I never did think it was such a bad little tree.......

Thursday, December 11, 2014
"I never did think it was such a bad little tree," said Linus in A Charlie Brown Christmas. One of my all time favs.

It's also word-for-word what I said when I put the finishing touches on my new Christmas tree.

Back in April or May, I picked this fella up off the side of the road. I was driving down my street when it caught my eye.....it's not every day you see a Christmas tree out in the spring, after all. Someone had put it out for big trash day and for the life of me, I can't figure out why.

I pulled over, threw it in the back of my truck, and stowed it away in the attic until Christmastime rolled around. I forgot about it, of course, until I got the decorations down this December. It was a wonderful surprise.

It may have been covered in two inches of dust and insulation, but underneath it was beautiful.

It just needed a little love.

And cleaning and ornaments.....

But to me, it was magical. One man's trash is another man's treasure, amirite?

With a wooden bark trunk, just pop an evergreen cube in the Scentsy and its almost like this baby is real. Almost. One day.

Some may say having three trees in a 1,500 square foot house is over kill. I pity these people. The more the merrier.

I'm the Christmas Queen, after all.

So deck the halls, spike your hot chocolate (I suggest buttershots), rock out to Christmas music, watch Christmas movies on repeat and fully embrace the season. It only comes once a year, you know. I fully intend to make a big deal out of it.

Merry Christmas, ya'll.

The Devil Car

Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Hiya, Chloe the Great Pyr, here.

My humans keep referring to me as the "Christmas Puppy" and I'm not real sure what that means. I think they are going crazy; they put a tree in the living room, right where I sleep! It's a good thing they found one without a bird nest inside.

But let's back up a little. I have a story to tell.

Have you ever been so scared you nearly pooped? I have. It was a snowy day filled with running and bacon (the best kind of day; I love visiting Grammy Pam). I was happy when it was time to get in the car because that meant we were going home. At home I can come inside and lay on the rug where it's warm.

I love car rides. Or, at least, I did. Until found out how scary they can be.

I was looking out the back window as we rode along when all of a sudden ..... SMACK. Then BANG, right by my face. I fell down, it was awful. It scared the poop out of me. I had to climb over the backseat and get to my humans ASAP so they could hold me and pet me and let me out of the devil car!

But then we just sat. And sat some more. All while being stuck in the devil car. They kept talking about the snow and ice and how slippery and cold it was but I wanted to get out and run home. I have a fur coat, after all. I wouldn't freeze.

Then....get this.....they picked me up and put me inside a HUGE, loud car with only one seat. I had to sit in their laps! It was terrifying. There was a stranger driving. They laughed at me, which made it worse. Luckily the stranger took us home and I got to sleep on the rug.
I think they called it a "tow truck." Terrifying.

I thought my human's learned their lesson after that, but a few days later they put me in a car just like the devil car! It was a different color, but I'm smarter than they think. I knew we were in harm's way, so I hopped over the backseat and stood between them on the arm rest. I tried to tell them it was dangerous, but they kept driving! So I kept standing. I was panting pretty loudly because it was so scary, I thought they would understand, but they didn't. They just laughed.

If they think I'm getting in a devil car again, they're crazy. They can't make me. I think I'd rather cross a bridge (and that's saying a lot!).

If you see my humans, please plead my case. I'd really appreciate it. You can also mention that I'd like scrambled eggs for breakfast on a regular basis and I'd also like more rugs in the house so I don't have to walk on the wood floor. Oh, and a puppy brother.

In the mean time, I'll be sleeping on the rug by the inside tree.

________________________________

Please note the wreck was not our fault and no one was hurt. Besides Chloe's mental state, of course. The car had seen better days (notice the wheels going two different directions....), so we got a new one out of the deal. With no hail damage and fewer miles! 

Not cut out for a K-9 modeling career.

Friday, November 28, 2014
Growing up with a professional photographer as a father meant that I fell in love with photo shoots from an early age. Regardless of whether I was behind the camera as a five-year-old styling my Barbies, in front of the camera for senior pictures, or behind the camera again shooting local landscapes or action shots,  I loved it all. Still do.

It's no surprise that I was almost as excited to take engagement pictures as I am for the wedding. Almost. It was the best day, you guys. At least for me.

I got my nails and hair done, shopped for the perfect outfit (or outfits to be exact), cleaned my ring and pinned 67 engagement picture ideas to my wedding board. I'd had my heart set on Candi Coffman Photography for quite some time, and I knew she wouldn't disappoint. 

Cole put on his patient pants along with a smile and put up with my need for cliche kissing photos.....aaaand a few other "corny" shots. OK..... a lot of corny shots. But it made me happy and that's what matters. What a guy. 

Chloe, however, ... bless her heart. She made her debut at our last stop, a wooded park with a bike trail. Although very well behaved, she made it clear that she is not cut out to be a K-9 model. 

I mean, look at those crazy eyes. 


You woulda thought we just got done beating her or something.


At least we got one good Chloe picture out of it. This one's going above the mantel. 


Maybe her soon-to-be puppy brother, Guinness, will be more photogenic. 

Here's to hoping! 

I love you, OK.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014
"You know we belong to the land, and the land we belong to is grand."

It's so grand, ya'll.

I grew up in the lovely town of Argyle, Texas (yes, like the socks). Stuck smack dab between I-35 east and west in southern Denton Co., it's a lovely little town with a population of around 3,300. High-school me loved being a "country" girl. A Texas girl. My AOL screen name was texascowgirl113..... And I prided myself on that. I mean, I rode horses after all. Everything was bigger and better in Texas.

My, how times have changed.

It's been almost seven years since I made the move to Okla. It took some time, but I've come to love Okla. and really consider it "home."

I was in Texas last weekend and found myself constantly thinking how thankful I am to be an Okie. Now, don't get me wrong... I love my friends and family, the variety of DFW radio stations and the fact that they have Corner Bakery, but........what else?

It warms my heart that Okla. has so much character. Locally owned business, restaurants with unique [and delicious] menus and people bursting with local pride. It's a real community of sorts, not just a giant city of people dwelling next to each other. It's people working together and supporting each other. A subconscious alliance, if you will. From the city to the country, it's all a beautiful conglomeration (whoa, that's a big word).

I suppose the fact that there's way less traffic doesn't hurt much, either.

So, for those of you that think Okla. is boring, or just a huge, flat wheat field, you're wrong.

Well, mostly. It is a giant wheat field.

But it's one worth discovering, worth exploring, and worth calling "home." I'll be glad to show you around sometime.

I love you, Oklahoma. Thanks for becoming my home.

Yours truly,

Amanda

Photo via The McGranahan Barn Facebook Page



I had a blowout.

Thursday, November 13, 2014
A while back I discovered Hart of Dixie on Netflix. I watched the entire two seasons within a week. My life was about like this during that time.....waiting for the premiere of season three seemed like it took years.


Needless to say, Zoe (Rachel Bilson) often went to the local hair salon in Bluebell, Alabama, to get a blowout.

A what out? Like the tire?

My thoughts exactly. I noticed overtime (in other TV shows, mind you) that southern bells mentioned their "blowouts" regularly. And man, did their hair always look pristine.

To the internet! I googled, I binged, I pinterested. I even asked my hair stylist. From what it sounded like, a blowout was basically a wash, dry and style, with special attention given to the blowdrying process to give volume, style and cleanliness that lasts several days.

So, you're telling me people pay to simply have their hair blow-dried on a regular basis? Yeah. No thanks. Not for me.

Until our engagement pictures came around and my [very dead and brittle] hair just wasn't cutting it. I needed to look fabulous. I mean, they're going to be hanging in our house for years to come and all..... So, I scheduled my first blowout. I was hoping the professionally styled hair would hold up against the Oklahoma wind and make me look like a supermodel....

It didn't. It looked 100% exactly the same as how I fix my hair every. single. day.

I asked for some volume/bounce/loose curl at the bottom....it went flat. I asked for a little extra hold to help in the wind....it blew around and tangled up like we were in a tornado. I was told the blowout would last around four days (meaning no washing during that time)....24 hours later I felt like a slimy, grease covered homeless person.

Can you tell which hair was professionally styled and which one I did myself?





















Me either.

The moral of the story is, blowouts aren't worth $40. At least now I know I can style my hair like a pro.

The Wedding Planner

Tuesday, October 28, 2014
I once heard someone say that planning a wedding was like a full time job. I laughed.

I shouldn't have laughed.

Planning a wedding is incredibly overwhelming and time consuming. There are SO many decisions to make, so many people who have opinions and so many other brides wanting the same date, same venue, same photographer etc. It gives me stress zits just thinking about it.

Don't let that fool you, though. Planning a wedding is one of the most exciting things I've ever done.

The important things are complete:

Date: check
Venue: check
Photographer: check
Honeymoon: almost check

Here's a sneak peak!


When the above big list items were decided on, it was a huge relief. With no more need to rush, we can now focus on the funner things like engagement photos and registering for gifts. After that, the dress!! With the knot dot com at the top of my favorites tab and my hidden wedding board on Pinterest, I'm right on track planning my dream June wedding.

It's a whirlwind, I tell ya. And I'm so glad I'm in the middle of it.

Sincerely,

Soon to be Mrs. Martin

On October 3rd......

Tuesday, October 7, 2014
.....he asked me to marry him.

You have no clue how excited I got when I thought of that play on words. It's a Mean Girls quote for those of you that have no idea what I'm talking about.

Now let's back up.

After nearly three years of dating, I was anxiously awaiting the proposal. I knew it was coming, I just didn't know when.

Cole mentioned to me that his parents would be coming into town and wanted to go to dinner with us on Friday night. Strange, considering there was an OSU game Saturday morning and we would all be heading to his parent's house in Stillwater after dinner. I was suspicious and hopeful, to say the least.

When he text me Friday morning to say his parents wanted to eat at The Coach House, I knew it was P-Day. You see, The Coach House isn't exactly our typical date-night local. We're more Groupon discount type of people. The Coach House is nice....I mean really, really nice. We'd be dressed up, eating a fancy dinner and his parents would be making a special trip to OKC. My chances were looking pretty dang good, ya'll.

I was lucky enough to have Friday afternoon off after being at a conference all week, so I got my nails done, tried on every outfit in my closet and made sure my hair and makeup were flawless. I was ready. I headed over to Cole's house to meet him before heading to dinner. This is what went down....

Cole: "So, I have good news and bad news. The bad news is that my parents aren't coming. The good news is that my mom knew how excited we were to eat at The Coach House, so she said we can still go and they'll pay for it."

Amanda: (complete disappointment showing on my face) "Oh.....OK..."

Seriously? They aren't coming? I got my nails done for nothing. So much for that idea. I tried to not be too bummed....I mean, at least the food would be good.

We got to The Coach House, enjoyed some cocktails and ordered our food. I made a [not very funny] joke about the lack of diamonds in my life. I tried not to pout, really, I did.

The waiter came out to check on us. He had a plate on his hand covered in a silver dome (I assumed it was someone else's food). He put it down on the table and yanked the dome off and there it was. A [very, very sparkly] diamond ring.

"Oh my gosh."

It all happened so fast. I was frozen, I couldn't move. It was really, finally, happening!

Cole came over to my side of the table and got down on one knee. Sweet and simply, he asked, "Will ya marry me?!"

I said something along the lines of, "Yes, you loser, of course!" before jumping up to hug and kiss him.

I'm not sure why I called him a loser. Its a term of endearment, right?

Cole enjoyed the rest of our gourmet dinner while I stared giddily at my ring. I was too excited to eat. I couldn't stop shaking. I was the happiest I'd ever been in my whole life, ever. Turns out his parents were never coming, it was just a trick! 


The days since have been a whirlwind of celebration. Watching the OSU game was difficult; I was blinded by the sparkle but doing the waving wheat after every touchdown was pretty enjoyable. Being engaged is just as wonderful as I always imagined it would be. I'm the luckiest and I am insanely excited to spend the rest of my life with Cole. He makes me laugh on the daily, fills my life with joy, cuddles with me when I'm moody, cooks the best breakfasts (and lunches and dinners), loves Chloe and all other puppies as much as I do and makes me the happiest girl in the world. Amanda Martin has a nice 'ring' to it, don't you think??


Thank you for all the well wishes. You guys are the sweetest.

And to answer the question everyone asked us immediately following the proposal, we're tentatively thinking a late spring wedding in home sweet 'homa.

Now let the planning commence!


P.S. Cole picked out the ring at BC Clark all by himself with the help of my Pinterest board. Smart man. It's exactly what I always wanted. How many ring Instagrams is too many ring Instagrams? I'm sorry. I can't help myself.

I'm Supergirl

Tuesday, September 16, 2014
And I'm here to save the world.

Sorry. Ignore that Princess Diaries soundtrack reference....my inner twelve-year-old can't help herself.

I spent the last 21 days participating in Emily Schromm (my crossfit idol)'s 21 Day Superhero Challenge. Basically, that's:

  • 21 Days without sugar
  • 21 Days with no refined carbs
  • 21 Days alcohol free
  • 21 Days of working out
  • 21 Days of drinking a TON of water
  • 21 Days of taking fish oil
  • 21 Days of watching Emily's tips and following her advice

I made it, I tied for first place, and I didn't cheat once, but boy was I craving cupcakes and toast like a pregnant woman craves pickles and ice-cream. 

I may have overdone it my first day back to reality.....15 cookies can cause your stomach to go into shock after being completely detoxed.....it didn't feel good, ya'll. But that awful feeling (mixed with happy taste buds) encouraged me to keep up the healthy lifestyle - with some necessary cheat days, of course. 

Although I didn't see a huge difference weight-wise, I did improve considerably in my workouts and felt better about myself overall (yes, that means working out in a sports bra or crop top and feeling confident - huge deal for me). Considering I am focusing on building muscle, staying roughly the same weight was the perfect outcome. It meant that I trimmed some fat while getting stronger. 

Over all, this challenge wasn't necessarily hard to adjust to. Eating healthy during the week is pretty standard for me, I just had to stop snacking at work. The difficult part was the weekends. Football games, tailgates, going out to eat with friends, turning down drinks.....visiting family and having to request special paleo-friendly meals. Watching Cole eat gas station snacks on road trips while I sipped water and ate my millionth pack of almonds..... Weekends sucked. They really sucked. But I did it, I stayed strong, and I'm pretty dang proud of myself.

I'm a freakin' superhero. 


I'm Still Here

Thursday, August 28, 2014
Oh, hello little blog. Blog that I've been neglecting. It's no wonder I had to throw out all the flowers I bought a few months back..... At least I can keep a dog alive. That's what really matters.

Sorry, kids. I've been real busy traveling the world, working on my cleans and doin' that 9 to 5 shiz. Or 8 to 5, if we're being technical.

Here's a run down of what's been going on these last few months. I promise I'll try to keep you up to date from here on out. Maybe....if you're lucky.

1) New Job

Back in June, I said goodbye to the Pinto Horse Association of America and hello to Communication Federal Credit Union. It's been a whirlwind of a summer, but I am finally settled in to my position as Marketing Assistant. It keeps me super busy and constantly challenges me in new ways, but I'm loving it so far.

Sidenote: When designing company t-shirts, make sure the design will be flattering on all body types (i.e.: bike tires do not look good on a women's chest. Or maybe they do. I guess it depends on who you're asking). 

2) Crossfit Crossfit Crossfit

I competed in my first competition a few weeks back. If I wasn't already hooked on Crossfit, it would have done the trick. I loooooove it. So much so that I signed up for my second competition in October, The Festivus Games. 

Yeah, I'm one of those people. Sorry. It's just so fun to see yourself improving and getting stronger on a regular basis. The group of friends, competitors and teammates that come along with it doesn't hurt much, either. Or the mass amount of pictures that end up on social media.

It's incredible to me that I tried to be a runner for two whole years (and ran a dang half marathon on top of it). I HATE running. Hate it. Despise it. Curse its name with every step. It makes me miserable and puts me in the worst of moods. And I'm really, really bad at it, too. Discovering an exercise that I thoroughly enjoy (and am pretty good at!) has made a world of difference. I think its safe to say my running days are over!


Along the same lines, I'm in the middle of Emily Schromm's #21DaySuperheroChallenge. That's 21 Days without sugar, refined carbs (bread, pasta, grains etc) or alcohol. 21 Days of working out, taking fish oil, hydrating and learning a ton about health and fitness from Em (my Crossfit idol/girl crush).

Initially, it sucked. I love sugar and refined carbs almost as much as I love Chloe. However, the progress and changes I've seen on a daily basis will make it all worth it in the end. I love a good challenge. And I really love Butta Coffee. After the first week, I'm sitting at the top of the leaderboard.....we'll see how long that lasts. College Football Saturday might get the best of me.

3) World Traveler

OK, not really. I only went to St. Louis. But it was a hell-uv-a long drive.

Living 1,000 miles away from your family can really suck, so we decided to meet half way for the weekend.

We were tourists. We visited the Arch, toured the Budweiser facilities, hung out with the Clydesdales at Grant's Farm. We ate our weight in delicious local food and had a splendid time. The next time you're in STL, get some coffee at The Mud House, a malt at Crown Candy Kitchen and BBQ at Bogart's Smokehouse. You won't regret it.

You will regret going to The City Museum if you're over the age of 7. Sheesh.





Until next time. Peace.

Burpees for Bernese

Friday, August 1, 2014
I'M ALIVE!

Don't open a missing persons case with the boys in blue. I'm still here, alive and well. I didn't forget about you......I've just been neglecting you. Shame on me, I know. Between starting a new job (more on that later) and training for my first Crossfit competition, I've barely had a spare minute to check Twitter or text my mom. It stresses me out just thinking about all the good RT opportunities I missed.

Last weekend I competed at the Koda First Timer's Open Crossfit competition. It's an event held at my home gym, specifically for people who have never competed before. 40 other girls were signed up in my division, and I somehow pulled off a top ten finish. Although I had my fingers crossed for the podium (and the Bernese Mountain Dog Cole promised me if I won), I beat [most of] my goals and am pleased with the outcome.

SIDE NOTE: I have to take a moment and brag on Cole. He got second place in his division. What. A. Stud. I'm a lucky lady and a very proud girlfriend.

The event consisted of three WODS throughout the day.


WOD 1
50m sled push (70 lb)
15 burpees
50m sled drag
12 burpees
50 m sled push
9 burpees
50m sled drag

What a way to start the day, man. Burpees are not meant for tall people. I went into this WOD with a goal of beating my best practice time (5:12). I knew it would be my worst event of the day.

As I waited for "3...2...1...GO," I chanted "Burpees for Bernese" to myself. That's what the competition was about, after all. By the end of my first round, I thought I was done for. I could feel the puke in the back of my throat. After the second round of burpees, I thought I was last in my heat. My judge kept yelling "Good pace, good pace!" I wanted to punch him. It's not a good pace if I'm in last place, dude. As I pulled the sled down the home stretch, I glanced over my shoulder to see where I stood.....low and behold, I was in second. Say what?! I finished with a time of 4:19. Not the best in comparison to others, but good enough for me! I think I could have shaved off a little time on the sled drags, but oh well. Hind sight.




WOD 2
5 rounds for time
Row 200m
10 Box jumps
10 Dumbbell Push Press (25 lb)

Besides my lingering fear of box jumps (I have nightmares about them on the reg), I knew this WOD would be a piece of cake for me. Exhausting, yes, but nothing to worry about if I really pushed myself. I practiced multiple times and felt good going into it. My goal was to be under 8:30. I didn't make it.....I didn't even beat my practice time. I did, however, come away first in my heat and 6th overall. 

Looking back, I needed to work on my push press a little more - I dip too low in my knees which adds time and energy. I also didn't really need those three second breathers on the last few rounds.....come on, Amanda. Get your shit together. This is the performance I was most unhappy with. Consequently, it was also the WOD I did the best in. Weird how that works, huh?


WOD 3
8 minute time cap
10 rope jumps
10 cleans @ 63 lb
10 rope jumps
10 cleans @ 83 lbs
10 rope jumps
10 cleans @ 103 lbs
10 rope jumps
Max Effort cleans @ 123 lbs

This WOD was my baby. I was sitting in 10th place going into it. I knew I could get through it. I also knew a lot of girls couldn't. Naturally, I figured I'd get first and end up on the podium with a new puppy. I guess I let my cockiness get the best of me.....

My goal was to beat my practice (6 max effort cleans) and to have no no-reps. I really paced myself. I knew I could get through the first three rounds easily, but that I needed to save as much as possible for the max effort round. By the time I got there, I still had several minutes left. I took my time, making sure I was good and ready before I started each clean. I could hear Cole counting down for me "3...2....1" which helped a TON. If I count for myself its always "3, 2,1....ok ok, 3, 2, 1 again." 

When the buzzer went off, my judge told me I got ten cleans. TEN! And I didn't no-rep once. I was thrilled. Then I found out several of the girls I needed to beat in order to podium got more cleans than me. I tried not to get frustrated.....but have you met me? I'm a sore loser. I guess that's why my parents put me in ballet as a child instead of a competitive sport. I could have totally gotten two or three more cleans had I not paced myself as much, right?? Who knows.....what I do know, is that finishing in the top 10 in your first competition isn't all that bad after all. Even if I didn't get my puppy.........yet. 

Photos by Koda Media.

......except this one. This one is by Chasity Beasler Ladd.


Backstreet's Back

Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Somewhere - probably in a box at my parent's house hidden in the basement - there are videos of my twelfth birthday party. My friends and I all pinky swore, crossed our hearts and promised on our lives to never show those videos to anyone. EVER.

I kept my promise. But at this particular moment in life, I'm wishing I could share them with you.

Thank goodness they're 1,000 miles away. 

You see, we (and probably every other group of pre-teen girls in the early 2000s) liked to make our own  music videos. We'd dress up like our favorite boy bands (drawn on goatees included), choreograph their latest single and practice until we had it down pat. Then we'd record the masterpiece, do a wardrobe change and start on a Britney or Christina inspired performance. We'd stay up until the wee-hours of morning making sure every part was perfect before we finally watched the finished project and hit the hay. 

This past weekend, it all came rushing back to me: every single perfectly choreographed move of I Want It That Way.

Yep. The Backstreet Boys came to OKC and I was lucky enough to see them live. 

[cue twelve-year-old screaming and jumping up and down]

video

Please excuse the awful Snapchat quality video. Priorities, man.

Nick Carter is still just as dreamy as he was circa 2000. What a total babe. I'll show him the shape of my heart any day.


They still knew every single dance move, too. Don't let their age fool ya. 


Our inner-pre teen might have gone a little crazy when the boys came on stage..... And that's fine. Its not every day your childhood dreams come true. 

Can I get a "Backstreets back?" ...... alright!


Chloe, Rabbit Slayer

Monday, June 2, 2014
Ah, the face of an angel.


Or a killer. It's whatever.

This spring, baby bunnies have been abundant in my 'hood. I love sitting at the kitchen table and watching them hop around my yard while I eat dinner. They're so tiny and cute with their cotton tails bouncing through the clovers and their little bunny noses wiggling non-stop. They make me smile and giggle.

Chloe likes them, too. They're fun to play with. They're quick and agile, two things Chloe is not, so chasing them is a never ending game for her. Sometimes we see them while we're out for a run. Containing our excitement is not a strong suit....

"Shhh, be vewy vewy quiet. I'm hunting wabbits."

Oftentimes while mowing my lawn, my shins get pelted with rocks, sticks or chew toys, courtesy of Chloe. She does a good job of hiding them, I'll give her that. Halfway buried and covered with grass weeds, no one will be able to find them or steal them from her. I always do a walk-through before I start mowing as a feeble attempt to avoid shin bruises.

Yesterday on my walk-through, I saw something fuzzy. I went to pick it up, assuming it was a toy.

It wasn't.

It was a baby bunny. A dead baby bunny.

I screamed a little, jumped back, ran inside and called my knight in shining armor to come pick it up because obviously I couldn't bring myself to do it. I guess Chloe's speed and agility has improved as of late... Must be all those episodes of Full House she's been watching. Comet is an inspiration!

Holding back tears, I said a few words as we buried the bunny under a tree. I hope it lived a happy life. Rest in peace, Little Bunny Foo Foo. I'll never forget you.

Chloe got the silent treatment from me the rest of the evening. She will now forever be known as "Chloe the Rabbit Slayer." She's pretty proud of herself, to say the least.

In other news, I'd like to give two-thumbs up to Nex-Gard, the best tick medicine in the world. The
Rabbit Slayer has been 100% tick-free for two months now (something I thought we'd never accomplish).

After trying every tick remedy known to man with no luck at all, I begrudgingly spent $120 on the newest, chewable tick preventative that promised results. I expected nothing from it, but within a week The Rabbit Slayer was completely tick free! It was worth every single penny.

It doesn't hurt much that there is a Bernese Mountain Dog on the box, either. I think its a sign....don't you agree?

I heart beer.

Monday, May 19, 2014
A wise man by the name of Benjamin Franklin was supposedly quoted as saying:
"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
I believe it. What a smart guy.


This weekend was spent at the Oklahoma Craft Beer Festival. The beer tasting event gave you access to over 200 craft beers from around the world AND a commemorative tasting cup. I don't know if you know this about me, but I'm a sucker for "free" event souvenirs. I'll do anything for free stuff - I'll run 13.1 miles, even. The itty-bitty cup was totally worth the $37 ticket.


Food trucks were expected to roll up to the OCBF, but little did we know which trucks would be in attendance. The Food Network's show The Great Food Truck Race was in town filming the upcoming season and several of the trucks were parked in Bricktown for the day. You better believe we gave 'em a try. Too bad the film crew was pre-occupied while I was waiting in line... The camera would have loved me!


Lone Star Chuck Wagon was delicious. Their menu items were given names to market directly to OKC inhabitants such as the "Thunder Wheel" and the "Sooner Yardbird Wrap." So clever. If only they had a Pistol Pete-o de Gallo.....

The wrap was full of fresh, Tex-Mex flavor and made my taste buds do a little dance. My only complaint is that it was pricey and tiny (but the perfect size to compliment my beer tasting cup, mind you). Oh well, I'll still root for the Wagon to win the competition. And you better believe I'll be DVRing the OKC episode when it debuts, just incase I make an appearance.

Alright alright. Enough food talk. Back to beer.

I sampled a handful of delicious brews ranging from stouts to ciders and everything in between. I had a few that made me scrunch my nose up in disgust, but that is to be expected. I narrowed it down to my top three choices that you simply must try:


Runners up include: Lefthand Brewing Company's Ambidextrous #6, Anthem Brewing Company's Special Blood Orange Ale, and Choc Beer's Gose w/Peach. 

I went into this loving a good stout (and I still do), but towards the end I learned to appreciate the lighter ales a little more. That heavy beer can be kind of overpowering after a few rounds....and honestly, the stouts all started to taste the same. The flavored beers gave my 'buds some variety - that "mmm what is THAT I'm tasting?" sensation. I like that sensation. I like it a whole lot. 

At the end of the day as we sat on the porch and drank a Busch, the verdict was clear: I heart beer. Most any beer, really. And I heart this guy, too. Awwww.


I've got a green-ish thumb

Thursday, May 15, 2014
My life has been particularly boring as of late. It’s a revolving door of working the nine to five, squeezing in some R+F training, sweating my butt off at that Crossfit place, bad TV, healthy dinners and boy time (which typically means me falling asleep on the couch in the nine o'clocks while he watches some kind of sporting event...#thunderup). 
Its true. I'm old. And quite boring, to be honest. Even the recent weekends have reflected it. Long gone are the days of staying out 'til two, sleeping 'til noon and doing it all over again. 
Last weekend, I decided to embrace adulthood. While Cole dug up his yard and installed a sprinkler system, I went to Home Depot, bought me some flowers, and planted them. 
And they're still alive. 
My mother is starting to come out in me. My previously black thumb is turning green....ish
Who wants to take bets on how long they'll live? I give them until June.

The next few weekends will be filled with beer tastings, road trips and bachelorette parties. Friends, family and festivals - does it get any better than that? I think not. Hold on to your hats, ya'll. So much for "boring."

R + F = LOVE

Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Friends, I have an announcement!

I am now a Consultant for Rodan + Fields Dermatology.

And I'm really, really excited about it.

I'm pumped because a) I need to support my shoe fetish and b) these products literally changed my life. Literally, you guys (see incredibly embarrassing photo below).
6-week R+F Unblemish Results
Yep, that's me. Ugly, pimply me on the left and pretty, zit-free me on the right. WHOA.

Ya'll, I was at a point where my acne was worse than it had ever been in my entire twenty-something years. 13-year-old Amanda didn't even know what acne was. I was embarrassed to go anywhere without makeup. Going to the gym straight from work didn't help either; all that foundation went straight into my pores. It was awful and was only getting worse! I was so embarrassed and self-conscious. Sure, my hair might be pretty and I have nice abs, but my FACE! I was sure people only saw my acne when they looked at me. I tried everything from 100% natural face care products to visiting the Dermatologist and using harsh, prescription chemicals and antibiotics.....I was a lost cause.

That's when Christmas rolled around and I decided to give myself a present: the gift of Rodan and Fields! My beautiful cousin Meghan, a R+F Level V Executive Consultant, kept raving about it. My mom was using the Soothe line and was seeing great results. Several other family members were head over heels for the stuff, too. Everywhere I looked, R+F was getting two-thumbs up, so what did I have to lose? Absolutely nothing....especially considering it had a 60-day money back, you're gonna love this stuff guarantee.

Boy, am I glad I gave it a shot. Six weeks in and my skin was mostly clear. Six months later and I'm posting a makeup-less, unedited selfie because I am no longer ashamed or embarrassed of my skin!


You can see for yourself....these products rock. Like, rock the boat, rock my socks off, rock and roll all night long kinda rock. 

R+F (which, b.t.dub. is made by the same Dermatologists who brought you Proactiv) offers four different regimens including: Redefine (to keep you lookin' young), Reverse (to get rid of brown spots or discoloration), Soothe (for sensitive or red skin), and my saving grace, Unblemish (for acne), as well as a ton of other fun products to throw in the mix and help your skin look its best.

So, my dears, here is the #1 reason why I am now a R+F Consultant: because I love these products and they completely changed my life. And I believe they can do the same for you! Of course, the extra cash, bonuses and time I get to spend talking to awesome people like yourself isn't bad, either. Girls gotta save money for that Jeep Wrangler and Bernese Mountain Dog puppy somehow, ya know? 

If you are interested in trying any of the products out, shoot me an email at itsamandab@gmail.com, leave a comment below or visit my website @ www.amandabradley.myrandf.com for more information. I promise you won't regret it!


Side note: Rodan + Fields offers great business opportunities, too! If you're interested in joining one of the best and fastest growing companies in the nation, being your own boss or scheduling your work around your life, all while having fun and making the big bucks, don't hesitate! Contact me or visit www.amandabradley.myrandf.biz for the deets! 


Foodie Friday | Green Goodies

Friday, April 11, 2014
Its no secret that I consider myself to be a cupcake connoisseur. I've searched high and low for the best cupcakes in Oklahoma City and Green Goodies gets the Amanda Bradley stamp of approval.  But, my dears, that's not what I want you to drool over today.

Nope. Today is about real food. Real good food, that is.

BATH Sandwich | Scrumptious | Photo via Green Goodies
Recently, Green Goodies started serving lunch. A healthy, gourmet, cafe style lunch. It was a genius idea on their part. If I worked closer to Green Goodies, I would eat lunch there on the reg. I'd have a usual and they'd know me by name. Or at least as, "that tall girl who inhales her food."

Green Goodies specializes in deliciously healthy food. They offer Paleo, gluten free, vegetarian, vegan and dairy free options, which I am all about. Most of the time, "healthy" choices don't exactly make your mouth water, but folks, I promise you, these will. The BATH (bacon, avocado, turkey, ham) sandwich was one of the tastiest I've ever had.

In my whole life.

Forever and ever amen.

Sorry, Mom, your sandwiches are a close second.

Served on Paleo bread with fresh tomatoes, greens and a house made aioli, the BATH is sure to have very dirty noises coming out of your mouth. Ahhhh, mmmm, oh my gosh, suh good.

The White Truffle Egg Salad Sandwich isn't a bad choice, either. Or anything else on the menu, probably. With soup, salad and cupcakes to boot, you'll be in a food coma in no time. The best kind of coma, obviously.

Word on the street has it that Green Goodies is now doing brunch. You better believe I'll be checking that out ASAP. They are seriously barking up the right tree.

You can view the cafe menu with weekly specials on their Facebook page. Green Goodies accept the Keep It Local card.

Friend Dating

Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Ah, dating. That awkward stage between being an acquaintance and being in a relationship. Its new and exciting....but what do you talk about?

I may have locked down the hottest bachelor in all of Okla., but I'm still dating. Friend dating, that is. You see, I'm happy as can be in Oklahoma City, but I'm missing one important thing: best friends. My besties all live elsewhere while I'm, for lack of a better word, a transplant. I love hanging out with my babe on the reg, but I still need some lady time in my life! I mean, who am I supposed to get pedicures and go see the next Nicholas Sparks movie with? 

In college, friend dating was easy; everyone was in the same boat. You had classes with people, parties every weekend, group projects....everywhere you went you met and got to know people. Now? Its freakin' hard, man. Meeting people, let alone people you like, is not exactly a regular occurrence. 

I watch shows like Sex and the City and want those friends in my life. Those weekend brunch dates, shopping buddies, call you up at 2 a.m. to tell you the latest drama, come over without being invited type friends. But, even if you share all the same hobbies, have identical Pinterest boards, had the same major or even share some of the same friends, it doesn't mean you will click. And even if you do, its hard to find the time to build that friendship between work, working out and the uber-important me-time. 

All that being said, I'm on the market. I'm looking for the Snooki to my JWOWW. If you like puppies, junk food, gossip, taking selfies, drinking beer, working out, laying out and/or trashy TV, let's be friends. 



wod.

Monday, March 24, 2014
Stages of a CrossFit WOD in the form of gifs.

1. When you look at the WOD online and know you'll be dreading it all day:

2. When you show up to the "box" rocking some brand new leggings:

3. Being forced to do burpees:

4. In the middle of the WOD:

5. How you think you look:

6. How you really look:

7. The coach's face when they watch your power clean:

8. When you and your partner get the best WOD time:

9. After you finish the WOD:

10. Not being able to talk about anything but CrossFit from there on out:

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