Cupcakes and Sunshine: 2018

Sunday, October 21, 2018

New Morning Mercies


Happy Saturday! I wanted to share my favorite book purchase as of lately.


I had heard of New Morning Mercies from a friend, and then couldn't stop screen-shotting daily instagram photos from friends that were posting bits of pieces of it, so I decided to buy it myself.


It is a GREAT 365 day gospel-centered devotional. I've been through a few, and this one is by far my favorite! Sometimes I even peek ahead to the next day, but stop myself so I can look forward to reading it each day.

If you are looking for a new devotional, I highly highly recommend!!

Happy Sunday, friends!

Monday, October 1, 2018

Life Lately- October Edition


I've been anxiously awaiting the arrival of October, and the best month of the year is finally here!

Life lately has been full of...

1. Kombucha: Nothing much has changed here! I really love kombucha. Trader Joe's has lots of new flavors, and during the work day, I'll run out and pick one up to get out of the house, grab some fresh air, and peruse Trader Joe's fall items.


2. Central Market & Roomie Walks: 
We've been walking to central market or walking to grab coffee a few times a week, and it has been so good for my soul. Loving these (somewhat) cooler fall days and you can never go wrong with Central Market.

3. This pup! Makes my heart so happy. I'm thankful for a roommate who so willingly shares him! (and he is also the very best companion during the work day when I'm working from home by myself all day)


4. These 6 ingredient pumpkin muffins: 


This isn't the best of pictures, but these are so good! and only 6 healthy ingredients.

  • 1/2 cup of cashew butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 banana 
  • 1/3 cup of pumpkin
  • 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • + dark chocolate chips
  • +pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon
Blend all ingredients together, pour into muffins cups, and bake at 400 for 9 minutes. I've been having them for breakfast every morning after our coffee-walks. 

5. Wishful Thinking:
This fall weather has me CRAVING cool crisp weather and somewhere pretty. Currently daydreaming of cool hikes and lots of pretty leaves. Texas isn't quite there yet, but maybe a quick blink of fall will be here soon. 

6. Trader Joe's Fall Candles: 
Ah, I love these candles. Our home smells like Honey Crisp Apples and Vanilla Pumpkin, and I can't think of a better way to start October. These make me happy. 



7. Flannel! 

As I mentioned, it's still a little warm in Texas, but with the start of October 1st, it is now socially appropriate to bring/wear flannel everywhere. 

8. Lots of coffee and quiet mornings. 


My two favorite things! 

9. Also catching up with good friends.


Abby's one of my favorites as well! 

9. And lastly, this one again, because he just makes me smile: 


Happy fall, y'all! 



Monday, August 27, 2018

Fun With Warby Parker - 5 Frame Try-On Review


It's 100 degrees in Texas, but I'm jumping on the pumpkin spice latte train (since they were released today!) and getting a head start on all things fall. This Dallas weather will cooperate eventually, right?!

With fall right around the corner, I've been looking at some new fall frames. I am so excited to show off some Warbys today.


If you don't know, Warby Parker is an incredible eye glasses brand, that will send you 5 frames to try on right at home. (Trying them out is completely free! Go ahead, and try it!) Did you know that August is National Eye Exam Month? With that being said, I really think of a better time to get new Warby Parker Glasses.


There are hundreds of styles to choose from online, and receiving your box of 5 try-on frames feels like Christmas!



You choose your five frames online, they ship them right to you (with a shipping label to send right back when you're finished!) Then, you get to customize your frames of choice online.


Warby's give-back program is one of my favorites. For every pair sold, a pair is distributed to someone in need! They also empower adult men and women with training opportunities to administer basic eye exams and sell glasses for ultra-affordable prices. 






My favorites are the Oliver and Welty in "Whisky Tortoise," and I think I'll be ordering both.


I'll be staying in my pajamas as long as possible as well.  ;) Take the quiz to and let me know which frames are your favorite!

Happy Monday, friends!


**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.


Saturday, August 25, 2018

Life Lately- August 2018


Happy Saturday morning, friends!

It's been a little while, so I'd thought we'd have a quick coffee date and catch up!

If we were having coffee, I'd tell you I've made a LOT of soup lately. Soups are so simple, and when I am craving fall (come on Dallas- at least drop below 95!!) this simple soup recipe does the trick.


It is THREE ingredients and I will never ever buy canned tomato soup again. This recipe is so easy, and there is not a long list of foreign-sounding ingredients when looking at the nutrition label.

  • 1 28-oz can of tomatoes. 
  • 1 1/2 cups of chicken stock. 
  • 4 Tbs of butter. 

Simmer for 30 minutes in a stock pot and then blend. I add a tablespoon of brown sugar or two sometimes as well to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes. Serve with a grilled cheese (or pb&j if you ran out of cheese!), and you have the most perfect lunch.

If we were having coffee, I'd ask you if you've read anything good lately, and tell you I've been reading Bread and Wine:


Goodness, I love this book. It's packed full of wisdom and recipes. I've read it a few times through, and I think it will always be one of my favorites.

If we were having coffee, I'd tell you I've been drinking lots of coffee.


And I mean lots of it. Working from home definitely has its perks, but 75% of the time, I am itching to get out of the house throughout the day. Starbucks has become one of my favorite spots. I am, in fact, counting down the days to Pumpkin Spice Lattes. I'm definitely one of those girls, and have no shame! (3 days in case you were wondering.)

As soon as Dallas drops below 85, you better believe pumpkin bread and lattes are in the making.

If were having coffee, I'd tell you I've been budgeting, budgeting. I love MINT to organize my finances, and I think it is so much fun to set goals and work within some helpful boundaries budget-wise.

If we were having coffee, I'd tell you Jenna Kutcher's Goal Digger podcasts are wonderful! Helpful tips, encouraging, inspiring. A lot about business and achieving goals. I like to listen to them on morning walks.

If we were having coffee, I'd ask you what's on your menu this week and tell you that you NEED to add this Salsa Verde Casserole:

I was looking on Pinterest and came across this recipe. I made this salsa verde casserole this past week, and I think it may be one of the best meals I've ever had. It was delicious! Please, please add this to your menu this week. You won't regret it.

If we were having coffee, I'd ask you about your favorite wine, and to tell me all about it. Maybe your favorite chocolate too. This past year, I was challenged to become knowledgeable in a certain area, and I want to learn all about wine!


I've asked a lot of Trader Joe's workers a lot of questions, done a lot of research, and I'm not yet close to becoming a sommelier, but it would be the dream! What is good, what is bad? Please tell me all!

And lastly, if we were having coffee, I'd tell you board games with good friends are the best.


Any other Catan fans out there?

That pretty much concludes life lately! Books, coffee, eats, wine, games- the good stuff.

Any big plans for you guys this weekend? Hope it's a good one!

Saturday, August 4, 2018

8 Healthy Breakfast Drinks that Aren't Coffee (Copy Cat Starbucks Coconut Milk Matcha Latte)


Good Saturday morning, 
I hope your weekend has been off to a relaxing start. I have a couple money-saving (healthier) recipes for you today, but first I wanted to let you know something I tried out-- I quit coffee. For 8 whole weeks. 

It was somewhat of an experiment to see how coffee was affecting me...

if I'd have more energy, if I'd feel better without it and, if I could live without it. I tried so many breakfast drinks and alternatives that were not coffee. And I have a few to share with you today. Here are 10 drinks that are NOT coffee for if you have quit coffee, if you need a coffee alternative, if you want to switch up your morning routine, if you want to take a coffee sabbatical, a coffee replacement, if coffee is not your thing, if you want to save money on coffee, etc. 

1. Matcha: Matcha is a drink similar to coffee because you can drink it warm and it has a lot of options for variety (latte, iced, mocha matcha). 

These past 8 weeks, I have LIVED off of Matcha. It is full of antioxidants and phytochemicals, has less caffeine than coffee, but still gives you a boost of energy without the coffee jitters. Here is a copy cat Starbucks Coconut Milk Matcha Latte (& price and nutrition break down) 



To make your own: 
  • 1/2 cup of coconut milk 
  • 12 oz. of hot water
  • 1 tsp. Matcha Green tea powder
  • 1 Tbs. of collagen (adds protein + great for your skin!) 
  • 1 packet of stevia




1. Heat coconut milk and water
2. Add matcha green tea powder
3. Mix in one Tbs. of collagen (you can add another here if you'd like) 
4. Add Stevia and blend all in blender or use a latte frother
5. Pour into a cup and enjoy! Lots of savings!! 









2. Yogi Tea:


Yogi teas are some of my favorite for if you're trying to kick the coffee habit. 

3. Smoothies
Right now a banana, coconut milk, and cocoa powder smoothie is my first choice smoothie. 


But a mango, banana, mango juice, (& maybe some spinach) smoothie is a pretty close second. 


4. Chai Tea- Chai tea is one of my favorite fall drinks. I know you can drink it year round, but there's something special about it on a crisp fall day if you're not drinking a pumpkin spice latte. 







5. Hot Chocolate. Homemade hot chocolate is so easy, and cocoa powder is rich in antioxidants as well! Here is a recipe I use quite often



6. Easy Apple Cider: warm up a mug of apple juice and maybe add a dash or two of lemon juice. This drink is one of my favorites with a side of oatmeal. 

7. Kombucha: I drink this stuff like crazy! breakfast, lunch, dinner. Synergy's new Watermelon Wonder flavor at Trader Joe's is my absolute favorite. 


8. Turmeric lattes: I hear these are so good for you, and could be a great coffee alternative. Here is a recipe to try out! 

Getting rid of coffee for a little while was a fun and challenging experience, but I think I'm just going to stick with my grande coconut milk caramel macchiato with 1/2 pumps of vanilla, and maybe an extra shot... 🙈







Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Back on track: July Goals 2018


Happy Tuesday!


If you've been following along these past few days, you know I've been working to create a schedule and get back on track!


(Also with a few treats here and there. the 4th calls for ice-cream and fireworks)

I used to set monthly goals and tackle them, and I've been wanting to hop back in to doing that! I've got a few goals in mind for July:

Monthly Goals:
  • Not to go over any category in my budget: I use Mint to track my finances and purchases, and sometimes just let myself go over in the categories I've set. I spent $4 over my fast food budget, it's fine. (CFA gets me everytime!) Budgets are for more than just awareness....oops! I want to make sure this month I am being extra intentional in how and where I am spending. I want to start saving for more travel trips, and know I could accomplish this goal if I was more intentional. 
  • Finish Fervent and start a new book. Since moving, I haven't sat down to read at all. I've been reading Fervent for weeks now, and need to finish it up. Up next? I've heard a lot about the Royal We. Anyone read this or have any good summer reading suggestions? 
  • Find an additional side hustle- whether that's nannying, or picking up an odd job here or there. I've been wanting to visit lots of new places, so I'm saving for travel! 
  • Get a library card: purchasing books through Amazon has become way too convenient. I have a library nearby, and would love to start checking out books instead of purchasing them! 
  • Streeeetch. I need to get back to stretching. 
Weekly Goals: 
  • 2-3 smoothies per week: It's summer and it's hot! Smoothies are so easy to make and really great for you. My goal is to make 2-3 smoothies each week 
  • START a tv show. I don't ever watch tv because I'm terrible at slowing down just to sit. What show should I start, y'all? 
Daily Goals: 
  • In the Word.
  • Time in Prayer. 

Let's get after it, y'all! What are your July goals?

If you're looking to bake up some patriotic recipes, I suggest these:





Happy 4th!!

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Banana Bread Oatmeal Snack Cake


"Blessed be the Lord, for he has shown us his lovingkindness to me" Psalm 31:21

Life lately has been so full of conversations, friends, walks-and-talks, sweet memories, and laughs.
I'm in awe of the Lord's lovingkindness and feeling very content in all the new.

I originally didn't have any intentions to share this recipe, but threw together some ingredients and ended up with one of my favorite healthy breakfasts of all times-- Banana Bread Oatmeal Snack Cake. So I had to share!


I was going for banana muffins, but with the move, have not yet been able to find the muffin tins. But this banana oatmeal recipe took the cake!  :)

It's sweet, moist, gluten-free, and has a protein-punch from added Greek yogurt. I am going to be making this all. the. time. Expect some fun variations to come in the near future as well.


Enjoy with a side of sunflowers....


...and with a friend:


and with this Playlist:

Lay It All Down- Will Reagan
Till I Found You- Phil Wickham
Feeling Low- Will Reagan
New Wine- Hillsong
It is Well- Kristene Demarco
Time- John Lucas
Mt. Zion- Cageless Birds
Cathedrals- John Lucas
East and West- Cageless Birds
Love is Kind- John Lucas
Waterfall- Jonathan Ogden
Beautiful- Cageless Birds
With You- Johnathan Ogden
You're the Only One- Chris Renzema
Psalm 27- Johnathan Ogden
Ghost of a King- The Gray Havens
Divine/Sailing/Time/Hymn- Phil Wickham


Banana Oatmeal Breakfast Snack Cake: 
1 1/2 cups of oat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup of sugar (I used coconut palm sugar)
2 large mashed bananas
1 egg
1/4 cup of coconut oil
1/4 cup of greek yogurt

1. Preheat oven to 350 and spread coconut oil in a cake pan to prevent sticking
2. Mix together first five dry ingredients.
3. Mix together wet ingredients in a separate bowl.
4. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix until incorporated.
5. Pour into cake pan
6. Bake for 18-20 minutes until brown
7. Slice and enjoy with coffee/tea!

Hey! Are you hopping in with us for the work day squat challenge? Check it out here!






Friday, June 29, 2018

Getting Back on Track - Workout Playlist 2018



Hey, hey!

How's it going? You may be seeing me a bit more around here, because I'm back to the blogging world and plan on sticking around for a little while.

And hopefully the fitness world as well.

These past couple weeks have been a lot of new- new job, new house, new pace of life. And I could not figure out why I had been feeling so sluggish, until it hit me that I needed to create a new schedule as well.

Previously, my days were structured for me and there was little wiggle room. Now, I work full time from home- and I love it. BUT quickly realized I needed structure and I needed it fast. I also needed to get moving since I now do a lot more sitting.

I'm back to the grind with a few tips and tricks to get moving and stay moving this summer.


This habit tracker I posted a while back is one of my favorites. ^^^ You color in a circle for each day you complete a certain task for three months, and it helps you to stay on top of your goals and create healthy habits.

I plan on working out at least 3x per week before sitting down at my laptop. (and then tracking it with my habit tracker)

Another goal is to do 12 squats every hour on the hour. Which means ~100 squats per day at the end of the work day. I think that's do-able. 500 squats/week? Anyone want to do this challenge with me?!


Loooots of water. I am a terrible water drinker. So I'm cutting up fruit slices, and keeping a large cup of fresh water with me all day long. (tip- use frozen fruit as ice cubes! I used frozen mango and pineapple^)

15 min- brain breaks outside. Sometimes I need a brain break every now and then, so I'll call a friend and go on a 15-minute walk outside. Some company and a little sunshine help me to focus too!


Standing desk: I don't have a standing desk, but my kitchen counters are the perfect height for me, so I can stand and check email.

THIS summertime workout playlist: Of course, I'm blasting this playlist from my Ultimate Ears Bluetooth Speaker (love this speaker!!)

1. Lemon- Drake Remix
2. All the Stars- Kendrick Lamar
3. Finesse- Bruno Mars, Cardi B
4. End Game- T. Swift
5. IDGAF- Dua Lipa
6. My! My! My!- Troye Sivan
7. Ric Flair Drip- Offset
8. This is Why We Can't Have Nice Things- T. Swift
9. Filthy- Justin Timberlake
10. Bodak Yellow- Cardi B
11. Anywhere- Rita Ora
12. Wolves- Selena Gomez
13. God Save Our Young Blood- BORNS, Lana Del Rey
14. Delicate- T. Swift
15. The Middle- Zedd
16. One Kiss- Calvin Harris
17. Raining Glitter- Kylie Minogue
18. Good Girls Bad Boys- Alison Wonderland
19. Nervous- Shawn Mendes
20. Young Blood- Pro Bills
21. Friends- Marshmello

Let me know if you want to get back on track and join me! Happy Friday!

like what you see? pin it here^^


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