What’s my Style?

August 19th, 2014 | Posted by Erica House in Life - (2 Comments)

This post is sponsored by Zevia. I am addicted to them.

While in Alabama last week I received one of my favorite packages of the year; an entire case of Zevia. They reached out to me to see if I’d be interested in trying the out and talking about what makes me unique style-wise as part of their awesome #ZeviaStyle contest.

My first thought was “Uhh…I better say no since I have absolutely zero style.” But, I really wanted to try out all the different flavors so here we are!

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Most of you know I’m fashion challenged. Thanks to not reading women’s magazines or having cable I have no idea what’s trendy. Then I realized that even if I don’t have a trendy or fashionable style – I still have my style! As a college professor/freelance writer that means two things: I get to dress up in kick ass professional clothing a few hours a week, and spend the rest of my time training and working from home in cute workout tops and comfy leggings! I realized a few years ago that buying the seasons ‘it’ purse or the new boots everyone was obsessing over just didn’t do anything for me. I wasn’t any happier for it, and all it did was leave me poorer. I still love to shop, but I look for versatile pieces that are budget friendly and I know will last me for a while. Most of the clothes I wear I’ve owned for years! Style is an attitude for me more than any specific look. I’ve seen women who look drop dead gorgeous in nothing but a t-shirt & jeans with minimal make-up. Confidence and happiness are sexy, so my only style goal is to wear a smile with whatever I have on.2014-08-14 13.52.51For those of you who haven’t heard of Zevia it is a zero calorie soda with no artificial sweeteners or ingredients (sweetened with stevia, monk fruit & erythritol.) For a company that’s only been around since 2007 they are blowing up! I’ve seen many bloggers rave about them and picked one up a few weeks ago and loved it. After trying all of the flavors my favorites are grape,  black cherry & cola. I had three yesterday. I can’t help it they are so refreshing in this ridiculous summer heat! IMG_7857

2014-08-16 16.06.04Go out and grab a Zevia to try (store locations can be found on their website) and share a photo of your #ZeviaStyle on Twitter or Instagram and you’ll be automatically entered to win $100 Target Gift card every day from now until September 5th!

Have you tried Zevia?
How would you describe your style?

Something weird happens when you sign up to do a trail race in a small city.

You actually have a chance of placing top 3 in your age group even if you are, comparatively, pretty slow.

Travis and I have been looking forward to doing the Love 2 Run’s 5k for Wounded Warriors for a few weeks. It was out first race together on a trail that Travis loves and it supports an incredible cause. Saturday morning we were up and full of energy! It was cute to see how Travis acted the morning of a race. He’s always a morning person but we were both more energetic and happier than usual.2014-08-16 07.17.52-2The race started at 8 a.m. and my main goal was to finish injury free. I’ve ran the course a few times with Travis and it’s challenging so I was worried I’d slip and hurt myself in the middle of marathon training. I didn’t have any real expectations on finish time since I’m running 40-50 miles a week now and not focusing very much on speedwork. I do one speed session a week where I run intervals at a 9 minute pace, but my prior 5k PR was done at an 8:15 pace.

I told Travis I’d be thrilled if I came in under 27 minutes. I decided to try and do an 8:40 pace and that’s almost exactly what I ended up doing. Travis has a little bit of a problem pacing himself so he gunned it at the beginning and ran the first mile in under 6 minutes! Travis ended up setting a PR with a finish time of 23:08 and I came in at 27:05.

The race didn’t use electronic timers on the bibs so we immediately went over to where the finishers were being organized by time and one of the guys was writing down the top 3 in each category. They came to Travis’s number first and he came in 1st place in his age group! This is the first time he’s placed and he killed it. About 20 minutes later we were still anxiously standing behind the guys watching them fill the form out and I could see them putting names down in my age group. I knew it would be close so I didn’t want to get my hopes up, so I was thrilled when I saw I came in 3rd. This was our first race together, and the first time either of us placed!
2014-08-16 08.48.03After we finished creeping we headed over to the area where the awards ceremony was going to take place. 2014-08-16 08.54.50For a 5k the race perks were unbelievable. Most 5k’s I do you get a shirt when you pick up your packets and a banana at the end. That’s it. Our race bags had a shirt, gu, honey stingers, KT tape samples, a koozie, pen, and a pedometer. The post race treats included freaking frozen yogurt, and the usual oranges and bananas. I grabbed two of the yogurts. Probably not the brightest idea since I had to run another 5 miles after the award ceremony (in ridiculous Alabama afternoon heat – got to love marathon training!)

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The award ceremony was simple – just called our names up to get the medal. Since Travis came in first he also got a gift certificate for a free pair of swiftwick socks & some more gu (and he gave both to me. awwww.)

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After the awards they had some raffle prizes to give away. Everyone who raced had their names entered and one of the prizes was a 1 hour massage. If you weren’t at the award ceremony when they called your name they picked another. When the massage came up everyone wanted it and the first few names didn’t get called and suddenly …. while he’s chanting under his breath “call my name, call my name” … they call out Travis’s name! I told him I must be his good luck charm he had such a great day.

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2014-08-16 11.45.55For a girl who just started running two years ago, and whose first 5k was 31 minutes, I’m pretty damn proud of myself. Travis said we have to start working on speed more so we can start winning all the races.

Yeah, like that’s going to happen!

Have you even won a sporting event?

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Office Depot, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #inspirestudentshttp://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

I’ve always joked that the reason I wanted to become a teacher was because it’s an excuse to constantly buy new school supplies. Growing up back to school shopping was one of my favorite parts of the year (only behind the holidays and the last day of school!) Now, I still get giddy whenever I see the displays of pens, notebooks and organizational goodies start to go up in the stores.

Last week Travis and I headed to Office Depot to pick up a few things and I decided to create a life planner. Every year I buy a small planner to write down important dates, appointments, etc. I hate having to buy a new one every year and, despite my best efforts searching, I have never found one truly  perfect for my needs. So, after 10+ years of obsessively using planners I had the ‘lightbulb’ moment of making one myself! Now, I can customize it and reuse it ever year.

PlannerWith the Fall semester starting this week it’s imperative I stay organized if I want to successfully juggle teaching, blogging, writing, and training for a marathon. It can be very easy for things to slip through the cracks if I’m not careful.

The first things I picked up were some new pens and sharpies to replenish my stock from last year. No, I don’t actually use red pen when I grade papers! I am super picky about the pens I use every day and the uni-ball ones are the best I’ve tried. 
IMG_7809I divided my planner into the following categories: School, blog, fitness, finances, projects, and freelance work. A list of all the printables I used (all free!) can be found at the bottom of the post.

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I highlight anything that’s on the test on my notes so when I’m lecturing I’m 100% certain we discuss it. That way students can’t complain that “we didn’t go over that in class!” IMG_7867

This is my weekly tasks for the blog. I will add to it every morning as things come up that need to be done, but this is a pretty standard list of items I do almost daily.

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I keep an editorial calendar (blank calendar I fill in with blog posts ideas for the month) and I try to make sure each week is an even distribution of personal/life posts, psychology, news or sponsored posts.

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This may be my favorite page. Go figure.IMG_7873

I’ve got a lot of big financial goals I’d like to reach by the end of 2014 (basically saving a ton of money!) so I’m going to be very careful with my finances these next few months. IMG_7874I love this vision and goal worksheet. I need to spend some time really thinking about what I’d like to put on there, but I think keeping it in a place I can see it daily will help keep me focused on doing things that will bring me closer to my goals.
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I saw this kitten folder and had to grab it. I mean, come on. IMG_7877

List of FREE printables I used:

If your wanting to geek out like me and start working on your own life planner head to Office Depot (make sure to sign up for Office Depot rewards!) to take advantage of some of these great deals (while supplies last)!

  • Save $5 Off your purchase of $20 or more on Select Newell Rubbermaid Brands (PaperMate, Expo Neon Window Markers, Sharpie, Uni-Ball, & Mr. Sketch)
  • Weekly savings from (Aug 17-23): All Sharpie Singles are $.25

Do you keep a planner?
What other categories would you add?