Friday, March 29, 2013

Hometown Fuzzies

Happy Friday, loves! I finally made it home after a long 4 hour drive in the car with my sister. I couldn't be happier to be home--I haven't been home since Christmas--and I have absolutely no plans other than church. And it is so awesome. The only thing that could make it better is if my mom were here, but unfortunately she had to go out of town.

Shenanigans in the car!

Tonight me, my dad, & my sister went out to one of the local hotspots, Pizza King. If you ever visit Longview, go there! It may be the best pizza you've ever had (though I am a little biased). Afterwards we ventured out to Tarjay just to look around but I didn't buy anything. And now me and Megan are just hanging on the couch--it's the best feeling in the world.

My dinner date! 

Also, I have a video from this afternoon's drive that I know you will all love if you like Celine Dion. Unfortunately I can't post it from my phone, but maybe I can upload it tomorrow! In case I don't get around to uploading it, I hope all of you have a fantastic weekend and a Happy Easter!!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Random Thursday

Linking up with Em, Lin, and Meg for Random Thursday!

Today's topic....

Obviously, books are almost ALWAYS better than the movies in my opinion, but there are some darn good movies that did the books justice. 


First up, The Help by Kathryn Stockett. I absolutely LOVED the book, and saw the movie more than twice while it was in theaters. Emma Stone as Skeeter was freaking awesome.


To this day, my boyfriend will probably swear to you that I HATED The Hunger Games movie when I first saw it. I felt like so much had been left out, but as time passed the movie grew on me. The books were super easy to read--I think I finished all three of them in one weekend. And I can't wait to see what's in store for Catching Fire & Mockingjay!!

I don't care what you say--I truly loved all the Harry Potter movies. Yes, of course parts had to be cut out, but for a franchise this large I think they did a phenomenal job. Sometimes I still don't believe that the whole thing is over and complete. I remember staying up late with my mom to see midnight showings and going to Books A Million for the midnight book premieres. 

On a related note, has anyone read The Host? The movie comes out TOMORROW, and I'm not sure if I want to see it or not. But I really loved the book [same as I did with the Twilight saga, but the movies were awful]. Have you read it? Are you going to see it in theaters?


My weekend starts tomorrow, I'm supa excited!
Now, go link up with those lovely ladies!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Follow Me on Bloglovin

Happy Hump Day, Y'all!

I just wanted to write a quick line and tell you that with all this Google stuff going on, I figured I'd see what Bloglovin is all about. If you want to keep up with me, click the link below!

Follow Beauty & Brains with Brown Eyes on Bloglovin

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Music Obsessions

Yesterday was horrible, hence the reason why I didn't post anything yesterday. Remember how I had my car wreck last week? Well, I took my car to the collision repair shop last Friday, and got a super cool rental. It's new, it's fast, it's an automatic, and it has XM satellite radio. Pretty sweet. Then they called me yesterday morning--they said that the damage from the accident is going to cost more than the actual value of my vehicle. I spent nearly all day freaking out about what might happen, and I called my dad [he always comes to my rescue and I'm so thankful!] and he's been taking care of every detail. On top of that wonderful news, work was too intense. Nothing was working properly, and I got an hour behind schedule. Not a good start to Monday. But I survived. 

I'm feeling super grumpy and tired today....probably because I'm mentally worn out from yesterday. I thought about doing a link-up, but I just feel so blah today. So instead I'm going to post some videos of my latest music obsessions :) enjoy!

I haven't actually watched this video yet, but I've always loved Fall Out Boy.

I love that Miranda Lambert is from East Texas!

Happy Tuesday!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Kitchen Aid Mixer Giveaway!

Have I ever told y'all how much I love to bake? No?!??! My sister and I are the queens of baking. So much that in middle school and high school, I would wake up early on Saturday mornings just to do some baking! And I would ALWAYS watch the Food Network. So why am I bringing up this subject now? Because Newlywed Moments and friends are having a giveaway for a Kitchen Aid Mixer! 

I've wanted this mixer since I first saw it at Bed Bath & Beyond years ago, and shortly after that my mom bought hers. I always told myself that I would make sure it was on the wedding registry, and anytime Andrew is with me when I see that gorgeous mixer I always make a big deal about wanting one. 

So perhaps it will be just my luck to finally have the mixer of my dreams!
[you think I'm kidding, but I am dead serious]

Now for the important to win.
Check out the Rafflecopter stuff below to enter! It's that simple :)

Hope I win! Happy Thursday Y'all!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Liebster Award

Happy hump day, friends! I've only been working on this post for like--EVER. Things are crazy today, and I'm super sore from yesterday's accident. Whatevs. I'm gonna be a happy camper and finally getting around to what's really important--my Liebster award from Joanna who blogs over at JayBird's Flight! Thank you sweet gal! This is my second time to receive the award, but the last time I wasn't following enough blogs!

So what exactly is a Liebster award? 
The Liebster Award is for bloggers with fewer than 200 followers. A Blogger nominates 11 fellow bloggers and asks them a set of 11 questions. The rules state that a nominee must link back to the blogger from whom they received a nomination. The nominee will write 11 random facts about themselves and then answer the 11 questions which have been set for them. They in turn will nominate another 11 bloggers and pose 11 questions to them. This is a really fun way to discover and connect with new bloggers and help us all gain some new followers along the way!

11 Random Facts About Me
I'm occasionally a bad blogger--only because I add tons of blogs on GFC and then never have time to read all of them every single day...but I will get there! Not a good way to start off my random facts [ohwell.]

I played basketball for nearly 20 years. I still love it. 

I love meeting new people! Though I can be super shy in person.

Yesterday I talked to someone on the phone and they didn't believe me when I told them how tall I was. It's really not that crazy. I'm only 6'4"...ONLY.

I work 13 hours a day, 5 days a week (though I usually get Fridays off!). It's as intense as it sounds.

People mistake my sister and I for twins every time we are together. Granted, we are only 2 and a half years apart in age, and we are both tall. 

I tweet about the strangest things sometimes...go follow me!

When I was in high school, my dad accidentally broke my nose. It's been crooked ever since.

I've always wanted to go to Europe and still haven't been yet  :(

I love to cook (and eat). Almost anything. But with my work schedule I rarely have time to enjoy either of those. 

I found out I had allergies when I was 4 or 5. My aunt had a sweet little kitten and 30 seconds into me playing with said cat, my eyes were bloodshot and watery and I couldn't stop sneezing. And I was kind of itchy. And I'm allergic to more than just cats.

My 11 Questions from Joanna
Who is your favorite artist or band?
Right now I'm in love with Kacey Musgraves <3 even though JT's album just came out, I'll always be a country fan.

What is your dream job?
I want to be an Occupational Therapist and work in geriatrics. Hands down. I love old people!

If you could meet anyone, who would it be and why?
Honestly, I don't know. There's no one person that I'm dying to meet, and every person that I care about is in my life! Though I'd probably enjoy meeting any famous music artists...

What is your worst habit?
Leaving my hair on the bathroom floor. It just kind of happens when I brush my hair and when I fix my hair. I just lose a lot of hair (thank goodness!) every day and I never bother to pick it up. But it irritates me when I find clumps of hair tangled together, or if one strand gets wrapped around my toes. Easy solution--pick the hair up! But I never think about it when I'm in the bathroom.

What is the first thing you do in the morning - other than wake up and such?
My schedule is set to a T. I know exactly how much time I need in the mornings, and other stuff. I always take my medicine first, put my contacts in, wash my face, and go from there. And I never skip breakfast!

What is something you are most proud of?
Graduating from college. I almost gave up and dropped out halfway through, but I decided to give it one last semester and I'm sure glad I stuck it out. 

Why did you start blogging?
Way back in the day, like 10+ years ago, I had a Xanga. I'm sure that's still around, but it was my way of blogging. High school got in the way and I just forgot about it. I picked it back up in college and would only blog intermittently, but now I post something nearly every day.

What is your favorite clothing store?
I have to pick two stores...because I can't just pick one.
1. Buckle: they sell the length of jeans that I need
2. Long Tall Sally: they sell everything tall. 
I can go out to any store, look at a shirt, and be able to tell if it will be long enough. 10+ years of being tall and I've learned so much.

Do you have a bucket list?  If so, tell us what is on it.
No bucket list for me! Though maybe I should start one...

What is your favorite outdoor activity and why?
I kind of HATE being outside, just because of my allergies. But I love being out on the water--fishing, skiing, tubing--you name it, I like it! I enjoy it because it was always something my family could enjoy together.

Dogs or cats?
DOGS. I'm not as allergic to dogs as I am to cats, sometimes. And dogs are just better. Period.

My 11 Nominees

11 Questions For My Nominees
What do you enjoy most about blogging?
What is your dream vacation?
Phone call or text?
What song(s) are you currently in love with?
If you won a million dollars, what would you do with it?
What is your favorite book or movie?
What is one thing you can NEVER leave home without?
What 4 words would you use to describe yourself?
What is your biggest pet peeve?
What is your favorite post or most viewed post to date?
Would you rather be famous for the rest of your life or be the best friend of someone famous?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Not How I Had Planned

So I was going to finish posting about my Liebster blog award today, but I never actually got anywhere near my phone or computer today--or even to work.

This morning on my way to the office, I was involved in a car wreck. I went to the ER to get checked out, and I am okay! Consequently, I've been resting at home all day and made a ton of phone calls and got lots of sweet texts. Thanks to everyone who heard and sent prayers and well wishes my way!

I'm planning to get back to my usual routine tomorrow, but you just never know how things are. Hopefully I'll be back to normal ASAP :)

Monday, March 18, 2013

You Did WHAT With Your 4 Days Off??

I did almost nothing. I took off Thursday & Friday from work and went to Houston with Andrew. Not to mention that his parents celebrated their 29th wedding anniversary. [insert awwwww sound here]

 Thursday night we went out to Wild West (Andrew HATES to dance) and 2-stepped the night away. Not really--we were there for 2ish hours and Andrew danced to 4 songs with me. And I managed to not pack my boots, so dancing was weird for me. But I had a great time, and of course managed to not take a single picture.

Friday I was really worthless, finally got to watch Pitch Perfect and I did my taxes. Woooo.

Friday night was worthless too, Andrew and I returned Pitch Perfect and got Batman: Dark Knight Rises. And we watched lots of basketball. Duh--it's almost time for March Madness to start!

I did nothing but sit on the couch for most of Saturday (no surprise there) but Saturuday night the family went out to see the new Oz movie. And I loved it! Though it was slow at times, it was quite good. We went to church Sunday morning and the fam went out to Carrabba's for lunch, which  was super delicious! Then we went back home, opened some gifts, and hit the road back to CS. We did celebrate St. Patrick's Day a little bit when one of Andrew's friends invited us over for a dinner cookout. He and his wife are so nice--I really need to get her number so we can hang out and not feel so dumb hanging around these rocket scientists. Hah!

And it's taken me literally all day to write this post--things have been nuts at work. Not good because my computer here at my second job SUCKS. If you see this tonight, come back tomorrow and it will look better--I promise :)

Linking up with these loves!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

WIW & Looking Different

This week's weigh-in post is short. Forgive me, I took 2 Benadryl last night and the effects seem to have not worn off yet. Or the drugs plus the fact that there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do at work. Thankfully it's the last day of the work week for me and I can celebrate a little bit of spring break now!

So, I forgot to weigh myself last night at the gym, and it's rather nice to not have a scale at home--numbers aren't everything. Monday night I was at 234 lbs, so I lost one pound between last week and this week. Yay! My family is starting to notice little changes, but I constantly look at myself so I can't always tell. Can you? The photo on the left is from the end of January. The right photo is from last night. I've been pushing myself harder because I won't be going to the gym for the rest of the week--spring break vacay! I'll just have to watch my calories :)

Link up with Erin & Alex!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Top 10 Tuesday

Stewart Street

Joining Trista for today's top ten

1. Make-up. 
1. Clinique Superbalanced Makeup in Alabaster
2. Clinique Blended Face Powder & Brush
3. MAC Powder Blush--I can't remember the color!
4. Maybelline Line Stylist in Onyx
5. Covergirl Falsies Mascara (sometimes I use the orange Lash Blast instead)

2. My iPhone
I think I would die without it--my phone is my lifeline to friends & family

3. A good book
Currently reading: The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown
[add me on Goodreads!]

4. Water
I drink at least 80 ounces of water a day, which equates to 10 cups a day. How?? I pee all the time.


5. Headphones & Music
I almost always listen to music at work, and I gotta have headphones and good jams to work out!

6. Hair Straightener
Y'all, my hair is the thickest around. It has always been thick, and I don't forsee it thinning down anytime soon. But I would rather have thick hair than thin hair any day! I love my Chi, but I've recently been using my sister's Babyliss, and it is truly amazing. I can straighten my hair in 10-15 minutes and it looks perfect all day. Warning--it has temperature settings and you can burn the shit out of your arm/hand/ear if you aren't careful. I usually put it on 375.

7. Sweets
I love anything sugary-and I mean ANYTHING. Ice cream, cake, cookies, candy, this list can go on forever.....

8. an Umbrella
I keep an umbrella in my purse because you truly never know with Texas weather when it could possibly start raining. I've been drenched enough times on campus between classes that it became a habit. And I also keep one in my car too.

9. At least one extra ponytail holder
One day in high school, I managed to break SIX hair ties while getting ready for school. There is usually one on my wrist and one in my pocket. Be prepared!

10. Blogger
I get my daily dose of posting from all different blogs. I think I may have become addicted. But it is definitely better than intermittently posting once or twice a week about absolutely nothing. Hah!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Weekend Epiphany

I spent the majority of my weekend freaking out about the smallest problem ever. One day I may end up worrying myself to death. I'm going to pour a piece of my soul out here, so get ready.

Remember my recap from last weekend and how I said that I was going to be interviewing with an Occupational Therapy program? If you don't, you can read it here. Well, over the weekend it finally hit me that this is really for real--it's going to happen. I know that may sound stupid, but when I initially applied to the program I was doing it because it was "only an extra $55 to send my application" (those were my exact words to my mom) and I never thought I even had a remote chance of getting an interview. And now that it's actually coming in May, I am terrified. I don't want to leave my friends & family, I'm scared to live in a new place, just plain scared. I know that may sound silly--grow up Natalie, you're almost 24 years old!!--but that's how I feel.

On top of that, I'm afraid of losing Andrew. I don't want to have a long distance relationship with anyone. Period. Too much heartache I think. I know that people say absence makes the heart grow fonder, but our relationship struggles [just like every other relationship in the world] have become increasingly more noticeable to me this past week. Basically, I've been with Andrew for so long that I've forgotten parts of me, pieces that are still there, and if I end up on my own away from him, I'm afraid I will crash and burn. But I know that I have to have my own self-identity and grow to be my own person, rather than being wrapped up in each other every second of every day. And when people learn to grow they sometimes can change, usually always for the better. Perhaps Andrew won't like the change--who knows.

So, if I do get into this program which is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I'm going. And I know that Andrew will be waiting for me when I get back.

It took me almost all weekend to come to the above conclusion. And y'all, it drove me NUTS. I am so exhausted; I lost so much sleep thinking about how my life could end up, or thinking of all the possible "what if..." scenarios. The hardest part was telling all of it to Andrew (some of it didn't really make sense in his engineer/smart brain) but I managed.

What did the rest of my weekend consist of? If you follow me on Twitter, then you probably already saw all of this!

Modeling my super cute new shirt from the Buckle :)

Lunch at Olive Garden with one of my favorite gingers, Blake

Hit up the mall so Blake could look for a new job. I tried so hard to resist a Double Doozy from Great American Cookies, but my willpower couldn't overcome :( it was worth every bite I tell you!!

Convinced myself to NOT buy this shirt from Inspirations. The shirt don't lie!

Saw this adorable Peanuts photo and just had to take a picture.

Spending some quality FaceTime with my mom & my sister. Megan's home for spring break this week, and I'll see her later in the week! Megan definitely makes the best brownies around. 

I was totally worthless on Sunday, although Andrew & I did go out for lunch. I did a little bit of laundry, and needed to go to the grocery store but ended sending Andrew to do that for me since I wasn't feeling well. And he even cooked dinner for me--biscuits & scrambled eggs. What a great guy :) and if you're still reading--I LOVE YOU. And since it's the week of spring break, the university is closing up early, only 2 more days of work and then a 4 day weekend! YES.

Linking up with these amazing ladies!


Thursday, March 7, 2013

A Round of Random Thursday

Today's random topic is.....
FAVE Childhood Memory!

The fact is, I have way too many awesome childhood memories to recount my favorites! So here's a few :)
Going on my first cruise ever--on the Disney Cruise Line. Pretty much the coolest thing ever as a kid. And just when I really started to figure it all out, it was over. My sister and I will be going one day as adults! I'm not even kidding. 

Family vacations to Galveston every summer. My mom is one of 5, so we have a pretty big family. Every year, we would rent a house on the canal and stay for almost a whole week. There were always things to do, and always someone to play a game with! We still keep this tradition up, even though most of the cousins are grown. This year we are going to a river ranch, and I can't wait! I've missed the last few years--mostly due to work or summer school. BUT NOT THIS TIME.

Hanging out with my dad. He's the greatest. We used to have "date nights" after the divorce, so he would pick us up from after school care and we would go out somewhere--for awhile it was ALWAYS Ryan's buffet. So yummy. And since it's Throwback Thursday on IG, I wanted to share this gem!

What are some of your favorite childhood memories? Be sure to link up with Linny, Meg & Emily!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

WIW Bitchin



Tired of working all the damn time. Tired of going to the gym. Tired of not seeing any changes on the scale. Tired of not being able to see physical changes. Tired of trying to keep up with MFP. And I know you didn't come read my blog today just to hear me bitch. 

I decided to step on the scale last night just for shits & giggles. Mind you, I'm competing in Erin's DietBet and I weighed myself Monday night too. Remember how I said last week I was at 240? And yesterday I mentioned that I was down a little from that. Lo and behold, I stepped on the scale and it was at 235. Hot damn! I lost 5 pounds!! Probably from being sick, but I'll take it! 

Additionally, my calves are looking ginormous--but then again, they always look that way. Family says my legs are looking super lean and toned. That is my best feature, after all [wink wink]. I'm not going to be giving up anytime soon, but I just want a break from all of this. It is stressing me out!

one of my "friends" had her baby today. I say "friends" because her sister & I are are super close and my sister and her were BFFs back in the day. Does that make her & me friends? I don't know.
So this is Baby Asher.
precious little boy, born today, weighing in at 8 pounds & 12 ounces.

And I will get to meet him in May!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Plane Tickets Cost Too Much

Well duh Natalie....but it's cheaper than driving the 12 hours to Omaha. All day I've been looking online to book a round trip flight, hotel, and maybe even a rental car. When I browsed yesterday, most of the tickets I glanced at were around $350-$400. And today, most of them are around $500-$650. Yikes.

The other things I'm struggling with are whether or not to actually get a rental, and trying to find the right flight home. It's kind of complicated because my interview is on Friday but there are no flights after 1:30, and I can't make that flight time. So do I pay a little extra for a late night flight or stick around Omaha another day with or without transportation and fly home on a Saturday? Ahhhhh too many decisions!!

I got back to the gym yesterday. I was slow on the treadmill, but my weight is down from last week's 240 pounder. And I'm going back tonight--but I have a smoker's cough. So nasty. Forgive me for rambling all over the place, but I'll get my plans all worked out by the end of this week!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Blah Blah Blah.

Let's jump right in, shall we?

I did absolutely NOTHING this weekend. For real, nothing at all. I sat around my house practically all weekend, except for Saturday night. I got super excited Friday afternoon when the mailman delivered a package from Sam who blogs over at Simply Sam. Go check her out! The sweet goodies I got included: a pink lemonade lollipop, some Peeps, 2 shades of Essie nail polish, and some Fun Dip! Yum!

My sister was in town for the weekend, and we went out to eat Saturday night with Andrew and his brother Austin. Of course, I forgot to take any pictures....silly me. I also found a delicious recipes for homemade cinnamon rolls, and I was dying to try it out! You can find the recipe via Pinterest or here. The rising took FOREVER. And some of the dough ripped when we were rolling it up, hence some ugly-looking cinnamon rolls below. Result? They were AMAZING. And almost all gone (I wrecked some of the dough because I worked it too long and it got rough. Oh well). 

Sunday was extremely quiet, I ran a few errands with Andrew and spent the rest of my time sitting on the couch vegging out. It was fantastic. But the most exciting thing about the weekend is an email that I got this morning just before work. I have been selected to interview with an OT program--and it is the only doctoral program in the US! Pretty awesome, huh? I wanted to scream and jump up and down and let all my emotions out, but I was at work and I couldn't do that. It's the first interview I've ever received; last year all I got were rejections (7 of them, to be exact.) and it was awful. Maybe this is a blessing in disguise? 

So if you live in Omaha or close to it, can I crash with you for a night or two??!? 

Last but certainly not least, I want to welcome all of my new followers! I think I may need to host a giveaway when I reach 50 or 75 followers. And I'm thinking....Starbucks, Target, Charming Charlie....the possibilities are endless! Kind of.