Wednesday, May 31, 2017

What's Up Wednesday: Life Lately

One Wednesday a month one of my favorite bloggers, Shay @ Mix and Match Mama and several of her friends host a link up and it always seems like the perfect way to jump back in to blogging.  By answering these questions I can pretty much sum up my life and what we have been up to in a nutshell. 
So, without further ado...my life lately:

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1/// What we're eating this week...   We have been obsessed with these salmon patties you can purchase at Sam's Club or probably most grocery stores. They are soooooooo good and really easy to stick in the oven with some veggies for a super quick and healthy meal. Even my three year old loves these!  Try themImage result for sam's club salmon patties
2/// What I'm reminiscing about... Since changing the blog name I started looking back at old posts and found myself totally getting lost in post after post and picture after picture of my life over the last 7 years.  So many fun memories...I love reminiscing!!!
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3/// What I'm loving...  Why was the first thing that came to my mind wine?!?!  Like, no specific type or brand, just wine.  I guess I will leave this question with that answer.  I am loving me some wine. 

4/// What we've been up to... Oh you know, just a little bar crawl to raise money for cancer research.  We have done the Crawl for Cancer for several years now and at some point we decided we needed to go with a theme. Here is a picture from our first crawl (pre-theme)

  We have done so many fun themes but this year may have been my favorite and one of the most fun yet....Trailer Park/Redneck.  It was hilarious. I went the route of the "jazzed up" yet trashy lady complete with PBR beer cans in my hair as rollers and house slippers. My cousins were equally as hilarious with mullets, pajama shorts and pants and jorts (jean shorts). We had a blast.



5/// What I'm Dreading... Hmmm, I cannot think of anything I am completely dreading other then the humidity this summer.  Gaawwww i hate humidity!!!  

6/// What I am working on... We have several house projects we are beginning to work on: new flooring, finishing a room in our basement, painting the bathrooms.  Other then those fun HGTV wanna be tasks I am also currently working on marketing my freelance makeup artistry business.  Check it out if you need a makeup artist for a wedding, event or even if you just want a lesson on how to do your makeup!!  Abby French Beauty LLC

7/// What I'm Excited About...  I have so many fun things coming up I am super excited for!!! My sisters bachelorette party is this weekend which I am so excited about.  I also have a long weekend planned with my amazing group of friends from grade school/high school. We are heading to Indian Beach...sort of by Clear water Beach.  We live all over the place so it is so special to get to spend quality time with my girls sans kids or distractions. 

8/// What I'm Watching/Reading...  Sooooooo somehow I got talked in to watching the old school show Twin Peaks.  I had no idea what I was getting myself in to. The hubby said he was sort of interested especially because they recently released a new season like 27 years later and so I went along with it.... I seriously can't tell you if I like it or hate it. It is really strange and weird but at the same time I want to know what is going to happen so I keep watching. Anyone else have any opinions on this show?!?!?!

9/// What I'm Listening To...  Books on Audible, like all day every day. It's basically how I "read" any book lately. I love audio books!!!  Music wise, I hate to admit but I am kind of in love with that song by Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee, "Despacito" feat Justin Bieber. I mean, I have no idea what in the hell they are saying because it is mostly in Spanish...but I love it and I can't help it. I am also loving Drake White, especially the song "Makin' Me Look Good Again"...so good!!!!

10/// What I'm Wearing... Um yoga pants.  duh

11/// What I'm Doing This Weekend..  My sisters bachelorette party!!! I am her maid of honor so I have sort of planned most of it and I am sooooo excited to hang out with her, her friends and some of our family to celebrate this chapter of her life coming to a close and a new one starting. I cannot believe my little sister is getting married...but that is a topic for another post.

12/// What I'm Looking Forward to Next Month... My girls trip to the beach, I mean duh. Also we fly to Denver at the end of next month for my sisters wedding.... so that will be exciting and challenging. It will be the first time Ellie will fly so I am excited to see what she thinks.  


Ok...so that is about it for the questions. Hope you had a great hump day!!!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

New Name but Still Fearless and Laughing

I am so excited to share with all of you the new name and look of my blog!!!  I have loved my little blog over the years...it has been such a great place for me to share my feelings, my random thoughts and pictures...so.many.pictures!  I have grown so much over the last almost 8 years. I mean, just read my first ever blog post waaaay back in 2010 HERE.  Good lord...I was worried about turning 30!  Some of the stuff I have written over the years is a little cringe worthy when I read it now, but I couldn't bring myself to delete it.

There is a long story as to why my previous blog name, Fearless & Laughing, became somewhat unavailable to me but it came at the perfect time. For years I have thought about changing the name because as the years have gone by my life has changed.  Those two words will always remain two words I still strive to live by and do daily, be fearless and laugh, however that spoke to me more when I was 29, trying to get over a divorce and find myself and making this blog.

I am now 36, happily married, a working makeup artist and a mom.  This blog is less about bar crawls (although I still do them...more on that tomorrow) or finding random adventures to fill my time and more about being a mom...being a wife...finding humor in the small everyday things. This blog is about my life, which will always be random and will always be similar to how I was at 29 worrying about turning 30...but now I have different worries, different inspirations and more to say.

At 36 I have a bigger voice then I ever did at 29. I know who I am, I know what I want and I am so truly happy with my life.  I love lip gloss...it makes any face look pretty and more awake! and OH MY GAWD I love yoga pants....specifically athletic stretchy ones that help hold in my mom legs/butt/thighs.  (see below...also my cute family and dogs)



I mean, is there anything more comfortable then a nice pair of stretchy yoga pants, a comfy (but cute) tee and some lip gloss... I say HELL to the NO and that is why I decided to name my new and improved blog LIP GLOSS & YOGA PANTS.  Apparently those closest to me agree that those two things are sort of my favorite because when I polled family and friends with a list of 15 different possible new blog names, this one came back as the winner more then any of them.

What can i say...I love yoga pants, lip gloss...my family/friends...wine...makeup...and iced coffee.

I hope you will join me in this new journey and adventure as I continue writing yet another chapter of my life and having it documented for all to see.  I once read a quote in a magazine and I have no idea who said it but it spoke to me. When people ask me why I blog...this is why:

"I wanted a similar space to hers. I wanted it to be a love letter to my kids. I want them to look back on this space years from now and read every feeling, see every joy and be able to know every tear.  They will see in the images and stories an unimaginable love for them."

I write because it feeds my soul, because it helps me figure things out...I document with stories and words on a blog because I want my daughter to know who I was as she was growing up. I want her to be able to look back when she has a child of her own and read how I handled this crazy life. I hope she laughs at me...I hope I give her courage to speak her own mind.

I love to blog and I hope you love to read it. Thanks for all that do!!!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Two Bedroom Apartment in Downtown Zanesville

*** This is an updated post...we had two apartments for rent, but we are currently still looking to rent the two bedroom***
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My dad purchased a building in downtown Zanesville years ago and turned half of the upstairs into a beautiful art studio for my mom and her artist partner.  I have been in love with this building since then…so much, in fact, that we had our wedding in the downstairs. 
Since then, he has transformed the other half of the upstairs into two STUNNING apartments.
  Obviously this building holds so many memories for my family which is why I am super excited to share this with you guys.  I jokingly (sort of ) told my husband we should sell our house and move down there…they are that gorgeous.  If you are looking for an apartment or know someone that is…you need to look at these!

Let me take you on a little tour so you can see for yourself.

The front the of building is just as beautiful as the inside…and it sits right next door to Zak's. For those that don’t know, Zak’s is a restaurant and bar that has amazing margaritas and great food. I mean, you can walk over, have a drink, eat some good food and then walk on home…doesn’t get better then that! The downstairs of this building houses a super cool company called Disrupt Media, a social media company for funeral homes...such a unique concept and they are very successful at what they do!! 
 Front of the Building…the entrance to the apartments is the far left door.
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The hallway and steps that lead upstairs are even pretty…the exposed brick and exposed beams in the ceiling, so cool
Steps and hallway
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This apartment is 2 bedrooms and 2 1/2 baths.
View from the front door.
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The kitchen and living area are complete open concept with hardwood floors, high and beautiful ceilings, and the kitchen is high quality and amazing! There is a crazy amount of cabinet space for an apartment like this and the cabinets themselves are beautiful…plus they have that slow closing ability (I am sure there is a technical term for this) so they don’t slam shut ever…so nice!
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Both bedrooms are a nice size with a full bath and closet in both.
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There is also a half bath with a washer/dryer hook up in a huge room that could also be used for storage, or your bike, so you can bike to all the great things downtown has to offer. I mean, seriously…how nice is all of that space?!?!
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You guys, these pictures don’t even do it justice. If  you know anyone or are someone that would be interested in renting this beautiful space you can email me and I can get you in to actually see it in person. ( abbyfrench22@gmail.com)
Besides being beautiful, the location is pretty cool as well. As I mentioned, you would be neighbors with some pretty talented artists (Studio 202)in the same building…and you are also surrounded by tons more cool artists and studios downtown which you can find here. The first Friday of every month there is actually an Art Walk and you would literally just have to walk out your front door to be involved! 
Other then the restaurant I mentioned earlier (Zak’s) there are also several other pretty amazing restaurants too. The Treehouse is a really cool coffee shop and also has amazing food and is only about a block away. .   The Old Markethouse Inn is another great place to grab a drink and some good food and it is also only a couple of blocks away. Another little place to grab some food that is really close is Dooleys on Market.
As if that all wasn’t plenty of great things to do right in your backyard there is also a pretty great gym right next door that offers personal training, classes and more called Schimmel Fitness. I know my mom loves having it so close to her studio and utilizes the proximity every single day.  I  mean a gym literally next door to you is pretty great!!! There is also a brand new BEAUTIFUL yoga studio that just opened down the street, Grass Roots Studio.
As  you can tell, I am extremely passionate about how fabulous and amazing this apartment and location are. Spread the word and let me know if you have any questions at abbyfrench22@gmail.com

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

That one time we almost got another puppy...

We got our dog, Reggie, about three and a half years ago as a cute little chubby puppy.  He is a pure bread black lab and we had no clue what we were getting ourselves in to.  At the time, I was about 4 months pregnant, neither one of us had ever owned a dog and we both worked full time jobs. The husband had always wanted a dog so when a friend on facebook posted that they had bred labs and puppies would be available it all seemed to fall in to place.




And then the puppy phase happened...crate training, getting up every 3 hours to train, teething, puppy biting, more training, losing that freedom you used to have.  In the throws of it, it was super crazy and a HUGE learning experience for both of us.  In the end, we have the best dog in the world and wouldn't trade any of it!  We love our dog and feel like he is such an easy dog that fits so perfectly into our little life.



The last couple of months we had started talking about the possibility of adding another dog to the family. For me, this meant a playmate for Reggie...this dog LOVES other dogs, so sometimes I feel bad he doesn't have a live in playmate.  This also meant a dog for Ellie (our three year old daughter) whom loves Reggie but they never really connected on the level he had with Joe and I.  To Reggie, Ellie is just this thing that came in to our lives and took our attention away from him...he likes her, he tolerates her, but he doesn't really pay much attention to her.  I started painting this perfect picture in my head of getting this new puppy that loved Ellie and they grow up together and play together and it would sleep in her room...and blah blah.

I started looking online for the perfect puppy...we like to get puppies so that we can train them from a young age and it is hard to find small puppies at the shelter.  We aren't against finding one there, but we want them to be a puppy!  I came across beagle puppies and for some reason it seemed like the best idea ever to get one.  It would be a mid-size dog, I don't have anything against beagles as a breed, it was very affordable (as opposed to some other dog breeds) and so we talked about it.  In true French fashion...we talked and we talked and we weighed pros and cons and we talked some more.  We went back and forth...was it the right time to get a puppy, is this the right dog for our family?????!!!!???

We drove to meet the puppies and picked one out and put a deposit down....and then we came home and the next day realized it just wasn't the right time for us.  We would rather be a little embarrassed to have to now go back and tell everyone we are NOT, in fact, getting a puppy then to live with something that doesn't feel completely right for our family.  It was such a hard decision for me and I cried and felt terrible and prayed they would find another home for that puppy...but in the end it was a huge relief to finally decide now was not the right time...and honestly, a beagle isn't the right dog for us either.  We LOVE labs! So when the time is right, we will most likely add another lab to the mix...but it probably won't be for while now.

Whew...long post about a simple story:  We almost got a puppy until we decided we shouldn't...anyone else ever make a decision and then have to go back on that because it just didn't feel right. It is a tough thing to do, but in the end, I a proud of us for doing what we feel was right for our family.

PS, if anyone is interested in the beagle puppies they still have two available and you can find them HERE

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

What's Hap-pinning Wednesday: Dressing Up

I am not even sure when this all began...sort of slowly, and it comes in spurts.  I am talking about dress up. My daughter LOVES to dress up.  You might just assume I mean in princess dresses and mommies high heeled shoes...and you would be right on some occasions.

Most occasions, however, I am talking she dresses up in an assortment of the most random attire.  For example...

My parents are in the process of moving and with that comes going through a TON of stuff and Ellie was collecting some of the random tid bits and putting them on. Why not?!?!?

Another example...





She collected every headband she could find in her bedroom and somehow got them all on her head...with a tutu...but then she spotted my hat and HAD to throw that on too.  She quickly realized it did not look cute with all of the headbands on under it so soon it was down to just the tutu and hat.  This kid has a serious sense of style, I am telling you!!!

And one more outfit to round out this fun little post comes to you with a little more cohesiveness...I give you, Firefighter Ellie:



And because she was getting sick of me taking pictures...


She is something else, let me tell you.  My husband and I are constantly discussing how our sweet little toddler has somehow turned into a "Threenager".  That is a post for another day though.

Hope your hump day was a great one!!

linking up with Jessi and Jenn

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Disney on Ice

Dear Disney, 
You almost got us...we almost spent $1000 on your crazy food and gear at Disney on Ice, but we somehow escaped without much but a $7 popcorn and a very tired but happy little girl.  Thanks for a great time, but seriously...why so expensive!?!?!

We went to Disney on Ice a couple of weeks ago and I have to admit, I may have been more excited then Ellie was. I mean, she didn't really even know what the heck I was talking about until I showed her a video. I love Disney and the princesses and ice skating...so HELLO: Disney on Ice was going to be pure magic. Thankfully, we were not disappointed and Ellie LOVED it.(so did I...and Joe too, surprisingly)  These were the moments I dreamed of when I thought about being a mom and having a daughter so it was fun to actually live that moment.

 Obviously dressing up as her favorite character was a must for the evening. She had a tough time deciding, but ultimately went with Anna from Frozen.

Does it get any cuter!?!?!?  She was so excited to be dressed up. If I had some sort of adult size princess costume you know I would have dressed up...luckily for my husband, I did not.

We went to Columbus early and took Ellie to dinner at one of our favorite places downtown, Dirty Frank's Hot Dog Palace.


I don't eat meat so the fact that they offer veggie dogs and vegetarian "chili" sauce is so amazing!!!  Ellie got the vegetarian "Octodog"  which is a hotdog cut to resemble an octopus  with a side of mac n cheese.  It was cute, but the veggie dog is way better on a bun and covered with tons of toppings...alone it was not awesome!


After eating we realized we still had some time to kill before the big show so we parked close to the arena and walked over to The North Market and treated ourselves to some Jeni's Ice Cream...YUM!  If you haven't been to The North Market it is so worth checking out! (obviously, so is Jeni's Ice Cream!) 


After ice cream it was time to make our way to the show!  There is just a short walk form The North Market to the arena and because it was chilly outside little lady got a ride from daddy across the bridge and to the Disney princesses!


We had made sure to get pretty close seats so she could see and they ended up being perfect!  It was so fun to watch her take it all in and applaud after each performance.  She really loved the 7 dwarfs and Frozen.  Somehow she was so intrigued by the performance that she completely ignored all of the seriously over priced food and toys...thank goodness!!!!



I actually ended up bringing our own super cheap glow stick and that was good enough for her! 


We had such a good time and I would recommend this show to anyone with a little girl, or boy (although this particular one was princess heavy).  My only negative was the over priced crap but I guess the tickets weren't too expensive so they have to make more money somehow...





Wednesday, January 25, 2017

What's Up Wednesday

I have been MIA again on this here blog so I figured I would just start with the first What's Up Wednesday of 2017. (linking up with Shay from one of my favorite blogs, and several of her friends) This makes it an easy transition in to letting you all know what we have been up to lately.



So let's get right to it:


1. What we're eating this week... 
   So I have really been trying to make things "from scratch" as much as possible to eliminate as much processed junk as we can.  I have never claimed to be excellent at cooking...the husband is a great cook...I am just average.  This "from scratch" business has proven to be somewhat of a challenge for me. I am more of a Sandra Lee semi homemade type of gal...meaning, I like to use some already made stuff and just throw in some chopped veggies and what not and call it good.  BUT...for the health of my family I have been trying. Some have been good, others not so much (I may or may not have mistakenly put 1 TBSP of salt in a recipe instead of the 1 TSP is actually called for...turns out that is a HUGE difference)  I am learning.  At any rate, here is one of the better things we have made and liked.

Million Dollar Spaghetti...this stuff was delicious!!! I made it with vegetarian meat crumbles, but it was sooooo good and I would recommend this for sure!

 Million-Dollar Spaghetti | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest
Picture and recipe from HERE

2. What I'm reminiscing about... 
Ellie turned 3 this month and with every single birthday I cannot believe how fast time has gone by so far.  I know everyone always tells you that, but it really is so true. "the days are long, but the years are short"...the most true thing of motherhood I have ever read. So this month I have found myself looking over pictures of Ellie from her first three years and not being able to believe how big she has gotten!!!


3. What I'm Loving...
I am loving this lip combo: Maybelline Color Jolt intense lip paint in 05 Stripped Down topped with NYX butter gloss in Creme Brulee. Together it is such a great neutral  for winter (and fall) With paler skin in the winter I like my neutrals to have a little more umph and this combination has just that.  Plenty of color, but nothing too crazy and the Maybelline lip paint stays on your lips for a good long while! 


4. What we've been up to...
Ellie's 3rd birthday party was an Under the Sea (mermaids) theme and she had so much fun.  I ordered the cutest mermaid skirt from Etsy (you can find HERE) and we made mermaid cupcakes and my  mom even made the cutest octopus out of a bell pepper. The best part for all of the kids was the bounce house. We had purchased this for Christmas but it is always WAY more fun when friends jump in it with her. 






5. What I'm Dreading...
Hmmm...I can't really think of anything right now that I am dreading...maybe more rainy, grey weather if that continues into next month.  That blah weather is the worst!!!!

6. What I am working on...
I am currently working on trying to get our bedroom and master bathroom finished.  They both need painted and we need curtains and a new quilt for our bed. Hopefully in the next couple of weeks we can cross those things off of our list.  I am also working on trying to get more organized and write more often on the blog...fingers crossed #ialwayssaythis

7. What I am excited about...
We are taking Ellie to Disney on Ice for the first time tomorrow night.  I just know she will love it and I am beyond excited to see her little face light up while watching this show. Stayed tuned for pictures because I know I will be taking an extreme amount of them!!! Also...I am excited for Scandal to start back up tomorrow!!!

8.What I am watching/reading... 
As mentioned above...Scandal. I basically binged watched the crap out of 5 seasons on Netflix recently and cannot wait for the new season to start tomorrow!!! We have also been loving "This is Us" along with everyone else in the world. We sort of came late in the game and had to watch the first 8-9 episodes online to catch up, but it so good!! 
As far as reading, currently I am reading this book. I love self help books and this one is really amazing and a totally different way of thinking then anything else I have ever read.  Worth checking out for sure!

9. What I am listening to...
I am so in love with the entire album from Johhnyswim. If you haven't heard of them, go check them out...so good.  Random fact: they sing the opening song for the show "Fixer Upper" and have appeared on that show I think a few times. 
As for the other songs...just a few we have had on repeat over here...and obviously I had to throw in a song for Ellie. She has recently discovered "The Wonder Pets" and LOVES this song so much (and the show too)



10. What I am wearing...
This question always makes me pause and then laugh a little. As far as clothes goes...well sweatshirts and yoga pants, sometimes jeans and tennis shoes/converse are basically this gals uniform on the daily.  I mean I won't bore you all with the exact sweatshirts I am currently sporting but just know they are comfortable!

11. What I am doing this weekend...
We will be celebrating my late great uncle KK's 100th birthday.  It was always his goal to make it to 100, which unfortunately he did not make, but we want to celebrate his memory anyways.  You can read all about just how special he was to our family HERE.  We are planning on visiting Lake Hope because that was a special place for him that holds many memories for my mom and her sister and brother.  I am sure the trip will be bittersweet but a happy one too!


12.  What I am looking forward to next month... 
Um, Valentine's Day...duh!  I love all things love and pink and red and hearts and....I could go on forever. I love romance and an entire day dedicated to expressing your love for everyone is just so much fun to me.  It will also be Ellie's first Valentine's Day party at a school, so that will be so fun as well.