Monday, February 18, 2013

it's a whole30 lent!

growing up, we went to catholic mass every saturday night.  as i got older, saturday nights took on a completely different meaning.  there was definitely mass, but it was more along the lines of mass booty shaking.  sweet baby jesus for sure did not approve.

as a grown adult, i've become one of "those" catholics.  the ones we used to scowl at on holidays-because, you know, they only show up on holidays.  and boy oh boy, do we "holiday believers" really know how to pack a church.  however, as slack as my church attendance record is, i've kept one practice for the past couple of years: the lent sacrifice.

for those of you that are not aware, lent is upon us.  it's the 40 day period between ash wednesday and easter.   as a way of penitence, most catholics choose to abstain from something for the duration.  i've done all kinds of lenten challenges: from candy to tortilla chips.  (one really needs to know me to understand how hard that was)  no matter how many days i made it through without as much as a sneak of my forbidden lent thing was for sure, it would be in my easter basket and i would demolish it.  nothing celebrates the resurrection of jesus quite like a girl pounding her way through a basket filled with brownies and sweettarts galore.

i may have only had half the idea right for lent.  lent is about conversion, about giving up a vice or a sin. the ultimate goal is not to just last 40 days, but to make it a lifelong commitment.

for the past couple of months, the boy and i have been toying with making a transformation to a paleo lifestyle.  since i was in middle school, i've dealt with chronic daily headaches.  and to make this lady even more lovely, i've also been handled one sassy gut.  so sassy that i was once blessed with the nickname "poopchute."   no lie.  it's a wonder the boy still finds me attractive.

several years ago, i started to really look at what i was putting into my body.  i mean, this is the body that is going to have to make some babies in a few years.  do i really know years of daily medicines haven't built up some toxic sludge inside of me?  and more recently, i've begun to look at the foods i eat.  i gave up cheese, wine, and chocolate...but was still dealing with some junky feeling symptoms.  if i was still dealing with junk, it must be because i was still eating junk.  paleo just started to make sense for me.

and in true jen holmes form, if i'm going to try something, i'm going to try it all out.  and that's why i've chosen to do #whole30 for my lent sacrifice.  it's a huge change in the way i eat and will hopefully lead to a huge change in the way i eat for the rest of my life.

let's get some basics down:
paleo: no dairy (depending on how strict you are with the diet...i'll probably just include greek yogurt), no grains, no legumes, nothing processed.  you can have sugar but it needs to be in a pure variety (ie: agave, a pure maple syrup, etc)
whole30: nothing processed, no sugar (real or artificial), no grains, no legumes, no white potatoes, no dairy, and no alcohol.  And most important-no "paleo-ifying" dessert or junk food choices-no coconut milk ice cream, no almond flour pancakes, etc.

basically, if a caveman could have hunted it, or gathered it, you can eat it.  so no krispy kremes.  or ben & jerry's.  or mcdonald's nuggets.

it's only been a few days since i started my whole30 adventure.  valentine's day was a real pain in the keester since candy was all up in my grill.  & i still want to go face down into a vat of skittles.  or starbursts.  or gummy bears.  and seriously, i'm going to miss beans.  

yours in legume free love,

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

pinterest gem: food passport

Lately Pinterest has just been too sassy for me.  I log in and all I see is reminders of things that I can't do.  I can't sew even though I have a sewing machine sitting in my stupid storage unit.  I will never spend a Sunday making 2390734 freezer meals.  I don't have a way to magically make a washer & dryer appear in a spacious Master Suite Closet.  (But let's just all take a minute and let our minds be blown by how amazing of an idea that truly is.)

And just when I was about to abandon all hope for pinning, I stumbled across this little gem.  The Food Passport by The Spotted Fox.

Best part-super easy steps.  Procure yourself a small notebook and divide each page in half.  In each "square" fill in the name & address of favorite eateries mixed in with places that have been lingering on that "let's check it out" list.  & Don't forget to save room the stamp when you've visited that particular place.  

Whenever the boy and I are trying to figure out where to eat out, the conversation normally goes a little something like this.  "You pick."  "I don't care."  "What about here?...NOPE!" and so on and so forth, until we end up in front of a basket of tortilla chips.  The end result is a whole lot of wasted opportunities to experience funky food options & a mexican waiter that knows our orders by heart.  

Plus the possibilities for this as a gift are endless.  Got friends that were recently married? Make them a food passport & include a couple of gift cards to favorite eateries.  As a Realtor, I think this would be a great closing gift (along with some gift cards) for anyone that is relocating.  Since the hubby has hit me with the travelling bug, I think it would be great to tailor food passports specifically to adventures.  How cool would a stack of these, each from a different trip, be as mementos?   It would be such a neat way to document experiences together.  

foodie love,

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

best day ever

our wedding video, courtesy of milestone pictures.

spoiler alert: skip to 5:42 to watch me slip adam the tongue.  obviously, my mother raised me right.


Monday, February 4, 2013


recently: on repeat

recently: discovered

postable.  they send you a link, you send it out, and you have a digital address book in under a minute.  hallelujah technology, i adore you.  i just wish i had found you before i got married. 

recently: i've got preggo friends

littlehipsqueaks: if you are my friend, you probably are preggo.  and perhaps, i'll be gifting your newest bundle of joy with something from this rad shop.  and seriously, can i get those chevron leggings in an adult size? 

recently: lusted

madebyhank: beautiful bags.  i want them all. 

recently: watched

the following.  so. good. and it stars kevin bacon.  i need not say more. 

recently: instagram'd

out of no where, i have become a bloody mary aficionado. like in a "i drink them with a friday night dinner" kind of way. i had this bad boy (complete with a pbr sidekick) in raleigh

recently: app'd

google+.  for no other reason, get it so that your iphone pictures automatically sync with your google+ account (and thus! with your blog!) 


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

30 before 30, update

some of my dearest blog readers may remember this little post, just a little something called a 30 before 30 list.  with over six months gone since my quest for pre-30 greatness started, i figured i owed y'all a little update.

1. get married  CHECK.  and i got the ID complete with a fancy new name to prove it. 
2. run another half-marathon.  eek.  did i really say that i wanted to do this?  how about a couple of 5ks instead?  bueller?  bueller? 
3. travel to the west coast.  tenatively scheduled for fall 2k13. 
4. eat in'n'out.  see #3
5. go back to disney.  with friends.  shamelessly take pictures with all of the princesses. see #3.  i'm gonna knock all these bad boys out in one swift west coast adventure. 
6. make a decent effort to learn a foreign language.   i ordered pollo ranchero last night, does that count for anything?
7.  learn to take really good pictures.  way to set the bar high, holmes.  i'm guessing instagram won't cut it. 
8. make eclairs.  (i've been dating the boy for YEARS and i just found out that his favorite dessert is eclairs.)  i bought him an eclair one day. 
9. go on a honeymoon. i want to go back. 
10.go on a girls trip for my 30th.  ladies, are you listening? quit getting pregnant so we can go on a trip!
11.plant a garden. i'm growing succulents.  baby steps, baby steps. a vegetarian for a month. how about trying paleo isntead? 
13. try out a new hair color.   welp, i promised the boy i wouldn't cut my hair off for an entire year.  and then i did anyway. 
14. sew something that i could actually wear.  i guess i should did that sewing machine out of the storage unit, eh?
15. do a boudoir photo shoot. on the books.  hey hey hey. 
16. floss more. seriously, i'm kicking myself for all these high maintenance promises. 
17. send more handwritten thank you notes.  wedding thank you notes!  
18. go camping.  why didn't i promise to glamp instead?
19. eat a hot dog. i'll save that one for when i camp. glamp. 
20. learn to play tennis. i played.  once.  like in september.  at least i learned how to play volleyball? 
21. be confident enough to ride my bike down the busy street. i really was making good progress on this goal.  and then it got cold. 
22. pay for someone else's food at a drive thru. drive thru's aren't paleo. 
23. be a rad wife. see #15.  and the huge new monster truck in my driveway. 
24. refurnish a piece of furniture. i pinned some ideas?
25. be a better friend. make phone calls.  send cards. seriously, i'm a bad person. i need to step up my 30 before 30 game.  
26. adventure in my own town-visit the art museum, airlie gardens, etc. not a thing.  it's almost ridiculous. 
27. make a pie from scratch. thank you, christmas tart.  let's not talk about how i made the dough from scratch and how the tart pan fell apart as i was putting it into the oven, runing said dough forever. 
28. the ocean is in my backyard-swim more. it's cold.
29. get a paddleboard.  seriously, cold. 
30. celebrate the last night of my 20's in style.  the boy promised me a trip to vegas in exchange for delaying our baby making years.  i like the way he thinks. 


Sunday, January 6, 2013


recently: on repeat

recently: read

gone girl.  mind blown. 
nom nom paleo.  why yes, i'm a bandwagon-new-year-healthy-eating-fool.

recently: app'd

flipboard. makes all my blog stalking dreams come true. 

recently: purchased

mrs. meyer's cleaning spray.  white woman do work, son. 
sanuk shoes.  i had a tearful goodbye with my toms due to a horrible case of the stanky stinks.  and let me tell you something.  once you go sanuk, you'll never go back.  my feet have never been so happy.

recently: lusted

a ridiculously expensive stove.  thanks williams sonoma, for not making my dreams come true. 


Thursday, November 15, 2012

6 haves and 6 have nots

In a study made popular by morning shows and Internet news, research suggests there are six types of friends everyone should have.   
Apparently, every group of friends needs a set of classic friend stereotypes.  You know, kind of like the token character in a movie.   Or that girl at a party.  The party or the movie just wouldn't be the same without them. 
Domonique Bertolucci, as quoted in the below Herald Sun article, says “You need different types of friends in the same way that you need food from different food groups. Different types of friends serve different purposes and nourish and enrich our lives in different ways.”
The Herald Sun outlined these types as seen below
The world changes quickly and some people are just that little bit better at keeping up with what’s hip than we are. Like those friends who know that NO ONE EVER says “hip” any more, for instance. We like to be around these people, because they’re a beacon of cool. Cool things just flock to them. These are the people who help you to open your eyes, have a flow-on effect for introducing you to other cool people and help to unstick yourself from the rut that’s all too easy to get bogged in. “These people enrich your life by exposing you to things that may have otherwise have passed you by,” says Bertolucci.
(IE: the friend who always knows what's going down on a Saturday night)
People are busy, we get it. But there’s nothing more frustrating than having to reschedule your re-re-re-scheduled catch-up. Everyone needs a friend who you can call at the drop of a hat. A friend who says “hell yeah, I’m up for that”. That’s why it’s good to have a mate who you don’t need to issue a 28-day notice to just to meet for a frappuccino. It’s refreshing (the friend, that is, not necessarily the frappuccino.) “This friend is the flexible, no frills friend who makes your life a breeze. Nothing is ever too hard and they’re open to doing new things and changing plans at short notice,” says Dr. Green. While Bertolucci agrees, “Their enthusiasm is contagious and you always have more fun when they are around.”
(IE: check your texts and your recent calls.  i bet they are all to the same person. i bet she's up for anything)
Oprah Winfrey once said: “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher”. And we all need to live life a little bit closer to Oprah. These people challenge you to be the best version of yourself. The only downside is that sometimes they can be infuriating and inspiring in equal measure. Dr. Green’s advice: “This friend is only an important role model if they behave in ways that are authentic and genuine. They will see the best in you and give you important feedback on both your strengths and weaknesses.”
(IE: probably a work friend.  perhaps don't admit your love for keeping up with the kardashians to her)
We like integration. We like killing two birds with one stone by catching up with several groups of friends at once. But there are times when you need to make an S.O.S call to a friend who is completely uninvolved and removed from a situation who can offer objective advice so it a bonus that your friendship exists without orbiting around your other ones. “There is a level of privacy to this friendship that doesn’t exist in friendship circles,” says Bertolucci. “It will be easier to share some of your hopes and dreams, fears and concerns knowing that they are not going to be discussed when you’re not around.”
(IE: the booty call of friends)
An honest friend will not always tell you what you want to hear, but they’ll certainly tell you what you need to know like if he/she is really that into you. When you've got a crisis on your hands or need to make a quick decision they are your go-to. They’re also there to keep you away from mixing paisleys and stripes. This type of friend has the strength of “feedback” and “is a pearl who will tell it to you straight when others won’t or will sugarcoat things at the very least,” says Dr. Green. But she warns that this friend is someone who does it with good intentions and for your own benefit.
(IE: the one you love to hate)
History. Sometimes it works to your advantage, other times it doesn't  This is that friend who sees you out of the context of your job, your relationship, your other friends and your life as it is now. This is the friend who knew you when you had pimples and a bowl cut. There is something special about this person because they feel like home. It’s nice and comforting to be around someone who has known you forever. “This is a friend you never have to put on a brave face for,” says Bertolucci. “They know you better than you know yourself and accept you unconditionally.”
(IE: your kindred spirit, she'll just get it)

But doesn't that just seem like half of the story?  I mean, we've all seen mean girls, amiright? You certainly can't get to close to your 30's without figuring out what friends you need...and what friends you don't.  So it's only fair that we also talk about the 6 friends that you don't need.  And seriously-my mom should have taught me this in high school. 
1. friends that tag unflattering pictures of you on facebook.  on purpose.  out of spite. and derives secret happiness from it.  seriously?  that's why they invented cropping, whore. 
2. the friend that is a) in a toxic relationship b) blind to it's toxic-ness and c) yet always whining about how unhappy she is. no one needs a man that bad. 
3.  the debby downer friend.  whomp whomp whomp.  no one likes a negative nancy either. 
4. the bailing friend.  you know, the one that always runs late and is forever cancelling her plans with you.
5. the friend that always talks & never listens. she probably never returns your calls either. 
6. the friend that stole your man.  burn her at the stake. 
here's to friends-the good ones.