A tornado in November

Hey guys, just a quick post to let you all know we are okay. Yesterday was an awful day in our neck of the woods. Illinois was hit extremely hard with severe weather, including thunderstorms, intense winds, and tornados.

The tornado that touched down in our town missed our house by two blocks. We had just gotten home from the store about 20 minutes before it hit. As we were putting away groceries I said to Bradley, "Look at the sky out back, it's all foggy and green." He dismissed me as usual and we went about our business.

A few minutes later I walked into the living room to see a wall of leaves swirling in our front yard. I'm talking, I could see nothing but a shit ton of leaves moving rapidly. I freaked out and yelled at Bradley to get to the basement and I dragged Chorde downstairs. Bradley of course stayed put on the couch to watch football. There was this strange humming sound followed by a blast-type noise. We identified the blast later as the tornado hitting the transformers near our house.

Once it was over we went outside to make sure we were okay. Neighbors here and there right by us sustained damage from tree limbs and the like. Two blocks down is where the real devastation occurred. Houses are torn to shreds. Trees are completely ripped from the ground like somebody just walked by and plucked then up and threw them. Some people have nothing where their houses once stood.

It's my understating that the funnel formed about two blocks behind us and travelled around us in a two block radius. It then crossed a road and flattened houses and subdivisions in its wake. I cannot understand how we got so lucky, all I can say is Thank You Jesus.

We walked around surveying the neighborhood after it happened and there were people sobbing in the street. I can't help but be incredibly grateful that our home and our lives were spared. We went to my mom's last night to put all of our groceries in her fridge, charge our phones, and do some laundry. They are saying we might not have power for four more days. I don't know how I'm going to get my shit together and go to work tomorrow, especially since the main road out of town is closed. This all really sucks for so, so many people.

If you can, I hope you all would reach out to those in need. The destruction crossed over st least three states. Everyone can do something. At the very least pray. I hope today is a better day for lots of people.


My love

Sorry I'm not sorry about my super-heavy blog post yesterday. It feels so good to get that off my chest and to have had so many of you reach out to me with so much support and love. Blogging is such an amazing thing sometimes.

I'm not one of those people that pisses rainbows while farting skittles and burping cotton candy. I pride myself in being a pretty real person. I'm grateful that I have people who appreciate that and still like me despite being crazy.

As I laid in bed last night, I was thinking about the post and feeling the weight of all of those feelings. Every night, Bradley, Chordie and I are all snuggled together in one big spoon-train where Chordie is first, then me, then Bradley. Laying there in between my dog (who is my best friend) and my love, I felt so safe and secure. Which brings me to the most important man in my life; My Bradley.

Having the kind of Dad that I did, it's hard for me to trust a man or feel safe with them. But with Bradley, it doesn't occur to me not to. When we lay in bed together at night, I feel like I have the whole world surrounding me and I could not feel any more full or satisfied with life. Sure, 95% of the time I want to strangle him for various reasons, but I still love him despite it all.

You see, we are by no means a perfect couple. There are so many things we are working on, and so much we still need to learn about our relationship. But we still try each day to be better. He stood outside in the freezing cold last night using his shitty hand-me-down tools to fix my car. He reads my blog everyday and he caters to my obsessive cleaning habits. This weekend he took me shopping and yesterday he went to the store to get another pizza for me because he ate the majority of the first one. He means the world to me, and I don't want to think of a day without him.

I couldn't chose my Dad, but I could chose my future husband. I'm so, so happy with the choice I made to pick my Bradley.


My Dad

Today is the day I've been talking about for a while. Today is the day I share the story of my Father, and how our relationship molded me into the person that I am today.

I received an email from someone named Danielle a few weeks ago regarding the last post I wrote about my father here. What she said really touched me, and made me realize that I can tell this part of my story now, because it's time to just air it all out. Here's a little exert of what she said:

"My dad is not a great man, either. His friend David died and he changed. My dad is an alcoholic and the last few paragraphs have helped me more than you can know. I have spent big bucks trying to work out my daddy issues and lo and behold, all I needed was a little Kayla Layla."

Who knew that one person's dysfunction could be another person's epiphany? Danielle's words struck such a nerve with me that I felt compelled to share the entire story, because even now, it still finds a way to hold me back.

My parents were not married when I was conceived. My mother was many years older than my father and they met at a time when she had recently gotten divorced and just wanted someone to love her. Unfortunately, that man happened to be my father.

He didn't have the greatest childhood, having been abandoned by his real father and treated like garbage by his mother. It's no wonder he grew up to be the person that he did. Not that we don't all have a choice at some point, but I can sympathize with him that he didn't really stand much of a chance.

My father sold and did drugs, as well as his fair share of drinking. I can remember him setting me on the counter and having his friends watch in amusement as I would clean marijuana for them at the ripe old age of 3 years old. I don't remember him being an addict per-say, I know he smoked a lot of pot and did his fair share of cocaine, but nothing else to my knowledge. But then again, how would I know? I was a fairly young kid after all.

Before I was born my parents had a son that was stillborn. My father desperately wanted a boy and was incredibly upset and damaged by this loss. He resented me when I was born because I was not a boy. He never truly wanted me from the start.

He was very big on not showing emotions, unless they were anger, and he would often tell me if I cried that, "There's a dry well behind those eyes and you'd better find it." Another one of his famous lines was, "I brought you into this world and I can take you out." Sometimes I wonder if he truly knew what his words meant. As a child I was conditioned not to cry and not to feel emotions. It took a very long time to tear this wall down and feel things again.

My brother was born when I was 3 years old, and that was the single greatest event in my father's life. He was so proud of my brother, so happy to take care of him and be around him. It was the complete opposite of how he treated me. I can't remember my father ever cooking for me, or loving on me, or even having anything particularly nice to say to me. He would sometimes take me to the bar with him when he was forced to watch me, and I'd sit on a bar stool and drink Sprites while he would drink and hang out with his friends. Sometimes he would even pick me up from school, though I can remember a day where he got into a huge fight with my Mom when we got home and she told him to get out. He looked at me and said, "Come on Kayla!" and I just looked at him and said, "No." I was 5 years old at the time. I'll never forget the look in his eyes when I wouldn't go with him. He slammed the screen door so hard that it just shattered and fell to the ground like it does in the movies. He got on his motorcycle and left, and that was that.

The truth is, he scared me. I was scared to speak for fear of getting yelled at, I was scared to misbehave for fear of being spanked to the point where someone would have to stop him. I was just plain scared of him. How was I ever going to grow up and have a healthy, normal relationship with a man when the one who was supposed to set the example for all of the rest had terrified me and scarred me to such an extent?

There are people in my father's family who want to say that these things didn't happen, or that perhaps he was a better man than the stories reflect. And maybe to them he was. But I'm the only person in the world who knows how it feels to be David's daughter. I'm the only one who experienced these things from him first hand. There is not a single person who has ever or will ever walk this Earth in my shoes. I am beyond allowing anyone to tell me how great of a man he was, because they never lived life as his daughter.

One beautiful September morning I woke up for school and walked into the living room to find my entire family at home. Being 6, I remember thinking, "Sweet!!" But the looks on their faces told me they weren't home to have fun. All I can remember was my Mom telling me that my father had been in a serious motorcycle accident and that I wouldn't be going to school that day. My six year old self was disappointed because I didn't get to wear my new headband that I had laid out the night before. I also remember being overwhelmed with this feeling that I couldn't describe at the time. I can identify it now in my adulthood as relief. I felt relieved that he wouldn't be coming home for a while. I was relieved that I would finally know where he was at all times, and what he was doing. It kills me inside to say that out loud. What kind of 6 year old is relieved about something like that? Parts of the story like this are what holds me back from wanting to share it because it just gets so fucked up. So, so fucked up.

I won't waste any time or energy going into detail about what a horrible person my grandmother is, or all of the fucking crazy things she tried to do while he was in the hospital. I can't bring myself to give her the time of day, and even saying this much is way outside of my comfort zone.

To the best of my knowledge, my father and his friends had spent a night out partying and having a good time. Early that morning, they were riding down the road when my dad's friend Jeff's hat flew off. Jeff did a U-Turn to go back and get it without realizing my father was behind him, and they crashed into each other. Jeff was DOA, my father died multiple times and was successfully resuscitated. They had to completely reconstruct his face, he spent many months on a feeding tube, and his memory was severely effected. He was not the same man he was before, and he couldn't remember why that was. It was almost as if the old David died that night, and a new David took his place. Not a better David, just a different one.

Essentially, my father's motorcycle accident was both the absolute worst, and the absolute best thing to happen to me in my life. Had the morning of September 6th, 1993 never happened, I can't say that I would be the person I am today. Had I not been freed of the man my father was prior to the accident, I don't know that I would be as happy and well-rounded as I have become.

My father really was not present in my life after that day. He went to live with various relatives, had two failed marriages, and spent a couple of years in prison for domestic abuse. He lived a hard and fast life, and in a lot of ways he paid the price. I never had enough mercy in my heart to reach out to him, and I couldn't get past the pain and the anger to see that I was hurting myself much more than I was hurting him. He didn't think about the pain and hurt he caused me, because he couldn't remember it. Every time I looked in the mirror, it was all I ever saw.

I did however gain an incredible sense of self from all of this. Despite being very angry and bitter, I was very head strong and independent. I knew my strength and intelligence, and I knew no one was going to mess with me. I definitely inherited his confidence, and I knew I was always going to be the biggest, baddest, toughest person around. I was, after all, his daughter, and I wasn't going to let him bring me down, at least not on the surface. 

I was at Wal-Mart once, probably around the age of 16 when I saw him there with his girlfriend at the time. They were at the jewelry counter looking at of all things engagement rings when I walked right up to him and said, "Do you know who I am?" I can't explain to you the pain you feel when your own father looks you in the eyes and has no recollection of you whatsoever. I had to tell my own dad that I was his daughter. I will never, ever, ever forget that moment for as long as I live. He didn't know who I was, and I look just like him. I'd like to blame it on the fact that he hadn't seen me in years, but I think he just wasn't mentally right. At least, that's what I tell myself.

A year prior to his passing, my Aunt called me and we had a conversation about my father's health. She was taking care of him, as she always had, and he was not in good shape. My Aunt Lisa is one of the most incredible women who has ever lived on this planet. She has a lot of health issues herself, and she is always the first person there for anyone who needs her. My father did not deserve her love and her efforts, but she gave them to him because he was her brother. She is one of the most amazing souls and I am so thankful that my dad had her to rely on.

Basically, my father had Parkinson's disease, pneumonia, and a myriad of other health issues. She asked me to come to him, that he was asking for me. I looked at my nephews playing on the floor in front of me, these tiny little babies with so much life ahead of them. And I made the choice to stay with them and focus on their health, and not to go to my father. On the surface, and in my heart, I know that this was the right choice. It was a choice my father could never have made. I didn't have the mercy in my heart to give him what he wanted from me. I'd spent the last 22 years defining who I was by how horribly he had treated me. I wasn't ready to forgive him just yet.
This is a picture I took the day my Aunt first called me. I look at these faces now, and I think a lot about the choice I made. I could have had a year to know my father. But I chose these three amazing little boys who needed me more. Some days I wonder why there had to be a choice, why I couldn't just be there for my Father and for them. Then I remember that it was never really a choice at all, because everything happened the way it was meant to. I love my nephews more than I can ever say. I definitely could not have gotten through the grieving process without them.

A year went by, with my Aunt posting things on Facebook about him, how his health would improve, and then take turns for the worse. Three days before he died, she had posted a video of him on a ventilator. I knew in my soul that it was time. It was like the connection between us had repaired itself. I was finally ready. I went to him the next day, and when I walked into the room his heart rate sky rocketed and he was going crazy. He couldn't talk because of the ventilator, but I knew that he was happy to see me. We spent the rest of that day holding hands while I talked to him. We would have these moments where we would just lock eyes and I could read his mind without him saying a word. We have the exact same eyes. We had a lot in common. Sometimes I regret not knowing him, we might have actually liked each other. I guess I will never know.

The day we took him off the ventilator was one of the most gorgeous days I can ever remember. I was standing beside him when they came in and took it out, and he frantically just started saying, "I love you I love you I love you" to me. Like he knew he didn't have a lot of time left to say it, and it had been years since it had last been spoken. I held his hand and I talked to him about my brother, who was on vacation at the time, and I told him all about my nephews and how amazing they were, and I tried to tell him everything I could about me so that he would know. I sang him the Bette Midler song "Wind Beneath My Wings" because he used to make me sing it as a child to him. And we just stared at each other. We only had a short time left to remember each other's faces. Even though our faces were the same in so many ways.

I held him as he took his last breaths. I helped to usher him into the next life. I gave him the mercy that I had for so long withheld. And he gave me my freedom. I was free from all of the trauma of my childhood. I finally understood that he loved me the only way that he knew how. That was going to have to be enough for me, because that's all there was. We can't choose our parents, we can't choose how our childhood's turn out, and we can't choose the trauma we experience. I learned in my father's last moments of life that you can choose how you live in spite of all of that. I learned that my father's opinion of me shouldn't impact the person I am or how I chose to live my life. Most importantly, I learned that I am loved, I can be loved, and that the only person hurting from my grudges and grief is me. I was free to let it all go and to live my life loving my father instead of hating him. Because he's the only Father I was given in this life. He no longer defined me, but he sure as hell taught me how to be one tough chick who doesn't take shit from anyone and who knows just how wonderful and amazing she is. I don't know that death is always this freeing for anyone other than the person who dies. But this is my story, and this is what happened.

 My father and I on our last day together. I've shared this image with very few people. It is still hard for me to look at.

I now have a tremendous amount of love and respect for my father, and I forgive him for all of the bad things that ever happened. I like to speak fondly of him, and visit his grave to clean off his headstone. I have pictures of him up in my house and I have a shelf with some of his belongings on it. This is all I have left of him, and now that I am okay with loving him, I like to remember him positively.

I will never be completely okay with everything. I will never be fine with not having a positive male role model growing up, or a father who can fix my car or walk me down the isle. I will never be okay with not being able to make it right or showing him mercy with enough time for us to get to know each other and make some positive memories. But I can't change the past, so I try not to dwell in that. I do still cry like a baby for him. Because my heart will never fully heal from the damage of my childhood, or the loss and regret of what could have been. But I am whole and happy in knowing that he and I are both at peace with the past, no matter how much doubt tries to creep in.

So, there you have it. My novel of a post on my father. The primary reason why I am so fucked up. It is what it is. There are parts I didn't want to share, but did anyway, and there are parts I just need to keep to myself in order to stay in the positive. But I will always, always love my father. It took me a long time to get to this point, and I cannot tell you just how much I have grown as a person by learning this lesson. It took me 24 years and a lot of trauma and heartache, but I wouldn't and couldn't change any of it. I am so grateful that I grew into the person I am today, and I love how my life has turned out in spite of everything else. I couldn't ask for more.


Five on Friday!

I am so glad this week is over, you have no idea. I feel like a big ball of stress that needs to unravel. So much so that I've found gray hairs sprouting up all over my head. Bradley and I found ourselves in the bathroom the other day looking in the mirror and arguing over who had more.

This is how we keep the romance alive ;)

And now, it's time for Five! (See what I did there?)

1. I'm just going to come right out and call bullshit on everyone jumping on this "Thankful" bandwagon we have going on this month. The same people that I see incessantly bitching and complaining on Facebook while posting their passive aggressive e-cards trying to be ironic and sarcastic are now incredibly thankful for everything from their monthly period cramps to the idiot bozos at McDonald's who forgot to put Sweet & Sour sauce in their bags. Honestly, I see through all your transparent bullshit people. Try being thankful 365 days a year and see how far you get. Or, be like me and just be incredibly cynical and snarky every day of the year and see how awesome you can be. Either way.

2. Speaking of the holidays, it's time for us to start whippin' this house into shape. Bradley is having both of his sisters and their families come into town for Thanksgiving. That means I have to clean like a psycho (nothing new), prepare food for our Thanksgiving, prepare food for my family's Thanksgiving, entertain guests, clean up, go visit my family and have another meal & clean up, and then get up the next morning like a crazy person and go shopping. Bring on the Redbull!

 I've been telling Bradley that we need more plates, dishes, and serving trays for this. He doesn't understand why presentation is so important. All I have to say is, I'm not having the Stanfield's over for Thanksgiving without at least a couple of Thanksgiving-themed serving trays and that's that.

3. I have had the worst round of luck lately, let me tell you. My car has become the bane of my existence. There's been a rattling noise going on somewhere in the back for a couple of months now. I've told Bradley about it, and he's even made mention of it when he's driven it before. About a week ago it started to sound really loud and pretty much doesn't want to go. Finally tonight I told him he needed to look underneath because I thought it looked liked something was hanging from underneath of it. Turns out, my muffler pipe is broken except for this miniscule piece that is holding it together. One bad bump and it would probably have fallen off while I was driving. The only word I can find to describe my feelings on this is, "Fuck."
4. For whatever reason that I cannot on a conscious level identify, I have become obsessed with hummus. I've been thinking about it non-stop, talking about it, dreaming about it, everything. There's this trendy cafe by my work that has the most incredible hummus you could ever imagine. The best part is that it comes with these triangle pieces of this warm, soft, delicious pita bread to dip in the hummus. The feeling I had when I first tried it is comparable to that of how I felt when I held Chordie in my arms for the first time. Just absolute true love. Not that I love hummus like I love my dog, but definitely along the same lines.

5. Tomorrow is supposed to be 63 degrees and sunny with clear blue skies. I'm trying to talk Bradley into taking Chordie to this park outside of town to let her run around in nature and pretend to be a real dog. I also want to get my camera out there and snap a few pictures. I can't wait for my lazy weekend with my two loves. And sleeping. I cannot wait to sleep, a lot.

Hope you all still love me despite my crazy bitchy ranting. Have a great weekend :)


Life Actually

Have you ever had one of those moments where you're writing a blog post and you start to re-read it and you're like, "This is complete shit."

That just happened to me.

Yesterday we had a murderer on the lose in the area surrounding where I work. Some places were evacuating and some were on lock down. We, on the other hand, were working away, googling news on the situation and pretending like someone who was armed and dangerous wasn't potentially blocks away from where we were. Just another day in paradise :)

Bradley and I are really kicking ass at this whole gym thing. I say that having only gone twice. But it's two more times than we've ever gone in the past. We feel good and we have a good time. Somehow I seem to have more time to get things done in the evening? I'm not sure how this happens, but I go to the gym right after work, come home and cook dinner, and still have a couple of hours to blog and chill. Working out is magic.

On the way home from the gym last night, Bradley stops at this local Italian place and went in and got their garlic bread. It is seriously the most delicious bread of all time. I was on the phone at the time and didn't have a chance to ask him what he was doing. When he gets back in the car I was like, "Why would you go get garlic bread after we just worked so hard at the gym?" And he goes, "You're all, 'Oh don't take my rolls away I love bread blah blah blah so I got you bread!"

He reads my blog, and he satisfies my need for carbs. I could not love him more.

Anyone have any good suggestions for us to keep our workout routine fresh and effective? It's been so long since I've worked out regularly, and I can't find my workout notebook I had when I had a trainer. It feels kind of like starting over. But in a good way. I feel so excited about this new journey for Bradley and I, and I can't wait until we are super hot and sexy again :)


Top 10 Things I Want to do Before 30

I've been feeling pretty old lately I must say. I feel like, one minute I was 16 and I was zooming around in my Dodge Neon blasting angry Kelly Clarkson songs and not having a care in the world. Now I'm 26 and I feel like I'm 50. I found multiple gray hairs growing out of my head the other day which prompted me to ask myself, "When the fuck did I get so old?"

There are so many things I want to do before I hit the big 3-0 (when I'll be REALLY old) and since I'm in my happy place when I'm making lists, here goes nothin'.

1. Get Married. This is number one on my list for obvious reasons. I want to be married when I have children, and I want to bind myself to this lucky fella sitting on the couch with me right now. I want to be a bride and wear white and create the ultimate playlist for my wedding reception. I want all that shit, and I want to do it before I get to an age where people are like, "Oh this is her first marriage? I thought she was like 30?"

2. Have kids. I want to make babies so hard sometimes. The majority of the time I want to nap and spend my money foolishly in the dollar section at Target. But I really have always wanted to be a Mom and get to experience childhood through my children's eyes. I want to be that Mom that shows up to every conference and embarrasses her children in various ways, and I want to be a MILF. Plus I think the world would really benefit from a couple of little Bradley/Kayla's.

3. Go to Disneyland. I am a huge huge huge Disney World fan. We went on vacation there almost once a year when I was a kid. I would cry every time I left. I would still cry today, that's how magical it is. I've always wanted to visit Disneyland and experience everything that it has to offer. I'm still trying to convince Bradley that we should honeymoon there...

4. Get a motorcycle license. Is that what you call it? I'm not entirely sure. Anyway, I've always wanted to ride a motorcycle by myself at least one time in my life. I don't know that I would have it in me to ride one often, given the history I have with them. But I think my Dad would be proud knowing I gave it a shot at least one time.

5. Cut my hair. Yeah, you read that right. I think at least one time before I'm 30 I need to hack this shit off. Just to give it a try. It's been a while since I've had "short" hair, and even then it was at least medium length. I'm talking bob cut to my shoulders type shit. Granted I'm going to have to lose weight so that I look a little more feminine. I don't know how I would take someone calling me sir.


I'm Alive!

Well hello strangers!

Yes, I am alive. I received so many distressed emails from all of you that I was anticipating seeing my face on the news under an Amber Alert. I felt so special :)

Truth is, Kayla Layla needed to unplug. I've had a lot of shit going on lately that I really needed to focus on. Life has been giving me lemons, so I've spent the last week turning them into Screwdrivers.

For real though, I think sometimes we get so caught up with "keeping up" that we neglect to see the things around us that need our attention. I'm a firm believer that anything important is worth fighting for. I have been fighting like hell.

With that said, I am back in action. I'm ready to plug back into social media and dazzle you with all of the wonderful things I've done the last week.

Just kidding! The McRib is back. The majority of my time has been spent devouring these delicious gifts from God.

I was so excited I had to photograph the menu while ordering my first McRib of the year. I take this shit pretty seriously.

This past weekend I partied my face off at our friends, Brody & Courtney's wedding. I looked like a retro Kardashian and rocked my top knot and houndstooth dress like a boss.

Bradley almost died at the reception because he tends to forget he's a diabetic when he's been drinking. He will turn dark red with a ring of white around his eyes and they get all glassy eyed. His blood sugar was almost 400 and he was chugging water like mad. He wouldn't let me take care of him or help him, but I wasn't about to let him ruin my fun. There were kegs to be cashed and moves to be busted. Thankfully he returned to normal just in time to take me home so that I could pass out cradling the iPad in my nice warm bed.

We also just joined the new Gold's Gym Express that just opened up in our town. I decided I needed something to counteract my McRib consumption, and I really wanted the free t-shirt.

So now I'm going to be forcing myself to do all of those things I don't want to do and keep complaining about. I'm going to quit drinking soda unless we go out to eat for a special occasion, I'm going to limit myself to 1 McRib a week (this is subject to change), and I'm going to make a more concerted effort to eat healthy again. Healthy to me isn't full blown eating clean, no carbs type shit. For me, portion control is key. I can lose weight by working out and eating like a normal person. But if you tell me I can't eat a dinner roll, I'm going to eat 10. Because I love dinner rolls and I won't ever give them up. Suck it Atkins Diet.

Also, in case you all didn't think I was wonderful enough, I've been focusing on my photography as of late. I did a shoot with my sister Heather, my niece Kjirsten, and my nephew Kohlton. I had her friends Amy & Paul and their daughter Olivia come back out with us too. I had taken pictures with them previously, but we wanted to get some with all of the kids together. I think they turned out mighty swell.

And that's been my life this past week. Working on life, working through life, and everything in between. I promise I will respond to all of my emails tonight, just so you know this isn't some Kayla Layla imposter pretending to write my blog. I plan on returning to my regularly scheduled programming the rest of this week. Shit's gonna get deep 'round here!

Later Taters!


Poppin' the Question

My friend Megan just got engaged last week to her boyfriend Brian. Brian's brother is my friend Bethany's husband Shawn. Bethany and Shawn introduced Bradley and I. Are you following me so far?

My friend Ashley got engaged a couple of weeks ago to her boyfriend Spencer as well. These wedding bells have to be exhausted from all this ringing!

So in light of all of these recent engagements within my group of friends, I'd like to turn this into a story about myself. See what I did there? ;)

My engagement story is really cute and awkward, just like my Bradley. We both knew very early on that we were going to get married. I never believed it until it happened to me, but you really do just know. About 4 months before we'd gotten engaged, we were shopping at the mall and decided to go look at rings just for the hell of it. I tried on this one ring in particular, and we both had the same reaction about it. It was most definitely the one.

Being the creep that I am, I took a catalog they had in the store home with us and put the picture of the ring on my nightstand at his house A. Because I loved it, it was beautiful and I couldn't stop staring at it and B. Because Bradley responds best to pictures and instructions.

On the December 21st of last year I was working in the evening making Christmas cookies with my nephews. We went all out with the icing and the sprinkles. All of the things that my nightmares are made of. It was a really great day and there was a bunch of snow on the ground but the sun was out. I remember thinking how perfect it was and how excited I was to be enjoying the holiday spirit.

Bradley called and told me we were going out to dinner at a local seafood restaurant which should have been my first clue that something was amiss. He never eats seafood. And he was rushing me along, telling me to shower and get ready at my sister's house so that we could go as soon as I got off work. Again, I should have been able to sniff this out, but somehow I missed all the signs.

On the way home from dinner he starts talking to me about Geocaching. In case you've never heard of it before, it's basically an App you can get on your phone and you follow a map and use a compass to find these hidden caches. They can be really tiny or pretty big. You put your name on the log when you find it and then put it back. My friends and I were obsessed with this a couple of summers ago and I'd always tried to get Bradley into it but he just made fun of me.

Quickly the conversation turned into him wanting to stop and find one on the way home. It was 20 degrees out in December with snow on the ground, but I was so astonished that he was actually caving in that I didn't object. So he "navigates" us to this cache he finds on his phone, parks the car, and we get out to find it. He was wearing his coat but he also grabbed a hoodie he'd had in his car. I'm like, "Why do you have a hoodie?" His quick witted response was, "Uhh, I'm cold?"

I had my phone out trying to use my flashlight to find the cache while he's messing around behind me pretending to look. At this point I'm bitching up a storm because I'm irritated, cold and incredibly full. I was having a hard time finding it and I started looking in a different place when Bradley was like, "Try looking over there babe I think I see it." I checked around this light pole and sure enough, there it was. I pulled out the log to sign it and in it's place was a note that read, "Pookie, will you marry me?" After I shit my pants, I turned around to find him on one knee, kneeling on his hoodie in the snow, proposing to me. 

I ugly cried like it was my job for about 5 straight minutes before I said yes. It was the cutest, sweetest, most thoughtful thing he's ever done. He'd even asked my Mom for my hand in marriage beforehand. He can be such a gentleman when he wants to.

He had arranged with all of our friends to be at our favorite bar that night, so after he proposed we went out to celebrate. People bought us Cherry Jack Bombs galore and we were both so hammered and happy.

The Hammered and Happy Couple

When we got home that night, he proposed to me again, only this time in the style of Randy "Macho Man" Savage. For those of you who know anything about professional wrestling, Macho Man proposed to Miss Elizabeth in the ring once on television. Bradley, in his drunken stupor, fashioned himself as Macho Man and myself as Miss Elizabeth and asked me, "Miss Kaylaaaaa, Willlll Youuuuu Marrrrryyyyy Meeeee?" I of course had to accept, as his proposals just kept getting more and more creative. He then proceeded to pass out cold while I stayed up to eat a PB&J. Perfect ending to a perfect night.

Snapping into Slim Jims in his dreams

It's been almost a year since we got engaged, and we are planning on getting married 7 months from now. It's crazy to think about how quickly time has flown by and pretty soon I'll be walking down the aisle to my Mach Man. I'm so so glad that Bradley went the extra mile to make our proposal really memorable and special. I really did get so lucky, and I can't wait to see him standing at the alter :)


That One Bad Hair Decision

My recent Q&A post has inspired me to talk a little more about my luxurious locks of hair. For all of my life my hair has been a big part of who I am. I came into this world with a full head of it, and people were constantly impressed with not only how much hair I had, but how dark and long it was too. It was my first claim to fame.

The above picture would not be the first time I was to be mistaken for a boy

These three pictures were taken at 3 months, 1 year, and 3 years respectively. Unfortunately my mane is/was pin straight, lacks any volume, and my Mother thought at the time that cutting the front half of my hair into bangs was a good idea. It wasn't until I got into Junior High that I decided I no longer wanted bangs that started in the back of my head.

While it was always great getting attention from people for having such long, dark hair, I always found myself envious of the girls with locks of the curly and wavy variety. It seemed like they could do so much more with their look and they didn't even have to try to style their hair. I on the other hand had to resort to wearing headbands which only accentuated my ugly and uneven hair line. Poor 6 year old Kayla Layla had no one to set her straight. Such a shame.

One day I somehow managed to convince my mother that I needed a perm. She was a little reluctant, but I like to nag until I get my way, so she quickly caved. In my mind, I pictured my hair to have these big, loose, bouncy curls. I thought I was going to look like Julia Roberts with all that volume and shine. 

I ended up looking like my worst nightmare.

The world's earliest (and worst) documented selfie

First of all, just to clarify, the white stuff on my mouth was some sort of error upon development. I took this with a disposable camera and I think that taking this picture shocked the camera's system and maybe temporarily disabled it, thus the blemish. 

Secondly, can you imagine looking at this in the mirror everyday? As if it wasn't enough I was overweight, awkward, and unattractive, but to replace my one feature of beauty with this brown poodle on my head? It was a travesty. 

I still don't know why the hairdresser cut so much of my hair off. In this picture it's pulled back into a pony tail, but in reality it sat at my shoulders. I was so devastated that I hid underneath my Powerpuff Girls blanket for days. My sisters all came over and looked at me and hysterically laughed. I was initially too depressed to laugh at myself, but then I quickly got over it. How could you not?

Clearly this was the worst decision I've ever made. I still blame my mom for allowing me to do it in the first place considering I was like 9 and she should have known it was going to turn out badly. But I can laugh at myself now and show the world the worst picture of all time because I think it's hysterical, and because I finally grew into my looks so it's no longer an accurate reflection of my appearance.

The moral of this story is, don't get a perm. Just don't do it. Perms are unnatural. Perms are the devil. If you get a perm, you will look like the above picture.

Remember 9 year old Kayla Layla who didn't know what a bad decision it was going to be. Learn from her mistakes.


Q&A Day!

Hello boys and girls and Happy Friday Time!

This week flew by, which I am not in the least bit complaining about. I love sleeping in with my Bradley and my Chordie and hittin' up Starbucks for my weekly PSL. My little slice of Heaven :)

I am so excited to answer the questions some of you posted to humor me with my Q&A. They were all funny and thoughtful, and I appreciate anything that encourages me to talk about myself so here we go!

Nicki from Beautifully Awkward asked:
"What is your favorite Halloween costume? If you could wear one outfit for the rest of your life what would it be? What exercise do you hate the most?"

Well Nicki, it's going to be difficult for me to pick a favorite Halloween costume. My mom used to hand make them for me so that they were as true to form and perfect as possible. One year she made me this super gorgeous authentic-looking poodle skirt when I was a 50's girl, then another year the dress that Rose from Titanic wore when she meets Jack and was going to jump off the boat, and she's even made me a Yellow Ranger costume which was the bomb.com. But my favorite would have to be my Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz costume. I starred as Dorothy in my 3rd grade school play, and since it was around the time of Halloween I wore it to trick-or-treat as well. It was so perfect and I loved it so much. I even had red shoes that we glittered like Dorothy's and they were beautiful. My mom still has all of my costumes because she's a hoarder and because I'm her favorite child so she's pretty much held onto everything of mine. 

As for the outfit I would wear for the rest of my life, that's a piece of cake. I live in Victoria's Secret boyfriend sweatpants. I have multiple pairs, and I get butterflies in my stomach when I turn onto my street after work because I can't wait to come home and put them on. Funny enough, I used to wear them daily when I was a Nanny and that was acceptable. I don't care what anyone says, sweatpants and a t-shirt are my jam.  

If you know me at all, you know that I hate running. Even the thought of running makes my chest tight and I feel out of breath. When I originally lost 90 pounds I did it without ever running. Sure, I did cardio like the elliptical or walking on a sharp incline on the treadmill, but never running. I've learned that unless I'm being chased by a murderer or if I'm about to burn my popcorn, I don't need to run. And so I won't. Boom!

JC from Sweet Love & Ginger asked:

"What makes you unique? Like the characteristic that is Kayla Layla. Thing that reminds other people of you."

Physically, people remember me mostly by my hair. It's crazy long, so that tends to be the first thing people notice and the biggest thing they remember. Personality-wise, I'd like to think that my most memorable characteristic is my honesty. People come to me for my opinions on lots of things because they know I will tell them the truth. Not because I am being mean, or because I want to tear people down or hurt their feelings. But because everyone deserves the truth, whether it's about how you look in a shirt, or whether or not your boyfriend is a douche-lord. We can't see ourselves from the outside, and sometimes our judgement gets so clouded that it's hard to evaluate things as they are. I always make it a point to be there for anyone and everyone I care about, and I'm a straight-shooter when they come to me for advice. Plus, I would want everyone to be straight-forward with me as well. I don't like bullshit, plain and simple.

Also, I'm pretty freaking funny. Err'body knows that ;)

Erin from Shesabigstar asked:

"Why oh WHY are the Red Sox the best team in baseball?"

My dear, sweet, beloved Erin. I wish I could answer that question for you, but unfortunately it appears to be a trick. You see, the St. Louis Cardinals have won more than 9,300 games, 11 World Series Championships, 18 National League Pennants, 3 National League Eastern Division Titles, and 8 National League Central Division Titles. There are more than 40 former Cardinal players and managers enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Also, over the last 16 seasons, they have finished in first place eight times, won three NL pennants and two World Series while drawing over 50 million fans.

I think I rest my case :)

"When are you and Bradley getting married and do you plan on having kids right away or do you want to me married for a while first?"

Bradley and I have set our wedding date for May 31st, 2014. God willing, we can pull off our wedding while being house and car poor at the same time. If it was up to Bradley, we would have been having kids a year and a half ago. For me, I want to do things in the "right order" and get married first. Not because I think there's anything wrong with having kids and then getting married, but because I personally was a child whose parents weren't married and I grew up with such a complex about it. I felt like a love child, and I hated that my mom didn't have the same last name as me. Honestly, I want more than anything to be Bradley's wife. I want to wear a white wedding dress, and I want to enjoy our life together as a married couple for just a little bit. With that being said, as of now I would like to start trying once we get married because I know it's going to be something of a process for me. I have Endometriosis, so conceiving and carrying a child could potentially be a challenge and I want to give myself enough time to figure out if I can do it on my own before using medical intervention. I'm going to leave the kids thing in God's hands and see what happens.

Samantha from 24 to 30 asked:

"How do you keep your hair looking so gorgeous all the time?!"

Oh Samantha, you are a girl after my own heart. Aside from the fact that everything about me is gorgeous, my hair is an entity unto itself. I've always had long hair (except for this one time, which I am feeling inspired to share with you next week once I find the picture) and it's been as much a part of me as my right arm. To keep it looking so luxurious I'll let you in on my little secret. I don't do shit with it! I don't style it, I don't put chemicals in it, I get two haircuts and colors a year, and I use a comb instead of a brush. I change my shampoo and conditioner every time I run out, and I only blow dry the outside of it enough so that it doesn't get crazy frizzy and I straighten out the ends just a bit because they tend to flip a little. Otherwise, it just sits straight as a board and refuses to curl or do anything special. I will say that I am big on conditioning because my hair gets really tangled if I don't, and because it's so long it tends to break easily. Having long hair is the perfect lazy girl hairstyle and I have it down to a science. 

Rikki from Momma's Got A Dude's Name asked: 
"You are walking along at the state fair and about to devour a couple three fried oreos when a fan of your blog comes running up to you screaming, "IT'S KAYLA LAYLA! HOLY FUCKING COW IT IS KAYLA LAYLA!!!!!!" This crazed fan starts asking you a million questions and all you can think of is how you can get one of these glorious deep fried cookies into your face hole. What is your strategy? Go!" 

Not to toot my own horn Rikki (toot toot) but I am an excellent multi-tasker. I also happen to be a great listener. What happens when you combine these two admirable qualities? Me stuffing my pie-hold with oreos while listening to this barrage of questions. Because I'm Kayla Layla, they are already going to know not to mess with me when I'm enjoying my snacks, so they will be patient enough to wait for me to finish chewing and considerate enough to look past the chocolate in my teeth. After I finish my cookies, I would inform them that it's gonna cost them another 3 oreos plus a funnel cake to answer their questions. This of course is a great deal considering I have tens of followers who would die to get this kind of face time with me. We all leave happy and it would make a great story for everyone.

Because Rikki is an over-achiever, she also asked:
"Finish the story:

I was headed to the grocery store to get another box of chocolate Lucky Charms (dear inventor of this blessed cereal: I could kiss you right on the mouth). When I arrived at the store I saw a homeless man sitting right in front of the delightful boxes of goodness, blocking my path to deliciousness. I must have looked startled because he looks up at me and says, "Don't be alarmed Kayla Layla. I'm only here to help." Immediately, I...."

My mom always taught me not to talk to strangers. And I've seen enough shows on ID to know better than to accept any help from them either. I'm certainly not going to be rolling the dice on an apparent homeless transient who may or may not smell like urine. I'm gonna put on my "Fuck You" face, grab my cereal, and bounce the fuck out of there. Homie don't play that game.

And last, but never ever least, Holly from Where We Can Live Like Jack & Sally asked:

"Who is your favorite family member of Bradley's? Who is the least favorite?"

I see what you did there Holly Stanfield, and two can play your game. My favorite family member of Bradley's is my Fairy Blogmother Holly. She has introduced me to the wonderful world of blogging, and for that I am eternally grateful. She understands the necessity of an empty sink, and she is always the first person there when you need someone. Holly always puts other people first, and she is truly one of the most thoughtful and considerate people I've ever met. I can't wait for Thanksgiving when she and Noel and their families will be at our home to celebrate. I definitely hit the jackpot with my awesome future sisters-in-law.

As for my least favorite family member of Bradley's, my answer is ANYONE WHO IS NOT HOLLY STANFIELD!

Checkmate :)

Whew! Who knew talking so much about yourself could be so exhausting! Just kidding, I'm having a Redbull this morning to celebrate Friday-Time! My wings are back!!

I've decided that based on uniqueness, thoughtfulness, and downright dedication, the winner of my oh-so-coveted guest post will be...

Please go check out her blog right now! Wednesday she posted the most hysterical GIF's of herself and I am still dying over them. And, make sure you're tuning in next week for her guest post. I'm giving her the topic, and I can't wait to read her response :)

I hope you all enjoyed reading about what a wonderful and witty person I am. Have a good weekend, go make some wreaths or clean your house or something like us normal people do!


Kayla Layla's Kraft Korner

Today's blog post is brought to you by the letter K ;)

I'm finally getting around to posting about my little craft session I had over the weekend. Bradley has just about driven me to the point of insanity with sports on television lately (short drive) and so I needed a little something to keep myself preoccupied while he sat and yelled at the television for 10 hours on Saturday.

Even though we are big Cardinals fans in our house and it is the post season, I've been contemplating creating an Alabama wreath for some time now. Our living room and dining room are gray, our kitchen is crimson, and we have houndstooth print accents throughout the house as well. So it just made sense to create a wreath to go along with our Alabama theme.

I also like to do craft projects and talk to myself like I'm Martha Stewart and I'm filming a television show. Don't act like you've never done this. We all want to be Martha deep down.

We took a little trip out to Hobby Lobby Saturday morning to collect my supplies. I brought Bradley along so that he had some say in what I used because I knew he'd be bitching about my choices if he wasn't. I decided to go with the ever-popular deco mesh wreath style that I've seen all over Pinterest. Lucky for me, the mesh was 50% off, which was music to my debit card. Everything else was either 30% or 40% off as well, so the total for all of my supplies was just shy of $28. Not bad for a DIY wreath that goes for $60+ on Etsy.

My supplies included a roll of gray and a roll of crimson deco mesh, a medium-sized wire wreath thing I found in the floral section, a roll of houndstooth ribbon with the wire so that it maintains shape, some pipe cleaners, a wooden A, and some houndstooth felt to cover it.

I started out by putting the pipe cleaners all around the wreath for each section. Since there are four rows of wire, I attached one to the outer-most wire, and the third wire down for each section as such.

I did this because I wanted to basically weave together the two different colors. I started with the crimson mesh and attached it to the outermost section, left about 6-8 inches of slack, and then attached it to the inner pipe cleaner on the next section.

I continued this around the entire wreath and when I got back to the beginning I cut the mesh and attached the end to the wreath with a pipe cleaner.

Then I began adding the gray to the wreath using the same process, attaching it to the outer most layer, leaving some slack, and going to the next open inner section.

Again, once I went around the entire wreath, I cut off the excess and attached the end to the wreath with a pipe cleaner.

When I was done with that part it looked like this. I then went around and fluffed out the mesh and evened it out so that both colors were equally represented and gave it a more rounded shaped. Then I began attaching the ribbon by first gathering the end and tying it to the wreath with a pipe cleaner.


Then I simply wrapped it around the wreath, making sure to evenly space it throughout. 

Again,  I went through and fluffed and puffed so that it looked symmetrical and even. That's the nice thing about the deco mesh is that it's pretty flexible and stays how you shape it. Next I got started on my letter A. I decided to hot glue the felt onto the wood because I figured it would stay on most securely. 

I coated the front with hot glue and laid it on the felt. Then I went around the sides with the hot glue and folded the felt over it to cover the entire shape. This part of the process was the biggest pain in the ass because it was fairly time consuming and meticulous. However, my A looked really cool in the end.

Once that was completed, I took a pipe cleaner and attached the A to the center of the wreath and voila! Super bad ass Alabama wreath for our front door!

I plan on spicing it up a bit with some little football and elephant knick-knacks, I just have to search the internet for some cute cheap ones to buy since I haven't seen anything around here that would match. Overall I think it's super cute and was relatively easy to make.

I'm hoping to go out this coming weekend to get some more fun mesh and possibly start making a Christmas wreath. There are so many fun ways you can customize wreaths and I love getting creative and making things myself so that I can brag about how amazing I am. Oh yeah, and Roll Tide!

In other news, I got my swap package from Amanda over at Cats, Cuddling, and Carrot Cake and I am over the moon! She did such a great job getting me things that I would love and I can't wait to use them all.

I got pumpkin cupcake hand sanitizer (My OCD went wild with excitement) a pumpkin pie candle which is currently burning on my dining room table and smells AMAZING, Cinnabon almonds which I almost cried about (they are seriously so delicious) two cute nail polishes in great Fall shades, Warm Vanilla Sugar hand lotion (one of my all-time favorite scents) apple cider chapstick (I can't even believe that exists it is so amazing) some super duper cute hair ties, and a bird necklace. Obviously the necklace is my absolute favorite gift in the swap, it is so adorable and you all know how much I love birds. I am wearing it to work today and I can't wait to take endless selfies of myself in it :)

It has been so awesome getting to know Amanada and reading her blog. She is such a sweet girl and she's so funny. Everyone needs to go read her blog so that you can love her as much as I do! Thank you again Amanda for all of my lovely gifts, they are all so perfect and receiving your package made my entire week!

Don't forget to keep your questions coming for my Q&A post! I've received so many funny, thoughtful, and unique questions so far, it's definitely going to be tough to pick one as the winner. I'm already starting to answer some of them and I can't wait to share this post with all of you :)


Keepin' It Real - Kayla Layla Style

I was initially going to write my crafty blog post for today, but my camera is all the way in the spare bedroom, and Chordie and I are cuddle up on the couch in the living room. It's too far away to go get, so instead I'm gonna just keep it real.

I'd also like to mention I'm now rewarding myself for blog posting with bowls of Chocolate Lucky Charms. I cannot wait.

I'm actually writing this post on Monday night and scheduling it for Tuesday morning. Why? Because I'm annoyed with the Cardinals right now and how stupid Jon Jay has been tonight. Normally I don't get super worked up, but Bradley is on a roll right now and he's fueling my fire. Plus, I'm already cranky because this night has flown by and I'm not ready to go to bed just to get up and go to work tomorrow morning. I want to sleep in with my Bradley and my Chordie and pretend like it's Sunday again. I don't think that's a lot to ask.

As I was doing my usual blog-creepin' tonight I realized that an absurd amount of you have those robot things where you have to type the random gibberish text and numbers so that you can post your comments. This drives me bat shit crazy. Sometimes, I have to enter them so many times I honestly start to wonder whether or not I am in fact a robot. My iPhone and iPad want to autocorrect everything I type, and then if I click out of the text box for any reason, I can't edit it or add anything else, I can only publish or exit out and re-write my comment. My OCD hates this part of the process. So please, if you love me, remove your robot defense mechanisms so that I can stalk your blogs and comment without issue.

We've been stressing a lot lately over here at the Glover house about how we're going to afford our wedding. Since buying our house, we sank the savings that we had into furnishing it and we had to start all over again. Our original wedding date was October 12th (which was this past Saturday) and we pushed the date back to May 31st. Sunday morning we went to the place where we are having our reception because they were having a buffet breakfast to raise money for Parkinson's research and it was a little surreal to think that we would have been a married couple that day. Now, we're still living in sin and praying we can win the lottery just to be able to have the wedding of our incredibly limited and scaled back dreams. Life is such a bitch sometimes.

I haven't stepped on a scale in a couple of weeks since I got sick, but if I had to guess, I'd say I've gained back all of the weight I lost for the diet bet. As I sit here and fiend for the Chocolate Lucky Charms I'm about to enjoy, a part of me wonders why I keep struggling with this. I'm reading about how all of my favorite bloggers are doing this Advocare Cleanse, eating healthy, and having satisfyingly regular bowel movements. Why don't I jump on this bandwagon and see what it's all about? I'll tell you why. I'm fat, I'm lazy, I'm stressed about money, time, my car, the cold weather, whether or not Bradley is going to eat tonight's leftovers before I can take them in my lunch, how it's only Tuesday, etc. Basically, I am full of excuses. I feel like the world is spinning around me and I'm catching glimpses of all of these things I want in life, and how everyone else is going out there and getting them. I feel like I'm standing still in the middle of the spinning instead of moving with the flow and going after what I want. I can't quite figure out why I'm holding myself back. Paging Dr. Freud.

I'm really loving all of the questions I've gotten so far for my Q&A post. I'm thinking instead of a 5 on Friday linkup, I'll post my answers to all of your questions. Don't forget, the person with the best question gets to humor me like I'm actually a big deal and write a guest post :) I know that incentive alone is keeping you all up at night wracking your brains for the perfect questions that you're just dying to know the answers to. Keep 'em coming!

Whew, I'm so glad I got this done, Bradley just delivered my bowl of cereal. Time to eat my feelings!


Is it Friday Yet?

Does anyone else wake up on Monday morning with this exact thought running through their head?

I need to either find a rich husband (sorry Bradley) or win the lottery because I'm ready to retire and sleep in 7 days a week and have someone else clean my house for me.

Just kidding! Everyone knows cleaning is my favorite pastime.

I pretty much spent my weekend chillin' out, maxin', relaxin' all cool & all. It was glorious. Except for some issues with Gloria, my car.

She's been acting like a big piece of shit lately, not wanting to start and dying when she sits idle at stop lights. Now don't get me wrong, I love my Gloria. It was my dream at 16 to have a Jeep Grand Cherokee. I got her almost 4 years ago, and this coming May she will finally be paid off. So naturally she's starting to fall apart and costing me mucho deniro while we're trying to save up for our wedding.

Bradley the Handyman decided he was going to take matters into his own hands and fix the problem. After all, "It's just the starter babe. It's real easy to replace." Right...

After going out and buying a new starter, he pulls up in the garage and gets to work. Whenever I hear the words, "Bring me my toolbox" I always get a knot in the pit of my stomach.

However, nothing triggers the uneasy feelings quite like making lunch in the kitchen and hearing Bradley say, "Babe, I need duct tape."

Fuck. Duct tape? Really? He claims he was just taping some wires back, but we'll find out once I drive ole girl to work tomorrow morning whether or not she's put back together properly.

Note the roll of duct tape on the left side under the hood. Real mechanical-like.

Thankfully Gloria is up and running again, purring like a kitty cat. My handyman saved the day, duct tape and all. We took her out this afternoon and vacuumed and wiped her down so now she's all sparkling and smelling like strawberries and lemonade. 

Just to keep with the theme of speaking my love language this weekend my house got deep cleaned to the nines and I even made Bradley clean the bathroom drain out so that we weren't standing in a puddle of water every time we showered. After pulling a small Wookie comprised of my hair out, she's draining good as new. 

I am on cloud 9 after getting so much accomplished and Bradley is hating his life. Which is fair considering I've had to listen to Fantasy Football phone conversations non-stop the last week to the point where I want to drop his phone in the puddle of water that accumulates in the shower. Maybe that's the real reason he finally broke down and cleaned it out? 

I also made this super cute Alabama wreath this weekend for our front door. I'm going to attempt to be a "crafty blogger" and write a post about it. I am quite the crafty gal, but my specialty is bitching about life and eating my weight in chocolate while drinking cases of Strawberitas. So that tends to be the theme of this little blog :)

Because I was a maniac this weekend about my clean house and clean car, Chordie Girl here had to get a bath as well. She hates hates hates baths. I asked her if she wanted to go take a bath and she went and laid on our bed and stared at me defiantly. I had to drag her into the bathroom just to get her in the tub. She wouldn't look at me for an hour afterwards. To sweeten her up a little bit, we went out and bought her a brand new Halloween bandanna. Judging by the look on her face, it didn't help.

I'm holding Chordie a little tighter in light of Chris and Holly losing their beloved Chauncey. Chauncey was such a good dog, he was so good with Haven & Olive, and I know how much Chris loved him too. I'm so sad for them today and I'm glad that Chauncey is at peace now in the big backyard in the sky eating all the cheese he can handle.

I hope you all had a great weekend, and that your week goes by quickly. I loved all of the questions I've received so far, and I'm hoping to get a few more so that I can do my Q&A post sometime later this week :)


5 On Friday!

Thank you Jesus for creating Fridays. I live for them.

I'm excited to be back in the saddle, linking up with Darci from The Good Life Blog for my favorite link-up :)

1. Holla for jean day at work! My dress pants are feeling a little snug from packing on a couple pounds the past two weeks. I like to self-medicate when I'm sick by having Bradley get me king-size Twix and Snickers on a nightly basis to ease my pain. Plus, my thought process has already gone to convincing myself it's okay to put on a few pounds because the holidays are around the corner and I'm going to gain weight anyway. Can you say faulty logic?

2. I'm so excited for the Cardinal's game tonight! Game 1 of the NLCS baby! I love baseball, but I get bored watching games during the regular season unless it's against the Cubs because at least the rivalry spices things up a bit. But the post-season gives me such a baseball high. I love the intensity and the drama of it all. Plus, I like rubbing the Cardinal's success in the faces of my Cubs fan friends. That never gets old ;)

3. Bradley tried convincing me last night that we should make the 6 hour road trip to Lexington to watch the Alabama/Kentucky game. Because 12 hours in the car and 4 hours watching a game I'm not in to sounds like the perfect way to spend my Saturday. In the words of Dr. Evil, "How 'bout no, Scott."

Not that I wouldn't want to go to another game with him (the last Alabama game we went to it poured, we were soaking wet, and we discovered they don't sell alcohol at college games) but I'm not interested in an unorganized, spur of the moment trip to go to one. I like things well planned out, and I like enough notice to be able to relinquish some control over the situation. Mostly, I just want to sleep in and drink Strawberitas all day. I have priorities.

Maybe I'll spend Saturday crafting some sort of Alabama wreath for the front door to satisfy his Crimson Tide needs. Blog post idea ;)

4.  I'm participating in this Fall Swap that Allie from Tales of a Twenty Something is hosting and I'm so excited. I got partnered with Ashley from Cats, Cuddling & Carrot Cake and it has been so fun getting to know her and reading her blog. I just mailed out her box today and I can't wait for her to get it and check out all of her goodies. Check back next week for a post about our swap :)

5. I've been thinking a lot about doing a Q&A post sometime soon, so if all of you lovely people could comment with some questions that you are just dying to know the answers to about me, please feel free. I love talking about myself (obviously) and I really want to get a dialogue going between myself and all of you beautiful people who visit my corner of the blog world daily. 

The person with the best, most unique question will get to write a guest post on my blog! Listen, I know I'm not at Holly status where that is like, a big deal, but I want my favorite readers/bloggers to all get to know each other like I do. Plus, I'm going to give you a topic to write about, which is going to be lots and lots of fun to read ;)

I hope you all have an awesome weekend! I'm going to try to kick Bradley's ass into writing that damned blog post he insisted he be allowed to share. His reluctance at this stage in the game just reinforces everything I've already told you about him!!

Check ya later fools!


Some Thoughts from V-Watts

Hey Nerds!

How 'bout them Redbirds last night, huh?! We're big St. Louis Cardinals fans in the Glover house. Bradley's middle name is Louis after the Cardinals, that's how die-hard we are. I just wanted to share some love for our boys, and here's to kicking some ass in the NLCS!

Anywho, one of my favorite bloggers, Veronica, is here today in Kayla-Layla-Land to guest post for y'all. She is one of the funniest people ever, she always posts the funniest comments and sends the most hysterical emails. I know you all will love her just as much as I do after reading this, but not more than I love her. Because that just isn't possible.

Veronica has such an amazing weight loss story, and she looks incredible. The first blog post I read of hers was about taking a selfie of herself and how she feels about the way she looks. In this picture she looked so beautiful and so confident, I had a hard time believing she used to be heavy-set. She is definitely an example of what hard work and determination can accomplish. Veronica is an inspiration to me and I hope I can get my shit together and look and feel as amazing as she does.

Hi KaylaLayla readers! My name is Veronica. My original home on the Internets was www.vwattsthoughts.blogspot.com . Long story short, I've been inactive in the blog world because of some darn spammers. Kayla is trying to entice me back to blogland with a guest post. Well, of course, I had to jump on the chance to do a guest post for THIS blog. If this is your first time catching Kayla's blog, please stay tuned. She is HILARIOUS! Like for real! I have a blog crush on her and I ain't ashamed to say. I usually get a healthy dose of the funnies from her posts while I'm at work. In case you happen to be my boss reading this post today, I meant to say I read Kayla's blogs when I am at home, after work, on my own time, not clocked in using company hours.

So, I'm gonna share my fatgirl slim journey with you guys. We all love a good weight loss story, right? For those of you who haven't had a baby yet I know it can get kind of annoying to hear the whole, "I lost a ton of weight after I had my baby" story. It's like, "Yeah, you are SUPPOSED to lose a ton of weight after having a baby. What about us fat girls that are fat from the get-go?"   Well, let me assure you I was fat waaaayyyy before I got pregnant with my daughter. So hopefully that puts us all on common ground.

I'm gonna try to cram some really important back story into just one paragraph so bear with me. I was 220lbs by jr in high school. I started losing weight the healthy way and got down to about 160ish pounds by 21yrs old. Then I decided to go a lil cray cray and picked up a nice colorful delightful eating disorder-bulimia. I struggled with that hoe for 6 years. Then I got into recovery at the age of 26. I went from 138lbs to 190lbs pdq. For the past 5 years that I've been in recovery my weight has been up and down, although never getting any lower than about 180lbs. I got pregnant and by the time I was ready to deliver my daughter my weight had gotten up to 238lbs. YOWZA! Then after I had her I weighed in at 210lbs. I then very quickly ate my way back up to 216-220lbs. PHEW!!! That was a lot of back story to catch you guys up on where I started on my weight journey this time around. Can we please have a moment of silence for the elasticity that my skin has lost from ballooning up and shrinking down over and over within a decade's time? Le sigh.

Okay, so back in October of 2012 I told my husband that I really wanted to give weight loss another shot. He's heard this spiel several times before so although he was super supportive on the outside I wouldn't be surprised if he was  inwardly rolling his eyes. I started my blog as an attempt to have more accountability. I figured that putting my weight loss attempt out there for the whole world to see might make me stick to it better. I was scared ishless about doing it but I wanted to give it a shot. So there I was in all my fat glory for people to support or to mock. To my shear joy, I found a lot of support. In those early days I remember writing a whole lot about falling off the wagon and really not liking my body. There was talk about double chins, fat tummies, and feelings of failure.

Around that same time the hubby and I started going to couple's therapy. Our therapist was AWESOME! Through speaking with me he was able to see through my sunny disposition and he very quickly pinned down the fact that I was negative and very controlling. How is this awesome, you ask? Well, when I accepted that truth for myself I was able to begin to change it. And by "I" I mean God. I prayed a lot about becoming more positive. It took a while for me to learn not to speak badly about myself. After all, making witty jokes about my thighs and double chin were second nature. Learning to take it easy on myself when I messed up food wise was quite a process too! But little by little things started falling into place. The pounds began melting away. I remember reaching 192lbs. This was the weight I was right before I became pregnant. I finally reached my pre-pregnancy weight. How exciting. Then I remember seeing the scale read 181lbs and I almost couldn't believe it. I had surpassed my pre-preggo weight without even obsessing about it(as I normally would have). Then I remember getting into the 170's. This set of numbers had always taunted me. For the five years I've been in recovery I would get soooo freakin' close to the 170's only to fall off the wagon and shoot back up the 190's. Then I remember reading 169lbs on the scale. HOLLA! In Big Holly's words, "I TOTALLY HAD OPRAH CRY FACE!"  I hadn't been close to that weight in five years. Through out this entire process I had been so appreciative of every single ounce or inch lost but I must admit that seeing my body in the 160's had me feeling like my body was finally beginning to look like what it was meant to look like - healthy body. Early last week the scale read 163lbs. I got so excited that I decided to have three days of glutenous celebration. Okay, that's not the reason I gorged on food from Thursday to Sunday.

I couldn't have you all thinking that my journey has been perfect and pristine. I still occasionally fall victim to losing my mind and going hog wild down the candy isle. I did manage to eat a whole sleeve of Rollos AND a bag of Peanut Butter M&M's at the movies the other night after a nice Hibachi dinner. Yeah, I still got moves like Jagger(if Jagger were a compulsive eater). I find that when my schedule gets screwed with and my gym time gets nixed that I tend to search for normalcy through fatty, fantastic, sensational carbs. I can also see how the accountability that I had with my readers was a crucial part of my journey. Darn you, Kayla! I think you've successfully enticed me back into blog world! So, this week is dedicated to getting my mind right and getting back to the gym. I have goals to reach and fat to evict from their cozy home on my inner thighs. This girl is on a mission!
Thank you all so much for allowing me sneak some very much needed blog time on the lovely Ms.Kayla's blog. I hope you all have a great week. And because my need for blogging has been renewed, I'll see you in the Internets!

You're all welcome for being so persuasive and convincing this lady to come back to the dark side :)

Make sure you leave some love for Veronica in the comments just to reinforce the idea that she need to get her skinny ass back to blogging again!

Peace out Girl Scouts!