My 30th Birthday (the calm before the storm)

My 30th Birthday (the calm before the storm)

I’ll be really honest- I tried to make my own birthday plans this year. I’m big on birthdays, and it seems like plans get thrown together at the last minute and I didn’t want that. But then nothing came together.  Tried to get friends together for a fun day- but the time/date didn’t work.  Tried to plan a spa day, but my masseuse cancelled at the last minute. So I kind of had no plans, which was a bit disappointing.

Mom took me shopping Saturday and tried to brighten my day, but I was in a bit of a cranky mood.  Tyler and I were going out to eat that night, so I was looking forward to that. We left Remi at home with Gigi and headed out.

I asked for a progressive dinner, so we started at Rolandos. We had guacamole and margarita, but I felt like he was oddly rushing me.  We weren’t in a hurry…what was his deal?

Well, his deal was that our next stop was my surprise party! A room full of friends and family were waiting on us and they got me good! I cried happy tears.

Amber had come in from Memphis just for this (so sneaky! She told me she had a training in NWA when we had lunch earlier that day. I thought she was headed back to Memphis).

Remi was supposed to be home with Gigi…but she was there too!

We had a fun dinner and then delish cake!

We got to meet sweet Ella- our friend’s baby. But they moved to Tulsa right after she was born.

I call this the calm before the storm because on Monday, all hell broke lose. On my actual birthday, I woke up at 1 a.m. nauseous. I got sick later and was sick ALL day. Tyler was sick too, and it turns out we all got it from the party. I don’t think it was food poisoning (it took too long to come on) but 11/20 people from the party were sick (so far…I hope no one else falls victim). I missed out on my work party. My people were planning an AMAZING VIP party complete with a burrito bar and a delicious cake. But I was stuck in bed trying not to die.  They did send me pics of virtual Brittney enjoying herself! 18920331_10100116298015463_1850892596052673571_n.jpg

I just know that 30 can only go up from here!


30 Things about Me for my 30th Birthday

30 Things about Me for my 30th Birthday

I turn 30 today.

It feels a bit momentous, but I’m excited.

I feel like my 20s were a dress rehearsal and now the show is on. I’ll be honest, there were some hard times in the last few years….but I’m happy and in a great place now. I’m excited to see what this time in my life brings.

To celebrate (inspired by Sheila Gregoire), I’m sharing 30 things about me in honor of my 30th birthday.

  1. My parents are 30 years apart in age. It made for interesting parenting. Dad grew up chopping cotton for 25 cents, mom grew up riding the bus around Chicago. But I appreciate having the different views. And they totally showed me that age is just a number. (This was them years ago. Sadly, dad is now in a nursing home with Alzheimer’s)
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  2. My favorite movies (tied) are the Wizard of Oz and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.
  3. I taught public speaking in graduate school (I was a Communication student) and have zero fear of speaking in public.
  4. I performed in Branson for several years. If you don’t know Branson, it’s a town in Missouri with a bunch of shows and theme parks (an Ozarks vacation destination). It was super fun, but it also gave me a “I crave applause” complex that I had to work hard to undo.63830_639938826123_1657137010_n.jpg
  5. My favorite food is chips and queso. I can make a meal of it (especially if it’s queso with chorizo!) and I have no self-control with it. “How do you stop eating chips and queso? Do they run out or do you die or what?”
  6. I love being active, but that’s new-ish.  Growing up, I danced (which was active) but I HATED being sweaty or playing sports. In grad school, I had a great friend who encouraged me to workout for stress relief. We would attend classes together, tried running together, and she showed me that I have a love for a good sweat session and feeling sore. I actually owe a lot to her for that, so thanks Laveda! (she’s in the middle at my first Zumbathon!)
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  7. I’ve always had dogs for pets. We have had many dogs over the years (and some other animals thrown in there too – cats, a horse, small animals that didn’t have long lives like guinea pigs and birds). Other than my first year in grad school, I’ve always had a dog in the home.
  8. I love going to concerts. My favorites are Hanson (if you’ve been around here for a hot minute you know that) so I like smaller intimate venues best. But I do love an arena show too.
  9. I was in a “social club” in college.  Our school didn’t have national sororities, but we had our own clubs. I was a Tri Chi (yes…XXX…we wore TC because nowadays XXX has a bad connotation ha!). Some of my best friends and best memories came from being a part of that group.10400898_511380787463_5192_n.jpg
  10. I took the ACT 7 times to get the score I wanted.  I wanted a score high enough to give me a full scholarship and I did it on the 7th try.
  11. I took like 12 years of clogging. It’s a fun style of dance, but that’s probably why I’m not graceful. It’s not a graceful dance- it’s more clunky.
  12. I have only been out of the country to places in the Carribean (Mexico, Cayman Islands, Bahamas, Jamaica).
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  13. I would love to go to Europe and Israel someday.
  14. I don’t like raw tomatoes. I can eat them on tacos or burgers…but not in salads or by themselves.
  15. I’ve had my gallbladder and wisdom teeth removed.
  16. I very much dislike going to the dentist. However, I have “soft teeth” (so I’ve been told) so I need fillings often…so I have to go.  I usually ask for laughing gas if I have to have a filling- which makes me feel like a kid asking for it.
  17. Cruises are my favorite type of vacation. Everything is included so you don’t have to think about plans. There are plenty of activities. You can choose to relax or be active. The food is GREAT. I can’t wait to go on another cruise (probably Alaska for our 10 year anniversary).
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  18. I am NOT a daredevil. I don’t really even like tubing on the lake. I prefer relaxing activities to things that seem dangerous. I will ride the jet ski, but only if I’m driving.
  19. My only overnight hospital stay was when I gave birth (and I was there for 4 freaking nights- 2 in labor and 2 after).
  20. New York City is my favorite place to visit, even though I’ve been 8 times. There is so much to explore and do…and I LOVE Broadway musicals. There are some great shows out this season, and I’m a little sad I won’t see them in NYC. I can’t wait to take Remi someday!
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  21. I prefer salty snacks to sweet snacks. Give me chips or cheese or crackers and dip over cookies.
  22. My favorite Girl Scout cookie is a Samoa.
  23. I could watch the Food Network all day long. It doesn’t make me hungry (usually) but I love watching other people cook and learning techniques and recipes.
  24. I worked two summers at a kid’s camp. My most valuable lesson was how to get ready in like 20 minutes, since I preferred sleep over a long shower. 1928983_504270985563_2668_n.jpg
  25. I think my love language are naps…but not a quick nap. At least an hour. 2.5 is ideal.
  26. We got married on the 13th, and a lot of people said it was bad luck.
  27. We had glow sticks at our wedding. I wanted a party. Does this picture look like a rave or a wedding reception? It’s our wedding!28901_533379896073_2309473_n.jpg
  28.  I would move to Northwest Arkansas or Tulsa in a heartbeat. I love where I live…but I also love a bigger city. My husband, on the other hand, loves having land and living in the country.
  29. Instagram is my favorite app.
  30. I got to go on a free-sailing hot air balloon ride back in 2011. It was random (I worked for a car dealership who was sponsoring one of Tyler’s cousins endeavors. She was supposed to take a Make A Wish kid up, but he was too sick. So last minute, she asked if I wanted to go since I was a business connection and family.) It was one of the neatest things I’ve ever done. And I was scared to death the entire time. ha!293427_578888147173_1541057470_n.jpg

So there ya go. 30 things about me to celebrate turning 30! Tell me something fun about you!

I’ll be back later this week with my 30 Before 30 recap!


Completing my 30 Before 30

Completing my 30 Before 30

Back in 2012, I turned 25 and wanted to have something to work on that was for me. I decided to make a 30 Before 30 List. It was 30 things (some that were edited/changed over the years) that seemed fun or important to me.

It made me become intentional. I was intentional when I mentioned fun things to do. It made me intentional in planning things with family and friends. It made me think about the places I chose to eat at, the things I spent my time and money on.

I would TOTALLY recommend making some sort of goal list. I may do a list of things to do with Remi from 1-2 or something. It just makes you think outside the box.

Friday night, we completed my list by going to eat at Emmy’s. The meal was great.

It was WAY nicer than I thought and wasn’t really the place for a baby, but the food was good.

Remi did love the spaetzle though! She ate them by the handful.

We split a sample plate- chicken cordon bleu, beef roladen and pork shnitzel. All great. And so was the red cabbage!

We got a black forest cheesecake for dessert. Bye low-carb diet. #worth it.


It felt great to accomplish something. I’ll be the first to tell you that I start a WHOLE lot of things and don’t finish them. But this was something I thought about and worked toward. And some items were personal goals, some were fun, some were silly…but they were all worthwhile (except maybe watching Casablanca. It was boring).

Some highlights from completing the list over the last 5 years:

  • Reading through the Bible. I still can’t believe I did that. It was a work of obedience and some days was honestly a chore. But I’m so glad to have read all the words that my sweet Savior meant for me (and for you!). I would like to do this again soon.
  • Attending Zumba convention (which was a compilation of the “save $1,000” and “attend Zumba convention” goals). It was fun, I learned a lot, I went out of my comfort zone, and I had a great time.

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  • Running a 10K.  I was SUPER into running in 2013. The 10k was a cold Thanksgiving morning and it was HARD. My knee hurt, I was cold, and I felt like the last runner on the course. But I finished. A good lesson to push myself and be proud in the accomplishment and not compare myself to others.IMG_0369.JPG
  • Visiting lots of local restaurants. I’ll be honest that Tyler defaults to his old familiar favorites. They aren’t all chains, but many are. Or the local places we love, we frequent.  There’s nothing wrong with that, but when you try something new, you might find a new favorite! Case in point- Calico County! I had never been before this list, but I LOVE it. The same with Landry’s. It’s now an old favorite of ours.
  • And seeing a local theater performance made me try out for the local theater the next year. It gave me a super fun experience, new friends, and taught me new things. It was also WAY out of my comfort zone, but totally worth it.IMG_0402.JPG

Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day Weekend

Oh we had a fun weekend together! I hated that Tyler had to work, but he joined in the fun when he could.  (These are out of order, but ain’t got time to fix it…so here are the highlights)

We took her to the waterpark on Memorial Day. It was BUSY but we got there when it opened to get seats in the shade.

She wasn’t sure at first, but ended up loving it.

Some play time in the shade….

I loved our matching blue swimsuits and pink hats.  My best girl.

We were there with the grandmas and cousins. We had a great time!

She wanted to be belly down, but the concrete was rough on little knees….so Kelsey helped her leg surf. ha!

She even took a little nap in the shade. The sun and fun will wear a girl out!

She LOVED when I put her swimsuit cover up on her. LOVED the hood. Big smiles.

She took a nap before we ever got the waterpark. My little frog. We used to call her tree frog as a teeny tiny newbie, and she still sleeps with her knees tucked. 

We did LOTS of playtime with Daddy when he was home. He’s the best. 

We were in Hot Springs on Sunday and she wore her red, white and blue then. I am in love with these sweet rompers. She did great in the hotel. Slept her normal time in the pack and play and was as great girl. 

We got to see family in Hot Springs. We got to play with Uncle Neil…

Family picture time. Love this crazy crew. Gavin is only smiling because he’s bunny-earing his dad. 

Nene and Carl were teaching her how to beat on the table. Girl likes to drum!

We went to Caitlyn’s dance recital in Hot Springs and she got some Nene lovings. 

Saturday morning, she was practically asking for a nap. Just couldn’t hang. ha!

We got to see Aunt Sandy and play together at recital. And how cute is our unicorn romper? LOVE. 

So that was our fun weekend: home, Hot Springs, hotel stay, back home, water park. Lots of fun. She’s so easy going and takes it all in.