Saturday, April 16, 2011

Losing Weight and Keeping It Off

The picture to the left is from my junior year of high school. The picture to the right is from my junior year of college. I tried to find myself wearing the same shirt so you could see the difference! 

Most of my readers are facebook friends of mine that have followed a link I have posted on my wall. Because of this, I receive most of my feedback via facebook messages and wall comments. I have had several readers request two things. First, to give some insight on how I lost so much weight (check out this post: Scales and Zeroes). Secondly, they have asked me to share our wedding details.

So first things first: How I lost so much weight. 

I began my freshman year of high school wearing a little girl’s size 14. I was tiny. My mom made jokes about dressing a pencil. But that year I gained 40 pounds and a dozen stretch marks. I ended the year wearing a woman’s size 5. Looking back I see how awesome my body really was then. But it was a progressive issue. By my junior year I was wearing a size 12. I’m almost 5’2” so weighing 155lbs didn’t look as good on me as it does for someone who is 5’10”. 

Six years later I weigh a steady 115lbs. There have been “ups” and “downs” and as a woman I have to accept the fact that my body will fluctuate. So if I were to give you any reasoning for how I lost so much weight, this is it: Mind control. Thank you Steve Carell, Dinner for Schmucks. Let your head tell your heart and your body what it is you want and how you’re going to achieve it. 

1.      I did my best my senior year of high school to learn to enjoy working out. I started with yoga and let myself believe it was a hobby. Then it was the spin cycle class. I wasn’t a regular, but I was probably at the gym at least once a week from then on because it had become something I enjoyed doing.

2.      I told myself I could have one soda a day and only one soda a day. The sodium (not to mention the calories) will cause your body to hold water weight. That’s not a scientific fact it’s just what I’ve been told. Just cutting back on how many sodas I had a day made my cheeks so much smaller. I felt more comfortable and less bloated. 

3.      I eat what I want. If I want McDonald’s and I can afford it I let myself have it. When I was in high school I was so insecure about my weight. I would see a brownie and want it, but knew it was bad for me. Instead of eating the brownie I’d eat a ton of carrots with ranch dressing and an apple with peanut butter and this and that. Sometimes it’s better to let yourself have that one brownie than it is to eat several semi-healthy items and never feel satisfied. Of course, use good judgment and don’t over do it.

4.      I make an effort to recognize when I am full. I wait before I go for seconds so I can really listen to what my body is trying to tell me. Be aware of your portions, but don’t be stingy. If you love those potatoes give yourself a logical amount, but recognize you can’t have desert and you’ll need to be more careful tomorrow. (This goes back to #3)

5.      I make myself realize that it’s not about what I look like. So I have a little muffin top? Big deal. What it comes down to is my lifestyle and whether I fit in the clothes I’ve already paid for. If I let my body go the rest of my life might go with it. By reforming my body I began to learn commitment and self control and it’s helped me throughout my life. And I have built a larger wardrobe because I haven’t had to buy duplicate items in different sizes.

6.      I walk when I can and take the stairs when I don’t want to. Make yourself park far away from the store in the parking lot. It builds patience and leg muscles. 

7.      Spend your calories the way you should spend your money, carefully. You wouldn’t buy shoes you didn’t really love so don’t eat a piece of cake you’re not crazy about either. Save those calories for your favorite bag of chips or double chocolate fudge chip ice cream.

I always try to remember that little actions can have BIG results. I hope some of my small habits can help you as much as they have helped me. If you have discovered a little trick that helps you keep weight off or get it off, please share it with us!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Ch Ch Ch Changes


By the end of this weekend Popsicles and Potential will have undergone some changes and will be facing more changes in the future. I wanted to confirm that some of these changes are okay before I lose any readers and my amazing 13 followers. And thank you so much for your support.

Hopefully we will build functional pages that will allow me to post and keep things more organized for you. The pages will feature craft projects, a page for cheap outfits and my fashion/shopping advice, how to stay organized and clean well, insight into my life (money, marriage, etc.) and our wedding details. I know many of you have looked forward to posts about our wedding and some of the things we have changed more recently around our home. I have been hesitant to post these until the blog has a face lift. I apologize. I am also looking forward to instituting a “Feature Friday”: a view into the homes of my friends and family. I have a great friend helping out with all of this.

I'm in the midst of working on a logo. Wish me luck. If you have any advice or would like to do it for free please let me know!

My wonderful friend Ben Hardbower who is an excellent photographer in the making is going to take some shots for the new Pops and Pote background. Check out some of his work Here.

Post title changes are still under consideration. It has been fun following the style of the title and posting with an “AND”. However, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to search for a specific post and understand what each post is actually about. I’m sure you agree.

I want my blog to be helpful. Adam and I go through the craziest things and so far have survived each time. It’s my duty to report to my fellow citizens (ha) how we do survive these things so that they might also survive this thing called life. Essentially, I want my blog to be helpful. It can only do that by looking its best!

Please give me some feedback. Hate it or love it? Better ideas? Supportive? What is it that you want to see?

Thanks again,


Monday, April 11, 2011

Working Full Time and Imagining the Beach

I’m sorry it has been a week since I last gave you every intimate detail about our lives here in the climate/season confused mountains. This past week I began training for a big girl full time job. It’s been 8 to 5 every day, which Dolly Parton never prepared me for.

I successfully put together so far five awesome outfits. I’ve discovered (yes this early on) that being dressed well makes me feel better about working in a cubical or sitting through an eight hour training session. Kudos for me I guess. Eventually, I’ll post pictures of my daily outfits. I like getting to brag about my cheap, but totally awesome style. 

After eight months of being at home with the time to take a few classes, rearrange furniture eight different times, write wedding thank you notes, etc. my immune system grew comfortable with my super bleached and lyscol’d surroundings. It did not come as a surprise to me that by Wednesday of my first week I was plagued with the worst cold I’ve ever had. I was living on cough drops and Day Quil until Friday morning rolled around and I could not-literally-move. Embarrassingly enough I called in on my first week of training. (Count me out for a promotion) Oh well. 

Things I’ve learned so far: Our school offers a lot of degrees. Cool. Also, you shouldn’t use your coffee thermos you won on your Royal Caribbean cruise as a means of telling yourself “If you work hard, get paid, you can save up for a cruise!” The truth is all that mug says to you is “Hey, while you’re in this drab, undecorated training room there are people out exploring the Cayman’s with cold drinks in their hands.” I’ve learned too that you should not exceed four cups of coffee before 10 am or coworkers begin to think you are either (1) pregnant because you have to pee every thirty minutes or (2) hung-over. 

This evening Adam and I both opened the refrigerator to plan dinner and both let out a deep sigh of exhaustion. Suddenly I understand how my mom felt after a long day of work, but had to come home to face chores, more children, and dinner. It amazes me that after a week of work I’m even more in love with the idea that I am totally cool with being a stay at home mom. I’m willing to sacrifice a bigger house, a nicer couch, and maybe one less pair of shoes in order to make sure that we can live comfortably in the place that are supposed to rest. And maybe I could focus on my blog and dream company. You know there are women selling pillows for $80 on etsy? Yes, people buy them. 

So that’s a bit about my work experience after the first week. I just don’t know how people do it. Work all week and are still full time students. Heck, I don’t know how people work all week. 

P.S. We’re eating potatoes for dinner because that’s all we feel like cooking. 

Couldn't resist.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Too Much Stuff and Not Enough Guts

I don’t know why, but this morning I woke up thinking “We have too much stuff”. We have several newlywed friends who blog and they all make comments about their “lack of items” and how it’s natural because they are newlyweds. Maybe it seems like we have more junk because Adam collects books and my mom cleaned out her house and gave everything she didn’t want to us. Or it could be that everything from our wedding made its way to our house. It also could be that Adam and I didn’t live on campus a year to two years before we got married so we had items from our apartments. I don’t know, but I’m exhausted with the thought that I need to get rid of some things and I have absolutely no idea how to do it.

For example: Our bathroom. Adam uses my shampoo whereas I use the shampoo and conditioner. We always run out of shampoo before we do conditioner and I usually buy different brands when I shop the next time. This leaves us now with three different bottles of conditioner underneath our sink. Have you watched  The Book of Eli? {Short: This man finds a Bible after a time that they were all burned and he is determined to take it to a safe haven. This time is survival of the fittest as most of the country has been destroyed. They have nothing.} There is a scene where a woman uses shampoo to wash her hair and she feels like a queen because no one has or can afford shampoo anymore. I hate that scene because now I can’t just toss my extra bottles of conditioner! I hate hate hate wasting things. I even use our left over coffee to marinate chicken. (Recipe to come) Considering all of this, what would you do?

I have literally (my husband has me addicted to that word – watch Parks and Rec?) been sitting in our office for the past 40 minutes on the phone with my mom trying to figure out how I can de-clutter this room. That’s my before noon goal. Wish me luck. 

 Isn't that just awful looking? You should see the before pictures to this! (Office make over post in five months -just kidding) 

By the way, as much as I dread starting work on Monday I think my sanity needs a break from house work. I’m over thinking it. GET. ME. OUT. OF. HERE. 

So readers, single, taken, engaged, married: Do you have a lot of stuff and feel guilty or do you love being surrounded by things? If you hate it, how do you deal? Do you cover it up? Hide it? Sell it? Help me out! 

Update: We have decided that though we might have a lot of stuff for our age and early on in our marriage it's not necessarily a bad thing. We have a small townhouse with little storage so you have to see everything out all of the time. Once we get a house (soon hopefully) it will seem like we have nothing again. In the mean time, we don't need to buy anything. Maybe a new vacuum, but it's so nice knowing we don't need anything. So I'm not going to freak out anymore and try to figure out what else we can get rid of. We're sticking with what we've got and that's it! 

Friday, April 1, 2011

Baby News and Big Plans

Happy April Fools Day everyone!!!! I hope you all used this day to your advantage and made up some scandalous lie to trick everyone. Adam and I talked about posting a picture of a house like this: that we could tell people we went ahead and bought a house to "flip". But, within the past few weeks we have received so many calls and so many friendly messages on the subject of house shopping that we decided to avoid nervous and frantic phone calls from concerned friends and family. (Not that we haven't appreciated the sometimes amazing advice)

Instead, we decided to announce that we were pregnant. If you're still wondering: No we are not pregnant. All that's in my stomach is a Target hot dog (my favorite after Sam's Club), too many diet cokes, and and Girl Scout thin mint cookie. Too much information? 

I couldn't believe the response we got. My mom said, "Are you serious?" in a way that sounded a lot like the time I told her at 6:30 am that I got into a car accident on my way to school when I was 17. Adam's mom probably had a panic attack searching for her phone with such excitement hoping that the news was true. You see, my mom wants me to finish my bachelors degree so I can pay for a child. Adam's mom wants me to have a child now so she can steal it away from us and make it wear frilly things regardless of it's gender.

We aren't planning to have babies any time soon. Sorry Charlie. We've got a uh, how do I say this nicely... disturbed, but adorable cat. Not to mention, full time jobs, student loans out the wazoo, dreams of owning our own home, and very few reliable friends for babysitters. (Just kidding-almost) It's not true for us, but it is true for our honeymoon friends Dan and Claire who live in the UK. So congratulations to them! Keep them in your thoughts and prayers until October!

That's Claire and Dan on the left! Aren't they adorable?

But don't worry, when the time comes and we get knocked up you will all be the last ones to know! 

Happy April First. :)

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Creating a Sun and Creative Techniques

This sun is from {The Nester}. I thought it was adorable and we needed something for above our bed... So Adam picked up four white posters from the dollar store for me (50 cents each) and I got to work! 

I measured each sun blade at 5 inches in width. Folded a straight line, then cut. 

Then I folded the five inch cut in half (hot dog, not hamburger). 

I traced each time the angle that I wanted the blade to have... 

Voila. And repeat 12 times. 

I temporarily taped each blade to another and decided on a layout. 

Then I glued each one together. 

I cut three smaller pieces 5 inches in width. 

Then I glued all of the pieces together. Carefully... 

My mother in law used these mirrors for our wedding shower centerpieces and gave them to me. I took off the black place stickers. 

Yes, I did it. I just covered that baby with lots of hot glue.

Then I was done! But I realized I made no plans to hang it. I called my mom and she gave me a great idea of using a soda can pop top. 

I bent it so it would catch the nail.

Hot glued it on and used the place sticker to keep the metal from marking our walls. This works if what you're hanging isn't too heavy. 

And there you have it! Now I need to get on that headboard, bed stand, and new lamps! 

It's not as amazing as the one on the left, but I still like it! And it only cost me $1.50 (three poster boards), and the cost of all of the hot glue sticks I used. I'm trying to decide if I want to paint a edge on the mirror similar to the sun on the left, but for now it will do!

Our Rough Weekend and Emergency Road Trip Lessons

It’s been a few days since I last posted for my wonderful readers so I thought I’d give you a wild and exciting post. I have decided to recap my crazy weekend so you can all see how crazy our life really is.

A year ago: We received an invitation to a good family friend’s wedding and began saving for a trip to Florida.

Two weeks ago:We had to spend a ton of money on my car and student loan payments.

A week ago: Our Florida trip was canceled. 

A day before expected Florida trip date: We find out Adam’s grandfather isn’t doing well. So we planned a trip to NC. 

Day to leave for NC: Appointment with loan officer takes three hours. When we were done we rushed home to pack. I was in charge of getting the cat together (we couldn’t find a sitter), packing for Adam as much as I could, getting our computers, school books, and packing for myself. Needless to say… 

{Jackson on the dashboard and trying to get on the dashboard.}

Arrival in NC: It’s freezing unlike our last week at home. In my suitcase: a pair of shorts, a bathing suit, one pair of jeans, a jean jacket, two sundresses, and flip flops. Not what I needed. Then we found out Adam’s Papaw was admitted to a nursing home. This of course really upset Adam.

Saturday in NC: Visited Papaw. He really isn’t doing well. 

Jackson, being unbalanced, peed more on himself than in the box so I picked him up and carried him to the bathtub. Of course this meant that my only pair of jeans were now very fragrant. Adam’s mom uses the apartment laundry room and it didn’t make sense for me to go there to wash one pair of jeans.

Sunday in TN: We drove to TN to visit other friends for church. I wore a sundress, my 12 year old sister-in-laws shoes (we wear the same size, thank heaven) and my jean jacket. I was freezing. Arrived late back to NC and Adam and I both have a hideous amount of homework to do. 

Monday: Visit Papaw one more time before we leave for home. He’s doing much better. We run back to my mother in law’s house to pack up our stuff. She is at a funeral and we realize she has a good deal of Adam’s things and we’re going to have to get them from her later. We get home and then notice that we left all of our bathroom stuff and my make-up – I start working next Monday….

{This is Adam and his grandfather at the home.}

It goes on, but I don’t want to bore you. Maybe Adam and I were both emotional because I was missing a loved one's wedding and his grandfather was in a nursing home, but it seemed like everything went wrong. Fortunately, Adam’s mom mailed us our bathroom bag yesterday. 

Lessons learned: 1. Don’t let your husband rush you when packing. If you must rush just pack everything. 2. Don’t procrastinate on homework something big might come up. (I’m always learning this lesson) 3. Try your best to keep your emotions from clouding your better sense. 4. Don’t take a cat on a road trip with you.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

New Foyer Style and Reclying Material

This is our foyer "before". Very cluttered, busy, but it held everything we needed- or thought we needed. (Mail, keys, junk, etc.)

This is a bookshelf we were holding for a friend that decided he didn't want it. So we kept it. We also beat it up pretty well with all of our books too and I was ready to fancy it up or toss it (oh how I hate throwing furniture away).

So I tried to spray paint it black and I made a cute backing for it, but it just wasn't looking any better. At this point I had already used two cans of black spray paint ($2 total).

Hating the thought of throwing it out, I cut it in half. Yes, with this tiny blade thing because we don't have a saw.

I pulled off the top of the shelf and added it to the cut half... 

Tried to nail it. Failed. Tried again. Failed. Finally got it on the third try.

Then I spray painted it white and voila!! Adam has been begging me to let him keep his "house shoes" downstairs so I found a way to make it work. It also conveniently holds my rain boots. Yes, I need two pairs! It rains a lot here okay! I had another $1 can of white spray paint so the total was about $3. I am one of those people that puts spray paint on the grocery list. It's always convenient to have some cheap cans around.

P.S. The top isn't that uneven. It's the floor... a joy of renting from a cheaply built community.

House Hunting and Falling in Love

So maybe I have low expectations or maybe I am just comfortable with smaller more “homey” spaces. I love this house. It’s small and old with so much character- not that sugar coating “character“ that really means it needs a lot of work. It’s been loved and well taken care of. I never saw myself falling in love with a Cape Cod style home, but I guess it worked out the same way I never thought I’d fall in love with Adam. Anything is possible…  I’ve posted a ton of pictures, my apologies. I just really wanted to share it all with you! 

This is the sidewalk that leads to the front door. You don't need to park on the street. There is room for a driveway to be built, but we'd have to do that. Personally, I'd love to add a "rock way". Similar to this: 

{This is not the house that I am showing you. I am showing you this driveway.}

The back patio is 16x24 feet. It's huge. If you look closely you can see that down there is a beautiful creek. Our first visit there were five deer just roaming out there. So beautiful.

And there is a light post! How cute!

That's my amazing husband. He was probably looking at the roof line or something important at this moment...

I'm not going to buy a house that I want to change all over, but having a few ideas is okay! I would love to finish the basement and add french doors here that open out to the patio. Dream.


Adam and I have a love for old pieces. They have stories... This comes with the house (it's big). 



Landry room, but there are also connections downstairs.

Part of the dining room.

Other part of dining room.

Living room with a beautiful fireplace.

Foyer with coat closet (necessary for the NE).

Stairs up to second floor. 

 First bathroom.

 First bedroom.

Second bedroom.

2nd bathroom upstairs. 

This is a "study" I guess, but it would totally be a great nursery. :) 

3rd bedroom 

4th bedroom.

Side porch.

Path to side entrance. 

Oh. I don't even know what to do with myself. It has me speechless. Please! Share your thoughts!! I'd love to know what you think!