone has my standards, and it's not fair to hold them to those standards without their knowledge. 

One of my favorite things in life is to learn about people and what makes them tick. What makes them do the things they do? Getting to know people helps you to be less judgemental and give them the benefit of the doubt. But! When I don't understand them or why they are doing whatever it is, I get so frustrated. Because I have this apparent tendency to get frustrated and be critical it's a slippery slope toward negativity. I literally could walk around all day getting irritated at everything and everyone. 

So I made a decision that day in the car. (Much like the decision I made when I was 14 and decided to start listening to my parents. Instant switch flip.) I would not allow myself to continue being annoyed all the time. The reality is, people are crazy and will continue to do things that you don't understand. It does no good to get worked up about it. 

That was a few months ago. I still find myself slipping in and out of that negative thinking pattern. It's helped me a lot to think about how I would like others to feel about me. I don't want the majority of conversations my sister and I have to be me venting about something that bugs me. I don't even want the kind of reputation where people expect to have a conversation like that with me. I'd rather have the reputation of being the one that will turn the topic around to good things. You never feel good after talking like that with someone else. I want people to feel good when they leave my company. 

There is also the line of thought that I would hate to know someone was being that critical of me or frustrated because of something I did. Whether it was something I chose to wear, something I said or a decision I made. No one knows what moved me to make those choices, and in the same way, we don't know all the details or the motivations of someone else. Give people the benefit of the doubt, because you want them to do the same for you. 

Leave a comment down below if you feel this way sometimes too! Are you like me, trying to be positive all the time, but have a tendency to be critical? Are you more of a positive person or do you tend to be negative? I'd love to know what personal projects you are working on! And let me know if you've been around since the beginning and remember the Pugs, Pearls & Positivity days!