Catching up!

Ever since I got back from vacation, blogging has taken a serious backseat. Now that it’s finally starting to actually feel like spring, I’m spending a lot more time in the evenings outdoors with my fur babies (yay!!) and other shenanigans with the hubby.  Here are a few pictures to give you a snippet of life over the last few weeks:

The Good:

Art ShowChecked out my beautiful sister’s senior art show! So proud of her amazing talent (which I have less than none of).

CavernsVisited a cavern with my parents and Justin. The pictures turned out pretty awful but it was beautiful in real life!

FestivalSpent the day at a local downtown festival with the love of my life. Music, food, and lots of glorious sunshine!

The bad (for my health):

Chocolate shoesToo much wine and food at the aforementioned festival = sickness. 😦 But it was worth it to snag one of these beauties: a chocolate shoe lollipop!!

OreosMy youngest sister visited and brought me these. Tastes like an Oreo with Dunkaroo frosting — best combination ever?? I think YES. Unfortunately, I polished this package off way too quickly and need to log some serious hours at the gym to make up for it!

The ugly:

Granola failAn entire box of my favorite granola ruined thanks to a not-as-closed-as-I-thought container. Complete and utter lunch-packing fail.

WindshieldThank goodness for insurance! My entire windshield cracked after a stray rock hit it on our trip to Charleston. Yikes!

The Threads:

A round-up of work outfits from the last few weeks. I finally got to break out some warmer-weather stuff! Yay!

03-27 Look 03-28 Look 03-31 Look 04-01 Look 04-04 Look 04-07 Look 04-08 Look 04-09 Look 04-11 Look

***

And lastly, today’s outfit! I’m totally loving this new dress from Target! And thanks to the Cartwheel app, it was 15% off. Score!

04-13 Look 1 04-13 Look 2

Dress: Target (exact here) ~ Cardigan: Target (exact here) ~ Necklace: Maurices (similar here and here) ~ Bracelet: J. Crew Factory (exact here) ~ Shoes: Nine West (exact old, similar here)

Advertisements

Wedding Wednesday: The Decorations, Part 2

Not gonna lie, it’s been a long day and my hubster wants to chillax on the couch and catch up on last night’s episode of “The Voice” so I’m gonna just get right down to it so I can go join him! It’s Wedding Wednesday and the decorating fun continues!!

Wedding Wednesday

Our wedding took place on my grandparent’s farm, which is now owned by my parents. My parents decided to renovate the old farmhouse in the months before the wedding, and one of the things they updated was the windows. Putting new windows in = tons of old, rustic wooden windows for me to use for DIY decorations!! YAY!

Here are some of the ways I incorporated these windows into the decor:

DIY Window Pane with blown up photo

Believe it or not, this window frame came with the perfect amount of aging/distressing so I didn’t have to do anything to it. All I did was clean the window with some simple wood cleaner and it was done! I printed out the photo at Costco because it was the only place I could find that would print off a near poster-size picture and didn’t charge a ridiculous amount of money for it. Score!

Engagement pictures in rustic window frame. Wedding DIY.

I used the same process as before (but with smaller pictures) in the above window frame. I’m sure you can find some super crafty way of attaching photos to a window on Pinterest, but I’m going to be very real about the un-crafty way I created these.

1. I cleaned the window and glass.

2. I placed one picture at a time behind the glass of the window and moved it until the exact part of the picture I wanted to see was “framed” by the window pane.

3. Without shifting the picture, I carefully pressed it into into the glass. Making sure the picture was flat against the window glass, I used my nail to bend a crease in the picture up against the side of the window frame. This marked the outline of the part of the picture I wanted to see

4. I cut out the picture using my crease as an outline (I left a slight edge around the crease in case I needed to shift the picture. Better to have to trim it a little more than realize I came up short!)

5. I used masking tape to attach the picture to the side of the window glass.

6. I repeated all those steps for the remaining three window panes!

Like I said, you’ll probably find a more conventional, “crafty” way to do this using fancier tools and a more exact method on different blogs or DIY websites; however, this is what worked for me because it was quick and easy! I loved the result and no one saw the back of the windows anyways so the whole tacky-masking-tape-thing can stay our little secret, right?

Engagement photos in old window frame, stacked crates, DIY wedding decor

While I liked the first two window frames (which were placed by the “welcome table” that I talked about in last week’s post), this last one was probably my favorite. I loved the double window; it was so unique! I propped it up against this display of new and old crates found in my parents’ attic near the walkway where people went from the ceremony to the reception. The yard at the farmhouse was very big and thus, difficult to decorate, so this display was a simple way of adding some cool decorations without spending a lot of time or effort or going overboard. I found the J & S letters at TJ Maxx and the wooden hearts were handcrafted by a dear family friend. The wine bottles were part of a whole ‘nother DIY project that I’ll discuss in a later post. I was really happy with how this display turned out!

In the spirit of window crafting, I’ll share one more thing! Our seating arrangement was created using an old storm door found in the attic of the old farmhouse.

Old door used to display seating chart. Wedding DIY

I alternated seating arrangement cards with engagement photos on the windows of the door and absolutely loved the way it turned out! For this, I used clear reusable tabs on the back of the photos and seating cards to attach them to the glass. My dad created a simple arch and used swinging screws to attach the door to the arch to put it at eye level with our guests.

seating arrangement on window pane

If you look closely, you’ll see I used the same tree design on the seating cards that we had on our invitations and programs. It was the perfect way to tie everything together!

All photographs are copyright of the fantastic Rothwell Photography.

And that concludes another Wedding Wednesday! Have a good evening!

***

I am slowly inching my way into a spring wardrobe — here’s hoping the cold winter is finally gone!

Teacher outfit blog: pink and brown, bow belt, flower necklace

Sweater cardigan: Maurices (similar here)~ Cami: Express (exact old)~ Khaki pants: Maurices (similar here) ~ Flats: Target (exact here) ~ Belt: Via Plato’s Closet ~ Necklace: Lia Sophia “Flower Pot” (no longer available; similar here)

March Madness!

One of my favorite times of the year (in the sporting world, that is) is finally heeeeeeeere! First day of SPRING and it’s March Madness!

Now, I would never classify myself as a huge college basketball fan. I really don’t watch much during the regular season, though I am a huge Ohio State fan in all sports so I will occasionally watch a game of theirs. All that being said, I just LOVE the March Madness tournament!

Every year, I fill out two brackets. One is what I call my “coin flip bracket,” where every decision is based on the flip of a quarter (heads = top team wins, tails = bottom team wins). It’s so fun to see how things work out when it’s left purely to chance! I also fill out a “date night” bracket; Justin and I each fill out a bracket and exchange them. At the end of the tournament, whoever had the better bracket gets taken out to dinner by the loser. It’s a fun excuse to go out to eat and have some fun. 🙂 **Sidenote: Justin has beaten me the last two years but I have a good feeling about this year! Time to win a date!!

I have so much fun filling out my bracket that I thought I should incorporate it into my classroom too. Here’s what I did during my planning period today: Using March Madness in the classroomMy students all got really excited when they saw the bracket! I knew it would be a fun thing for them to see and keep track of the tournament with, but then I thought about trying to make this a learning experience too. Turns out, there are a lot of ways to make the bracket fun and educational! Here are a few ideas I came up with:

Making March Madness Work in the Classroom

1. Probability For this one, you have to take rankings out of the equation. I’d phrase a question like: “If all teams had identical records, what is the probability that . . .”

  • “. . . a team from the West wins the tournament?”
  • “. . . a team that begins with an ‘A’ or ‘C’ wins the tournament?”
  • “. . . Ohio State will win the tournament?”
  • “. . . the final match-up will be between Villanova and Arizona?”

Get creative! We did probability with marbles and cards and the students all felt that it wasn’t relevant to their lives. Now is a good time to engage their attention (even if it isn’t truly chance since there are rankings in real life)

2. Statistics Use the records to your advantage! Have the students discuss a particular game (have info up on the board for those who didn’t watch) and figure out a particular player’s statistics. (i.e. “Player B made 5 of 9 shots last night. What was his percentage of made shots?”)

3. Writing assignment Have the students make-up a story about an unbelievable upset (they can pick the teams from the bracket to write about) and have them give specific details using whatever writing strategy you’re currently working on (i.e. using specific adjectives, adding proper nouns, etc)

4. Graphing Have a poll question written on the board (I’m going to let students actually write on the board since they love to do that but you could have them do it by raising their hands). For example, your question could be:

  • “Who do you think will win the whole tournament?”
  • “Who do you think will win the South/East/West/MidWest?”
  • “Which is your favorite team still in the tournament?”

Collect student answers (you can have one student be the recorder as other students raise their hands or you can have them write their answer on the board — perhaps in simple tally form depending on how you worded the question). Then you can work on graphing the student responses in pie charts, bar graphs, etc.

5. Summary writing. Write a ton of statistics from a game that has been played up on the board and have students take that information and write a game re-cap summary. Remind them of important things summaries need (recount highlights and include major details such as the score) and have them make up a quote from a player or coach to include as practice for writing with quotations.

I’m very excited to implement this in my classroom! I’m going to just have a fun poll question on the board each day too so it stays interactive and keeps the students engaged. I think it will be fun! Please let me know if you have any other fun strategies for involving students in March Madness and I’ll gladly add them to my list!

***

Today’s outfit didn’t exactly scream “spring” but when it’s only gonna be a high in the mid-50s, it’s hard to go too crazy.

navy and white stripes, white pants, statement necklaceShirt: TJ Maxx (exact unavailable) ~ Pants: New York & Company (similar here) ~ Flats: Target (exact here) ~ Necklace: Purple Peridot (exact here)

Outfit catch-up + Juice!

Hi y’all!

Another day off of school due to snow (I don’t know about you, but I am READY for spring to get here!) which I spent cleaning, doing laundry, and . . . napping. Not even a little bit ashamed about it either.

Morning Burst Juice

Today for breakfast Justin and I tried a new juice and we LOVED it! I am calling it my “morning burst” juice because it seriously gave me the perfect boost of energy to start my day! This is definitely going to make it into our regular rotation.

Ingredients:

-2-3 handfuls spinach

-1 banana (two if they are small)

-1 large apple

-1/4 pineapple

-1 pear

Morning Burst Juice Ingredients

So delicious! I added water to mine to make it less thick but Justin loves the thicker/frothier taste so he didn’t. We were both big fans!!

Morning Burst Juice

Outfit Catch-up

Since I’ve been horrible at blogging lately, here are my latest work outfits! Details to all available pieces can be found on the wear page. Enjoy!

teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com teacher outfit blog :: simplifythechaos.com

Wedding Wednesday: The Suit

Okay, people. Fess up.

Elsa-FrozenWho ticked off Elsa!?

Seriously, I can’t believe it is snowing again. We have already had several inches this afternoon and school has been canceled for tomorrow. While it will be nice to have a day off, I am getting antsy for spring!! I need some warm weather and bright colors back in my life!

Wedding Wednesday

Since last week’s post was all about my dress, I thought I should spend some time this week and talk about Justin’s suit.  Finding the perfect suit was (shockingly) more difficult that finding the perfect dress.

Our requirements for a suit were seemingly pretty simple. We wanted something light tan and breathable since the ceremony was outdoors. We also wanted it to be fairly casual since our wedding theme was more fun than formal.

That’s it!

You would think we would have found tons of options but we struggled. I bet Justin tried on suits from at least 10 different stores and nothing was right. Most suits looked too formal or were too dark in color. I was about to give up and have him just wear khaki pants . . . until . . .

Justin

We found the perfect one!!

Justin’s suit was from Express, which was very fitting since that has long been one of my favorite stores. It was the best combination of everything we were looking for — breathable, the perfect mix of formal and casual, and the exact shade of khaki I was envisioning! Plus, we used one of those excellent Express coupons to get a sa-weet discount. Success!!

Originally J was planning on wearing the full three-piece suit, but once the day came, he just felt that the right thing was to ditch the jacket, roll up his sleeves, and keep it casual. I actually love that he did that — it was perfect! And did you see those shoes!? He found navy and yellow boat shoes to match our colors online and convinced me that he should wear them. They are perfectly, ridiculously him and I’m glad he found them. He definitely stayed true to himself!

SJW0302

See what I mean? He’s ridiculous. And awesome.

Justin also wore a navy and green striped tie (all the guys wore variations or blue and green patterned ties but that’s another post) to complete the look. I loved the entire outfit, and he looked SO handsome. Mmmmm. 😉

SJW0314 SJW0327

And there ya have it! My hubby on our wedding day. Lookin’ snazzy and keepin’ it real.

Have a great “hump” day!! If you are getting snow like me, be safe out there!

***

Today’s outfit was inspired by the Style Me Feb prompt “shades of sea and sky.” And yesterday’s was inspired by my desire for SPRING. Details on Wear page!

02-12 Outfit

Shirt: Express

Pants: Old Navy

Flats: Target

Necklace: Purple Peridot

Bracelet Set: Ruche

02-11 Outfit

Sweater: Old Navy

Blouse: Express

Pants: Kohls

Pumps: Maurices

Necklace: Lia Sophia

Clutch: Coach

Style Me Feb

Hi there!

I had a bit of a sleepy morning today and it took me a long time to wake up! i always get less sleep on Monday nights than other days of the week because Justin and I watch “The Bachelor” (yes, he watches on his own free will!!) and then I somehow always get sucked into “Castle” even though I’m already super sleepy. Both shows captivate me . . . for very different reasons. 🙂

Style Me Feb

On sleepy mornings like this, waking up and selecting an outfit seem to be extra hard. My brain doesn’t want to function yet and it’s far more interested in finding a way to sneak back under the covers than color-coordinating and figuring out an outfit.  Lucky for me, I recently discovered “Style Me February” on Instagram and it has made getting dressed SO much easier!

Style Me FebStyle Me February was put together by Hilary (check out her adorable blog here) and so far I am loving it! It is a fun challenge (and sometimes very difficult–try wearing Broncos colors to a Super Bowl party while also incorporating animal print!) and helps give me ideas in the morning. Even though I had little brain power this morning, having a “theme” was a helpful way to kick-start an outfit!

This is also a great challenge for me to not shop and try to find ways to achieve the daily theme without buying new things. It’s inspiring me to get creative and look for new ways to utilize the stuff already in my closet. Win-win!

I encourage you to join me in this month-long challenge — even if you don’t want to attempt the whole thing but want some inspiration for a day’s look, check out the #StyleMeFeb hashtag on Instagram. It’s really neat to see how others style according to the day’s theme!

Happy Tuesday!

***

Today’s Outfit: “The Chicness of Black and White.” As always, links to outfit pieces can be found on the “wear” page.

02-04 Look

Jacket: Maurices

Tank: Express

Pants: New York & Company

Flats: Maurices

Necklace: Purple Peridot

Bracelets: Express

Super Bust + Treadmill Workout

Hey there!

I hope you all had a great weekend and are refreshed for another week! Some of Justin’s college friends come into town on Friday night and we had a great time hanging out with them and catching up. We also spent a lot of time playing games, which was awesome! Justin and I are huge gamers so we love when other couples come and are up for a little friendly competition. 🙂

DominosLast night we went over to our friend’s house to watch the Super Bust (oops…I mean Super Bowl). Nearly everyone there had wanted the Broncos to win, so we were all really depressed most of the night. When the game got out of hand we ended up switching back and forth to the Puppy Bowl which was way more entertaining in my mind.

Speaking of puppies, how cute was the Budweiser commercial with the puppy and horse!? I died. SO adorable!!

Super Bowl CommercialTreadmill Workout

I have had a lot of knee injuries over the years and lately, running on a treadmill has become more painful on my joints (I know, I sound more like I’m in my mid-eighties rather than mid-twenties). Wintertime is the worst for me to stay motivated to keep my cardio routine up because I can’t run outside and I get bored on the elliptical every day. I recently tried mixing up my routine with some incline walking/light jogging and it has made a huge difference! I still get my heart rate up and feel like I got a good workout but I switch things up enough so that my knee doesn’t bother me by the end of it!

I wanted to share my routine with y’all in case anyone else could benefit from a change in workout. **Please note: I am not a personal trainer. This is just a workout that I have found to be beneficial to me. It may not be right for you, so please speak with a medical professional before making any changes to your current workout routine.

Treadmill Incline WorkoutThe thing I like about this workout (besides the fact that I can do it without causing pain to my knee) is that it keeps me from getting bored on the treadmill. Having to switch gears every two minutes keeps my mind occupied and my body from getting bored. I hope it works for you!

Have a wonderful Monday!

***

Here’s today’s outfit of the day, plus some catch-up outfits from the weekend. As always, links to available pieces can be found on my “wear” page.

Sweater: Forever 21

Jeans: Maurices

Boots: Forever 21

Scarf: TJ Maxx