Reflecting on 2017

Happy New Year, friends! Can you believe it’s already 2018?! I feel like the past year flew by, but at the same time it was the longest year of my life! Such a strange mix of emotions are attached to the past twelve months.

I don’t want to get too detailed and personal — I know you’re probably scrolling through tons of bloggers’ NY resolutions and reflections. But I think I’d be silly to not reflect on (and share) all the things this year taught me. God used the craziest things to teach me the most important lessons, and proved Himself faithful throughout all of it. The good definitely outweighs the bad, but the bad that this year brought was definitely some of the worst I’ve ever experienced.

We started the year out by planning our honeymoon! ☀️ Yes, we waited a couple years to take our honeymoon after getting married because life was crazy busy, but we FINALLY had time (and money saved!) to do it. We spent weeks trying to nail down the perfect honeymoon resort, and in March we finally picked one in the Dominican Republic, and we were supposed to go in April. We were SO. EXCITED.

About a week later, my husband came home from work and flipped my world upside down by saying the words that every military spouse dreads: “I’m being deployed.”

Except our deployment was extra special in that they chose him at the last minute for whatever reason… and instead of having a 4 month notice to plan/prepare, he had about 3 weeks. He was set to leave on the same day we were supposed to leave for our honeymoon. LOL right? Little did I know this was an allusion to how the next year would go, haha.

During this time, I was also applying for Dietetic Internships because I had finally worked up the nerve to go for it. I had spent some time building my resume and had some hope that maybe I had a chance. Well, unfortunately I got my hopes up too high on that one, because on the same day that hubby left (and that we were supposed to be honeymooning), I found out that I did not get matched for the internship.

Talk about ALL the curveballs ALL at the same time. Less than a week after hubby leaving for deployment, my first injury struck (of MANY #deploymentcurse). I was alone, hurting all the time, and unsure of the future. I tried to use all of these struggles as a learning experience, and began to pray constantly. I felt my relationship with Christ strengthen to a point it’s never been before.

I made strong, amazing friendships during those seven months that I know God put in my life to get me through. I learned so much about myself, my weaknesses AND my strengths, and especially about my marriage. Nothing like seven months spent in different countries to show you how strong you actually are!

So, fast forward a lot of lonely nights, wine and chocolate, a couple crazy hurricanes, a knee strain/back issues/migraines/broken toe/hamstring strain, several trips home to family, and some awesome friendships later… and my sweet hubby came home to me safely. I would say this day wins my 2017, hands down. All of the bad things that this year brought disappeared when he walked through that airport to me.

Fast forward some more, and my injuries are slowly (but fairly surely) improving. I’m still struggling with the frustration of not being able to be active, but isn’t that life sometimes? I’m finding new passions in my life, that give me hope for my future career. My husband is here with me, right where he should be, and we get to move to a new adventure in 2018. If there’s one thing I’ve learned the past twelve months it’s that God has different plans than we do, and no matter how much they hurt at first, they’re 1,000% better for us in the end. Hold on to that promise, and you’ll make it. God showed me that sometimes he has to take us to our worst to bring us to our best.

Whatever struggles 2017 brought you, use them to make you stronger in 2018! No matter how rough it gets, remember God isn’t punishing you, he is strengthening you for big things! I pray that you have the strength and motivation to chase those big things in the upcoming year.

Cheers to you and to 2018! Thanks for reading,

XO beth


My Review of “What the Health”

*actual picture of the eggs I ate last night ^

I’m sure you’ve heard by now all the rave about the latest documentary on Netflix called “What the Health.” I certainly have, and was shocked at the response and number of people claiming they needed to instantly change their whole diet based solely on this documentary. So I immediately decided I needed to watch it and form my own opinions on it.

If you haven’t heard about it or seen it yet, this documentary looks at the link between our diets (mostly meat and dairy) and major diseases they can potentially cause. It is clearly produced by people pushing the vegan agenda, and it also completely discredits several major health organizations (like the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, etc.).

I will start by saying this: I do acknowledge and appreciate that the health of our nation is being discussed. We are certainly experiencing an obesity epidemic in this country, and it should be brought to light how to prevent it further. The majority of people need to start understanding how the type/amount of foods they are consuming is affecting their overall health. However, the way this film goes about it is not so much informative as it is simply one giant scare tactic with little valid research to back it.

One of the biggest red flags to me was that, throughout the whole 1.5-hour-long film, they interviewed only TWO Registered Dietitians, and one of those two only spoke for about a whole 20 seconds. The rest were mostly doctors who simply stated their opinions without backing it with hard scientific evidence. AND, at the end of the film, several of the doctors even admitted that doctors hardly get ANY nutritional education and know little about how diet affects the body… so then why are we taking everything they are pushing on us without questioning their research or validity?!

Here are my main points I wrote down while watching it that I want to share:

YES processed meat is not the type of meat you should be consuming for the majority of your meat choices… NO meat will not give you cancer, as long as you are choosing the right kinds! (Lean meats that are organically raised/fed are best, but this is not always realistic. It isn’t the meat that’s harmful, but the chemicals/antibiotics that are sometimes put in them.) I personally am not the biggest fan of meat but only because it’s a preference thing – I do still try to eat a serving of lean meat at least a few times a week.

YES a vegan/plant-based diet CAN work for people! Don’t get me wrong, I find nothing wrong with a plant-only diet, if you have your reasons for doing so. You can still get all the macro- and micronutrients needed from plants if you follow it correctly. But if you choose to do so because this video scared you into thinking meat of any kind at all is going to kill you? NOT a good reason. You do not have to rely on a plant-based diet to avoid disease. People on a plant-based diet can still get sick, just like people on animal-based diets can. Every body is different and handles food in its own way.

NO sugar alone does not cause diabetes… the main contributors to diabetes are genetics, lack of physical activity, and high energy (calorie) intake. So yes, a diet full of sugar is often associated with a high energy diet. Don’t let the wording of that whole diabetes conversation confuse you. And no, eating plants will probably not reverse your diabetes in a week or two like they imply. Food can certainly be the best medication in many circumstances, but it’s very complex and disease-dependent.

NO eating one egg a day is NOT equivalent to smoking five cigarettes a day!!! This one really pissed me off, to be honest. If eggs were as bad as smoking five cigarettes a day, I’d probably be dead or have cancer by now. It is also not equivalent to a whole egg McMuffin.

YES eggs have cholesterol in their yolks! NO it is not going to kill you as long as you’re eating them moderately, and yolks also have nutrients not found in the whites of the egg.

YES diets high in red meat (*note I said HIGH in red meat, not just eating a serving. A small amount in the diet won’t hurt you*) can be a risk factor for cancer… BUT this film claims that even lean chicken can cause cancer! Um, last time I checked chicken isn’t red meat so bye.

YES you can consume dairy and NOT DIE!!!! Let’s think about this… if dairy is terrible for us, then WHY IS IT A WHOLE FOOD GROUP?! Yes you should choose low/non fat options and yes you should not eat it in excess… but to go to the extent of saying that even babies don’t need milk? A bit excessive if you ask me. And if you’re reading this then I assume you pretty much asked me, so you can’t get mad at my somewhat sassy opinions. 🙂

YES you should try to avoid constant medications IF possible, but some people simply need them based on their conditions. So yes, the pharma industry is huge and all about the money, but some people can’t simply be healed by eating plants. If it were that easy then this would all be a different story.

YES some of the sponsors of these organizations do happen to have a conflict of interest, and I do find that odd and slightly off-putting. But at least the organization is there and is making the effort to do something about the issue. Before completely discrediting them, you should make sure your research is accurate.

Overall, I would not recommend this documentary to someone because it is so one-sided and misinformed that it is completely misleading people. My advice? Find what works for YOUR body, based on YOUR specific needs, and focus on a balanced, varied diet consisting of REAL whole foods, while also making healthy lifestyle choices. If you want to lose weight and trim fat? Energy in must be less than energy out… AKA eat less and/or workout more. Adequate amounts of protein, fat, and carbohydrate are key. Don’t buy into everything you hear, unless you know they are a valid resource back by scientific evidence.

Thank you for reading! If you disagree with my opinions, please know that I respect that and don’t mean to offend ANYONE! I simply want people to be informed of misleading information so that they know to make the best choices for their body/wellbeing 🙂

If you ever have questions about nutritional information, feel free to comment or email me!

XO beth



What Living on Base Has Taught Me About Decor

Hey friends! I hope your day rocks so far. I’m currently swooning over this cup of coffee… it’s some local coffee we picked up from the farmers market and I’m in love. It may or may not be my second cup of the day.

Today I’m giving you a (tiny) look into my home so that I can share what living on base has shown me about decorating my house! This may be helpful to any new military spouses who are about to move into base housing OR for anyone simply wondering how to efficiently (in my opinion) decorate. Or just for anyone wanting a little glimpse into my base housing experience. 🙂

I am only showing a couple of areas in my home, because as I’ll explain shortly, this is a PROCESS. And a slow one! Keep in mind we are still kind of newly weds soooo some areas of the house are just not decorated yet!

1. Use pops of color wherever you can! For those of you unfamiliar with the white walls club, typically base housing has all white walls in every room of the house. You are only allowed to paint them something else IF you paint them white again before you move out. This just sounds like a ton of work for a temporary home, so we chose to stick with the white walls. This means that you must add color any chance you get! I’m a huge sucker for neutrals (with decor AND my clothes!) so I have learned to add color. Add some bright flowers to a table, or a bright color picture on the wall. You may have some bright throw pillows you can add to your couch to brighten up the whole room. Just don’t be afraid to add bright colors where you can – as long as they match/coordinate the theme of the room! One of my favorite pops of color in my dining room is the peonies – in my table center piece and on the dream catcher. It’s a simple way to brighten the room!

2. Utilize all of the space you’re given! Here is a great example of this – my bar nook! When we first moved into this house, we were intrigued and honestly confused by the awkward, random nook in the dining room wall. We left it alone for several months because we couldn’t decide what to do with the space. Then one day it hit me – a bar nook! I searched Pinterest for all kinds of inspo, and thanks to my hubby’s willingness to spend hours in HomeGood’s with me, my bar area came to life within a week! I combined my love for chic/classic decor with his love for whiskey (the prints) and BAM a bar area we both love! So, don’t be scared to get creative with those random spaces in your house! Use the space you’re given efficiently and you’ll find it easier to decorate AND store things.

3. Simple is okay! I find myself often comparing my house to other peoples’ houses and how thoroughly decorated they are. But I have to remind myself that it’s okay to go for a simple look! One thing that drives me crazy is clutter – so having a simple theme is great if you get clutter anxiety like me! It makes the room look clean and tidy without having to try too hard. Plus, if you’re only going to be living there a year or two, then it’s just a few less things you have to take down when it comes time to PCS!

4. Decorating is a process! This is the biggest realization I have had since moving here! It may sound silly but when we first moved here and made a few friends, I would get so down on myself after seeing their houses. I felt like my house would never look as good as theirs or that I would never know how to decorate well enough. But then I realized, we JUST got married less than two years ago! We JUST moved here a year ago! We are still figuring out what our style is and letting it evolve into exactly what we want it to be. It takes some time to accumulate all of the pieces you need for your house to look whole! Not only time but money! It definitely takes MONEY. So what we have done is simply buy a few things here and there, every couple of months, and before you know it you’ll have a whole room complete! It just takes time (and patience). You gotta save up dat money to be able to replace the old, eclectic college hand-me-downs with your very own furniture.

Hope this helps you out, wherever you are in your home decor journey! Here is where my decor is from:

Dream catcher – HEREMy friend Kristi from back home has started an awesome business (Krafti Kristi) and her goal is to bring your Pinterest boards to life. How cool is that?! I know I’m guilty of pinning crafts and never following through with them, so having someone do it for you is pretty awesome. Check out her page!

Gold photos + ‘Kitchen’ sign + clock + succulents – Hobby Lobby! The photos and signs were incredibly affordable, and I made my own succulent displays! Just got the jar, stones, and plants from HL and assembled it how I wanted 🙂

Bar cart + chai candle – HomeGood’s! Seriously there are no words for how bad I want everything when I go in HomeGood’s. If you need a bar cart, they have lots of cute ones to choose from!

Large whiskey print – Amazon! 

Hanging wine rack – my talented husband! 🙂

Painted wine bottles – used from my wedding! Efficiency at its finest 🙂

Aztec rug + gold lights – Target! Linking the rug HERE. Lights were in the dollar section!