wellness wednesday: july music

Top 3 Favorite Workout Songs
- July Edition - 
Nothing makes me happier than listening to music that I have loved for years.
Thus, a throwback to my high school, music lovin day. 

Best warm up song:
Suspension- Mae
Once I told my high school cross country coach that this was my favorite running song.
A week later on the way to a race, he showed me his ipod and guess what he was listening to.
Suspension. By Mae. And he was loving it. 
Also he had red hair and braces and he was like 35 years old, so basically he was just super goofy and awesome.

Best power song:
Just Want You to Know- Backstreet Boys
This is great to run to.
All I have to say other than that is you REALLY need to watch this music video.
Because yes that is Nick Carter with a mullet.
Also. The new BSB album? MINT. My love for them will never die.
Sorry Christian.

Best BONUS power song:
I Want to Save You- Something Corporate
Ah so much love for this band and the man behind the music!
And this song just takes me back to being a 14 year old and riding in the car with my buds from seminary to school. The good old days.
This is also great for running. The beat is enough to make you work hard, but you won't want to keel over and die by the end.
Win win!

Best cool down song:
Hands Down- Dashboard
Because what was high school without a little emo Dashboard song right? 
Also this song just makes me feel great about life, and there's no better way to end a work out than feeling great about life.


a photoshoot

Here are some more pictures from our little shoot with Sam last weekend. 
Aka brace yourself for a little photo over load.
Aaaaand here we go!


weird holidays and stuff

I feel like the last few days off we've had were just monopolized by the plans of others, which sort of makes me grouchy. My sentiments are that we've been working our butts off and the last thing I want to do is plan my work-less day around YOUR schedule (whoever "you" are ha!) and not my own. 
You feel me?

Anyways, true to form, that's kind of how yesterday went. I'm very thankful for the blessing of all the work we have, our families that live close by, and the babysitting we get to do. But it was all a little much yesterday and maybe I cried a little bit because by 5pm, the only thing we had done was eaten Panda Express
(sidenote: BARF-LANDIA.
Also they didn't give me enough orange chicken, so I went up and asked for more. 
I don't know who this new ballsy Brooke is, but I like her!)

There was however I beautiful cherry on top of our day yesterday. 
My sister in law went into the MTC! For the next 3 months, she will be preparing to serve a mission in Tahiti! 
I know right?!

So I just realized I actually cried twice yesterday. Now I'm keeping a tally I guess.
 Anyways, saying goodbye to missionaries is so emotional!
I seriously hope my brother ends up really going to the Brazil MTC because dropping him off will be the literal worst. I JUST CAN'T DEAL WITH THAT
This is also reminding me that I've been neglecting that little are of my life. So here you go.
Baby brother Mckay graduated high school and got his mission call to Curitiba Brazil! He's not really a baby any more I guess!

He also just got a job as a life guard at Deerfield beach, so basically he's a stud. 
And I adore him. 

Since I'm on a roll talking about people I love, I just have to share this little tid-bit from Christian's life lately. 
He has been in communication with a guy who worked for years in the investment banking and financial field, something Christian could very well be pursuing in the next several years. In a recent conversation they had, he coined Christian as a "horse he would bet on".
Dude I'm with you. 
I'd DEFINITELY bet on that ;)

No but really, I'm so proud of Christian and the strides he's making, and I completely agree with this guy-  Christian is going to go places. He's willing to work so hard and push himself to unimaginable limits; limits that include working 2 jobs and writing for the pre-law review this fall, just to name a few. 
(I know. I'm tired just thinking about that!)
In case I don't make it apparent enough, I adore this guy and I'm sure glad I was lucky enough to hitch my wagon to his!


favorite things

- Cheerios. It's literally been years since I last had them, and we bought a box this weekend.
They are gone already, thanks for asking.
 I feel like when we have kids, I won't be able to pack them baggies of Cheerios for a snack because oh wait, mom would probably eat them all.

- Neighborhood bike rides. Now that we are officially a 2 road bike family, we can go do it together! I get such a high when Christian and I bike together! Speaking of Christian........

- When he plays this song and sings along while dancing with me in the kitchen.
Puddle on the floor, every single time.
Also ladies, you should try this with your husbands. I'm guessing you won't be disappointed by the results wink wink ;)
I just really love this handsome guy.

- 3 words... ish.
Macey's. Soft serve. Ice cream.
Maybe we go twice a week, maybe we don't. 
I guess you'll never know.

- These nuggets who stayed with us all weekend.
Friends since they were babies basically. I'm glad some things never change.

- And finally, I'm just really loving that time seems to be dragging on lately. Sometimes it's hard because it makes the weeks feel painfully long, but in reality, I don't want summer to end!
With that comes fall, and with fall comes winter.
And with winter, endless cold and lack of sun and that all just gets soooo annoying, amiright?
Summer, stay forever won't you?


snap shot from our weekend

 The talented Samantha Kelly took some pictures for us on Friday night and I'm officially in love with them.
Here's a little sneak peak!
Also my brother Ty is in town, so basically I'm in heaven. Happy Saturday all!


wellness wednesday: form is everything

I've been thinking about this a lot the last few days because I'm feeling the pain from an ill-adjusted bike seat. Ouch.

Guys, I'm like the ultimate form-nazi when it comes to exercise.
When the day comes that I finally get group teaching certified, I know I will harp on that more than anything. 
I watch the poor people in my Body Pump class who squat so deep that their toes scootch out passed their knees and it makes me die a little bit inside. Like this lady.
He should use that hand to straight up shove her to the floor for that awful squatting form.
Bad bad lady!

It's so super important to have the right form when exercising. 
Unlike this guy, who OBVIOUSLY doesn't know how to use the eliptical.

In running, good form can help prevent hip and knee injuries, as well as shin splints. Good running form also improves your performance and speed, and who doesn't want that?! 
It's the same for biking. 
Form is especially crucial in weight training. 
Improper form will not only increase the likelihood of injury, but it will totally prevent you from strengthening the right muscles! 
For example, if your hands aren't at the right distance on the bar when doing chest presses, and the bar isn't positioned correctly over your body, you end up over-working and straining your shoulders instead of your chest muscles.
Or during your tricep workout, you could just be like this guy who is channeling his inner Quasimodo in the second picture. And who's tryin to do that every day? Not me.

Surprisingly, I think that good form also applies to workouts like Zumba and swimming! It's everywhere!
Your exercise becomes so much more effective and less likely to kill you
(at least no more than you're expecting and intending! ;) )
when you can focus on having the right form. I think if we are putting in the effort to exercise, we all want to maximum results right? I'm a firm (and obnoxious!) believer in the importance and effectiveness of good form. 

So next time you're at the gym running, lifting weights, kickboxing, whatever it may be....
Take the time to observe yourself if you can! Maybe you will notice small improvements you can make, and in turn have a better workout the next time.



In contrast to my slightly lazy and impressively emotional week last week, Saturday was literally the most active and busy day of my life. (Okay maybe not really, but.....)
We went on a bike ride up Provo canyon in the morning, because Christian officially and finally has a road bike (!!!!), and then we hiked Stewart Falls later in the afternoon. 

(I don't know why we feel it's necessary to document our athletic endeavors. Maybe it was the endorphins.... or the fact that I was stoked from listening to Backstreet Boys and zumba music for the whole bike ride.... I mean what??)

Then we ate our weight in chicken and waffles with our D.C. married friends 
- gotta do something to offset all that physical activity
and then we biked some more... however our destination was a shave ice place, so that second round of biking doesn't really count because hello. Shave Ice. With ice cream. AND a snow cap. 
Boom boom boom. 

Anyways, when the day was over I realized something.
When my emotional state is kaput, and I'm super tired of life and such, that LAST thing I usually want to do is pack my weekend full of socializing and physical stuff. When I start to feel like that, a Nike sweatshirt I saw once pops into my head and encourages me to change those feelings.
("Don't suck, just do it!" Words of wisdom if ever there were any) 
And after this weekend, I realized that I am VERY grateful for good things in life. Good food, good company, and good hard physical exertion all make for a much happier Brooke, and sometimes what I DON'T want to do is exactly what I need. 
Funny how things like that work out.


things about life

- There is a guy at my work who sounds like he's been sucking on ice for about 4,000 hours. 
You know when you chew ice too long and your mouth gets numb and your tongue doesn't move right and when you talk you sound like what an elephant would if they could talk? 
Yeah that's him. 
Also, I've never seen him (he's allusive and hides behind the call center cubicles all day)
So I don't feel bad acknowledging his strange way of talking.

- Anyone else still do this?
I'm literally a diaper baby, obviously. 

- I don't know what it is about summer time, but I always feel the need to stoke my love of 80's rock. 
My current favorite songs are Shook Me All Night Long by AC/DC and Photograph and Love Bites by Def Leppard. I just really love synth and harmonizing and bad hair and neon with my whole soul. 

- Speaking of music.....
The new Backstreet Boys album comes out in a few weeks and maaaaayyyybbbbeeeee I'm going to buy it at midnight at Walmart. Some things never change I guess. 

- Have you been watching the Bachelorette? Christian and I are totally rooting for Zack to be the next Bachelor (let's be real, he's not going to make it to the final 2), because he's so weird and funny and happy and adorable. Also his surprised face is literally the most hilarious thing ever. 
What a lil' goober shmoober.

- I must interject this... sorry to be a total Debbie Downer in the last post. I'm just going to be real and admit that the coming months might be tough ones, so if there's more of that to come well.... apologies in advance ;)

- Christian is getting a road bike in the next few weeks! Finally we can fulfill our dreams of biking all over town together. Don't be surprised if you see him in the Tour one day.... seriously though, the guys got thighs of steel. And you didn't hear that from me ;)

- Want to hear something crazy that I did last week? 
Okay I'll tell you. 
We were stuck in absurd traffic on the fourth of July (naturally) and this guy was being the literal worst driver in the world and practically wrecking us while we were waiting to turn into our lane. After an exhausting day of festivities, I was at my wits end, so I made Christian roll down his window while I proceeded to lean over to the drivers side and politely get in this guys face about how he needed to take a Valium and chill the heck out. (I still can't believe I got so confrontational. What's happening to me?!)
Anyways, he totally backed off. And I felt a teensy bit bad but mostly I was just proud that I stopped some of the rudeness that is ever present in the streets of Provo.
(And let's just choose NOT to acknowledge the fact that I was maybe a bit rude as well. 
You can't have your cake and eat it too, amiright?!)

- Finally, like I mentioned, things have been kind of rough the last few weeks (sorry if I seem like totz the biggest grouch all the time) and Christian has been the BEST through it all. Every time I start losing my mind over something silly, like my latest breakout or the fact that I don't want to make homemade enchilada sauce with dinner, he steps in and gives me a hug and helps me calm down and tells me nice things and watches the stupid tv shows with me and basically just makes me feel like the luckiest girl ever. 
If I could wish something for everyone in the world, it would be that they could - at some point in their lives -feel the kind of the love that I feel from my dear husband. It's such a blessing. Heavens knows I'm SO undeserving, but I'm thankful he's in my life because he helps me be a better Brooke, every single day. 


today I'm just like.....

- I must start by saying I know I'm very blessed with a dear husband, a place to live, food to eat, a good education, health, and the sweet gospel. That being said, today is just one of those days and I need to exhale in the form of grouchy word vomit.
(Which is also probably just a pathetic and semi-public cry for virtual hugs because let's be real, WE ALL NEED THOSE SOMETIMES GOSH DANGIT!)  So there you go. You've been warned.

- So work has been pretty slow the last week, and then all the sudden today I got 4billiontrillion things thrown at me that have to be done before Friday (NATURALLY), and basically I have no clue what I'm doing (ALSO NATURALLY)
I'm just like.... a helpless puddle of brain mush staring at my computer screen. And brain mush is basically dripping out my nose. That's the mush level I'm at. Seriously. That's all I did for about 20 straight minutes today. Bad news: it didn't help a bit.

- I woke up this morning and felt like thousand pound weights were hanging from my feet and my motivation to do anything was non-existent. So I went back to bed until 11 am.
I'm just like.... FRIGGIN TAKE THAT, WORLD.

- You know how sometimes you just want to eat something, like more than anything in the whole world?
Today I'm just like..... why the heck aren't there french fries raining from the sky?!

- And finally, things have been shaken up quite a bit recently. To the point where everything I've known my whole life doesn't really make sense anymore and my whole perception of reality is.... well.....
No longer reality.
That's vague and dramatic sounding but seriously. I'm taking a beating and it's really just way too much to deal with. Probably the reason why every other area of my life
(read: work and waking up in the morning and not being able to eat french fries right this very second) 
feels so much worse than it probably is. Sorry. It's the truth. And that's all I have to say about that.


holiday hangover, how 'bout you?

I love the 4th of July like any normal person, but sometimes it just feels like a holiday where we are expected to run ourselves ragged, eat too much potato salad, and get stuck in traffic jams. 3 things which I'm normally NOT all about. (Read: that's exactly what we did yesterday and I vow to never do it again!)

I'm not ready to let the party stop however 
(Look at me just a-eatin my words....)
and tonight we are going to a FREE. OUTDOOR. CONCERT. 
Those are 3 of my favorite words, aside from "puppies", "cheesecake" and "fofo", which is the Spanish word for squishy, which I think is hilarious. Also my darling lover will be at said concert with me so.... win win. Maybe we will kiss a little bit. (False. That's not a maybe, that's a definite.) And then I will officially be the happiest camper in the world, despite my post-independence-day-hangover.
(Although I'm thinking Will Smith officially wins the award for "worst-independence-day-hangover-in-the-whole-entire-world-also-universe-also-I'm-Will-Smith-sodon'teventry".)

Anyways, this post is obviously on the fast track to nowhere, so......

Here is a version of the national anthem by one of my most favoritest bands in the history of ever never ever never land. Enjoy. 'Murica.


a funny story from our dating life

Some of you probably know that Christian and I met, and pseudo dated during our freshman year at BYU. 
Glad you figured out your hair situation, love. 

The last few days I've been reflecting a lot on our relationship and I remembered something truly hilarious from the very bare-bones-beginnings of it. 
After Christian and I confessed our feelings for one another
(If I remember correctly, it was through text.....
Obviously we were truly mature 19 year old baby children)
one of my friends asked me if I would write to him on his mission. 

My exact response was:
Clearly, I was NOT all about tying myself to some young missionary fella for 2 years. 

And here we are, almost 5 years later, and I'm eating my words every single day.
 Not only did I write and write and write to Christian (those were the most excruciating 2 years, I'll tell ya!)
I married the guy.

And boy am I thankful, because he still sweeps me off my feet just as much as he did back then.

wellness wednesday: what's stinky and clean at the same time?

I've been all sorts of anti-blogging lately. Life has hit us upside the head over the last few weeks, so I'm trying to take some time to reconnect with my husband, myself, and the things that really matter. So let's just ignore the fact that there are going to be quite a few meaningless posts in a row, shall we?
We shall. And moving on.

So last week I tried something new. 

First off, I've always had a very sensitive scalp. Water other than my normal shower, dramatic change in temperatures and humidity levels, and new products always cause a lot of irritation. It also changes and gets quite irritated along with my cycle, which I think is dumb and unjust but hey. 
I also use salt spray almost every day, so along with the fact that my hair is colored, basically my hair and scalp take a constant beating. 
I've been wanting to use a clarifying shampoo for a while now, but then I remembered you can do the same thing with APPLE CIDER VINEGAR. I had a bottle in my pantry so I decided to go for it. 

It was the most amazing thing I've probably ever done for my hair. 
(Aside from this one time I got a hot oil scalp massage that lasted for literally 45 minutes. 
Are you dying just thinking about that? Because I am)

My hair felt so soft and clean, and my scalp has been irritation free all week long! It felt really nice to strip all the products off my hair, especially considering I spray it with salt every day.
The things we do for beauty.
If you are feeling the need for some hair revival without spending a ton of money, I HIGHLY recommend doing this!

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