Friday, June 26, 2015

stitch fix : a summer fix!

You know the best way to cure blah/rainy/crappy day blues?
Receive a shipment from Stitch Fix!

Yep, it was one of those kinda days, and then I got my Fix and it all of a sudden everything was lovely.   My kids were with me and they adore rifling through the five items and seeing how excited I get - and of, course, they have their opinions about it all.   What is Stitch Fix?  Well, I receive, on occasion, a box with five clothing items or accessories from the really fun personal styling service called Stitch Fix.  You get to schedule when you'd like a shipment sent (could be next week, or months from now) you decide what you like and what you don't, then you send whatever you don't love back in the provided envelope.  Incredibly convenient...and so fun!

This was my 7th Fix, and my second one styled by Hillary (who, if you'll remember, I loved how she "got" my style last time - read about that fix HERE!) 

She, again, sent me some really great items that were flattering and, for the most part, in touch with my personal style.

#1 Lissane Keyhole Halter Top (by Renee C) 
#2 Ruxin Distressed Boyfriend Jean (by Mavi)
someone call Yard Crashers...please...desperate.
I have been longing for the perfect cute and eye-catching halter tank in my last couple fixes.  Hillary got it right with this sweet, summery bandana print.  I love the keyhole front, and the fact that when you actually fasten the button in the back (which I almost didn't do) absolutely no side boob shows. Hurray!!!  Nothing ruins a perfectly good shirt for me than annoying visible side boob, whether it be bra or actual boob.  Definite KEEP.

Now, the jeans.  I love the jeans.  They have just the right amount of fading, distressing, and bleach spots to make me really happy.  Plus, they are really soft!  I did a wide cuff, which I prefer in the summer months, but I think they could also look unrolled with some ankle boots come fall.  They are not exactly what I envision when I think "boyfriend jeans."  Aren't they supposed to be super baggy/ill-fitting?  These hug my curves so either I need to update my size profile to a bigger size, or BF jeans have morphed since they became trendy into a more girlish fit.  Doesn't matter, 'cause KEPT!
#3 Corby Knit Tee (by Market and Spruce)
olive jogging pants from a previous comfy!
I had seen this 'merci' tee in another blogger's Stitch Fix post so I pinned something similar -- and - voila!  - my stylist sent me one.  I was psyched!  I love this trend, shirts with words, particularly something very simple.  The shirt is a soft, thin, sweater-like material and is a little longer in the back.  Hubby thought it looked great, and I was kind of on the fence.  Definitely goes with my style and the rest of my wardrobe...but the fit wasn't my favorite.  I am on the fence about this one -  should I KEEP or RETURN????

 #4 Scribe Ruffle Front Blouse (by Skies are Blue)
This tank is simply not my style.  The color is perfect, I love teal and was hoping for something bold; however, the style, the ruffles in particular, is not me at all.  I don't love ruffles unless they are on my 2-year-old daughter's bathing suit.  Besides the ruffle, it was also kind of boxy.  RETURN.

#5 Jazz Embroidery Detail Blouse (by 19 Cooper)
I personally had a lot fun with this tank, channeling my inner glamour girl.  I am really digging the black on black on black trend, and I went a little nuts with the accessories because I was picturing wearing this on a fun night out.  I feel so much sassier in pants than a dress or skirt, so I thought this could fit my "going out" wardrobe fine.  Hubby doesn't love it, but I sort of do.  What shall I do - KEEP or RETURN???

Have you tried Stitch Fix yet?  If you have been inspired at all by this post to give it a try, click HERE to check it out and get started on your personal style profile. If you use this referral link I will receive a $25 credit towards a future Fix...and if you refer friends, you will, too!  It is kind of amazing.

Happy Friday, friends!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

lime-crusted tilapia

I've been itching to be blogging more - but honestly have had a lot on my mind and schedule lately. That, along with a chaotic/messy house due to our current renovation project (the powder room..oy!) has made it difficult for me to get anything on 'paper.'

So I'll start off easy...a recipe.

I had made this a couple times in the past, but Hubby claims he doesn't remember and that this was the most amazing thing he's eaten in ages! (Totally paraphrasing there.) This doesn't shock me because with two small children I have been making a lot of, well, "kid-friendly" dishes as of late.

There are a lot of foods I regret eating, because they make me feel kind of icky afterward.  But you know what I NEVER regret eating?  Fish.  Fish and veggies and a big glass of red wine.  To me, that is the perfect meal.  Absolutely no guilt, yet fully satisfied.

This dish is perfect for summer because of the lime kick added to the fish.  Lime and summer go together perfectly, don't they?  (Can I get an "Amen" from Corona drinkers???)

Lime Crusted Tilapia
(adapted from this recipe)
(for the fish)
4 tilapia filets
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
juice from two limes
1/2 cup olive oil
(for the dressing)
1/2 cup mayo
2 TB balsamic vinegar
2 TB honey

1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Spray a glass baking dish with oil. 
3. Whisk together ingredients for dressing in a small bowl and set aside.
4. Put the Panko in a shallow bowl and whisk the olive oil and lime juice together in another.
5. Coat one filet in the oil and juice mixture, dredge in the Panko crumbs until covered, then place in dish.  Repeat with other filets.  Make sure you use all the Panko.  Just sprinkle whatever doesn't adhere to the filets evenly over the tops before baking.  For an added kick - sprinkle with more lime juice, also!!!!  Go wild, it's summer.
6. Bake for 12-15 minutes.
7. Serve over a bed of spinach and halved cherry tomatoes.  Drizzle liberally with the creamy vinaigrette. 
Enjoy! So, so good!
spinach from my teeny tiny veggie garden -- and can you tell which one tomato is, too? :D
Hope to be back soon with some renovation updates, a lil Stitch Fix action, and, (grandparents, I didn't forget you!!!!) sweet kiddo pics/updates!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

mama confessions : parenting through anxiety

climbers gonna climb.
While I've never considered myself a "laid back" kinda gal - I definitely never had anxiety before becoming a parent.  I climbed mountains,  jumped off rocky cliffs and precarious tree limbs into rivers and lakes,  and drove solo across the country never once fearing for my life, or the lives of those around me.
My dad never seemed anxious or worried when taking us on many adventures.  If he ever feared for our lives, he hid it well.  He wanted us to have experiences that would shape us in a positive way.  He was/is passionate about God's creation and desired for his kids to know that passion.
I want my kids to as spite of my first inclination to keep them safely by my side at all times.

Since they are too tiny for mountains and whitewater rafting, we have started small.  Last summer I started taking them both to different parks around our city, for them (and me!) to see all that our area has to offer as far as nature... and let them run wild.  We live in an urban neighborhood, adjacent to a downtown metropolitan area, we'll drive anywhere from five to forty minutes to get to a park where they can roam free.

I have tried to steer them away from the playgrounds to the trails.  To hike and hear the birds and find cool rocks and sticks and bugs.

I realized through these outings that while I have a taste for adventure and love taking my kids places every day, I also have major anxiety issues surrounding these very activities.
I have irrational fear they will fall off imaginary cliffs.

I break out into a sweat when we are near a busy street - and we live on a busy street, so imagine my constant state of anxiousness! Eek!

I panic if I cannot see them every moment we are at a playground.  In the two seconds I do not see one of them I am positive they have been kidnapped.

I imagine crazy scenarios and nearly lose my mind with unease.
If you haven't guessed I am clearly a control freak, and now that my kids are both runners and high-energy, who prefer to be climbing and moving and checking out EVERYTHING than standing calmly by my side, I no longer have the control I had when they were infants.

It drives me bananas.

Yes, this is real anxiety, and yes, I realize they make pills and therapists for this.

Let's just say I pray a lot.  No, seriously.

I believe my anxiety is there for a reason : as a constant reminder I need to trust God.  

I am not a supermom.  I need help every single day.   God knows I am horrible at asking for help,  I believe that in "praying through" the anxiety I am forced to acknowledge that He is in control. For me there is peace in knowing that.

Anyway, I don't want my anxiety to negatively affect my kids and our activities, so I try to go with the flow, appear calm, being cautious, yet not limiting them if there is no real reason. I want them to experience the world with abandon, never being afraid to climb a tree or swing from a rope or explore new places.  Or get in touch with nature.  Like birds, which they seem to love.
counting ducks.  there were sixteen, btw.
finola has a deep infatuation with all birds.  after she ran off all the ducks she moved on to the geese... and got hissed at a few times.
found the perfect climbing tree. 
she plopped down here on her own, to eat her "bo-bish" (Goldfish)
Cormac always finds a hiking stick and tries to climb as high as he can.  Finola always follows Cormac.
"Lean into the hill!  Put down your stick!  Test each rock! Why is your butt so dirty, Finola????" 
By the end of our outing I felt I had lost years of my life due to anxiety.  We climbed up some scary steps to a lookout over the city, and I only told Cormac about thirty times to stay on the safe side of the wall.  (Even though the other side had about five feet of grass before a semi-gradual decline.  In my mind it was the Grand Canyon, or certain death.)
The edge of the cliff.  Have I mentioned I am afraid of heights?
After this little excursion I was more than ready to get home for naps.  But I still felt happy we had gone out, gotten fresh air, climbed up to a beautiful view of the river, where Cormac was able to excitedly point out landmarks while I took deep, cleansing breaths.

+ + + + + + + 

Any other mamas experience this?  How do you work through your anxiety?