Monday, December 30, 2013

2014 Goals, Dreams, and Wishes

I am having so much reading about the 2014 small goals and New Year resolutions other people are setting!!

Read here to see why small goals are important and to link up all of your 2014 goals, dreams, and wishes! 

Erica Ashley-Faith, Hope, Love
See you in 2014!  

Friday, December 27, 2013

NYE Goals/Resolutions/Dreams for 2014

We are about to go LIVE with my favorite monthly link up plus a little twist! So many people set new years resolutions, which is GREAT! It is a great skill to set goals, but let me tell you why I am not a huge fan of the new years resolutions....

They usually go something like this...

For the most part, people stick to the their resolutions for a good two weeks, or maybe even the first month when suddenly there is an excuse to go off that diet you were on, or you just HAVE to spend money, or the gym membership you bought is being used less and less..


Because New Years resolutions are long term goals...


Well long term goals need to have short term goals to go with them...let me show you

1) My "New Years Resolution" is to lose 20lbs this year 
(so in stead of just leaving it at this and then making every excuse in the world when I don't complete this goal I will set some short term goals)
I will lose this 20lbs by doing the following:
     - Completing the T-25 work out
     - Running another 1/2 marathon
     - Drinking TONS of water daily 
     - Paying more attention to my diet...aka eating 5 small meals a day 
(These smaller goals are going to help me reach my large New Years Resolution Goal) 

Now if I have short goals to work towards in order to reach my resolution! If I don't complete this resolution I can look back and see what small goals I didn't complete. 

2) Find a job

     - looking and networking
     - Keeping my resume up to date
     - Applying, applying, applying- - - - and calling to check up on my

3) Save Money

     - Pay off some of my student loans (yay real world :/) 
     - Save enough money for an emergency funds in my savings
     - Save enough money to be able to move out of my parents house and live 
       on my own! 

4) Travel...on a budget! 

     - Florida
     - Hilton head
     - Washington DC
     - Boston
     - Mackinaw Island

5) Grow in my relationship with God
- Spend more time in the bible
- Find a devotional to do daily...any ideas?
- Spend more time in prayer

What are your New Years Resolutions!? Even if you do not make small goals Link Up all resolutions/goals/wishes/hopes/and dreams for 2014 here! 

(I will blog in 2014 about my success in 2013 of my goals) 
Erica Ashley-Faith, Hope, Love

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Post-Christmas Depression

Is anyone else feeling super depressed today? Seriously, the day after christmas is so draining! Its like the excitement and music and lights leading up to it then BAM its gone! 

My dad said it best yesterday: "Christmas, it does this every year, just comes and goes!" 

Instead of being depressed I am going to focus on all the great things that christmas has brought! 

The first one being Christ, becoming flesh, a sinless person, in order to die for all of your sins. That is the ultimate gift :)

The second being, family. If you didn't know already Christmas Eve is my birthday. So if I post any new pictures you will see the new found wrinkles on my forehead (lol I am kidding...sort of) I am 24 now and I feel like that is old! 

Sisters boyfriend, sister, myself, and sister (sorry for the awful pic for everyone else! I was being super selfish and thought I looked great ;) It was my bday anyway!)

Anyway, my family does such a great job of making my birthday special and not blending it in with Christmas! 

My gift was the new T-25 workout! I am SUPER excited to start it! And I got a charm for my bracelet. It is an ice skate since we go ice skating every single year since I was 6 for my birthday! 

Then my family took me to PF Changs for birthday lunch! Where I received this bad boy for dessert...The Great Wall of  Chocolate...they weren't kidding! 

We actually went to Bone Fish Grill after for chocolate creme brûlée where I officially went into a chocolate coma! 

My birthday ended :( I already can't wait to celebrate it in a year from now! And my sisters and I woke up Christmas morning to the best gift EVER! 

A family vacation to Hilton head in May! I am so excited since we have not been able to go on a family vacation in years! This will be the last one before my sisters get engaged and we all end up moving who knows where! I am sooo pumped! 

I hope you all enjoyed your christmas! Merry Christmas all! 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Birthday Girl

Tomorrow is my birthday!! Normally I would be blasting this news weeks before hand but it kind of snuck up on me this year! 

Yes I am a Christmas Eve baby, and no it doesn't suck! My family has gone out of their way to make sure my birthday and christmas do not blend, hence I am officially a birthday diva! 

So lets do a little recap about the year 23 shall we....

1) Completed my final year of college!

2) Graduated from college

3) Went to the Patriots v Lions game...GO PATS! 

4) Wine tasting through Traverse City

5) 2 of my absolute best friends got married! 

6) Completed a half marathon

What I am looking forward to 24 ( I always thought 24 was a cool age! I hope it lives up to its expectations)

1) Visiting my best friend in Washington DC
2) Getting a job
3) Figuring out where in this whole wide world I will live! 
4) Trip down to Florida (I need some sun after all this snow in the Mitten!)
5) A trip to Mackinaw Island
6) Wherever God takes me :) 

Seriously, with all this traveling, thank goodness for this awesome gift from my grandma and grandpa! I swear its actually silver and grey, not purple! 

Can't wait to see what 24 has in store!  

Friday, December 20, 2013

Lil Mama

Now that I have officially graduated from college and have no job I am a professional substitute teacher.

I love it! Granted, I am ready for my own class room very soon, but it is really nice to have a break and just show up and teach with out creating lesson plans :) 

This week I was able to sub for a few days at the old school I use to work at and did my first portion of student teaching. I forgot how much I LOVE those students. They have so much diversity at the school and I love the high energy. 

Yesterday was the greatest. Santa Claus came to visit! A lot of the students never make it to see Santa so they were really excited to see him and tell him a few things they wanted :) He also gave them candy canes. 

However, my favorite part of the day was as follows:

One particular student was on my "list" of kids to watch. He is nice kid but is ALWAYS causing some sort of chaos in class. He came to school halfway through the day and missed my introduction of myself. 

I had told the students they could call me by my last name or Miss R. However, someone of them were in my class over the summer where they called me Miss  Erica. I told them that was fine too. 

So this bright young fellow comes into the room, halfway through the day, and dives right into causing some crazy chaos. A few more hours into the day he turns to me and says, "Miss R. I hear some people are calling you Miss R***** and some are calling you Miss Erica. I don't want to call you any of those names so I think I will call you........Lil Mama." 

So for the rest of the day the name caught on and am now the sub known as Lil Mama...

I can't help but laugh! 

Keep a look out for my upcoming special Monthly Goals link up! I am not huge on New Years resolutions and I will tell you why later, but I will be hosting a special New Years/Monthly Goal link up coming soon! 

Have a great Christmas weekend! 

Merry Christmas
Lil Mama

Monday, December 16, 2013

Ouch, my mouth!

I wish I had a really awesome weekend update for you all! However, I spent all weekend with a swollen mouth, unable to talk, eating mashed up sweet potato and soup...

I had my wisdom teeth out.

After watching marathons of Law and Order SVU, catching up on Greys, Scandal, and Parenthood, and diving into my guilty pleasure RHOBH and Vanderpump Rules I was able to do a lot of thinking..

1) Wisdom teeth suck..why do we even have them?

2) Why do I look like this

3) I feel like someone beat the living daylights out of me (also look like someone beat the living daylights out of me)

4) I wish I could talk (literally days with out speaking more than 4 words...drove me to insanity!)

5) All I want to eat is a huge cheese burger and lots of really hard crunchy things with some taffy on the side! 

6) I wish I could move my mouth enough to smile

And finally, why does Jax look like he is trying to seduce/kill someone in the opening of Vanderpump rules....

Happy Monday all! Hope you had much better weekend than I did :) 

Monday, December 9, 2013

Graduation Weekend

Seriously, one of the absolute BEST weekends of my life! My parents went above and beyond to help me celebrate one of the greatest accomplishments thus far!

Saturday, I officially graduate from GVSU with a Bachelors of Science in Social Studies and a Bachelors of Science in Education :)

Family came in from out of town a few of my best friends spent all weekend at my house to help me celebrate and saturday night I went out with a bunch of my sorority sisters.

 On the way to the ceremony :) Grandma, Mom, and cousin A

I am so thankful to have such an amazing support system. My family and friends have encouraged me along the way. Though there were multiple times where I almost dropped out, I didn't want to finish, and switched my major 3 times, they still encouraged me to follow my dreams and finish :) 

I also have to give a huge shout out to the big guy upstairs. If I hadn't been saved at 21 I never would have gone into education let alone finished college. 

This weekend was one for the books :) Here are some pics! 

 Grandma and Grandpa

 Freshly off the stage :) we did it! Newest college graduates!

Dad and Mom :) Most supportive parents!

One of the little sisters :) 

Graduate Gift! I am OBSESSED!

My mom and my best friend! This lady has endured more phone calls, tears, and complaints from me for the past 5 years yet she encouraged me every step of the way. LOVE YOU MOM!

Sorry for the blurry photos! These are the ones from my phone, but you better believe I will have more photos to share via camera soon! I just couldn't wait to post! 

Happy Monday!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Sneak Peak

Sorry for no blog post this week but I have been/will be super busy because its graduation week!!!

Tuesday I graduate from the College of Education and Saturday I will graduate from GVSU!! 

I am SO excited and feel so accomplished to finally be done and graduating with 2 degrees :) Life is GREAT! Most importantly, GOD is GREAT! 

Here is a sneak peak photo from Tuesday! Have a great weekend everyone! I know this graduate will ;)

Monday, December 2, 2013

Monthly Goal Link Up

I hope that everyone had a GREAT Thanksgiving! There are so many things to be thankful for! I would love to do a weekend recap later this week, but I am really busy because I GRADUATE COLLEGE IN 5 days!! 

Seriously INSANE! I have blogged earlier this month about my journey, feel free to read.

But for now, lets check out monthly goals! 

Last month my goals were:

1) Work out 3-4 times a week. I would say that I kinda sorta completed this. I probably worked out 2-3 times a week. But I did squats in my bedroom every day :) 

2) Prepare my resume for graduation. DONE! I had a mock interview at the school I am student teaching at and they were very impressed with my interview and resume! Hopefully that may turn into a job someday! 

3) Save, save, save...miserably failed. 

4) Drink lots of water. 3-4 water bottles a day! CHECK! 

Goals for December:

1) Find a job! This will be the first on my list until it happens! 

2) Save! This is for real now, I am basically an adult and I need to pull it together! I just created a spreadsheet of all my expenses, earnings, etc. I hope this works!

3) Enjoy time with my family and friends :) It is the holidays and I am truly blessed with amazing friends and family! 

4) Enjoy my birthday! I turn 24 on December 24th! Golden birthday, and I am ready to PARTY! 

5) Working out and staying healthy during a month of sweets! One of my favorite bloggers Ashley at Run with Me has made an awesome challenge for the month of December I am committing too! Check it out

What are your goals this month!? How did you do last month? Link up here!