Ryder began playing in the same league as Chase this week and Rhett took his job as their “coach” very seriously with his hot-orange whistle around his neck. We also filled our days with park play dates and plenty of outside time which is always a good thing!
On the flip side, my mind was also consumed with concern for my dad. While we feel confident the surgery he had to remove his prostate was successful in removing his cancer (we will know more in the coming months), his recovery has taken a bit of a dive over the past two weeks. He experienced serious pain from a lymphocele that required him to have a drain put into his abdomen which then got clogged and then infected. I feel awful for the pain he’s experiencing as well as how mentally and physically exhausting all of this must be for him.
We’re finding immense gratitude in the belief that his surgery was successful but, as his daughter, I just hate for him to be going through this in his recovery. He is one of the absolute strongest people I know and I fully believe he will be okay but it’s hard to know someone you love is in pain and struggling. I’ve had a few of you reach out to ask for updates on his recovery so I wanted to be open and also thank you for caring for our family so much. We are still planning to make our way to Florida late next week and I am very much anxiously awaiting giving my dad a big hug as well as meeting my new nephew.
As for the weekend ahead, the boy are particularly excited because we’re taking them to their first professional soccer game. When Ryan and I saw Charlotte FC had a noon game on their schedule this year (all other games are in the evening) we jumped at the chance to scoop up tickets for our soccer-loving crew. I hope to have a recap to share with you guys on the blog on Monday but until then, keep on scrolling to check out this week’s roundup of favorites, Things I’m Loving Friday style!
Things I’m Loving Friday
After falling in love with influencer-favorite ELEMIS’ pro-collagen cleansing balm last summer, I added their dynamic resurfacing facial pads to my cart during my last ELEMIS order and they’ve quickly become another skincare favorite. (FYI, they’re currently 50% off with code DEALS on the ELEMIS site! I just restocked!) I do not wash my face when I wake up in the morning but instead use one of these resurfacing pads on my face the minute I wake up, a tip I learned from The Sister Studio. They feel amazing on my face and instantly make me feel more awake. They accelerate skin’s natural cell turnover and the textured pads reduce the look of dark spots, pores and uneven skin texture. I truly think they help my skin look brighter in the morning and they’ve quickly become a staple in my skincare routine. Lately my morning skincare routine looks like this (in this order, all applied before makeup): ELEMIS Dynamic Resurfacing Facial Pads, NOW Solutions Vitamin-C + Ferulic Acid (I also use Hyper Skin Vitamin C serum but recently ran out), NOW Solutions Hyaluronic Acid AM Moisturizer and last but most important, Dr. Brand Liquid Sun Shield SPF 50.
I first discovered this seamless tank after asking a woman working out near me at Burn Boot Camp where she got her top because I loved the ribbed material. When she said Target and told me the price point, I was sold before I even tried it on! Once I received the v-neck ribbed top I ordered in the mail, I loved the fit so much that I found myself back on Target.com looking at other tops from their JoyLab line. This led me to the high-neck version of the tank and I immediately ordered one as well as the v-neck top in another color. They fit so well and the material is substantial enough to not feel cheap or too thick that they make you feel overheated. The length is of the v-neck top is cropped without being sports bra-tiny and both tanks come with a built-in bra and removable cups. (I leave the cups in and don’t wear another sports bra with them.) I love these tops so much!
Airplane Mode for Longer e-Book Library Loans
Talk about an incredible hack!! If you borrow e-books through your local library, switch your Kindle or e-reader to airplane mode once you borrow them to avoid having your books returned. They will still automatically return to the library on their due date so you’re not holding anyone else up but they will remain on your electronic reading device until you turn off airplane mode. How amazing is this!?
As someone who has been burned by e-books I’ve borrowed from the library automatically returning when I’m in the middle of reading them one too many times, I was thrilled to learn about this little trick. When I shared this hack on Instagram, a few of you chimed in to tell me you borrow multiple books at a time (like MONTHS worth of books) and switch your Kindle to airplane mode and read away stress-free without worrying about return deadlines. Talk about a legit game changer!
My rating: A-
After reading a handful of B.A. Paris novels and thinking they were good-not-great, I was looking forward to reading the author’s most popular novel, Behind Closed Doors. This was one heck of a disturbing book! Consider this a warning as I don’t think it’s a book everyone will enjoy but if you can stretch your believability muscles a bit and prepare yourself to stomach some horrifying events, it’s a read you will absolutely fly through. It was the most captivating of the B.A. Paris novels I’ve read and I absolutely loved the ending.
The book is narrated by Grace, a women recently married to prominent attorney Jack Angel. Jack is as stunningly handsome as he is intelligent and has built a successful career representing women who have been abused by their husbands. Grace and Jack have what appears to be a perfect marriage. Grace is the epitome of elegance and Jack is head-over-heels in love with his wife. They’re a couple who cannot seem to get enough of each other, as evidenced by the fact that Grace is never seen without her husband. Upon marrying Jack, Grace quit her job to dedicate herself to gardening, cooking and being their for her hard-working husband. She no longer has a cell phone or hobbies outside the home but any questions thrown her way are met with a smile and seemingly unflappable devotion to her husband. It all begs the question, what is happening behind the closed doors of their picture-perfect mansion? Why does Grace share an e-mail address with her husband? Why does she cancel all solo plans she’s made with friends? Why is she looking increasingly gaunt and fragile? Who are Jack and Grace Angel really?
My rating: B+
If you are looking for a good beach read to throw in your bag during spring break this year, Elin Hilderbrand’s Paradise trilogy is a good one! Troubles in Paradise is the third and final book in the series and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I don’t want to share too much about it as to avoid giving away the previous two books but it includes all of the things you’d expect from an Elin Hilderbrand novel — a little mystery and a little romance all wrapped up in an easy-to-read novel.
After uprooting her life in the States, Irene Steele has just settled in at the villa on St. John where her husband Russ had been living a double life. But a visit from the FBI shakes her foundations, and Irene once again learns just how little she knew about the man she loved.
With help from their friends, Irene and her sons set up their lives while evidence mounts that the helicopter crash that killed Russ may not have been an accident. Meanwhile, the island watches this drama unfold—including the driver of a Jeep with tinted windows who seems to be shadowing the Steele family.
As a storm gathers strength in the Atlantic, surprises are in store for the Steeles: help from a mysterious source, and a new beginning in the paradise that has become their home. At last all will be revealed about the secrets and lies that brought Irene and her sons to St. John—and the truth that transformed them all.
Life with a Leopard Gecko: Two Months In (Since Pepper had her own blog post this week, I wanted to give Lucky some love, too!)
Cheesecake Cookies ‘n’ Cream Ice Cream (We’ve been making a batch of homemade ice cream every weekend lately and this is one of our favorites!)
Question of the Day
What is one thing you are loving this week?