ranch life

What’s Up, Wednesday {10.31.2018}

Well… I blinked and now it’s the end of October! Which means… It’s time for my one blog post a month, haha! Here’s a little life lately via What’s Up Wednesday with Shay!



A few weeks ago, we actually decided to try Home Chef. I did some research into all the meal prep delivery services by looking at everyone’s options, and felt like Home Chef fit us the best. We got our first box about two weeks ago and really liked it– all the ingredients were really fresh and quality, and it seemed pretty dummy proof (the recipe card was step by step and everything was pre-measured and portioned out for 2; the only “prep” work was to chop a few things). For the first week, we got steak in some type of amazing white wine sauce with cheddar mashed potatoes, spinach and artichoke chicken, and a strip steak stir fry type thing over risotto. All in all, we liked it enough to try it again! Last week, we didn’t really love any of the choices, so we skipped it, but our next box is coming this week. We chose another steak with carrots and potatoes, chicken Kiev with broccoli, and a prosciutto and mushroom pasta.  Our deliveries are scheduled for Tuesdays (you can pick Tuesday-Friday, I think?), and we only choose three meals but you can get as many or as few as you like, and they have lunch and breakfast options as well.

Over the last few months, I feel like I’ve just been burnt out on cooking (especially with all the traveling we did through September and October). I can’t seem to come up with anything new and when I sit down to meal plan, my mind is just blank. So, I’m not anticipating that we’ll use something like this forever, but I’m hoping it is enough to just jump start me and get a few more recipes into our rotation so we aren’t burning out on the same things over and over, or hitting take out as much as we have been.



Honestly? I haven’t been doing a lot of reminiscing lately. We’ve got so much coming up that we’re excited about and anxious for, that I’ve been looking much more ahead than behind!



5 words.

Olivia. Dallas Arboretum. Pumpkin Pictures.







Geez, what have we not been up to, haha! When we left off last month, we were headed to Arkansas…

We arrived in Little Rock for Steven’s interview on Thursday. He interviewed Friday during the day, and then we headed northeast about an hour to Stuttgart, AR, the duck hunting capital of the world, home of Mack’s Prairie Wings, the largest waterfowling store probably in the world. 😉 This was Pecos’s first out of state trip and he was so good!


We ended the night with some Little Rock BBQ that was DELISH, including homemade fried pies. It’s safe to say we didn’t lose one single pound on the interview trail. 🙂


That Saturday, we headed home just in time for Steven to leave out for Houston on Sunday for an interview on Monday. He got home late Monday night and we had the rest of the week at home! He interviewed at our home program on Thursday and then we celebrated his birthday on Friday! We had a fun day just doing things around town, and then Olivia’s sweet babysitter came and watched her Friday night while we went to the movies.



We enjoyed the rest of our weekend at home and Olivia went to baby Sunday School class for the first time that Sunday!


The next week, we made a super quick (like drove there all day Thursday, drove home Friday night) trip back to New Orleans and back home in time for Steven to work on Saturday. {She was really wishing we would share our fried crawfish in Baton Rouge below… 😉 }


We got another few days at home, and then headed out Thursday for Dallas for the last interview! Steven’s brother and his wife live in Dallas, so his whole family met there and while Steven interviewed and Avery worked, the rest of went to the Arboretum to take those adorable pictures with the pumpkins! Gran and Bud helped Livy try her first fortune cookie and we had so much fun with our favorite aunt- Aunt Shelby!



This past week we had our next Alliance fundraising bake sale and we did really well! 2 down, 4 to go, and we are keeping on track pretty well with last year’s totals, even though last year was a record breaking fundraising year for us. {Livy was not super pumped to be in her Halloween outfit and having to go out that morning, but she got over it quickly!}



That night, we met Steven’s mom and her group of friends (they’ve all been friends since their kids were in primary school because they all met in PTA) for dinner because they were having their annual girls’ trip in a small town near us. They call themselves the RUMPs (Retired Unneeded Mothers of Pupils), and Olivia is officially their “Rump-ette”- she’s the first grand baby for any of them, so you better believe that girl got her face snuggled off!



Nothing? At least not anything I can think of right now!



I tell you what, y’all, getting older isn’t for sissies, that’s for sure. I’ve been pretty fortunate thus far in my life to have pretty good genetics and a good metabolism that, for better or worse, has allowed me to eat whatever I please and not work out and not really pay the price for it. Well, then I had a baby and turned 29 and everything is starting to catch up with me.

I’ve been back in my pre-pregnancy size 2 pants since 1 week postpartum, but I just feel different (and have a little more “mom fluff” than I would like). I think it kinda plays tricks on your mind to stretch out as far as you think you can go and then pop back like deflated balloon; it’s hard to feel like you look like you did before (probably because you don’t, haha!). Steven has made a really good effort to work out and eat better since Olivia was born, and I’ve been making no effort to a slightly half-hearted effort, so I’m trying legitimately commit to making better lifestyle choices and get into better shape with him (instead of semi sabotaging him… 😉 ).

Part of that is with eating at home. And part of it is working out consistently. The only time in my life that I’ve ever legitimately liked working out and was in really good shape was when I was in graduate school and I went to hour long barre classes five days a week- I loved our instructor and the other girls in the class and it was just fun. So, finding something that I actually like doing workout wise (and that I have the time to do) has been a challenge. Steven and I have tried off and on to work out together doing different things, but we have different fitness goals, and it’s been hard in the past to find something that meets our respective goals that we like doing together. But, several weeks ago, he downloaded an app called Running, and it takes you through different walking/ running/ sprinting plans to build endurance to run for long times/distances, which is what I need- he played soccer for years and years and was previously in the kind of shape it takes to run long distances; my physical education credits were met with dance team, so at one time, I could high kick for days, but I’ve never been able to run down the street unless something was chasing me, haha! So, he tested it out and told me that I would like it. I was not pumped. After some persuading, I got on board, and honestly, I really do like it. It’s nice to have that time doing something together, and getting good benefit out of your time because let’s be honest- nothing else burns calories like running. And if you’re going to be spending your precious time doing it, you might as well be getting the most out of it that you can. We try to do it in the morning before work, but if we don’t, then we definitely wait until later at night because we learned the hard way that doing it with the sun up and with the jogging stroller is a whole other beast 😉  We’re taking it one day at a time, but I’m hoping/ planning for us to be that cute couple that does 5Ks together here in a few months… #daretodream

{Our little running buddies, Livy and Pecos!}





Christmas is coming!! I know we’re still several weeks out, but I start early and go hard for Christmas for several weeks so it’s almost go time!



I’m mainly watching Dancing with the Stars to vote for Bobby Bones! And I’m not sure I’ve cracked a book in several weeks… I’m part of the Hello Gorgeous Book Club on Facebook (if you’ve never read Angela Lanter’s blog Hello Gorgeous, you should check it out! I found her through Jamie Ivey’s Happy Hour podcast and love her!), and I haven’t really kept up super well with the books each month, but next month’s book is The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, and I might jump in on that one. The movie on Netflix looks really good, but I want to read the book first.



I haven’t been listening to a lot of music, but I do really like Josh Turner’s new Gospel album “I Serve A Savior”. It’s got some new songs from him, plus some older hymns and a few re-recordings of his previous songs. I haven’t listened to Aaron Watson’s new Christmas album “An Aaron Watson Family Christmas”, but here in a few weeks when I start getting Christmas stuff going, it will definitely be up! (And yes, you read that right, I’m a before Thanksgiving Christmas-er. It’s just too much work and time to wait until after Thanksgiving to do and leave up for that short of a period of time!)



Ok, who knew Amazon had such cute and inexpensive t-shirts?? I got this one to wear to the bake sale and on Halloween, this one for our church carnival/ maybe Thanksgiving, and this one for Christmas!



Steven is working, so this may be the time I finally whip the house back into really good shape from the tornado it’s been the last few months from traveling to fellowship interviews and only being home 2-3 days/week. I need to clean out Olivia’s dresser to make room for her bigger/ winter clothes but I turn into an emotional puddle when I have to do that (anyone else??). She’s growing so quickly I can hardly stand it, even though she’s so much fun the more she grows.






Thanksgiving, obviously! Give me alllllll the rolls and turkey. That’s pretty much all I need. And pie. Chocolate pie. 😉

AND- MATCH DAY! The day we’ve been waiting for and praying about for literally years is finally within a month away. On November 28, we will find out where Steven matched for GI fellowship training and that will be the last career/training unknown we’ll have to hurdle (following med school and residency). We are such planners that it’s been really hard to have this looming and undecided for so long, but the countdown is on, and we can’t wait to find out! After the three year fellowship, he will officially be done training and will be an attending physician with control of his own schedule, and where we live, and when we get time off, and all that good, normal stuff. 🙂



Bonus Question: What’s your all time favorite Halloween costume? 

Well, I honestly haven’t dressed up in a few years, but in 2012, I was Mary Poppins! That’s one of our close family friends with me at our church festival as the older gentleman from the movie UP– isn’t he perfect as him??



This was my first year in grad school, and my third year with the speech and hearing program, who hosts a Halloween carnival for speech therapy kiddos and kiddos with hearing loss every year called Safe Treat. Not one single child knew who Mary Poppins was. 🙁

The next year I was Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz and had a few children identify me as “that girl from Oz the Great and Powerful”… 😐 So, 2014 was the last year I was on campus for Safe Treat, and I went with a ringer…



I was Anna from Frozen! (And one of my sweet friends from church was Elsa!) I think part of why I loved those costumes so much was because I made them myself and I think they turned out really well for homemade! And, I don’t think I’ve dressed up for Halloween since then, haha!

But, probably my favorite Halloween costume ever is this little nugget as a Cabbage Patch Kid!!!



Happy Halloween, y’all! 🙂

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