Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Salty & Sweet St. Patrick's Day Treat

The DiEduardo Divas (including myself) love arts and crafts time, especially around holidays!  Yesterday we made a fun treat that was super easy and quite tasty so I thought I'd share. 

I visited Pinterest (duh!) and found the cutest PRETZEL SHAMROCK TREATS from  Instead of using pretzel sticks, we used lollipop sticks and they still turned out darling.

After assembling them we had to let them chill in the fridge for an hour.  The Divas didn't like this step but they sure were a yummy treat after dinner when they got to enjoy them for dessert.

I hope you and your family enjoys making (& eating!) these as much as we did!

Monday, March 12, 2018

The Real Reel

A photo captures one second in a person's day.  One second.  And people typically post the positive photos on social media and in frames in their homes.  But, let's be honest, who wants to share the negatives?!  The other day I noticed Jason Aldean's wife, Brittany, doing #therealreel Instastories on Instagram.  So many people think just because a person has everything "together" and is "all smiles" in photos on social media that they actually have it "together".  I loved that Brittany kept it real and did a quick, few Instastories to show you what their "real life" looked like compared to the photos she posts.  Her skin isn't perfect, their house isn't clean 24/7, and her baby cries multiple times a day (just like every other baby)!

For me, this blog is about capturing my life, what I'm going through - the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Don't get me wrong, I'm certainly blessed beyond measure and SO thankful that my diagnosis wasn't anything worse but the past few weeks have been HARD for me.  It may look like everything is perfect by the photos on my social media pages, but just imagine a few things...

Imagine losing your car keys for 6 months and there is no spare key.  Being unable to drive for 6 months has been such a struggle for me.  I'm a GO-er and a DO-er and having to depend on others to get from place to place has been such a burden.  I've learned to be an independent person and I'm not one to ask for help.  Like I said, things could be 100 times worse but for me, in this moment, this is a struggle.  It's hard for me to ask others for help even though so many have offered.

Imagine not being able to pick up your child because you're not able to lift more than 20 lbs due to the weight limit restriction after your surgery.  Praise God I was cleared last Monday to lift my girls and you bet, I picked them up and squeezed them tight as soon as I got clearance from the doc.  It felt amazing!

Imagine not being able to cheers with a glass of wine with your friends.  There have been so many events and special occasions where I'd just like to enjoy a glass of wine with my girlfriends or family.  Let's be honest, we all have bad/hard days and sometimes a nice lil cocktail would cheer us right up.  I have acquired a taste for O'Douls so that'll do for now.

Imagine taking seizure meds that have your hormones, emotions, and sleepiness all over the place.  Some days I need a nap.  Some days I cry about the dumbest things.  Poor Kyle never knows what he's going to get on any given day.  I've heard from other people that have taken the same medication that it messed with their emotions as well.  So ready to get off of these!

Thursday, I had an EEG done to determine what's going on with my brain waves currently.  If all looks great, they will wean me off of my seizure medicine.  Hallelujah!  We won't know the results for a week.  I feel like the minutes and hours are slowly going by and I can't wait to hear from my neurosurgeon and neurologist with the results.  A part of me thinks the results will be great and then a part of me doesn't want to get my hopes up in the event that they're not.  However, all of this is in God's hands and in His perfect timing.

This post isn't meant to be a "Debbie Downer" but it's release my feelings and boy do I feel better getting all of this off my chest.  Today, for the first time in over 4-5 months, I worked out!  Yep, I went to Gold's Gym and participated in one of my favorite classes, BODYFLOW!  I definitely wasn't able to do it full out like I used to, but it felt great to stretch, breathe, and push my body just a tad in the right direction to get it back to a healthy lifestyle.  And duh, of course I wore one of my favorite workout tanks and had a taco salad for lunch!

After lunch I told Kyle, "exercise gives you endorphins...endorphins make you happy...happy people just don't shoot their husbands, they just don't!"  LOL  Name that movie!!

So, #therealreel is that God ultimately knows the timeline of this journey and I love the following Bible verses that have helped me...

Acts 1:7 "He said to them: 'It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority.'"
Psalm 27:14 "Wait for the Lord, be strong and let your heart take courage."
Psalm 40:1 "I waited patiently for the Lord and He heard my cry."
Isaiah 40:31 "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Nashville and CMA's Recap

Today I'm doing a #tbt of our November 2017 trip to Nashville.  Y'all, this trip was a once in a lifetime event and I'm forever grateful that we were even able to go!  As I laid in the hospital bed (due to my seizure/cavernous malformation) on Friday, November 3 and Saturday, November 4, we didn't know if heading to Nashville and the CMA's were going to be an option.  We were scheduled to leave on Tuesday, November 7 and when my neurosurgeon mentioned we could go, I literally cried tears of joy!  We had been planning this awesome trip with two other couples for a while and what a trip of a lifetime it was.

As planned, we headed out (by car, thank goodness we chose not to fly because I wouldn't have been able to due to my cavernous malformation bleed) and the journey to Nashville began.  We stayed at Playlist Properties which was awesome and within walking distance to great restaurants, bars, and the infamous Ryman Auditorium.  Tuesday evening we grabbed a quick dinner at Pucketts and headed to The Ryman for some good ol' fashioned country music.  We saw Pam Tillis, Terri Clark, Suzy Bogguss, and Charlie Daniels and let me tell you - this was epic!  How cool to see musicians I grew up listening to!?  It was this night that I learned my hearing and vision had been affected by my seizure.  I was able to wear my sunglasses and get some toilet tissue to plug my ears for the show, however, the next day Kyle got me some awesome earplugs.

Wednesday was the BIG day - the CMA's!  We grabbed brunch, strolled the streets of "downtown Nashville", and I found the cutest cowboy while shopping.

Then, it was time to get dressed in our best for the 51st Annual CMA Awards.  We were able to score tickets thanks to Kyle's awesome client who had a connection to Nashville and the music industry.

Talk about AH-mazing seats!  We felt like stars and I think we looked like them too.

After the most amazing show ever, we decided to act like celebs and take pics right in front of the stage.

After the show, we walked across the street to Legends Corner and there were stars performing in the bar.  How cool is that?!  We waited to see if we could see anyone famous and then this cutie came by.  Oh, hey Dustin Lynch!  We saw Big & Rich also!

Since the loud noise bothered me and I was unable to partake in adult beverages, Kyle and I decided to walk to the FGL bar where we knew there was a private party.  We had heard Jason Aldean was on the list to attend, and he's my all-time favorite.  We obviously weren't on the list but Kyle said "play cool and we'll see if we can get in."  Um, what?!  While we weren't on the list, we sure looked the part and lo and behold, the lady let us in!!!  Talk about a rush!  We were SO excited and walked in with our heads held high.  We took pics in the swanky space and were in awe that we were at the Big Machine after party!  Talk about an amazing evening!  Definitely a night to remember!


The next day we headed to Bartaco, a trendy Mexican restaurant in Nashville.  While dining, we discovered Luke Pell, one of the guys from The Bachelorette, was sitting a few tables over.  Of course, we had to get our pic with him.  He happily obliged and was a super nice guy!

We walked around and did a little shopping in The Gulch and surrounding areas that afternoon.

That evening, we headed to a really cool restaurant called Virago.  This place was SO delicious with Asian food and fun cocktails (for my friends and hubby to enjoy)!  Definitely recommend this place!

On Friday, we decided to use our free passes to the Country Music Hall of Fame and become tourists.  While I had been to the Hall of Fame before, I was excited to go again and share the experience with Kyle and Erica.  There are so many cool things to see and they had a few updated displays as well.

Friday evening we dined at The Southern Steak & Oyster and each of our entrees was on point and delicious.  I highly recommend this restaurant if you're ever in Nashville!

We called it an early night and headed back home on Saturday.

If you're thinking about taking a trip to Nashville, I strongly encourage it!  You will not be disappointed.  There's so much to do in this wonderful city and now that I've been twice, I can't wait to go back again.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Beautycounter Products I'm Loving Lately

In honor of Beautycounter celebrating their 5th anniversary on Sunday, March 4th, I thought I would share my current 5 FAVORITE BEAUTYCOUNTER PRODUCTS.

This Rejuvenating Face Cleanser is what I wash my face with every night and my face feels SO clean and soft after using it.  It's super gentle but yet removes all of my makeup and the green tea in it helps soothes and calms the skin.

Some nights after I wash my face with the Rejuvenating Face Cleanser, I'll use the Rejuvenating Toner Pads.  However, every night my final step of "putting my face to bed" is by using the Rejuvenating Night Cream.  A small pea-sized amount goes a long way, as it does with all of the products, but especially this one.  This cream locks in moisture while you sleep and helps your skin feel smoother and firmer by morning.  My friends from high school and college know I never washed my face before going to bed.  And to be honest, I never did it consistently until I started using Beautycounter about 6 months ago.  How gross?!  Now, I love going to bed each night with a clean face and love waking up to a rejuvenated face.

When I get out of the shower each morning I use the Nourishing Day Cream first.  It locks in moisture throughout the day and is lightweight, but not greasy which is awesome!

After I use the Day Cream, I use the Nourishing Rosewater Mist.  This product helps wake up your complexion and get it ready to apply your makeup for the day.  It smells amazing and isn't overwhelming.  Feels refreshing too!  You can also apply this over your makeup as a setting spray.

My ultimate favorite product, so far, is the No. 3 Balancing + Charcoal Facial Mask.  Y'all, I cannot rave about this product enough.  I'm obsessed with the results of it and would recommend it to women of all ages.  I use this mask about 2-3 times a week in the evenings after I remove my makeup and I can tell a difference in my skin each time I use it.  It draws out impurities in my skin and evens out my skin color.  It's amazing!!

I can't speak highly enough of all of their products and their mission.  Their mission is to get safer products into the hands of everyone and I truly believe in this mission.  The United States has not passed a major federal law to regulate the safety of ingredients used in personal care products since 1938.  That is astonishing and I'm so glad Beautycounter is making an effort to improve beauty products so we can have better beauty with safer products.  And, I'm glad to be a part of the team and help share their mission with friends and family!

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Five Favorite Family Recipes

"The family that eats together, stays together!"  One of the things Kyle and I swore we would do when we had children was eat together as a family.  So many people don't do that anymore because our lives are so hectic and we're always on the go.  But, we've vowed to make a conscious effort to eat together as a family as much as possible and we've done pretty well with it.

When cooking meals, I want to make sure I make meals that everyone will enjoy.  And when you have a picky 5 year old, sometimes that can be difficult.  Especially when she searches thru a soup to see if you included onions.  Sheesh!  Here are five recipes that our entire family enjoys and I hope you will too!

First up is the infamous PASTA FAGIOLI.  Like all of these recipes, I found them on Pinterest and have linked the source for each one.  My girls LOVE this hardy soup and my Italian hubby enjoys it as well.  I tweak it just a tad and use ground turkey instead of ground beef, I omit the celery (because I'm not a fan and I know that's just one more "thing" that Bailey will have to pick out too) and I do about 1/2 - 3/4 of the spices it calls for.  Be sure to top it with grated Parmesan cheese and you can even serve it with a salad.

These QUICHE CUPS are for me and Kyle.  We needed something quick and easy in the mornings, but something that was nutritious and not loaded with carbs.  I tweak these depending on what fresh veggies I have in the fridge.  I've made them with broccoli and mushrooms, spinach and mushrooms, spinach and sausage.  Definitely make them to your liking and add whatever you've got on hand.  I do not recommend using frozen veggies as it didn't taste as fresh.  We put these in the fridge and grab and go as needed during the week.

As you probably know, my favorite saying is "love you more than tacos" and I use that hashtag quite often because, well, I love tacos.  Honestly, I could eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!  I love that this TACO PIZZA is a nice alternative to tacos and my girls are obsessed with it!!  I tweak this recipe just a tad and use ground turkey instead of ground beef, and I cut this recipe in half but cook the entire pound of ground turkey but only use half for the pizza.  The other half of the meat I save for taco salads for me during the week.  Again, I can't rave enough about this quick, easy, meal that the whole family is sure to enjoy!

Another family favorite is this LEMON CHICKEN PASTA from Lil Luna.  Talk about simple, easy, and delish!  My girls request this tasty dish all the time and of course it makes my pasta-loving hubby happy as well.

Now to wow the crowd, you definitely need to try out this delicious HONEY HAM GLAZE recipe from  I make this about 4-5 times a year and everyone raves over it.  Y'all, this is super easy and oh, so yummy!  It's an Easter Sunday must and definitely a Sunday evening favorite.  I made it this Sunday and we have tons leftover that the girls can take for school lunches.  Winning!

Hope you'll try a few of these recipes and your family enjoys them as much as we do!  Let me know your family favorites too.  We're always up for trying new recipes.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Target Roundup

Target is one of my most favorite places to shop!  It's a one-stop shop!  I mean, who doesn't LOVE Target?!  They have everything from clothes to accessories, household items to toiletries, and everything in between.  I've recently bought a few things that I absolutely adore so I thought I'd do a quick roundup of my current favorite things and my current wish list items.

Sunday, I wore a couple of my recent sale rack finds...this fun, cute top and my new favorite cat-eye sunglasses.  The shirt is from the Who What Wear line and I think this line is incredibly chic and you can mix and match their tops, skirts, and pants.  I love the cat-eye sunglasses that are on trend these days.  I always check out the 50% and 70% off racks because you never know what you're going to find there.  This shirt was just over $8 and my sunglasses were $7.  Score!

I haven't purchased this CROSSBODY BAG yet, but it's on my wish list.  It's perfect for traveling and would be perfect for my summer trip to New York City.  What an adorable accessory that can be dressed up or worn casually. 

Kyle and I gave the girls these adorable MACHU PICCH BIKINIS for Valentine's Day and they love them!  They're super cute and trendy.  Don't forget, right now all of their swimwear is buy one, get one 50% off.  Now is the perfect time to stock up on cute swimsuits with that great deal!

Espadrilles are all the rage for summer this year and I think these EMERY ESPADRILLE SANDALS are affordable and functional.  They can be worn with a dress, shorts, or even jeans and would be a great shoe to transition from winter to spring.

I love a good dry shampoo and this NOT YOUR MOTHERS DRY SHAMPOO is great and right now it's on sale for under $4!  I love not having to wash my hair every day and this dry shampoo helps revamp my hair with just a quick few sprays.  And I love that it's unscented!

We're surprising the girls with a Disney Cruise for Spring Break.  I love that Target has Disney shirts, accessories, and even the infamous MICKEY WAFFLE MAKER!  This is in my cart as we'll be surprising them in a couple of weeks and what a perfect treat for their surprise!

This PAISLEY PINK THRESHOLD RUG has made the perfect addition to our kitchen and I absolutely love it.  We have a lot of grey and blue in our home and I wanted to add another pop of color without going too crazy, but yet bringing everything together.  Right now it's on sale and you get an extra discount if you use your Target Red Card. 

If you don't have a red card yet, you must sign up for one ASAP.  You automatically save 5% with each purchase AND if you purchase anything online you automatically get free shipping.  It's a no brainer.  Happy shopping, friends, and I hope you all have a great week!