5 Tips to Stay Hydrated

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and The Coca-Cola Company. All opinions are mine alone.#FindYourSparkle #CollectiveBias

5 tips for staying hydrated


This post is a little different from my normal wednesday posts because it applies to everyone not just brides-to-be! This year I have been making a conscious effort to stay hydrated, not only does it help me not snack as much throughout the day but it helps me think straighter!

5 tips to stay hydrated throughout the day:

1. Eat food that has a high water content. Apples, cucumber, celery- most fruits and vegetables fall into this category.

2. Whenever you’re hungry, drink a glass of water before you eat anything. We often think that we are hungry when our bodies are telling us that we are thirsty.

3. Drink flavored water like Dasani Sparkling water. Drinking flavored sparkling water makes drinking water feel less like a chore, & more like a treat! Before I discovered that Dasani made a flavored sparkling water, I would add fresh lemon or lime juice to my sparkling water. This saves me a lot of time having it all together in one can. The cans are really cute too. The slim design makes it easy to pack in your purse or lunch box. My favorite is the lime flavor but they come in Lime, Berry, Lemon, Tropical Pineapple, & Black Cherry. (I buy mine at Walmart- located in the bottled water aisle). Check out some fun recipes with Dasani Sparkling water here!
Dasani-WalmartDASANI LIME
4. Keep water with you at all times (even if it means having two drinks at your desk). Water is free at restaurants so even if you’re craving something else to drink- order a water too! Simple habits like these can increase your water intake dramatically!

5. Make it into a “game” with this free printable that I made for my readers! I LOVE checking items off my to-do list throughout the day. Print out this free weekly chart and stick it in your daily planner. Or frame this daily one & use it like a mini dry erase chart. You can buy a magnetic frame like I did or you can use any frame with a clear plastic or glass front. I like the magnetic one because I can put it on my fridge or my filing cabinet at work! Most doctors recommend drinking 8 8 oz glasses of water a day & the Dasani Sparkling waters are 12 oz each. Thats a check & a half!



Do you have any tips to stay hydrated? Let me know in the comments below!


Wedding Diet: How to Make Zoodles

posted in: Home, Recipes | 1

wedding diet zoodles


Zoodles (zucchini noodles) were my saving grace when I decided to try Whole 30 last November. Zoodles are my favorite & easiest pasta replacement. I have cooked spaghetti squash several times but I always end up with SO much left over (and it takes like an hour to prepare). Since I usually cook for one (or two when J is in town), zoodles are the easiest and tastiest pasta substitute.

So, how do you make zoodles? Well before you invest in an expensive tool, I would suggest buying a small handheld spiralizer- that way you’ll know if you’ll actually use it.  This is the one that I got off amazon. Under $10 with Prime. It comes with a cleaning brush and is super easy to use. I registered for a more expensive option for our wedding registry because I use this little one so much.


Wedding Diet Zoodles

Always wash your zucc before spiralizing. Just put one end into the tool and start twisting. You’ll end up with beautiful noodles!

Zoodles Wedding Diet. 3

Zoodles Wedding Diet 1

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You can see above that the spiralizer turns the zoodles into thin ribbon-like strands.

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The spiralizer cuts around the core so you don’t get many seeds in your zoodles. The strands come out really long so I suggest cutting the pile into 4ths (like a pizza) to make eating a little bit easier.

Now to get to the meal prepping part of the post. Half a zucc is the perfect portion size for me. This week, I made a meat sauce with a garden tomato sauce & some ground turkey meat.

Zoodles Wedding Diet. 10

This meal comes out to be a little under 300 calories per serving and is the perfect lunch or dinner. If I take this to work, then I would put a little water into the side with the zoodles (not a lot but enough to steam them). I would also probably put the zoodles in a baggy to cook the meat sauce longer than the zoodles. I like my zoodles a little crunchy. I prepared these for dinners this week so I’ll dump the whole thing into a skillet together (maybe with a little olive oil) and cook it until the meat is heated all the way.

Zoodles Wedding Diet. 8

Zoodles don’t take long to cook, which is why I love them. Just warm a little olive oil & add some salt & pepper. I really only cook the zoodles until they’re warm. If you cook them too long (or with too much olive oil), they will become soggy- which won’t taste pasta-like. I like to make them with a meat sauce or with chicken. You could cut the zoodles up into tiny pieces to mimic rice & add it to a stir fry. It’s so simple & easy to make that you can make a side of zoodles for yourself and regular pasta for your family members / guests who are pickier eaters (though once they try zoodles, they may never go back to pasta!)

Do you like zoodles? What is your favorite zoodle recipe? Let me know in the comments!

Ciao for now!


Wedding Wednesday: How to Plan an Out of State Wedding

posted in: Uncategorized | 2



This spring (especially the last few weeks) has been pretty busy.

As some of you know, when I first moved to Chattanooga, I had to wait several months before my apartment was move-in ready. During that limbo, I lived with Jordan’s grandmother. After I posted my last wedding wednesday (like within 10 minutes of pressing “post”), I received an urgent text from Jordan telling me to go over to his grandmother’s house. She passed away that afternoon.

To be honest, I haven’t been in the wedding planning / blogging/ social media mood since then… It’s been very hard to move forward with wedding planning feeling like there will be such a big absence on our special day. Before she passed, she got to see a picture of me in my wedding dress and she got to look at our engagement pictures. Even though she won’t be there physically, I know she will be there with us in spirit. I miss her terribly.

This morning I got back into planning, I officially scheduled my bridals & FINALLY sent off my first batch of save the dates!

In the south, it’s traditional for the bride & groom to get married in the bride’s hometown. As I said above, I live in Chattanooga, TN but we are getting married in Augusta, GA. It is a 4 hour drive to Augusta so it’s just far enough that I can’t make the round trip in a day. (Though, I have done that before… like to vote in the primary election this year.) So I have been planning our wedding out of state.


photo by Jeri Ann Photography 

Here are some helpful tips that I’ve found helpful for planning a wedding out of state:

  1. Have a point person in the city (wedding planner, relative, friend). My mom is great about this. I can’t stress how helpful my mom has been with the entire wedding planning process. She really treats wedding planning as a “team effort” and has taken care of a lot of the contracts by herself. I also have my dear friend Jackie in Augusta who has offered to run small errands if I need her too. I haven’t taken her up on this yet, but I have a feeling I will be calling her a lot this fall. Jackie, if you’re reading this, thank you! <3
  2. Double up! Schedule multiple appointments for one weekend. Plan your engagement pictures on a weekend that you’ll already be in town. My trips home are way more planned/ scheduled now that I’m in the thick of wedding season.
  3. Keep an active wedding-to-do iPhone note. This is good advice for anyone planning a wedding- different state or not. That way when I am planning a trip home, I can look at my iPhone note and see what I need to do. I keep my note on my phone because it’s close to me almost 24-7 so I can write down my ideas the second that I think of them.
  4. Book vendors far in advance. When you’re out of town, everything takes longer. Allow yourself a lot of cushion time in case an appointment gets canceled.
  5. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Remember WHY you’re getting married. When wedding planning stresses me out and gives me anxiety… like the fact that we haven’t finished asking the bridal party, save the dates aren’t sent out, and I don’t have people to do my hair and make up…. I remember WHY I’m getting married. I’m marrying Jordan because I love him and I don’t want to go through life without him. I had the opportunity to grab breakfast with my sweet friend, Stasia, passing through town last weekend and she gave me some of the best advice, she said, “it’ll be beautiful, the people who want to be there will be there, and at the end of the day, you’ll be married to Jordan.”

Did you get married in a different state? Do you have any long distance wedding planning advice?

Ciao for now!



Healthy Meal Prepping & Life Hacks- With Centrum Vitamints

posted in: Home, Lifestyle, Recipes, Wedding | 8


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CentrumFunFlavors #CollectiveBias

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Happy Monday!

Today I am going to talk about something that I try to do every Sunday afternoon: healthy lunch prep. As a busy 20-something, I try to do all my shopping and prepping in one day. Every Sunday afternoon, I head to my local Walmart and stock up on groceries (and Centrum Raspberry Vitamints). I usually only prepare 4 lunches for the week because I always end up doing something else for lunch at least one day. This week, I’m going to show you my favorite recipe- a mexican salad.


4 Chicken Tenders sauteed

Salsa (fresh, I get the hot flavor)

Guacamole (I used 100 calorie guac packs)

Black Beans (strained & rinsed with 2 tbsp of red wine vinegar added)

1 Lime 

1 Bag of Romaine Hearts 

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First I cook the chicken in a little olive oil, himalayan pink salt, & fresh ground pepper on the stove. While the chicken is cooking, I strain a can of black beans and put them in a bowl with some red wine vinegar.

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I cut each tender into bite sized pieces. The first thing that I add to my lunch containers are the black beans. I spoon the beans into the small side of the container until they are equally distributed. Then I lay approximately 1 cut up tender on top of the beans.

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As you see above, the small side of the container is for the protein / “hot” items and the large side is for veggies / “cold” items. Easy lifehack: put the lettuce into a baggie so that it’s easy to take out while you heat up the hot items in the microwave. I put salsa into a small container and use that as the “dressing” on the salad. I use fresh salsa because it saves me from having to cut up all those vegetables but it adds spice & fresh veggies!

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I always make sure to include some sort of snack (usually a piece of fruit) and my Centrum Raspberry Vitamints! While I’m heating up the beans & chicken in the microwave (high for 45 seconds). I take my Raspberry Vitamints! It gives me something to do while my food is in the microwave and the routine keeps me from forgetting to take my vitamins. I just have to be careful to only eat 2- they’re just so delicious. I love the new raspberry flavor, it’s sweet but refreshing at the same time. Plus, I know that I’m getting all the health benefits from a multi-vitamin. I highly recommend Centrum’s Multigummies too! They taste just like fruit snacks.*

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After I heat the hot portion in the microwave, then I put the lettuce into the large side of the container and spoon the hot beans & chicken over the lettuce, I top with guac, salsa, & a squeeze of lime. Not only does meal prepping help me not over-eat (all about portion control) (#weddingdiet), but it helps me save money too. ‘Cause someone’s gotta pay for our honeymoon, right? 😉 I enjoy staying healthy with simple solutions like meal prepping & Centrum Gummies & Vitamints.

PS: Make sure that you pack a napkin & fork! And here are some coupons so you don’t forget your Vitamints!

What helps you save time during the week? Do you meal prep?

Ciao for now!


*These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Wedding Diet & Easy Healthy Recipes

Wedding Wednesday- What to Wear for Your Engagement Pictures!

posted in: Lifestyle, Wedding | 6


Today, I am sharing a few photos from our engagement pictures and some advice for brides-to-be (or you could also apply these same tips to a family photo session).

Engagement Photos by Jeri Ann Photography

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What to Wear For Your Engagement Pictures:

  1. Wear something flattering. If it doesn’t look good in the mirror, then it won’t look good in pictures. You can even have your significant other take a quick iPhone shot of you wearing the outfit to make sure that it photographs well.
  2. Tone down the patterns. Patterns (especially super tight patterns) can look weird when photographed (look up the moiré effect). I usually try to add texture (like the lace on my dress) rather than crazy patterns.
  3. Make sure your outfits flow but aren’t super matchy matchy. No longer are the days of all white tops and jeans on the beach. My center stone on my ring is a midnight blue sapphire, so I asked Jordan to wear his navy blazer.
  4. Get your nails done. You’ll want some close up ring shots (speaking of which, have your ring professionally cleaned. That way it’s extra shiny in pictures.)
  5. Wear something that sets the tone of your wedding. Your Save the Date is the first impression that guests have of your wedding. If you are having a formal wedding, then I wouldn’t send a save the date with an engagement photo wearing t-shirts.
  6. Wear something bridal. I know I’m not wearing white, but I consider lace accents and blush as falling into that category.
  7. Make sure that your outfits match your home decor. Ok, this one may be a bit of a stretch… but since most engaged couples don’t have children yet, your house will end up looking a bit narcissistic with wedding photos and engagement photos everywhere… so they might as well match your throw pillows! Our pictures will look great in frames and hung on our walls because our outfits flow with the theme and color scheme of my apartment (and our future home together).

Non-Outfit tips:

  1. Bring props. I chose to do a picnic themed engagement shoot so I borrowed my friend Jackie‘s mom’s picnic basket and repurposed my bridesmaid bouquet at her wedding from the day before. Bringing a bottle of bubbly also gave us something to do in the pictures besides just stare at each other. 😉
  2. Enjoy it. I had so much fun taking an hour and just being near Jordan. We weren’t on our phones, we didn’t have anywhere to be, our only job was to hold each other and be in love. Sounds super sappy but it was a really nice to just relax and enjoy each other’s company. Plus, smiling in general makes you a happier, even if you’re in a bad mood (it has something to do with your brain and your facial muscles… don’t quote me on that, but you can look it up).
  3. Don’t psych yourself out about it. I looked up wayyyy too many poses on Pinterest and we didn’t end up using half of them & some of the ones that we did use, I don’t love. At the end of the day, your engagement pictures are just pictures of you and your loved one. Be prepared, but don’t get carried away and miss what this special time is really about.

unspecified-3Cheers & ciao for now!




Wedding Wednesday: A dozen items that you need to add to your wedding registry!

posted in: Lifestyle, Wedding | 2


Photo by Jeri Ann Photography

Photo by Jeri Ann Photography

Engagement pictures are done, save the dates are ordered, & I am officially past the 6-month mark. Before we send out our save the dates, I need to make a wedding website (I know, as someone who works in digital media, how have I not done this already? ha!) and mostly finalize our registries.

I am a member of a Facebook group called the Wedding Connection (let me know if you want to join & I’ll add you), it’s a group full of engaged and newlywed brides. I polled the ladies in there about the best wedding presents that they received and got some surprising answers. I added some of their answers along with advice from my mom below!

A Dozen Items That You Need to Add to Your Wedding Registry:

  1. Really nice bed sheets- I would suggest registering for two for the master bedroom and one for the guest bedroom. This is an investment that you may not originally make on your own but once you sleep in them, you’ll never go back to regular sheets. Here is a guide from Southern Living with advice about what thread count is best.
  2. A nice set of knives- Jackie recommends these 17 piece Calphalon knives.
  3. A splurge kitchen item- I chose a pink Kitchenaid mixer for this category and a lot of really fun attachments. Like this, this, and this. If a mixer isn’t you thing, then you could choose a Vitamixer or a Big Green Egg.
  4. Something for him- I still haven’t added this yet, but I think I’ll add some nice tools or a cordless drill. Definitely include something that will make him happy. My friend Laura registered for Star Wars tumblers for her groom.
  5. Dyson Animal Vacuum & a Furminator- If you have a pet, plan to get a pet, or your significant other is a package deal- definitely register for some pet care items that will keep your house clean.
  6. Nice bakeware- Be sure to register for quality bakeware that come with lids. Choose bakeware that you won’t mind sitting on your dinner table. Your casserole deserves to travel from the oven to the table in style. Corningware is awesome and Kate Spade has some cute options too. Jordan begged me to not make our entire registry Kate Spade.
  7. China or Christmas China- A lot of women have recently opted to forgo china and only register for every day dinnerware. As someone who loves the idea of hosting swanky dinner parties, I knew that I wanted china. I originally registered for this china, but then we found out that we would be inheriting the exact same pattern. (WOW! Right?) So now, I am registering for complimentary pieces & platters. If you are inheriting china, then you could always register for Christmas china!
  8. A nice peppermill- There is no spice that that I love more than fresh ground pepper. We like this mill.
  9. Insulated picnic basket- My sister got one of these at one of her wedding showers and I knew I would register for one ever since.
  10. Chargers / Table setting decorations- Don’t just register for china and neglect the rest of your table! Some nice chargers or some napkin rings can be used for years & parties to come.
  11. Kitchen Tongs- I almost forgot these! I think tongs are the most under-appreciated kitchen item.
  12. Nice leftover storage containers– I registered for these because they were glass (I’m wary of putting plastic in the microwave) and have lids.

Obviously, I didn’t list EVERY item that is on my registry. My list is 100+ and going strong. The items listed above are items that I forgot about or was told not to leave off my registry! Did I miss something major? What was the best item that you registered for?

Ciao for now!jaclyn-signiture-1

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Happy Hour on the River with DSW

posted in: Fashion, Lifestyle | 3

Chattanooga Happy Hour


Chattanooga Happy Hour

Chattanooga Happy Hour

Chattanooga Happy Hour

Chattanooga Happy Hour


Chattanooga Happy Hour

Chattanooga Happy Hour

Chattanooga Happy Hour
This little caterpillar wanted to join our photoshoot. 🙂


Jean Leggings (similar) | Tote (similar) | Tunic (similar) | Shoes (similar) | Earrings (similar) | Sunnies

Jordan snapped these photos before happy hour at the Boathouse restaurant on the Tennessee River. I bought this tunic from the boutique where I used to work and had totally forgotten about it until I unpacked my warm weather wardrobe. Since I was constantly back and forth from Augusta to Chattanooga last spring & summer, I lived out of a suitcase and my wardrobe was pretty limited. Don’t you love it when you are reunited with an old favorite?

The tunic pairs perfectly with these chunky DSW shoes. I think every girl needs a pair of these chunky heels in her life. Seriously, the most comfortable heels that I own, which is why I wear them all the time! Definitely a spring & summer staple.

The past two weeks have been wildly busy and stressful– from work to some family health problems. When it rains, it pours. Wedding planning has been a good distraction and creative outlet. While I’ve been waiting on our engagement photos to be finished, I’ve been trying to get everything ready before our Save the Dates are mailed. (Think Website, Accommodations, & Registry). Last weekend, I felt like I spent the entire time registering… Who knew it would be so time consuming? I will share more about that tomorrow in my Wedding Wednesday series. 🙂

Hope everyone had a good weekend!

Ciao for now!


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What I’m watching… (April 2016)

posted in: Lifestyle | 1




While I’m blogging, I am usually multi-tasking and watching my favorite shows on TV. Since I don’t have cable (see post: Breaking Up With My Cable Company), I watch 90% of TV on Hulu. Here are my top 3 NEW shows that I watch on Hulu each week.

  1. The Catch

    maxresdefaultWhen to watch on Hulu: Fridays

    This ABC show is awesome. Jordan doesn’t mind watching it with me either. It’s about a private investigator and a con man. The private investigator, Mireille Enos, is GORGEOUS and has GORGEOUS clothing. If you like Greys or Scandal then you’ll love this! Shonda Rhimes does it again.

  2. The Family


    When to watch on Hulu: Mondays

    This is also an ABC show. It’s pretty thrilling and has some dark themes. It’s about a politician whose son is kidnapped. If you like Scandal and Law & Order SVU then you’ll like this show.

  3. The Path


    When to watch on Hulu: Wednesdays

    This show is a Hulu exclusive. It’s about a cult from the 70s in modern day. Scientology fascinates me and the cult in this show definitely has some scientology-esque themes going on. Warning there is nudity and cussing in this series- rated M. If you liked The Following (theres a lot less killing in the Path) or Big Love then you will like this show.


Have you watched these shows? What are your current favorites?

Ciao for now!



Wedding Wednesday: Advice from Newlywed Brides

posted in: Lifestyle, Wedding | 0


Welcome to my first Wedding Wednesday post!

Every Wednesday until we get married (on November 5th), I am going to share something about wedding planning or wedding related. Jordan and I have been engaged since July 2015 and we are just getting into the thick of wedding planning. I am definitely in the wedding season of life. A lot of my friends have been getting married recently and I have been lucky enough to be included in their special days. When looking for advice for my wedding day, what better ladies to ask than the brides whose side I stood beside not too long ago?

Question: What was the best advice that you got or advice that you wished that you would’ve gotten for your wedding day?

Bridal Advice for the Wedding Day
Leah and I at her bridal luncheon.
 “The best advice we received when it came to wedding planning was wait 24 hours before saying yes or no to a new idea/vendor/decision, it helped us make sure what we decided on was really what we wanted and not just a hasty choice to feel like were getting things done (which was tempting because we were barely engaged four months). And best advice we had following the wedding was wait 1 year before make any big life changes. I am so glad we did that because that first year was a wonderful time of just hanging out and getting to know each other, since then we bought a house and started my own business so we just don’t have as much time to relax like we used to but I know we learned how to just enjoy each other that first year.”
-Leah (married since March 2014)
Follow her on Instagram & her Blog

Bridal Advice for the Wedding Day
Laura and I at her bachelorette party in Savannah, Ga.
“I wish that someone would have told me that it’s okay to cry. All day I held back tears for various reasons and tried not to let it out. When I finally saw Matt for our ‘first look’, I tried to hold it in which just made it even worse. It’s okay to cry! Just let it out and often! People will understand and will help you fix your makeup afterward!”
-Laura (married since November 2015)
Follow her on Instagram

Mandy and I running errands for her cookie business.
“The best thing I can recommend is writing thank you cards after each shower and soon after your wedding. Do not be stuck like me finishing up almost a year into your 1st anniversary. I was raised truly southern and to always write thank you notes and wish I had adhered to this a year ago. Also, do not let anyone tell you what you like or need, follow your heart and your dreams. It is your day and forever more.” 
– Mandy (married since June 2015)
Follow her on Instagram



Bridal Wedding Advice
Jackie and I getting ready on her wedding day.
 “When we first got engaged, everyone told me to enjoy this time and to just take everything in. I took this advice to heart and used it to help me not sweat the small stuff. Throughout the week leading up to my wedding, everyone (and I do mean everyone, even the bank teller) asked me why I was so calm. My response was always the same, “Why wouldn’t I be calm? At the end of the day, I’ll be married to my best friend; everything else is just details.” If something isn’t done by that last week, don’t do it! That will just stress you out, and your wedding should not be something you stress out about; it should be something you enjoy and cherish every moment of.” 
– Jackie (married since April 2016 (a little under 2 weeks!))
Follow her on Instagram


Ciao for Now!


Keeneland Spring Meet Stakes

Keeneland Derby Fashion

This weekend Jordan and I took a trip to Lexington and attended horse races at Keeneland. I had only ever been to Steeple Chase in Aiken, so the Dixieana race was new scenery for me. This was also my first trip to Kentucky. Hopefully we will make it to the Derby one day.
Lexington was beautiful, definitely like something out of a southern movie. White picket fences everywhere with drives that looked like this:
Keeneland Derby Fashion
At Steeple Chase in Aiken, your tailgate spot is on the track itself. At Keeneland you tailgate outside and watch the races from stands.
Keeneland Derby Fashion
Keeneland Derby Fashion
 Keeneland Derby Fashion
Keeneland Derby Fashion

We sat in general admission and it was absolutely packed, see photo above. The boys had the most fun placing $2 bets. No one in our group won more than $30 but from a few $2 bets, that’s not bad.

Something tells me that this wasn’t our last trip to Keeneland!

Trip Details:

Location: Keeneland Race Track, Lexington, Kentucky

Ticket Price: $5 (general admission)

Dress Code: Church Clothes

  • Ladies: sundress or dressy romper & cute sandals or wedges
  • Gents: button-up & slacks (blazer & tie optional)


  • Bring tailgate food & drinks- concessions inside are pricey ($4 water bottles)
  • Prepare a Spotify playlist for tailgating
  • Wear comfortable shoes, lots of standing on concrete & walking
  • Put on sunscreen even if its cloudy (we all got badly burnt)

Ciao for now!


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